Any time you’re camping near a lake, a pond, or any kind of water, it’s always a good idea to bring some fishing gear along. Even if you don’t have any angling plans at the moment, chances are, you’ll be hankering to cast a line at some point during a lazy afternoon. While you can always carry a compact fly fishing kit to cover your bases, the OIG TrailCaster offers an even more compact option.
Designed to turn any trekking pole (or similarly sized sticks) into a fishing rod, the attachment gives you functional fishing gear that you can use to snag yourself some trout, panfish, or grayling. That’s right, this lets you use the same trekking pole you use when hiking to do a little angling, expanding the amount of things you can enjoy in the outdoors without being burdened with carrying extra gear.
The OIG TrailCaster consists of a plastic attachment that secures over the end of a trekking pole to turn it into a fishing rod and a plastic cleat that fits around the body of the pole. The rod attachment has been designed to fit the most common threaded trekking pole tips, with included elastic bands that you can use to affix it in place, in case your trekking pole doesn’t quite fit it flush. The cleat, on the other hand, snaps onto the body of poles approximately 18mm in diameter, again with elastic bands that you can use to reinforce it on poles that don’t quite have the same dimensions.
From there, you just run a line from the cleat to the rod for straight fly casting, in case you want to go with the simplest setup. If you brought a spinning reel along, you can also secure it right on the cleat (using the elastic bands), allowing you to build yourself a functional fishing rig that takes up minimal space in your pack.
According to the outfit, the OIG TrailCaster will provide a surprisingly “intuitive casting feel” that should make it very easy for both novice and experienced anglers to get into. We know, your trekking pole won’t exactly bend like a proper rod would, but the flexible build of the rod adapter is supposed to facilitate that familiar casting action. The two components, by the way, weigh less than 1.5 ounces together, so they barely add any weight to your camping stash, too. Do note, you’ll also have to bring along a reel, a line, and a small supply of lures, although all of those should fit in a small box you can cram in an exterior pocket of your backpack.
In case you’re curious, both components of the adapter kit are 3D-printed, so they have that DIY feel to their construction, although they’re both simple enough with no moving parts that you shouldn’t encounter much trouble during use. Why not mass produce it? From what we can tell, they seem to consider this an evolving prototype of sorts (they say “beta version” in the website), so they’re probably still trying to improve on the overall design while getting it in the hands of people who want to use one.
The OIG TrailCaster is available now, priced at $30.