Fishing for Beginners – Get Started Guide

Last Updated: 20.10.19


Fishing is the type of sport that requires preparing – you can find our thoughts on the best fishing backpack here. Before you pack your tackle box for the first time, you should make sure that you have purchased all the supplies that you need, from the right rod and reel to hooks and bait. 

Fishing is a hobby with numerous positive effects on one’s physical and psychological health. If you are a complete novice that is interested in picking up this sport, this is the right article that you need to read, as it includes all the info you might need to know.



The length of the rod

When you are in the market for a reel, there are a couple of aspects that you should have in mind. Firstly, you have to consider the length of the rod. The length of a product of this sort is measured from the tip to the butt of the rod. Most models measure between four and fourteen feet.

Shorter units can be used to cast at short distances. They work great with lightweight lures, they allow for easy maneuvering and are easy to handle when fighting fish. Longer counterparts are suitable for casting at further distances. They are practical to use for surfcasting and they are usually utilized with heavier lures.


Weight and action

Another crucial aspect that should not be overlooked is the weight of the device. Lighter options are easy to carry around. When it comes to this feature, you also have to consider the type of bait that you plan on using. 

The weight of the rod is measured by what seasoned anglers call the pound test or the strength of the fishing line. You have to make sure that the line that you select matches the weight of the type of fish that you intend to catch. For instance, a line that is used to catch trout has to have a 4-pound test.

The action of the rod is an indication of the flexibility of the unit. Extra fast options flex near the tip of the device. Similarly, fast items flex a little down the rod, while medium rods flex near the largest eyelet. This last type of rods was designed in such a way so that it has to be unloaded slower so that the fish cannot throw the hook. 



The material that was used to make a rod also tells you a lot about its performance. Graphite models are stiff and light and they are very sensitive. However, they are known for being a tad more expensive than other counterparts.

Fiberglass rods are heavier, but, at the same time, more flexible than those units made of graphite. They are very difficult to break and, even more importantly, a lot more affordable. They are the go-to models for beginners. 

If you plan on fishing in a wide array of locations, it is best that you opt for a model made of a combination of fiberglass and graphite. Yet again, this won’t come cheap!


The reel

There are two types of reels that you can select from. Spinning reels are, to put it in simple terms, similar to the automatic transmission in a car. This means that they are particularly easy to maneuver and, thus, perfect for a beginner. Plus, these models rarely get tangled and they work with many kinds of baits and rods.

Casting reels are a bit more complicated to use and, thus, are alike manual transmission on cars. They provide the angler with much more control and with a higher cast accuracy. Yet, they are not a great fit for a beginner.



Fishing line

Once you have the rod and the reel, it is time to look for some fishing line. Monofilament or mono is the most popular kind of line you could get. This choice is a safe bet as it can be utilized in most fishing conditions. Its main advantages are the fact that it can stretch, its low visibility, as well as its affordability. This is the line that you should get as a novice.

Braided line is very strong and it has a small diameter. It works best in difficult fishing circumstances. However, its outstanding features do not come at a low cost.

Fluorocarbon line is a new invention that has recently hit the market. This line is suitable for clear water angling. It has great strength, impressive abrasion resistance, and a low stretch. Once again, this alternative is somewhat pricier than mono. 


Hooks and weights

As a beginner, the safest thing that you could do is to invest in a combo kit specially designed for novices such as yourself. These kits include a wide variety of hooks and weights that you can use on your first fishing adventure.

For small fish, it is recommended that you use hooks that are sized 6 to 10. Yet, if you plan on releasing your catch, it is best that you utilize circle hooks, as they inflict less damage to the fish.


Clippers and pliers

To cut the fishing line, you will need to bring with you some clippers. To save money, it is a great idea to simply use regular nail clippers for the job. 

Pliers come in handy when it comes to actually removing the hooks from the catch. Using a device of this kind is better that doing it by using your hands. This way, you can minimize the risks of injuring yourself.



Bait and a bucket

If you intend to go fishing in a well-known fishing location, you will be able to purchase live bait on the spot. Most sellers offer a wide selection of live bait such as crickets, minnows, and crawlers. 

If you want to use artificial bait, we advise in favor of going to your local angling shop and asking for recommendations from the sales assistants. By doing so, you can be sure that the bait that you end up with is suitable for the type of fishing that you intend to do.

A good fisherman never leaves his/her house without a bucket. You will need it to keep the catch in it. Besides, you can also use it as a seat.


A bobber and split shots

Another important piece of gear that you should invest in is a bobber. Most bobbers are made of plastic or cork and they attach to the line. 

The main use of a floater, or a bobber, is that it helps the user tell when a fish is biting. Also, they enable the users to retrieve the lure at a constant pace. 

You should also make sure that you bring split shots with you. These are those small weights that you have to clip to the line for it to sink.


A state fishing license

If you are between the ages of 17 and 65, it is illegal to fish if you do not have a fishing license. You can get one online or from a local retailer. It is vital that you bring the license with you when you go fishing. 

Most state licenses are not very pricey. However, it is crucial that you read the regulations that these documents come with. If you are caught without a license, you will most likely get fined. 


First aid kit

Seasoned anglers also recommend that novices bring with them a first aid kit. These kits can be purchased online and they are not very expensive. It is important that you have one with you, as fishing is a hobby where you can get minor injuries that have to be treated immediately.

Most first aid kits have an expiration date. This is why the specialists advise anglers to replace the products that are no longer usable with new ones. You have to do so once every few years.


Extra items

If you plan on going fishing in the summer, there are a couple of extra items that you might want to consider bringing with you. By this, we are referring, of course, to a bottle of water, sunglasses, a hat, and the necessary protective clothing. Sunscreen should not be regarded as optional.

Depending on how much time you want to spend fishing, seasoned fishers also recommend that you pack with you some snacks or even a meal. If the weather is unstable, you might also want to consider packing a small waterproof poncho. 

Last but not least, even if fishing is an activity that means taking a break from any screens, it is highly recommended that you bring a phone with you so that you can ask for help in case of an accident.



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