The Best New Fishing Gear and Tackle From ICAST 2011

Hundreds of new fishing products are rolled out each year at the ICAST show, and sometimes it's easy to get lost in the clutter. To help you figure out which new products will actually help you on the water, I put together a gallery of the 10 biggest game-changing items from the show along with 10 honorable mentions. #1 - Simms Pro Dry Rain Gear
Tired of getting wet? The Simms Pro Dry Rain Gear is crafted of three layers of Gore-Tex, keeping you dry and comfortable. Features include a clear watch window, kill switch lanyard D-rings on either side, stretch panels on the shoulders and elbows to allow for more unlimited and unrestricted movement. An oversized, packable hood fits no matter the size of your melon. ($499/parka; $399/bibs; $299/pants; simmsfishing.com)
#2 - Sebile D&S Crank
For those crankbait aficionados, there's nothing worse than hanging your favorite cranker on a limb or unruly snag. The Sebile D&S Crank promises snag proof operation with all the fish catching action Sebile is known for. An articulating hook moves into the hook setting position when a fish hits. Here's how it works: The hook pivots on an internal pin. When retrieved, the hook point is pulled down by gravity and remains inline with the bait's flattened tail. When a fish strikes the bait, the hook is forced upward, freeing the point to penetrate the fish's mouth. The pivoting hook and tail on the body act to lock the fish's lip in place until the angler grabs the fish. The fish can easily be released by pressing the bait downward and pushing the hook out. ($14.50; sebileusa.com)
#3 - Minn Kota Talon
Transom mounted hard anchors are the rage among shallow-water anglers. They allow you to hold fast in a spot without having to mess with a trolling motor or drop and tie off a traditional anchor. The folks at Minn Kota have now entered the fray with their Talon. The Talon utilizes an electric motor post, opposed to hydraulic, to keep you put. According to the company, the electric motor deploys the anchor faster and is quieter than hydraulic competitors. The three-stage anchoring (a sensor determines if you're solidly anchored and adjusts accordingly) insures you're planted firmly. ($1,299 - $1,499; minnkotamotors.com)
#4 - Berkley NanoFil
Spinning reels are fickle mechanical contraptions with their affinity to tangle anything spooled on them. Berkley NanoFil is gel-spun polyethylene nanofilaments with superior strength promising ultra-usability on spinning gear. Available in 1 to 12-pound test. ($19.95 and up; purefishing.com) To see a full review of this line go to: First Look at Berkley NanoFil, a Hybrid Fishing Line
#5 - Shakespeare Crusader
The Shakespeare Crusader is available in 25 and 40 sizes and has a gear ratio of 5.2:1, single ball bearing, cold forged aluminum spool and a smooth multi-disk drag system. Rods feature cork grips with a twist lock reel seat and durable tubular glass blanks. And get this―all this for under $20. Yikes!($19.95; shakespeare-fishing.com)
#6 - Hobie Revolution 11
The made-in-USA Hobie Revolution 11 is the perfect car top kayak. Amenities abound aboard; plenty of storage, molded rod-holders, optional livewell, exterior mounted rod holders and seamless roto-molding. This new 'yak will take you to where the bite is hot. It's smaller than the original Hobie kayaks making it faster, more manuverable and better suited for small bodies of water. Length: 11' 6" Width: 29" Hull Weight: 47 lbs. ($1749; hobiecat.com)
#7 - Oliso Vacuum Sealer
The Oliso Vacuum Sealer tackles moisture without hiccupping, and it works with its own special bags that can be reused up to 12 times. The bags are tough enough to seal crabs and shrimp without puncturing. For a vacum sealer, the Oliso brings some advanced technology to the table. It works off of a patented sealing mechanism that punches a small hole into the bag. A commercial grade vaccum sucks all of the air out of the bag while sensors monitor its progress. When the vaccum pressure inside the bag meets its preset level, the machine applies two heat seals to the hole. The sealer also has a selector that allows you to seal wet items or dry items. It's available in a hard-sided toolbox with DC adaptor for ultra-portability. ($189; oliso.com)
#8 - VMC Spin Shot
Drop shoting is as deadly a finesse technique as you'll find. Trouble is, many times the bait's action results in horrible line twist. The VMC Spin Shot eliminates line twist with its twin swivels. Simply attach to the swivels and leave twisted line behind. Available in 1/0, 1, 2, 3, 4, 6 and 8. ($3.99/pack; vmchooks.com)
#9 - P-Line Sparrow Hawk
The feather light P-Line Sparrow Hawk weighs in at a mere 2.1 ounces and is compact at just over 5 inches. The Sparrow Hawk will nest into your favorite fishing vest or fit comfortably on your belt. Machined out of aluminum, the Sparrow Hawk has a mean set of tungsten carbide cutters which slice through braided line. The cutters are replaceable, and the tool comes with a nylon pouch and lanyard. ($29.95; p-line.com)
#10 - Lucky Craft Fat Smasher
The Fat Smasher from Lucky Craft is a versatile crankbait/swimbait hybrid. Fished in a similar way to a shallow-water crankbait, it rolls with the side-to-side wobble action of a crankbait, but it has a swimbait profile. The double-jointed body gives it a great fish-catching action. ($14.99 - $20.99; luckycraft.com)
HONORABLE MENTIONS
Live Target Hollow Body Field Mouse

Jeepers creepers! The Live Target Hollow Body Field Mouse is as realistic a soft bait as you'll find. This four-legged crawler will fool even the finickiest of fish. Available in 3" and 3 ½" models, this mouse imitator will have them jumping in the boat. ($10.49; livetargetlures.com)
Trilene XL Armor Coated
Mono can be a blessing or a curse. While limp enough to cast great, it's prone to fraying and breaking. Trilene XL Armor Coated promises castable limpness with a super-strong outer sheath that's immune to underwater bumps and bruises. ($8.95 and up; purefishing.com)
Costa Del Mar Tag
Perennial sunglass powerhouse Costa Del Mar introduces their Tag. These polarized peeps have built-in side shields and durable hinges for the roughest of use. Costa's pedigree 580 polymer lens are standard with frames in eye-pleasing tortoise, black or silver. Rx lens are also available for total customization. ($149 to $249, depending on lens choice; costadelmar.com)
Bill Dance iPhone App
Now you can have Bill in the boat or on the bank with you. Bill Dance's iPhone/iPad Application is built on the most popular species such as bass, crappie, bluegill, catfish and trout. Dance provides app users with valuable tips and techniques he has learned from decades on the water. It Includes how to read water, structural tips, technique, lures and presentations of different types of baits in different seasons. (appstorehq.com/billdance-iphone-793709/app)
The Jewel Hole Punch
The Jewel Hole Punch makes punchbaits all the more enticing. The front cone centers the bait keeping the layered skirting flared to its fullest. The cone slides down over the hook eye to secure the line and protect the knot. ($3.99/2-pack; jewelbait.com)
Sebile Soft Weight Swimbait Rig
Sebile, makers of wildly popular baits, introduces their swimbait hook/weight system. The Soft Weight Swimbait Rig changes easily to customize the weight, castability, rate of fall and running depth of most any soft-plastic lure. By positioning the weights on the hook, the bait's tune can be changed to the preferred diving angle, falling motion and swimming action. Available in 5/0, 7/0, and 9/0. ($9.49 - $10.45; sebileusa.com)
Live Target's Hollow Body Frog
Big frog baits are the status quo. Live Target's Hollow Body Frog has been downsized to 1 ¾". The ¼-ounce mini-hopper is great for skinny waters where hefty hoppers aren't appropriate. These also shine when you'd like a more subtle presentation with less wake. ($10.49; livetargetlures.com)
Power Pro Super 8 Slick
Power Pro Super 8 Slick is braided fiber, woven under high tension to create a live surface that feels incredibly smooth. Reduced line friction on the spool and through the rod guides helps increase casting distance and decreases casting noise. Available in 8 different sizes (10, 15, 20, 30, 40, 50, 65, 80-pound) and 4 colors (Hi-Vis Yellow, Marine Blue, Timber Brown and Aqua Green). ($19.95/150-yard spool; powerpro.com)
Yo-Zuri Sashimi Jerkbait
The Yo-Zuri Sashimi Jerkbait has a bright metallic finish that changes colors as the viewing angle is changed. This, along with killer action, make these baits real fish catchers. Available in a plethora of colors and sizes. ($14.95; yo-zuri.com)
Pelican Products MityLite
Pelican Products introduces their MityLite 1960 LED Flashlight. The 1960 is small in stature, but produces great illumination. Compact enough to fit inside your pocket, this day maker produces 24 lumens. It comes with a twist-on shroud and ABS resin body that resists chemicals, corrosion, and extreme temperatures. ($27.95; pelican.com) To read about some of the weirder product releases from ICAST go to: New Fishing Gear: Three Strange Products From ICAST 2011

OL picks the 10 biggest game changers and 10 runners up from the ICAST showroom floor.