Years ago a long-time client of mine handed me a small gift-wrapped box before a backcountry trip. I opened it to find a pair of $350 titanium pliers. I gasped and said, “Why would I wear a pair of expensive pliers when a cheap pair would do the job?”  He retorted that in his profession as a private banker he wore tailored suits by well-known designers not for his clients but because they lasted and he loved the feel and the fit.

So with that in mind here is my short list of some fine holiday gifts for the angler on your gift-buying list. The fit, finish and overall feel of these items are why I suggest them. By the way, I still wear those pliers everyday and they do feel great there on my hip and they have never failed me.

Key Largo Rods have been crafted in the Florida Keys since 1978 by Rick Berry and are sold throughout the United States now. The fact that you can sit down with Rick in his shop and hand pick the components like the rod blank, guides, reel seat, handle and the custom color wraps is amazing! From kite rods to Bluewater conventional rods and everything in between, the Key Largo Rod shop has what you can dream up. Visit KeyLargoRods.com.

A rod without a reel is a stick without a purpose: Daiwa reels developed a second-generation reel with a pedigree that was earned on the decks of charter boats worldwide.  The BG series of spinning reels have been the tool of choice for those who demand day-in, day-out performance in the harshest conditions, both from saltwater and the beat down that slammer dolphin and monster tarpon can produce. The new BG reels live up to expectations and go beyond every day on my boats; from sea trout to the blistering runs and sky high jumps of giant tarpon, they will meet and exceed the expectations of your angler.

The Tackle Center of Islamorada offers great selection of Xtratuf boots. Take a look at the 6-inch Ankle Deck boot; it has quickly become the dance shoe of choice for the offshore and backcountry guys and gals. Wet feet are great on a beach but are a curse on a boat. From the non-skid sole to the tough exterior on the outside, to the all-day comfort of the foot bed, you and your feet will be impressed at the end of the day on the water. These boots come in colors for the lady angler on your list and the guy on your list will love the fact that they hold up under daily use and abuse.

 

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