2022 Holiday Gift Guide

Salt Water Sportsman wants to ensure you get your favorite angler the perfect gift. Here's our picks this holiday season.

Anglers can be really hard to shop for. So I dug through the best of the best to put together a list of gifts that is sure to please even the toughest critic.

XtraTuf Boots

XtraTuf has the perfect pair of boots for all of your adventures, with adventurers of all ages. I’ve been wearing XtraTufs religiously since the US Fish & Wildlife Service first issued me a pair some 20 years ago, and just got my five-year old his first pair this past summer. For cold weather use, look at the insulated Legacy series. For more fair weather jaunts, try their ankle deck boots, which offer waterproof protection without being bulky or cumbersome. Men’s, women’s, and kid’s sizes available. $60 and up

Penn Authority

Penn has set the standard for reels for nearly 100 years. They have re-imagined what a spinning reel should be with the introduction of the Authority earlier this year. The new spinner has all the stopping power needed to put the brakes on even the biggest fish, thanks to Penn’s patented Dura-Drag system. A fully supported stainless main and pinion gears will stand up to strong runs and protracted battles. Even Mother Nature can’t harm the Authority, with an IPX8-rated body and spool that keeps the elements out. There are sizes from everything from inshore to off, starting with a 2500 series that can hold 240 yards of 10-pound test mono up to a monstrous 10500 that can hold 845 yards of 50-pound test. $499 and up

SeaTow Membership

SeaTow boat Courtesy SeaTow

Give the boating anglers in your life the gift of peace of mind with a SeaTow membership. As a member, they can call on SeaTow’s network of local captains for assistance when things go wrong, 24/7. Membership includes tows, fuel delivery, jump starts, prop disentanglements (no diver), parts delivery, and even un-groundings in some circumstances. The helpful local captains will even offer navigational assistance and advice on tides and weather. Those boating along the coast will likely benefit the most from the Gold Package, which covers anglers fishing in saltwater and fresh. You can add coverage for incidents that occur when trailering the boat for a little bit more. Gold Card Package is $199.99, trailer coverage is extra

Shimano Tranx 150

Let the angler in your life join the low-profile revolution with Shimano’s Tranx 150. These palmable baitcasters are perfect for those targeting redfish and specks on the Texas coast and beyond. Light tackle fluke anglers in the Northeast will also appreciate the lightweight nature of the reel, which holds more than enough braided line to probe the near-shore depths. Unlike repurposed bass reels, the Tranx line is built for the salt with a Hagane body and CoreProtect technology. And, despite the small size, there’s enough drag to stop even a bull red. $209

Zeiss Terra ED Binoculars

Every boater should have a pair of binoculars at the ready to look for potential obstacles in the water, current breaks or seams that can hold fish, or diving birds indicating bait being harassed from below. I recently lost my treasured Minoltas that had served me well over the last few decades, and a friend at Zeiss offered to lend a few pairs in the company’s Terra ED line up. I couldn’t have been more impressed with them. Despite the low price point, the rugged construction stood up to life on the water and the legendary SCHOTT ED glass made the most of the lowest-light periods when fish are often most active. Offered in a variety of sizes and magnifications, there’s a pair perfect for your cockpit or pocket. Of course, they also perfect for birdwatching and sporting events. $285 and up

Simms ProDry Fishing Jacket and Bibs

Simms’ ProDry fishing jacket and bibs is a versatile outerwear set that excels in a wide variety of conditions. I’ve been using this high-performing outerwear combo for about a year now, wearing it everywhere from the hardwater for ice fishing and on the Atlantic coast for striped bass and cod. I even wore it a weeks-long Alaskan excursion, keeping me bone-dry in driving rain and while running to the outer reaches of Prince William Sound. Anglers will appreciate thoughtful features like the reinforced pliers’ pocket and the D-ring for kill switch or tool lanyards. Articulated arms and legs provide plenty of freedom of movement, and the bib’s zippers allow you to easily get them on, even over clunky deck boots. Jacket $599; bib $599

Hardy Zane Carbon Fly Reel

Does your favorite angler like to prowl the flats with fly rod in hand? Then get them one of the best, and best looking, fly reels on the market. Designed for the skinny water angler, the Zane Carbon is a lightweight, large arbor sealed disc drag reel perfect for bonefish or striped bass on the flats in the smaller sizes or brutes like tarpon in the larger makes. A buttery-smooth drag tames even the most scorching runs, with an indent system that allows for easy adjustments even while you’re distracted by the beast on the other end of your line. $450 and up

Yeti Tundra Haul Wheeled Cooler

Coolers get heavy when loaded. Make the trip down the dock easy on your favored angler with Yeti’s Tundra Haul wheeled cooler. The big cooler has enough capacity to take a day’s worth of food and beverages for the whole crew, and will keep it all cold for days at a time. The flat-free wheels don’t require any air, and the handle is ergonomic and bomb-proof. Built-in anchor points and non-slip feet ensure it stays put while underway. Oh, and it’s perfect for tailgates and the beach, too. $450

Plano EDGE Leader Management Box

Give the gift of organization with the Plano EDGE Leader Management Box. This innovative box offers an easy and convenient solution for storing and organizing leader and filler spools, so your favorite angler can spend less time rigging and more time fishing. With a long, horizontal spindle and eight spool tension bands, it acts as the perfect portable spooling station. Premium features like a watertight seal, rust preventative technology and a rechargeable desiccant insert ensure line stays in pristine condition. $49

Costa Jose Pro Sunglasses

Costa Jose PRO Sunglasses

If your favorite angler is looking for a new pair of shades, Costa’s Jose PRO sunglasses are a great option. The Costa Jose PRO frames are named in honor of the legendary waterman Jose Wejebe, of the Florida Keys. The PRO glasses build off the original frames, with six new performance innovations to help anglers manage sweat, reduce fogging, and keep their frames locked in place in rough water. For example, the new nose pads that offer a more secure and comfortable fit for those with a high nose bridge and lower cheekbones. $264 and up

Daiwa Tatula TWS Baitcasting Combo

Daiwa Tatula TWS Baitcasting Combo

Red and trout fishers will be really happy to find Daiwa’s Tatula TWS baitcasting combo under the tree. The swept handle of the Tatula rod pairs nicely with the Tatula CT baitcaster, providing all-day comfort on the water. The reel is unbelievably light at only 7.2 ounces, so you can cast from dawn to dusk. And you’ll get more distance out of those casts, thanks to the T-Wing system levelwind that provides less resistance on the line. You can adjust the reel easily for the conditions and lures, with Daiwa’s patented Magforce Z magnetic casting and braking system conveniently located on the exterior. $229

St. Croix Rift Salt Spinning Rods

Anglers have increasingly taken to targeting big pelagic species on the surface. If the one on your gift list is among those chasing the high that can only be created by a tuna smashing a popper mere feet from the boat, get them one of St. Croix Rod’s Rift Salt sticks. The new rods are designed to throw heavy lures, and have enough backbone to subdue bruisers without wearing anglers out. There’s nine models of Salt spinners to choose from, and seven conventional if that’s more of their flavor. All are backed by a five-year warranty. $300 and up

Sitka Dew Point Jacket

I’ve relied on Sitka’s outerwear to keep me dry while piloting my boat through the worst weather winter has to offer for about a year and sincerely regret not making the switch sooner. You can get the same protection I rely on to get me through duck season in a diner-friendly solid color pattern. The Dew Point jacket features three-layer Gore-Tex construction that keeps even wind-blown spray at bay, a sculpted hood that provides unfettered vision, and pit zips to dump excess heat on warm days. $165 and up

Mariners Learning System Online Classes

The best way to improve your skills as a boater is to spend time on the water. But you can significantly cut the learning curve with classes that teach you the rules of the road, and can even result in a captain’s license. Mariners Learning System allows boaters to learn online, and receive the education they need to pass the tests for the OUPV (also known as “six-pack”), and 25/50 or 100-ton Masters licenses. They can even take the tests online. So give the gift of confident boating with an online captains course. $495 and up

G Loomis GCX Inshore Spinning Rods

G Loomis makes some of the best rods in the business. I’ve been using one of their early popping cork models for about 20 years now, and it’s one of the favorites in my arsenal. But G Loomis didn’t rest on their laurels, creating the GCX series of inshore spinning rods to make the most of modern technology. The multi-taper design creates a versatile blank that excels in a variety of inshore and flats scenarios. A premium Fuji reel seat and an optimized SeaGuide guide train round out the performance features and create a well-balanced rod any angler will enjoy using. $289 and up

Fin-Nor North Drop Sunglasses

I’ll admit that I thought Fin-Nor’s new line of sunglasses was going to be a gimmick. But after wearing a pair in for the last six months, I can safely say I was wrong. The North Drop sunglasses are the perfect choice for any angler that spends every possible moment on the water, or anyone that spends time outdoors. The excellent lenses provide distortion-free color and premium polarization, and the lightweight frame provides all-day comfort. Available in a variety of tints to match the prevailing conditions wherever your favorite angler fishes. $199 and up

Gill Langland Technical Hoody

This might just be the best sweatshirt your favorite angler will ever own. Cut just like the one they already love, Gill’s Langland Technical Hoodie has a host of features that take it into the next century. Perhaps the most notable is the XPEL technology that repels water, blood and slime—or in my case, the cup of coffee I spilled on the way to the marina my first day wearing it. A unique zippered pouch inside the kangaroo pocket adds an extra layer of security, ensuring your keys and wallet don’t end up in the drink. Slits in the sleeves let you insert your thumbs and keep them down even while wearing tight outer layers. The polyester construction is machine washable, and dries quickly. $89.95

Danco 7-inch Premio Pliers

Danco 7-inch Premio Pliers

Titanium has the advantage of not rusting, even when exposed to saltwater. So Danco built their Premio line of pliers out of the corrosion-resistant metal, knowing that that last thing anglers wanted to do at the end of the day was wash off their pliers. The 7-inch version features an innovative hinge and skeletal design that keeps weight down. Replaceable cobalt-titanium side cutters handle braided line, fluorocarbon, monofilament and even light wire. The pliers come with a leather sheath and lanyard so you don’t donate them to Davy Jones, and are backed by a lifetime warranty. $199

SIONYX Nightwave D1

Give the gift of safety at night with SIONYX’s Nightwave D1. The new marine color night vision camera system delivers clear color images, aiding boaters to navigate safely in low-light and near-total dark conditions. The IP67-rated camera features a wide 44-degree field of view that enables users to see their surroundings clearly, allowing them to make better decisions that keep them and their passengers safe. Nightwave can integrate with major brand MFDs via the analog video output, or easily connect to the SIONYX app, allowing devices to stream, record, and manage functional settings from a phone or tablet. $1,595

Good To-Go Meals

Hopefully your vessel includes a full galley, capable of cranking out gourmet meals in a hurry. But even if your boat is so equipped, odds are you’d rather spend your time at sea fishing and not cooking. So give yourself, or your favorite angler, the gift of good food, fast with Good To-Go meals. These just-add-water meals aren’t freeze dried like the others on the market; instead, they are dehydrated. This means the contents only contain the ingredients needed for the dish, and leave the chemicals out. We ate these almost exclusively on a two-week road and boat trip through Alaska, boiling water on the go. They come in a variety of flavors that rival what you’d get at your preferred local eatery. $6.50 and up

Gill Marine Tool

Having a multi-tool handy can solve a lot of problems in short order. Having one designed with boating in mind is even better. Gill’s Marine Tool incorporates seven tools to tackle fishing and boating’s most common tasks. The large, serrated blade makes short work of the toughest rodes and lines, but features a blunt tip for safety. A sharpened hook lets you cut leaders near hands without worry of injury. A marlin spike and shackle wrench handle the rest of the rigging chores, and a bottle opener is perfect for when it’s time to relax. Comes with a sheath and gift box. $44.95

Nemo Stargaze Reclining Camp Chair

This item is better suited to relaxing on the beach than it is to fishing, but we can’t be casting at all times can we? Nemo’s Stargaze recliner is the most comfortable folding chair you’re likely to encounter, letting you kick your feet up and relax while you watch the tide go out. Simply lean back to activate the auto-reclining mechanism and enjoy. The wide base on the chair ensures that it remains stable on sand and any other unimproved surface. Despite the full-size nature of this seat, it collapses down to a size that stows easily in most hatches. Includes an adjustable headrest, a no-spill cupholder, and a stash pocket. $187.45

Uncharted Supply Co. The Athena

No one ever wants to get stuck. Ensure the angler on your gift list can jump start their boat—or tow vehicle—anywhere with Uncharted Supply Co. The Athena portable jump starter and power bank. This versatile gadget not only provides enough juice to turn over up to a 6.0L gas or diesel engine at least 15 times with one charge, but can power a mobile office with its multitude of USB outputs. $139