One of the toughest things about fishing and boating in saltwater is making sure you wash everything down after a day of fishing. And I mean everything. Each and every one of us has found a pair of pliers or a favorite lure that got tucked away in a compartment or a tacklebox prior to the freshwater washdown—and as a result had turned into a corroded hunk of rust. So when Plano sent me the 414300 M Series Hydro-Flo 3700, I found it a lot more interesting than the usual tackleboxes on the market. Let’s see if you can tell why, from this picture:
Don’t blame yourself if you didn’t notice at first glance. See the square, rigid base it sits on? That’s the give-away. Plano introduced some tackle bags sitting on that base a couple of years ago, in a series called Hydro-Flo. The base is grated inside, so water can flow right through the bag. The idea was that anglers could hang their plugs, spinnerbaits, and spoons on the racks inside the bag, where they could be rinsed and drip-dry without trapping moisture.
The 414300 M Series Hydro-Flo, however, is big and beefy. Big enough, in fact, to hang those Green Machines, cedar plugs, and other large saltwater trolling lures. The Stingsilvers, Butterflies, and other jigging spoons. The Badonk-A-Donks, MirOLures, and other plugs. You get the picture—this thing is large enough to hold just about any saltwater fishing lure, and since it has 25 hanging compartments, you won’t be lacking for choices. And best of all, at the end of the day you can flip back the cover, let loose with the hose, and soak down everything inside.
The 414300 M Series Hydro-Flo also has exterior compartments that are perfect for leader spools, pliers, and the like. You could fit several Stowaway boxes, too, but I’m not sure this should really be looked at as a tacklebox that will replace what you currently use, so much as one that will significantly complement it—at least, that’s not how I’m looking at it as a saltwater boat owner. I already have all of my tackle in built-in trays and the leaning post on my boat, and I like it that way. But tackle that gets used through the course of the day often ends up either getting put away salty, left out on the cutting board, or stuck in a hook-holder, where it then gets forgotten about and ignored. The Hydro-Flo is the solution; with this box tucked away in a corner, every time I take a lure or rig off the line I can hang it up inside the box. Then at the end of the day, I can rinse the whole shebang, sit the box down in the garage, and ignore it until my next trip. When it arrives, at the beginning of the day I simply un-load the clean, dry tackle inside the Hydro-Flo back into my leaning post, and put the box back into its corner—empty, and ready to be re-loaded with salty gear as it gets used through the course of a day.
You don’t often see me use this platform to talk about tackleboxes… in fact, this may be the first time ever. But the Hydro-Flo is so useful, it’s worth sounding off about. Saltwater guys, take note.