Carroll County Times
Carroll County Sports

Jim Gronaw: An anglers’ Christmas list for the season

Last year around this time I made the terrible mistake of getting my annual Christmas list out just a bit too late. Although I tried to drop plenty of hints and suggestions, I still didn’t get near the cool fishing stuff I was hoping Santa would bring.

Still, it wasn’t a bad haul, as most of my loyal readers came to my rescue in one way or another.


But this year, I’m out of the blocks quickly and can foresee all kinds of fishing and outdoor items under the tree. Yes, proper planning is the key for big holiday hauls. Since I have been a very good boy throughout the entire year, I am banking on high-level items that will streamline my fishing adventures and help me catch more and bigger fish in 2020.

So, without further delay, let’s see what you folks can bring to the old man.


Jig heads

That’s right, doesn’t seem like much, but these affordable, stocking-stuffer items are just what the doctor ordered when it comes to catching fish. You see, I tie and paint my own panfish and bass jigs and catch almost all of my favorite species on them. Make ‘em smallish, like 1/64th and 1/80th of an ounce.

Some can be painted and some plain. And, oh yeah, some sparkle wrap and chenille will do nicely also.

Insulated socks and gloves

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You got it, the older I get the colder I get. Blood thinners aside, most of the socks and gloves I currently own are just “OK” for fall and spring climates. I need really warm items to house my tootsies and pinkies, or else I can’t fish when it’s repulsively cold ( the topic of an upcoming column). Yessir, this year, I want to kick Plavix’s butt in a big way, and you can help me do it!

Fishing line

And I don’t mean the cheap stuff, either. Let’s start with some Suffix 832 Braid in strengths from 10 to 50-pound test, just to cover the basics. Then I could use some mono at varying strengths starting at 2-pound test and running up to 20. Make that Gamma or Trilene, please. And those hi-visibility lines work great for detecting strikes from these aging eyes. Don’t hold back!

Bass Pro and Cabela’s gift cards

In “high dollar” amounts, thank you. Keep in mind that the price of top-line fishing gear isn’t getting any cheaper and I want to land my bluegills in style this season. Orvis rods and Shimano reels might seem just a tad pricey, but if I get enough gift cards amassed, I might just be able to pull off the greatest panfishing rigs out there.

A new kayak

Dare I say, yet another kayak? Well, they are just like children, in many ways. I currently have two small ones, a sit-on-top and a sit-in model. Both have their proper place in my senior water vessel lineup. They keep me young, healthy and allow me to get to fish that others can’t. Monocacy River bass, carp and catfish won’t like it, but I will!

Board games for seniors

No, you didn’t read that wrong, I’m serious about this. My wife has been after me to play board games for decades. Then when I do smash her in a healthy game of checkers, she gets all huffy because I don’t let her win. Preferred titles would be “Where’s My Glasses” or pillbox, car keys, etc. “ What Did You Say?” and the mealtime classic “What’s for Supper?” followed up by the favorite “Can We Eat Out Tonight?” Get the picture?

Camo stuff

To include socks, gloves, hats, T-shirts and on and on and on. I haven’t seen any camo glass frames yet, but I bet somebody is ciphering on it. How about dish ware and table clothe settings with the woodsy designs? Let’s see, camo draperies, easy chairs, scarves, under garments, toothbrushes, and towels and linens. How about camo ties, dress shirts and evening gowns. But I’ll tell you, a hat or a long-sleeve tee will do just fine.


So, there you have it, just a few ideas about what you can get your favorite, senior fisher-person friend for gifts this year! As always, have a very Merry Christmas and a happy and prosperous 2020 season!