The Belt, The Net, The Stick

Gear Update July 17, 2019

Please see Recommend Gear for the complete list


The Belt

Again inspired from Trout­bit­ten who made made me think about the wad­ing belt.

First of all, wear one. Espe­cial­ly if you wear waders, because in a pinch, they hold enough air in you waders to keep you a float for a few moments to allow you to cor­rect pos­si­bly dis­as­trous  mis­takes. Two: this beld is wide and thick and pro­vides good lum­bar sup­port which is essen­tial to sup­port all the core-use your body is going through hold­ing you steady in mov­ing water and cast­ing. Three: It serves as the basis for vital gear, that should go here and not your pack. Pri­marly, I am refer­ring to your land­ing net. More below.


This is a quick and dirty method to tie things togeth­er until you are hap­py with it and then use some­thing more attrac­tive like nylon but it works—it’s quick.

The Magnet

A key sys­tem in your land­ing net sys­tem. This mag­net allows for a quick release to allow you to land that trout and if you place it well, you can auto­mat­i­cal­ly lock it back into place with­out much effort.

The one of the mag­net should be attacked to your belt. I’ve seen com­pet­i­tive anglers do this; I think it is far eas­i­er and faster to get a hold of you net and just as easy to reat­tach when you are done.  I’m right hand­ed so I land with my left hand, so the mag­net is con­nect­ed to the left side of my belt, and not the pack. I used to hold my net on my pack but I found try­ing to reach way back, took time, was awk­ward and made me lose my focus on keep­ing the hook­set nice and tight. So now once I’m ready, I reach down to my side and eas­i­ly unat­tach the net and I’m ready to land that fish.

I attach the oth­er mag­net on the net so it bal­ances nice­ly  when hang­ing freely (PICTURE TO COME)

The Landing Net

I’ve had var­i­ous nets includ­ing very nice Fish­ponds. Unless you are guid­ing or your kids like to net the trout while you catch them, I think the Fra­bill fits the bill. They key thing is that your net should be rub­ber. You’ll find that once caught, trout tend to unhook them­selves and that if the net’s not rub­ber, you’ll  spend a lot of time, try­ing to unhook your hook from you net. I’ll repeat again: I think you should wear your net at your side where it’s eas­i­ly acces­si­ble, so you can fish focused.

The Gear Retractor

Per­fect for attach­ing to your wad­ing stick. It’s not too strong that keep­ing it extend­ed will tire you but it’s strong enough to pull your wad­ing stick back to you side, when you drop the pole. Again, I’m right hand­ed and atach this gear retrac­tor to my right side of my wad­ing belt.  They also make a mini which I’m think­ing of get­ting to replace my zingers because:

  1. I’ve now had a cou­ple of zinger fail­ures even by “good” brands
  2. I can not afford an Abel Zinger

The Wading stick

Prob­a­bly the best one  is a nice­ly worn stick that you have found and kept with you through hikes but these col­lapsable hik­ing poles have been great and do the trick. When you don’t need them, they fold up and ride safe­ly out of the way on your hip. Note: They are not easy to attach to you retrac­tor and require that you remove the tiny com­pass in the han­dle, and remove the straps and punch a hole to feed your zip­tie or nylon cord through, which then attach­es to the gear retrac­tors. I car­ry two of these poles. One is zip­tied per­ma­nent­ly to my belt, while the oth­er one is clipped on and eas­i­ly removed if I have to lend it to some­one else or just be removed when not need­ed. But it’s good place to store my poles so i know where they always are.

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