How To Organize Your Tackle Box

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A tackle box If you don’t have one, you’ve probably never been fishing. Until they create a tardis-type box that’s bigger on the inside than the outside, we will always be constricted by how much we can carry.

Plano Tackle Box


Why do you need to organize your tackle box? Simple. To find things faster.

When the fishing is hot, and you get sapped off, you don’t want to be fumbling around trying to find what you need. The longer your line is out of the water, the fewer fish you catch.

Ultimately, exactly how you pack your tackle box will be determined by size and shape. Having said that, there are a few hard and fast rules you should follow to make things easier to find. These are:

  • Select the right tackle box for your needs
  • If using compartment boxes, make sure they are clear
  • Label each box
  • Put soft plastics in bags
  • Sort by species you are targeting
  • Pack tools (like pliers) where they can be easily found
  • Always put a sheath on knifes

For a great selection of the best tackle boxes on the market at the moment, check out

The Right Tackle Box


Let’s start with the obvious. There is no point in taking a huge tackle box to go fish the rivers. On the other end of the scale, don’t take a small box when fishing pier/jetties/wharves.

This might seem like a no-brainer, but I have seen so many people with either way too much, or not enough. Leaving half of your gear at home, just to find you need it later is heartbreaking. It could mean the difference between catching a fish, and going hungry.

I have a few boxes that a store at home, and I can take whichever I need during the day. It’s much easier to switch a few things around, than deciding what you have to leave out because you don’t have the room.

Another option worth considering is getting a tackle bag. Great for storing your clear compartments, as well as being easy for you to carry on your back. This way you keep your hands free. A good choice if going to slippery or hard to get to areas, long walks, etc.


Tackle Bag

Clear Compartments


Now, these are great if you have the room. Not only can you store a lot of things securely, but it’s easy to find them when needed. Moreover, it’s also easy to take or leave whatever you need that day.

I use a couple of these for all my lures, and another for hooks, sinkers, etc. Available in many sizes, you can always find one to suit your needs.

Pro Tip – Keep them labeled to find the one you need faster.


Keep Soft Plastics In Bags


This is not something many people think about. Soft plastics will deteriorate with age. This process is accelerated when they are exposed to heat, UV, salt in the air, or water.

By keeping them in bags, you can cut many, if not all, of these factors out. Alternatively, I also use a flip carry case (much like we used to have for CDs) to carry all my soft plastics. These are great. Not only are my plastics easy to find, but well protected.

Sort by species


I have been doing this for years. It’s amazing how much easier things become when you start doing this.

First, decide what species you’re targeting, and where you will be fishing. Once you have done this, just put what you need together. This could mean putting a certain size hook, with the correct sinker, swivel, float, etc. There is no reason to take what you don’t need. Having these pre-organized at home makes life much easier.

Of course. your species box may not need any of these. It could be full of the lures/jig or soft plastics you will use.

Quick Example

Fishing for snapper or similar –  A selection of 3.0 to 6.0 hooks, Barrel swivels, 3-way swivels for if you’re not good at tying a paternoster rig. 80lb leader, 40lb leader down to sinker, selection of snapper sinkers depending on the area and tide size. ( larger tide, larger sinker)



Packing A Tackle Box


So now we know how to store all our gear, it’s time to put it all into the box. You want everything you need close at hand.

Pro Tip – Just take what you need.

Because we have organized everything so well, this is now pretty easy.

  1. Your species box should be at the top because that will be the one you are using most. If you don’t have a species box or no room for one, organize the top of your tackle box with only what you need.
  2. Under this is where the leader line will be. Make sure you have plenty on the spool.
  3. Next will be your knife. Be sure it is sharp. ( Always make sure the sheath is on when not in use)
  4. Also, any other tool you may use. This could be a hook remover, a multi-tool, a lip gripper, or even a knot-tying tool.
  5. Because you only put what was needed on top, you probably have a bit of room on the bottom. You can now put a few lures/jiggings or soft plastics. It’s always good to have a few with you.
  6. If you have any room left, the spares will go in last of all. you may not need them, so no reason to have them in the way.

If you don’t have any of these tools, follow these links to see some great products I have personally researched.

To Wrap Up


By following these simple steps, you will be amazed at just how much room you have to spare. If like me, you keep a few different sizes at home, pretty soon you will find getting ready for a fish expedition a very quick affair. This becomes quite important if you have kids at home, and like to leave early morning.

Fishing is a passion of mine and has been for many years. I also love talking about it, nearly as much as I love getting out there. Therefore, if you do have any questions or comments, or just want to talk fishing, feel free to leave a message in the comment section below. As Always

Tight Lines

Tony, Creator of Get Reel Fishin

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