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The 10 Best Gifts for Fishermen This Holiday

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Whether you’re a fly-fishing fanatic who loves to wade or a spinning reel and boat kinda guy, you’re probably due for some updated gear. Fortunately, the holidays are right around the bend.

Most fishermen already have at least the basics, like a good fishing rod and a quality vest and hat. The more seasoned outdoors people likely have even more than that, like proper footwear, navigational devices, binoculars, and helpful little gadgets like leader straighteners. But worry not, there are enough quality items out there that there will be no re-gifting this year.

Here are ten of the best gifts you can get for the fisherman in your life.

MSR Guardian Water Purifier

MSR Guardian Purifier.
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For the fisherman who likes to go on extended trips or simply get out there somewhere remote for a day, this is an ideal gift. Instead of lugging around a heavy container of water from home, you can drink as you see fit, with the added insurance that the water will be purified and safe to drink. This purifier can drop into your backpack or the back of your vest pretty easily and, if you’ve never had the pleasure, you’ll gain a whole new respect for a drink taken straight from the freshwater you’re playing in.

Nathan Summit Polarized Glasses

Nathan Summt Sunglasses.
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These no-slip glasses from Nathan are lightweight, fit beautifully, and cut into the distracting glare that water often throws your way. The design is such that you really don’t even notice that you’re wearing them, whether you’re sitting in a boat waiting for marlin to bite or on the move drifting down a river or hiking to your favorite fishing hole. And while you’re at it, get a good strap for those glasses.

Columbia Fish Flip Sandals

Columbia Fish Flip Sandals.
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With fishing, there’s almost always some setup and takedown. Before and after the main event, it’s nice to just slip into a convenient pair of sandals. This pair from Columbia is comfy and well as grippy, no matter what the weather is throwing your way.  Shoot, if it’s a sunny day on the boat, you won’t even need to slip out of these.

Donation

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Need a thoughtful gift that will ensure there are plenty of healthy watersheds to keep fishing for generations to come? Donate to any number of great organizations working on their behalf, from Trout Unlimited to more locally focused efforts like the PLWA in Montana. Wherever it is you or the fisherman you’re gifting to calls home, there are great organizations putting in the work to keep streams, rivers, and bays healthy and teeming with fish.

Fish-Themed Booze

Dry Fly Distilling Wheat Whiskey.
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A good fishing story is all the better with a post-outing beverage. You can keep the fishing theme alive with a whole cast of beers, wine, and spirits that dabble in fishing folklore. Try sniffing around at places like Drizly and Wine.com for some options. We are fans of Trout Slayer Ale from Big Sky Brewing, the many tasty spirits of Dry Fly Distilling, and the wines from Lange Estate in the Willamette Valley, just to name a few.

Rapala Digital Fishing Scale

Rapala Digital Fish Scale.
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It’s nice to know just how big that cod or salmon is. We won’t talk you out of stretching the truth to your fishing buddies, but for your own good, it’s very helpful to know just what you’re dealing with in terms of weight (especially if you’re catching lots and aiming to keep them).

Nite Ize RunOff Waterproof Wallet

Nite Ize Waterproof Wallet.
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Keep your items safe while you’re out and about with a simple but effective waterproof wallet like this. It can handle being immersed for up to a half-hour without sacrificing any of the contents. Even if you have a trusty spot for your ID and such while fishing, upgrade to something like this to avoid a possible headache.

Stanley Classic Thermos

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Whether it’s getting up bright and early while they’re biting and needing some hot coffee or wanting a brew still cold by the time you’re off the water, a proper insulated vessel is very much a necessity. This vintage thermos is great for any kind of liquid, hot or cold, and looks damn good housing it, too. Timelessness has never tasted so good, especially after a banner day on the river.

The Whole Fish Cookbook

The Whole Fish Cookbook.
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The best cookbook will have you eying your catch a bit differently, especially if you’ve always wanted to cook more with the day’s earnings. You’ll learn to use the whole thing as well as prepare it differently and in more interesting ways. Even if you don’t fish to feed, this book will have you headed to the seafood or freshwater protein section of your favorite market to get some fixings. Our pal Jamie Oliver endorses it, as do we.

The North Face Dryzzle Futurelight Jacket

North Face Dryzzle Jacket.
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A packable, lightweight waterproof jacket can save a day on the water, especially when it breathes and protects as well as this one. It does great in the wind and pouring rain and can be tucked into a pack or vest with ease when not needed. The hood fits well and the jacket overall is nice and stretchy, ideal for when you’re moving your arms a lot per the fishin’ routine.

Mark Stock

Mark Stock is a writer from Portland, Oregon. He fell into wine during the Recession and has been fixated on the stuff since. He spent years making, selling, and sipping Pinot Noir in the Dundee Hills before a full return to his journalistic roots in 2016. He's helplessly tied to European soccer, casting for trout, and grunge rock. In addition to The Manual, he writes for SevenFifty Daily, Sip Northwest, The Somm Journal, The Drake, Willamette Week, Travel Oregon, and more. He has a website and occasionally even updates it: markastock.com.

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