There is nothing like the open water and the still peace and quiet that you get when you’re out there fishing on the water. When it is just you and nature, there is something so soothing and peaceful about it. It’s one of the many things that anglers fall in love with besides their love of fishing. The only thing more exciting than catching a really big fish is the thrill of coming home and sharing it with your friends and family.
But how do you get the fish home fresh and intact? Unless you live within walking distance of your fishing spot, your fish needs a way to stay fresh until it can make it to the dinner table. This is where the fish bag comes into play.
A fish bag is something every angler needs on their fishing expeditions. Not just any fish bag will do, though. You need to find the best fish bag that is going to tick all the boxes you need to keep your fish as fresh as it can be. How do you separate a great fish bag from a mediocre one? These five points are what you should be looking out for.
What to look for in a fish bag
It’s thin but it can also be wide
The perfect fish bag is one that goes both ways. It can be really thin and compact when it’s folded down and empty. However, when you need to fit your fish in it, this bag miraculously expands to become big enough to hold your catch of the day. The bag should be able to open wide enough to accommodate fishes of every shape and size. It doesn’t matter how fat or thick or fish is, the best type of fishing bag is the bag that expands to fit the needs of the angler and the fish.
It has a buckle closure
A fish bag with a buckle closure is going to make your life so much easier. While zip closure fish bags are not all bad, sometimes if you happen to catch a fish that fits snugly in the bag, there is a risk of the fins getting caught in the zipper. That makes it tricky to get the bag open and if you happen to tug a little too hard, you could risk ruining the bag altogether and your fish too. Fish bags with a buckle closure are definitely the way to go. Once you’ve got your fish safely inside the bag and you’re ready to go, buckle closure bags make it easy. All you have to do is roll the top down, fold in the corners on both sides, buckle it up and voilà! Everything is nice and safe inside the bag and you don’t have the fiddly zipper to contend with anymore.
The insulation is closed cell foam
You’ll be glad that you have a fish bag that is made of closed cell foam should you accidentally get a little hole in your bag. If the fish made a small hole or perhaps you unintentionally made a hole in your bag, closed cell foam will be there to the rescue. This means that your bag is not going to be full of water like many of the other fish bags on the market. The insulation on some fish bags is like a sponge. This means that any water that comes in immediately gets soaked up, trapping the water inside. Eventually the bag is going to be full of water and you’ll have to toss it in the trash and get a new one. Why do that when there is a bag out there on the market that could save your money? Closed cell foam fish bags is the way to go. With a closed cell foam fish bag, if it gets water in it, all you have to do is dry it off and it will be good to go, as good as new.
Holding ice like a champ
You’d be surprised to find a lot of fish bags out there don’t do a great job when it comes to holding ice. A fish bag should absolutely be able to hold ice. Once you’ve caught your fish, you’ll want to keep it nice and fresh until you’re ready to head home. You’re not ready to head back just yet after just one catch sometimes. There could be days when you plan to spend a little more time on the water hoping to catch more than one fish. Meanwhile, if your bag doesn’t hold any ice, the fish you’ve already caught will be sitting out there in the sun going bad. By the time you’re ready to head back and pop your fish on the grill, it doesn’t taste as fresh or as great anymore. This is why ice is so important when you’re out there on your fishing trips. Whether you plan to catch one fish or two, you need ice. A bag that holds ice is one that is made out of tarpaulin polythene, strong and durable enough to hold ice or even ice blocks if that is something you prefer to use on your fishing trips instead.
Thick straps that make it easy to transport
A fish bag with thick straps that make it easy to transport your cargo is the best kind of fish bag. Thick straps means the weight is distributed much better to avoid joint and shoulder pain down the road. Lugging around a heavy bag of fish is not easy, especially if your bag has thin straps because it is going to be digging into your shoulders and flesh. It might not seem like a big deal at first, until you have to walk quite a bit and then you’ll start to feel the pinch.
Here’s another quick tip when picking out your fish bag: pick a bag that is waterproof and not just water resistant. Waterproof bags are going to repel water on the surface. Any splash of water that comes its way is going to roll right off and none of the contents inside are going to get wet. With water resistant material, the material of the bag is going to be woven together so tightly that water will have a hard time trying to find a way in. That is the kind of bag you want out there with you on the water.
Find the best fish bag for every fishing need at Reliable Fishing. Come learn our story and discover why we have made the best fishing bags in the industry for years.
Featured image: Frank Sanchez (@spearchito)/Instagram