Tips on How to Choose the Best Fishing Equipment
There’s rarely a sport as exciting and serene as fishing. You’re in touch with yourself and the nature around you. However, getting into fishing can be quite demanding. It demands a great deal of patience, practice and preparation. Before you go on any fishing trip, you need to explore and research the habitat and the fish’s behaviour. Otherwise, you might end up sitting pretty.
And it’s not just about the mental fortitude and knowledge with fishing. There’s also the extensive preparation of equipment. Nowadays, there’s plenty of equipment to choose from, and the equipment can make all the difference. To exemplify, a brief list of necessary equipment would be a rod, a fishing reel, lure, baits, bags, etc. Depending on your style of fishing and where you fish, you’ll need a different variation of each piece. That said, here’s a brief overview and tips on how to choose the best equipment for your needs.
The fishing rod is the long, slender pole that you see cast to catch fish. It’s the essential part that connects all the other parts and you handle the most. There are three factors that you should keep in mind when shopping for fishing rods – length, material and specifications.
You decide which length is ideal by how you intend on fishing. If you want to make short, accurate casts, then a shorter rod is best. But, if accuracy isn’t your goal, you can get a longer one. Also, the longer the rod, the further you can throw the bait and vice-versa. You should know, however, that longer ones are harder to handle.
Material-wise, there are fibreglass, graphite and composite. Fibreglass is strong and durable, while graphite is lighter. The composite, on the other hand, is the middle-ground, as it’s both flexible and durable.
Regarding specification, the two crucial ones are power and action. The first one is the amount of force you must apply to make the rod bend. The bend makes a difference in how easy it is to catch a fish. The action, on the other hand, is the speed to which the rod returns to its neutral position. If, for example, you’re looking for a good sea fishing rod, you need to buy one that has ultra-heavy power and fast action.
While the fishing rod might be responsible for casting and stability, the part that holds it together and helps you wind your line and catch the fish is the reel. The reel is also responsible for containing the line, which connects the fish hook to the rod and you. There are many complicated technical features you have to consider, as there are many types of fishing reels. If you choose the right fishing reels for the job, it can make all the difference between success and failure.
The first feature you need to consider is the line weight range, which determines the weight of the fish you can catch. If you don’t want your line breaking, don’t overestimate the strength of a heavier fish. Reels are categorised based on weight classes. The weight class is based on the total weight of the reel and its gear. If you want to have a balanced feel when holding your rod, you need to match both pieces of equipment. The weight of your rod should correspond to the weight of your reels for fishing. As a result, you’ll be more accurate with your casting, and you face less fatigue.
There are four main types of fishing reels – spinning, baitcast, overhead, and fly. You will also find freshwater and saltwater as subcategories of them. As saltwater can quickly corrode any material, the reels need to be made with special resistant materials, or they should have some form of a coating.
Spinning reels are the most popular due to their simplicity, efficiency, and reliability. They’re great for beginners, and even experienced anglers use them for lightweight techniques and applications. They’re characterised by the whipping action and open-faced design with a metal bail to stop the line from unspooling. To cast, you disengage the bail and squeeze the line to the rod with your index finger. When you cast it, you let go and the lure will float.
Baitcasting reels, on the other hand, should only be used if you’re an experienced angler. This is due to the fact that they’re much more difficult to control but offer more accuracy and power. Technically, they don’t have a bail, but they have a spool tension knob and a braking system. Therefore, when you cast the line, you need to press your thumb against the spool to stop it. Additionally, you can be more accurate with where you want to throw the line and stop the spool from turning faster than the line.
Overhead is very similar to baitcasting, but the goal is not to cast the line but to feed it out below the boat. You use an overhead reel for ocean or suit game fishing.
Lastly, you use fly reels only with fly rods. They’re a single-action reel, and you use one hand to cast and another to control the spool.
Once you’ve got the reel and rod combination that is ideal for you, it’s time to move on to the line, tackle, live bait, and lure. Or if you’re also interested in cooking the fish you caught, you should consider knives and a knife sharpening set.
The line connects your rod to the fish, and as aforementioned, the wider the diameter of the line, the stronger it is. If you’re going for big, strong fish, you should get several rolls with extra-wide diameter.
The tackle is what you put on the end of the line, and there are weights, hooks, and floats. Weights are great for more casting distance and to keep your bait underwater, hooks are for a stronger grip on the fish, and floats give you a clear visual indication of where the catch is.
What attracts the fish, however, is the live bait and the lure. Live bait is the traditional choice, and it works with freshwater or predatory fish. Examples of such are nightcrawler and live shinners. Lures are artificial baits meant to mimic the prey of the fish. There are many types, some that vibrate or move around to look like living creatures. They’re also available in plenty of colours. If it’s the right colour, fish can easily see it in any water and get baited by them.