by Capt. Mike Hogan
You’re probably getting the idea that I’m a gear nut. In my defense though, I think “gear appreciation” runs in fishermen. However, when it comes to running a guide business, anything that make’s your life easier is worth its weight, space and yes, the almighty dollar.
This year at the New Jersey Surf Show, and others, I saw Kadir Adturk’s (owner of Aquaskinz) latest and greatest, The Ultimate Cargo Bag. Well, so did a lot of people and demand being what it is, I just got mine about a month ago and to say the least, it was well worth the wait.
A little about my business. As a guide, I fish not only on my boat, but also on those of some of my clients. So an easy tackle management system is a must. By easy, I mean: adaptable, accessible and logical. My guiding is also unique in that I only fish with Hogy Brand soft baits paired with the Hogy System. I need a customizable storage solution. Many of the tackle storage systems on the market only offer limited capabilities.
The Ultimate Cargo Bag
The beauty is totally customizable: You can either insert plug tubes that will accommodate dozens and dozens of hard baits, or as I do, stack up a number of Plano 3700 series bins filled with Hogy soft baits. But there’s more! The bag is peppered with cargo pockets with overbuilt Velcro strips that will accommodate spare reel spools, line, bags of terminal tackle or almost any fishing accessory you can imagine. In typical Aquaskinz fashion, nothing is omitted. For example, there are clear tag holders so you can label the contents. In my case, the pockets hold sunscreen, pliers, worm glue, jigs, hooks… you get the idea, there’s lots of them. On the bottom of the bag, there is even more storage, which I load up with, yes, more Hogys.
Now I’m not sure if Aquaskinz recommends this as checkable luggage or not, but I recently checked mine on a trip to film some tarpon fishing in Key West and it went through with zero hassle. Another plus for the overbuilt bags in my opinion, but please check with Aquaskins before doing so.
You really have to see it in person to fully understand its capabilities. I’m sure ten different anglers would organize it 10 different ways. All I can tell you is this. It is now a key component of my fishing arsenal. My storage whining is now over; I’m not sure what my gripes will be now.