Tuesday, 12 April 2011

Bankside Entertainment

Well we’ve finally reached April and I’ve been back to doing my summer overnighters for a few weeks now. After our prolonged cold spell over the first half of the winter I went back to the syndicate in early January and I’ve been fishing there ever since. When I started night fishing again I had a few new gadgets with me to make life a bit more comfortable on the bank. I thought I’d take a quick look at a few gadgets both old and new that can help a fisherman, particularly a carp angler, pass the time on the bank.

Portable Power Pack. One of the things I bought last year was a portable power pack, these handy power supplies are ideal for camping and that makes them useful for fishing too.

Powering Portable Power Pack

The one I’ve bought is a 40 amp hour model (40ah), it has a cigarette lighter socket for powering anything that’s 12v, that means you can plug in things like a small LCD TV and a mobile phone etc. This particular model also has a 240v inverter so you can power mains devices too!. I actually use mine for recharging bait boat batteries on the bank, I have a very good solar panel for my bait boat batteries but on days when its cloudy I can use the inverter on my power supply and charge my boat batteries a quicker way with their mains charger.

This portable power pack even does mains!

Having a portable power pack is extremely useful and unlike a deep cycle leisure battery, a power pack is quite easy to carry, granted a deep cycle leisure battery lasts longer but who wants to drag one of those around when a power pack has a nice carrying handle and can be carried with one hand. This is definitely one of those things that make you wonder how you ever got along without one!.

12v Freeview TV. To go with my new portable power pack, I’ve also got myself a 10.2 inch / 12v Portable Freeview TV!.

My new 10.2" Freeview TV

Mine is a Nikkai TV and it comes with an SD Card Slot rather than a DVD Player although a lot of small 12v TV’s come with a built in DVD Players these days. Personally I’m happy with just the TV and going fishing on a Saturday night no longer means missing Match of the Day. Watching the news is handy too because there’s always a weather forecast at the end!. These new 12v Freeview TV’s are quite good on a power supply, I’ve left my TV on in an attempt to flatten my power pack and gave up after 8 hours solid, watching TV on the bank is something I just do for a few hours after dark or if there’s a big game on in the evening, 8 hours solid is a long time and I reckon a small TV like mine will run for several days on a power pack, possibly all week if its used sparingly.

Digital Freeview TV, runs great on the power pack above

Smart Phone. I upgraded my phone over the winter too and I now have a Samsung Galaxy which is an Android powered smart phone, not only do I have a mobile phone, I have full internet access and an unlimited supply of games courtesy of the apps available on Android Market.

Full internet access helps pass the time!

Obviously those anglers with an I-phone have exactly the same with their phones. Both Android and I-Phones are quite heavy on their batteries and this is where the power pack comes in handy, a 12v mobile phone car charger can be plugging into the cigarette lighter socket on the power pack and hey presto!, your phone can be used throughout your session, no need to turn it off as the power pack will keep it topped up for as long as you possibly need.

Galaxy Android Smart Phone, great for anglers!

I-Pod. I still take my ipod fishing too, this has been my main source of bank side entertainment for the last couple of years, I have a 120 gig model which has thousands of songs and a nice collection of films stored on it. I can’t see me using it much from now on but it’s still a handy device to have with you when the fish aren’t biting.

Apple I-Pod, another great gadget for an angler!

Portable Radio. Where would a carp angler be without a small radio?, I’ve had one for as long as I’ve been fishing and today’s radios are superb when it comes to battery life, my little transistor model goes for a couple of years before the batteries need changing!. I haven’t got one yet but now I have a power pack, a small DAB Radio will definitely be next on my list!.

Nintendo DS Lite. Not something I own myself but one of my mates takes a Nintendo DS Lite with him on longer sessions, he has the same power pack as me and he says a DS Lite has never flattened his power pack no matter how long he’s used it for. I’m not a big gamer but for those of you who like them, a DS Lite runs very well with a portable power pack too, you just plug it into the cigarette lighter socket on the power pack just like your phone or TV.

Well that’s all I can think of for bank side entertainment for now, I seem to have as much in the way of portable gadgets as I do fishing tackle but carp fishing isn’t just about sitting on a seat box for a few hours, it generally requires longer sessions which can mean days on the bank and its nice to have a few gadgets available to help pass the time.
Until next time, be lucky.

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