A new Fishing Rod. How about the Okuma Baidarka rods! Ever since I handled one of these rods, I knew I just had to get one. Okuma designed these with Kayak fishermen giving them all the feedback they needed to build it right. First off, these rods float! Even with a properly sized reel attached! I've seen these rods float Penn Senators and Shimano Calcuttas without a problem.
Secondly, the Baidarka a leash attachment point! A small ring makes it easy to attach a leash to keep the rod in place. It stays out of your way if you keep it attached for casting.
This rod also has a shortened butt section so you don't have to reach so far for the reel. The foregrip is extended for floatation and for better leverage while fighting the Big One. Running from $99-125, these are a great gift and at a great price.
I'm a big fan of the Eagle 'Cuda 350s/map. The ONLY thing this fishfinder doesn't have is a color screen. To me, this means my battery pack will last longer. What this fishfinder does have is a 600' max depth, and GPS! That's right, GPS mapping, complete with 1000 storable waypoints. Keep track of where that honey hole is, and find out how to get there. What's even greater is the price - $220 from most retailers. You can't touch another fishfinder and GPS combo for anything near that price. I think this is hands down the best fishfinder for a kayak. Its small size makes it easy to mount where you want to put it. The 'Cuda is completely sealed and waterproof, so it will not have issues if you roll or take a big wave over the bow. All in all, its the best out there for the buck.
While you're out there, you need to stay dry. The Kokata SuperNova Angler suit is probably the best semi-dry suit available for kayak anglers. While the color options aren't the greatest, they will make you visible should you find yourself in the water without your kayak. Latex wrist cuffs will keep water from going up your sleeves and are great for pulling the Big One on board and releasing him after the picture ops. The Tropos3 fabric will keep you dry and the Cordura backed knees and seat area will help make sure this suit will last you years. The SuperNova Angler also has a relief zipper - a MUST have item in my opinion. I do only consider this a semi-dry suit though. The very comfortably neoprene neck gasket will trickle SOME water into the suit, but not much. Because some will get in (only Latex gaskets are truly waterproof) I can't call it a full on dry suit.
If you're on a tighter budget, or dreaming of a Green Christmas, I have a few other great ideas for you.
First up is Bioline, a 100% biodegradable fishing line. Bioline was recently purchased by EagleClaw, so hopefully we'll be seeing this product more readily available in local markets. Bioline is the first, 100 percent biodegradable fishing line on the market. Made from PBS, Bioline is engineered to retain its strength and durability for the first 10-12 months of use and then completely degrade in water or on land within five years. Standard monofilament fishing line lasts over 600 years. That's some pretty cool stuff.
Bioline is available in 4-12lb test mainlines, 3-20lb test leaders, and also available are fly line tippets from 1x-6x.
Bullet Weights brought us Ultra Steel sinkers in 1995, and are slowly becoming more readily available with the prohibition of small lead weights being made by various governments. Ultra Steel sinkers come in a wide variety of styles to suit your fishing targets. The stainless steel is great for Carolina rigs and makes a much clearer and louder click against beads. Casting style weights are also available for those that prefer drop-shot rigging. Bullet Weights also makes a lead-free splitshot made from tin.
And if you like the "Merry Fishmas" Brook Trout at the top of this page, you can buy a set of cards from the artist, Jim Roszel, at Fishing Artworks. Take a look at his gallery, he has some GREAT prints that make awesome gifts as well.