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Christmas presents for anglers

What do you buy the fisherman who has everything? Ron Cousins has some suggestions…


This is the time of year when the angler in the family thinks of all the fish he could have caught during days spent Christmas shopping. Everyone else ponders the big question of what fishing-themed gift to buy to compensate for those days away from the riverbank.

How about some electronic help on the riverbank? Anda Sport has launched a bite alarm and smartphone app that should go down well with carp anglers. The indicators and app work together to give significant advantages over other remote alarms by not only signalling a bite but also providing a real time report on the angle of the rod and recording any slackening of the line that could herald a fish moving off with the bait.

If you have ever wondered what is happening down below where your bait is doing its stuff, Svendson Sports has the answer with the Water Wolf Camera. The 11cm long video camera, which took three awards at this year’s International Angling Trade Show in Brussels, is waterproof to a depth of 100m and can be mounted on the line in front of the hook and provide four hours of non-stop recording on a 16GB micro SD card of fish chasing and taking the bait.

The iPad is now an essential piece of kit for long stay carp anglers and sea fishermen; but the potential for damage is high and many meet their megabyte maker after being walked or sat on or left exposed to water. The waterproof Nuud iPad case from Lifeproof would make a great present as it is a waterproof, dirtproof, snowproof and shockproof protection case.    

What about something to give the hopeful fisherman a helping hand when he finally reaches the bank side? German company Blutbombette has borrowed nanomolecular technology from the medical industry to produce a fish attractant for predators. Devised with input from scientists at Dresden Biological Institute, it takes the form of a tablet inside a clear capsule that is placed on the line ahead of the lure. It spreads its fish-attracting contents as it is retrieved through the water.

Tea drinking and fishing go well together and no-one misses out on a cuppa when the Storm Kettle is around. Once issued to allied soldiers, who christened it the Benghazi Boiler, this clever solution to some outdoor living problems carries water between two aluminium skins that form a sealed chimney. The kettle is placed on its fire bowl using any small tinder and the fire is fed via the chimney. There’s no need to carry gas, fuel blocks or inflammable liquids and enough water for four mugs is boiled in less than four minutes.

If there’s a fly fisherman in the family who remembers fondly when Britain was the fishing tackle manufacturing centre of the world, he’s sure to appreciate a fly reel made completely in Harrogate by The Fly Reel Company. Machined from solid block aerospace grade aluminium, the reel is hard anodised with a 50 microns thick aluminium oxide coating which is available in a choice of colours and second only to diamond in hardness.  

Your angler’s tackle box is probably full of lures of all descriptions; but Canadian manufacturer LiveTarget has something that is really new in the BaitBall range. Essentially it is a single hard plastic lure designed with a small group of baitfish painted on either side to give predators the impression they are hunting several smaller weaker fish instead of just one. It has been a big hit the other side of the pond and I reckon French pike, perch and zander will go for this in a big way.

Lures make great stocking fillers and here in France we have Autain Pêche with a range for every eventuality. They cater for pike, perch, zander and trout fishing and a selection would make a great gift.

One problem with all this new gear is how do you get it from the car to the water? British Firm Preston Innovations has the solution in their Shuttle - a four wheel super-pram which will carry everything you need and probably leave room for members of the family to hitch a ride. My wife Caroline has bought one for me although when she mentioned how handy it would be in the garden I fear I sensed an ulterior motive.

Finally, if you are still in doubt about what to give an angler for Christmas, how about renewing their Carte de Pêche which comes due on New Year’s Day. This gives access to thousands of kilometres of river, canal and lake. For 90€, they have 365 days of fishing - and they will remember you on every one.





© Living Magazine - published in December 2014