Boating is as Midwestern as pastimes get. A bright lake, cold drinks, a line in the water—it’s the epitome of summertime leisure. If you’re new to boating or just want to rent a boat for the first time, read on for a few tips to have a quality trip!

Managing the Heat and Sun

If you’ve never been on the water before, you might think the air around it would be colder than that on land. And while you’re right to some degree, if your boat doesn’t have cover, you’ll still be out under the beating sun all day. It’s easy to get hot and sunburned if you don’t take precautions!

To prevent yourself from roasting like a lobster, of course you should bring sunscreen. Make it the water-resistant type if you can. Also consider UV-blocking clothing. While it’s not a prerequisite to a great fishing trip, it sure helps your sunscreen do its job.

Forget the sun protection? Worry not, we’ve got you covered. Fractional Toys is now a Sun Bum skin care product dealer, so you can grab your sunscreen when you come to pick up your boat rental!

The Right Accessories

Before you set out on the lake with your boat rental, you’ll need a brimmed hat! There’s a reason that the cliche image of a fisherman isn’t complete without some floppy headgear: It helps keep the sun out of your eyes, reducing strain and squinting.

You don’t need to go out and buy yourself an angler’s hat unless you want to. A simple, airy baseball cap will do just fine, so long as you sunscreen your neck. What you might want to go out and buy, though, are polarized sunglasses. Pulling fish out of the water or watching a bobber is a lot easier if you’re not fighting with glare all the time, and they’ll be useful long after the trip is over. They’re available at a variety of outdoorsy stores and generally aren’t astronomically pricey.

Finally, don’t forget the cold snacks and chilled beverages!

Tackle 101

So you’ve got the apparel—what about the tackle? Fishing garb comes in all shapes and sizes, some types beginner-suitable and others not so much.

Our advice: don’t go wild with lures and rods just yet. Depending on what you want to catch, what you buy will look different. But until you figure out if the fishing bug bites you or not, ask your local angling shop to recommend some affordable basics.

To keep costs down, we also recommend live bait. Lures are expensive, and they’re very fish-specific and often require finesse-filled rod techniques. Unless you know a fish species like the back of your hand, you’re unlikely to be able to employ a given lure to its best effects. Worms and leeches, on the other hand, are affordable and pretty tasty to pretty much anything that bites.

Make the Most Out of Your Recreational Rental

Fishing still sound tricky with all the stuff you need to buy? It’s not when you rent from Fractional Toys—our fishing boat comes standard with

  • A fish finder, which actually lets you spot potential catches beneath the surface
  • A trolling motor, for enhanced maneuverability, access to shallow water, and current and wind resistance
  • A Livewell, for keeping your catches alive and well
  • Rod Holders, so you can sit back and relax while you wait for a bite

While most of these convenience-boosting accessories are generally pretty pricey, you won’t pay a cent extra for them when you rent with us. In fact, you’ll already be nautical miles ahead of the game before you even unload on the lake!

Out On the Lake

Assuming you’ll be fishing with a bobber—the technique most novice anglers use—watch your depth and don’t get too close to the bottom.

While it might be tempting to target bigger, deep-water fish there, scuffing the lake floor can:

  • Get your hook caught in weeds
  • Break your line if the hook gets caught on a too-heavy log
  • Lead to the immense disappointment of a “red herring”

You’ll also want to know the behavior of the fish you want to target. Sitting around with a bobber, for example, might catch you a lot of species that suspend in groups (Bluegill), but might not be as effective if you’re looking to target more solitary hunters. Bait—and boat—accordingly.

And as always, practice good boating etiquette, as defined by your state’s regulations and advice. Lakes are for sharing, not for hogging, so please play nice with others. However, also consider unwritten rules. Some other fishermen, for example, might not like it if you get too close to a spot they’ve already claimed. If you don’t know if something would be offensive, ask!

Fractional Toys: Boat Rental Central

No Minnesotan summer is complete without a fishing trip, so stop in at our recreational equipment rental services stores today and schedule yours. You can reach our Oakdale location at 651-340-0937, or our Coon Rapids office at 763-406-2488.