Friday, April 23, 2021

Last-minute gift ideas

| December 24, 2020 12:00 AM

Well, here we are…Christmas Eve and you still have not gotten that special angler on your list that perfect gift you know they deserve!

One nice thing about needing a gift for a special fisherperson in your life is that there are literally hundreds of gift ideas, and especially here in the Flathead Valley, plenty of places to find them!

If you have a younger angler you are shopping for, I will highly encourage you to get them a fly tying kit.

While not an avid fly guy myself, I can tell you that a tying kit could very well be the beginning of a lifelong hobby, both in the fishing and in the making of one’s own flies to catch fish with.

This is a no-brainer! Another option for a younger angler might be an angler’s tool kit or a fish catching logbook to help them keep track of all the species they catch over their budding fishing “career.”

Perhaps you have an adult angler that is new to fishing, but not really sure if they are going to be a fly angler or a conventional angler.

There are certain things such as quality sunglasses, a tackle bag with the “Plano” boxes inside, a “Trout Kit” from Mepps or Panther Martin (a selection of spinners and lures) or even a nice personal cooler for keeping their lunch and drinks cold and protected that are just generic enough that you have all the bases covered.

Maybe you have an ice angler that you are buying for. Right now is a great time to find all the hottest gear and any of the local tackle shops can help you pick out the best lures and baits for our local waters and species.

A quality pair of fishing specific gloves, a small sled to pull gear out onto the lake or even an underwater camera will never be looked down upon.

If you know your ice angler fairly well, and you know what species they like to pursue, then consider getting them a high end, custom ice fishing rod.

Della Bay rods are a newer company, with roots both in Montana AND Minnesota (de ice fishing capitol of the world dontchaknowyashureyabetcha) that are exclusively available at the Sportsman and Ski Haus and they can help you select just the right rod for the species of fish being pursued.

And if your loved one ventures out onto the ice often, wearing wool pants and a down jacket, or maybe old ratty Carhart bibs, consider a gift of a flotation suit, specifically designed for ice fishing.

It will keep them warm, dry, comfortable and organized with all the pockets and gadget holders. Most importantly though, if they do break through the ice, the buoyancy provided by these suits means they will almost certainly return home, wet but safe.

Snappy Sports Senter has an excellent assortment of these suits and can assist in helping you make the right decision.

Making a last-minute purchase for any angler is easy. You can almost never have too many lures, knives, tackle boxes and pouches, disposable hand and toe warmers, or sunglasses.

Good luck shopping!

Speaking of ice fishing, the first Perch Assault of the year took place Dec. 12, with 100 anglers going head-to-head on Smith Lake to catch their five largest yellow perch.

Congratulations go out to Steve Schenk and Terry Riley for once again showing us all how it is done on Smith Lake. Second place went to Russ Geldrich and Chance Evenson, third to the legendary Jim Hoover and Jamey Curylo, fourth to Josh Green and Cody Walter and fifth to

Brendon Limpo and Mike Riggles.

Red Dutton weighed the biggest perch of the day at 1.59 pounds!

Congratulations to all the anglers! This Saturday is the 50th (or so) Sunriser Lions Club Smith Lake Derby.

This is a family friendly event with all kinds of prizes and gifts for the kiddos, adult categories and 100 rods donated by the Flathead Chapter of Walleyes Unlimited of Montana.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

I’ll see you on the water!

Howe is the owner/outfitter at Howe’s Fishing, A Able and Mo Fisch Charters. Call 406-257-5214 or at