The Fishing Season Approaches!
First off, it is time to start thinking about a fishing license. Here in Colorado your fishing license from last year is good until March 31st of this year. So you could head out now on your previous license, like I have been doing, but you will need to get a new license as of April 1st. Not only do you want to make sure that your fishing legally, your license fees will help the DOW to manage Colorado's wildlife for us.
Next, it is a good idea to look into changes in regulations. Year to year the DOW often makes changes to certain lakes and bodies of water to better maintain the fishing resources. They may increase or reduce fishing limits of certain species of fish at certain locations to help manage the lake as a whole. Blue Mesa Reservoir is one example. This year DOW has changed the limit of lake trout under 38 inches to unlimited to help reduce the affect they are having on the Kokanee Salmon population.
Next, check your tackle. This is a good time to get your fishing tackle out of the closet, garage or basement and dust it off. Start by checking your rods and reels. Are they in good working condition? If necessary you can clean it up or replace anything that is broken or unusable. While you are at it, inspect the line on your reels. I use to leave mine on until I didn't have much left. After loosing a number off fish due to broken line I realized that fishing line wears out and degrades depending on use, temperature extremes and exposure to UV light. Fishing line is not that expensive and replacing it at the beginning of the season might just help you land that next fish.
Check all of your lures, hooks, weights and baits. If any of your lures are damaged, or just heavily worn you might want to get a replacement. I have certain lures that I always replace if they are worn out or lost because I like to use certain patterns and designs. Also check to see that your hooks are sharp and either replace them or sharpen as necessary. A sharp hook will make it easier to catch that fish that hits your lure. A dull hook may prevent it from setting properly, resulting in a lost fish. Also make sure you have enough weights and bobbers, these items tend to get lost and you want to make sure you have enough for the coming season.