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Whether you’re a deep sea angler or a freshwater fly fisherman, a tackle box is essential for keeping your hooks, sinkers, lures and line organized. There are plenty of tackle systems out there, ranging from traditional boxes made of hard plastic, to fabric backpacks and shoulder bags perfect for keeping things light. The best choice for you depends on a variety of factors including your preferred fishing style, the amount of tackle you own and the conditions you’ll expose the box to. In this article, we look at some excellent options across a handful of different categories.
Best Overall: Plano Angled Tackle System
The Plano Angled Tackle System is an Amazon’s Choice product with hundreds of positive reviews. Well-suited to almost any fishing scenario, it’s crafted from hard plastic designed to protect your tackle from the elements. Several reviewers claim that the box is also capable of withstanding high impact falls. At 18 x 9.5 x 11 inches, it’s the ideal size — providing plenty of space without being too cumbersome. The main compartment includes three StowAway utility boxes, each with individual sections for your hooks, swivels, sinkers and more.
The box’s clever design positions all three utility boxes at a 15-degree angle for easy access. When you want to travel light, pack the essentials into one of the boxes and slip it into your daypack. Other handy storage areas include two top compartments for lures and soft baits; a bulk storage section underneath the lid; and two side storage compartments perfect for your fishing line, knife and line cutters. DuraView covers on all compartments allow you to see the contents at a glance, while the latches and carry handle are impressively sturdy.
Runner-Up, Best Overall: BLISSWILL Outdoor Multifunctional Tackle Bag
Available in black or army green, the BLISSWILL Outdoor Multifunctional Tackle Bag is made from 1000-denier nylon. It’s water- and abrasion-resistant, boasts strong stitching and comes with a fully adjustable and detachable shoulder strap that can be worn on either the left or right side. The strap is also extra-wide, making it comfortable on long treks to out-of-the-way rivers or lakes. Measuring 11.8 x 8.6 x 4.3 inches, the bag has enough space to accommodate everything you need for a full day of fishing.
According to Amazon reviewers, the main compartment is big enough for two 3600 Series StowAway boxes packed with all of your smaller tackle items. A full-length double zipper provides easy access to the bag’s interior. Use the multiple exterior pockets, straps and D-rings to stash your spools, line cutters and other fishing essentials. On the side of the bag, you will also find a water bottle pocket and rod holder.
Best Soft Tackle Bag: Spiderwire Wolf Tackle Bag
Those that like the idea of a soft tackle bag should also check out Spiderwire’s Wolf Tackle Bag. Made from tough 1680-denier polyester, it features PVC backing for added water resistance and a waterproof molded base that prevents it from sagging. The bag measures 15.75 x 10.8 x 8.2 inches and has a spacious interior compartment capable of holding up to four large tackle boxes. Adjustable dividers allow you to keep your reels, tackle boxes and sandwiches separate.
On the exterior, you’ll find two front pockets complete with built-in organizers, two removable line dispensers and a large rubberized mesh back pocket. Dual tool holders also provide easy access to your pliers, line cutters and lip grippers. Other highlights include quality zippers and buckles, all protected by a lifetime manufacturer’s warranty. Use the padded shoulder strap or the strong top handle to carry the bag from one fishing spot to the next.
Best Backpack: Custom Leathercraft Wild River Tackle Backpack
If you’re planning a fishing expedition, a backpack-style tackle box like this one from Custom Leathercraft allows you to carry extra weight comfortably while keeping your hands free. The shoulder straps are padded and fully adjustable, while the included rain cover provides protection from the elements. The backpack’s interior features a top compartment and an easy access front-loading tray section with space for up to four 3600 Series tackle boxes.
Five exterior pockets provide room for smaller items, while clever space-savers include a removable plier holder and a retractable steel cable lanyard for attaching your clippers. On top of the backpack, you’ll find a molded sunglasses compartment. You can use the tray section’s cover as a fold-down work surface, and the integrated LED light system for tying traces and hooking bait long after the sun goes down.
Best Extra Large: Plano 4-Drawer Tackle Box
The Plano 4-Drawer Tackle Box is ideal for those that have plenty of tackle and plan on keeping it all in one place (such as your car trunk or on board your boat). At 20.75 x 11.5 x 13.88 inches, it’s too large to be easily portable. It’s made of durable plastic, and features four pull-out drawers with adjustable dividers that allow you to create between 36 and 53 worm-proof compartments.
Underneath the lid, you’ll find a deep storage well with ample space for your spools, reels and other large items. This section also comes with four removable spinner bait racks. The lid is kept secure by a brass-bailed latch, and on either end of the box plastic tabs provide a place to attach the tools you need instant access to.
Best Waterproof: Plano Waterproof Stowaway
While many of the tackle boxes on this list are water-resistant, the Plano Stowaway is fully waterproof. It’s a simple, ultra-affordable and nicely sized solution for kayak fishermen, and for anyone else whose tackle box is prone to regular submersion. Amazon reviewers love the case’s overall durability and the quality of its Dri-Loc O-ring seal.
Three cam-action latches ensure a faultless seal all the way around the box and help to keep out dust and sand as well. Inside, the tackle box has four fixed compartments. A series of adjustable dividers allow you to split them into a maximum of 23 different sections, making this a versatile solution for most types and sizes of lure. The box measures 14 x 9 x 1.88 inches.
Best All-Inclusive: Ready 2 Fish Tackle Box
The ideal choice for beginner fishermen, the Ready 2 Fish Tackle Box comes with all the tackle you need to get started. You can opt for a box with one, two or three trays. The one-tray box comes with 62 pieces of tackle, while the two larger boxes come with 136 pieces of tackle each. Whichever you choose, you’ll receive a selection of jigs, hooks and sinkers and a useful fishing guide. The top tray includes adjustable dividers while the others (if you choose a box with more than one tray) have fixed compartments. The 13.9 x 7.6 x 7.4 -inch tackle box is made of plastic and features a strong carry handle and secure latch.
Best for Fly Fishing: New Phase “Go To” Fly Box
The New Phase “Go To” Fly Box is cleverly designed to hold hundreds of flies so that — at a moment's notice — you can be prepared to target any species in any condition. Each side has nine strips of foam providing a total of 216 hook slits, while a sturdy center swing leaf doubles the box’s capacity. Crafted from tough ABS plastic, it has a snap-tight latch and an O-ring seal that makes it fully waterproof. As an added bonus, the hinge pins are made of stainless steel so they won’t rust even if they come into contact with saltwater.