Spiderwire Utility Box Backpack

     I spend a lot of time talking about the need for mobility when shore fishing.  The ability to move freely over terrain while casting is quite possibility the most important aspect of covering water effectively.  So how do you do it?
Spiderwire Utility Box Backpack
     I have tried lots of tackle boxes and found that they just didn't work.  They are usually hard to carry, heavy, and impossible to hold onto when casting.  I used a cart for a while and although they were more mobile and allowed me to take extra rods.  I still couldn't cast while pulling it around and I was constantly forced to leave it behind if the terrain got rough.  Around that time I was introduced to land based shark fishing and one of the first things that the guys mentioned was that they used backpacks to haul gear from their cars to the beach.  Using a backpack allowed them to keep their hands free so that they could carry the heavy rod and reel combinations at the same time, saving them multiple trips.  So then I wondered, would this work in Wisconsin?  Well the short answer was yes, but which backpack to use?  I wanted something that could hold large tackle trays, my rain gear, and if possible an extra rod.  Maybe have my release tools on the outside of the bag for easy access?  After searching backpacks online, both fishing specific and general hiking I decided to just try and use a hiking backpack.  It worked well enough, but I still couldn't carry extra rods or have my release tools quickly accessible.  This caused some real problems on more than one occasion while trying to release a very angry musky.  I can direct you to a few spots on Lake Monona where if lucky, you may be able to extract a set of boga grips from the sand.
     Eventually I had enough of this and decided to pay out the money to get a REAL fishing backpack.  A few days spent pouring over reviews online I decided on the Spiderwire Utility Box Backpack.  It had everything I was looking for and was marketed by a company I had faith in.  I placed the order and was pleasantly surprised at how nice it was when it arrived.
My Musky Mojo Rod fits nicely.
     My first impression of the bag was that this really was a backpack for the angler.  The bag came with 3 utility trays.  Just basic adjustable trays, good for smaller lures (think bass lures).  It also has a cooler built right into the middle chamber of the bag.  It works well enough, and will keep your drinks or bait chilled on those hot summer days.  The rod holders on each side of the bag are really sturdy and will hold any rod from ultralight to musky XXXH.  This was nice to see, because I was initially skeptical about my musky rods being able to fit, seeing how this backpack was designed for bass fisherman.  My tools fit on the outside of the bag making it much easier to access them in a hurry.  My boga grips clip easily to the strap system and I can even fit my long handle pliers with out any issues.  Plenty of room in the top of the bag for an extra layer, snacks, or rain gear.  The bottom compartment is designed to hold the tackle trays, but if you need more room the dividers in the bag are velcroed in so you can adjust them anyway you can imagine.  With lots of extra pockets and a nice internal small item organizer in the upper compartment you can carry everything you need to enjoy a day at the lake or river.  Also the included removable pliers sheath is a nice feature.  As is the hard shell felt lined sunglasses holder.
     After using this bag a few times in different conditions I have really taken a liking to it.  I have used it ice fishing this winter for brown trout on Lake Michigan.  It is really nice to be able to hole hop without having to go back to a base, when I want to switch rods based on lure presentation.  I have been to Port Washington in pursuit of salmon with it where I found out that the bags small item organizer was the ideal solution for keeping track of all those little hooks and swivels.  Most recently I used it while wading for pike on the Cedar River near Palo, IA.  You wouldn't believe the peace of mind you get when your hands are free while traversing difficult shoreline.  All in all this is a great fishing backpack.  It meets all the requirements of the shore bound angler and it looks pretty good while doing it.
     I made up a quick video review for YouTube.  It covers pretty much everything I said in this article, maybe a little more.
     Tight Lines.

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