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Hey, gang, only four more shopping days until Christmas. Got all of your shopping done?
If you are shopping for the outdoorsman or woman in your life, it should not be that hard of a project.
Let’s see if I can give you a little help here.
How about the fisherman in the family? Depending on the age of the fisherman in mind, the choices are endless. My first choice would be a gift card for a local tackle shop like the Fishin’ Factory in Southington (860-621-8145).
Over the years, my Darlin’ Edna has purchased a number of gift cards there for me and they served me well during the fishing seasons. I could get the exact lures, line and bait I required for any of my trips and it did not take any money out of my pocket.
There was a time that a fishing rod and reel were just that. Any one would do for whatever fishing you wanted to do. However, over the years, the entire fishing industry has morphed into a multi-faceted business with various rods and reels as well as fishing line targeted at whatever species of fish you might be after.
For the trout fisherman, there are a number of ways you can go depending on who you are purchasing for. Fly fishing is becoming more and more popular, and this seems to be true even for many of the women now into fishing.
While there are some dealers who offer fishing rods and reels that can break the bank, there are other alternatives, especially for a novice fly fisherman.
For the hardcore fly fisherman, there are fly-tying kits that might do the trick.
There are also a number of ultralight spinning outfits that are great for trout fishing and many spinning rods and reels that can do double duty and work for trout as well as other species of fish found here in Connecticut.
You might want to purchase heavier rigs for carp fishermen and those who pursue walleye. The walleye fishery here in Connecticut has become quite popular.
And let’s not forget the carp fisherman. Believe it or not, there was a time when many fishermen looked down at the carp as a trash fish, unworthy of their efforts. Not anymore. Carp fishing has gone high tech and you only have to check out the carp fishing equipment at the sporting goods and tackle shops to see what I am talking about.
And for the kids just getting into fishing, there is a host of beginner rods and reels that you can purchase. One of the easiest reels for a youngster to get used to casting is one of those Zebco push-button reels.
And while you are at it, why not get them a tacklebox and put some hooks, sinkers and floats into it?
For the hardcore fisherman: waders, multi-pocket fishing vests, tackle boxes, lures — and if you really want to surprise them, how about a fishing kayak or cartop boat?
It doesn’t have to be a new one. I know plenty of fishermen who would be just as happy with a used cartop boat or kayak.
For the boat-owning outdoorsman, an electronic fish finder is always a welcome gift along with an electric trolling motor.
A lifesaving gift could be a personal floatation device (a.k.a. life jacket). Too many times lives have been lost on the water because of the lack of a life jacket.
As for the hunter or firearms owner in the family, there is not enough room in this column to list all of the possibilities for a Christmas gift.
Just about anything camouflage will do regardless of what type of hunting they do. There are camouflage items for bowhunters, waterfowl hunters, deer hunters, and now they even sell various household items in camo for the sport that can’t live without it in his life.
This includes underwear, but that still baffles me.
A trip to a local firearms dealer like Blue Trail Rifle Range can also take care of your Christmas gift needs. Blue Trail has plenty of firearms and ammo. They also have gift certificates for shooting time on one of their outdoor or indoor ranges.
Locally, you might have to check out one of the big name outfitters like Bass Pro Shops/Cabela’s for some archery equipment, including arrows and bows.
One of the hottest archery items here in Connecticut right now is a crossbow. There are those that love using them and those who are against them. I am in favor of them.
Another item that is quite popular is a remote camera that can be used to detect areas where deer are traveling through. Some of the photos of deer I have seen on these camera units are unbelievable, and that even includes photos of some really nice bucks that temp the horn hunters.
And don’t overlook all of the new types of outdoor wear for the hunter in the family. There was a time that anything wool was the proper wear for hunting, and the basic colors were either red or green checkered jackets and pants.
Not anymore. Now you can get state-of-the-art outerwear that can keep them warm and dry in just about any type of weather. Just make a trip to any outdoor outfitter and you will be amazed on the various types of clothing and accessories now available.
And, once again, a gift card never fails.
We have a few copies left of our book, South Meriden Memories, a publication that tells of a time in the Village of South Meriden when life was a lot different than it is today.
You can get a copy at Tom’s Diner, 55 Main St., South Meriden, or by mailing a check to Mike Roberts, 102, Dogwood Lane, Meriden CT 06450.
The book costs $15 and one dollar of each sale goes to Christmas in the Village.
HEY! MERRY CHRISTMAS from Edna, our nine-pound terror, Charlie, and your old outdoor writer.
See ya’ and God Bless America and watch over our troops wherever they may be serving our great country.