When you go fishing on the Chesapeake Bay or anywhere for that matter there are a few things that you should bring to make yourself as comfortable as possible on the charter boat. Once you are on the Bay or once you reach your fishing grounds there is no going back if you happen to forget something important.Chesapeake Bay charter fishing, especially in the middle of summer can get very hot and you should have the proper items to combat the heat. We have made a detailed list of what you should bring on your Chesapeake Beach charter fishing trip from some quality sunscreen to fishing caps for you anglers that may be thinning on top a bit.
Things to Bring
Food, Drink, Fish Cooler
Bring a cooler for food and drinks. Ask your charter captain how large of a cooler you will need to carry your fish home in.
A sports bag is a good idea to bring for carrying your rain gear, hat, glasses etc and other personal items that you need on a Chesapeake Bay charter fishing trip.
Bring chicken, subs, and sandwiches or whatever you want to eat. Bring your drinks. Ask the Captain if he allows glass bottles.
Preferably polarized fishing glasses to lessen the sun's glare that reflects up off the water.
Bring a camera to take snapshots of those big fish you catch or video of the beautiful Chesapeake Bay sights.
Hat or Ball Cap
A hat or ball cap is a good idea, especially for you guys that are getting a bit thin on top. Protect your head from burning.
Make sure you bring sunscreen, especially if you burn easy. If you are burnt up you can't enjoy your Chesapeake Bay charter fishing trip.
Cash in Pocket
You probably already paid for the trip but you should make sure you have some cash in pocket to Tip the First Mate. Being Mate on a charter boat is not easy work and these guys deserve every dime they get. Tip them well! (20% - 30% is customary)
Boat Shoes (No heels, dress shoes, etc)
There are other things to keep in mind like the type of shoes you should wear. Shoes should be boat shoes if possible like a pair of topsiders or dockers. If you don't wear boat shoes then a regular pair of tennis shoes is just fine. Shoes that would not work well for you on a charter boat would be hard soled shoes like dress shoes. The deck can become slippery at times and soft shoes grip better.
You may bring your special bottom fishing rod but the charter boats will supply all tackle, rods, and reels. That means you do not have to bring this gear. No trolling rods, no surf casting rods, Tackle boxes and tackle are okay.
Do NOT Bring
** Another important item that you should NEVER bring on the charter boat is a banana. No bananas, no banana pudding, no banana gum, no banana cake, no banana sandwiches, not even banana boat suntan lotion. If it says banana or smells of bananas then leave it at the house. OK, there is a good reason for the NO BANANA rule. It is considered VERY bad luck to have a banana on board a ship or fishing vessel. Many Captain's take this superstition very seriously and really do forbid bananas on the boat. Put it this way - If you do bring a banana on a charter boat and the fishing turns out to be bad, all your buddies, the crew, and Captain are going to blame you for ruining the days fishing. Obviously if you do sneak a banana on board and get caught you will still be allowed to fish as normal, but you might find yourself on the bad end of some unwanted razzing by your fellow anglers. Here is a NO BANANA quote: No Bananas on the Charter Boats. It may be an old wives tale, but it's a fact that Bananas are bad Luck on a fishing charter boat. History tells us that this tale originated from early years when boats with Bananas in the cargo, ran aground, got lost at sea, or lost many of their crew members to a deadly sickness. Further investigation indicated that the bananas were prone carry to the deadly tarantula spiders. Today, I believe the bananas are safe, but just to make sure that we have great day on the bay, let's leave the bananas home.