ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Considerations for Buying Fishing Equipment

Updated on January 2, 2015

Where to Start

If you're new to fishing, you'll quickly find that there is an ocean of products out there that you can swim through. However, not everything is worth it's weight in power bait or will you every use. So before you take that trip to the tackle store and get hooked on useless equipment take some time and reel in these 5 quick considerations. (See what I did there!!)

Where are You at and Where are You Going?

First, stop and think about your geographic location, the waterways near you and the type of fishing you plan on or what to do. For example, if you are located near, or are planning to fish, local ponds for fish like panfish, bass, or small catfish. You don't need heavy tackle or surf fishing rods.

Conversely, if you are planning on surf fishing or going out on a boat to fish in a bay or ocean, you will probably want to avoid light tackle or featherweight rods. Knowing what you want to do and where you are going if crucial to starting your equipment list.

2. Know your Skill Level

We all want to think we are the next Roland Martin or Brad Pitt in the 'River Runs Through It' but be honest with yourself. Like many things in life, fishing looks easier then it is. There is technique to a good cast and depending on the reel type you use, the technique is even more challenging. If you've never picked up a rod and reel, you'll want to start simple. If you used to fish but its been a while, or if when you fished you spent most of your time in tree branches and over head power lines you may want to start simple.

Reel Types from Simple to Use to Difficult:

  1. Push Button - This is the simple type that many of us as kids used. Push and hold the button, release in the direction you want the line to go and then begin reeling. It is simple yes, but it is simple too. A good starter reel for any age to get the motion of casting down.
  2. Spinning Reel - This has a thin metal bale that the fishing line is fed under. Flipping the bale and holding the line prepares the cast. As you go through the casting motion let the string go in the direction you want it to go. Most newer versions have a automatic bale flipper that flips the bale back to the proper position once you begin reeling.
  3. Bait Casting Reel - This may look similar and function slightly similar to a push button reel. But it isn't. These are generally much more expensive and are more challenging to operate. The challenge is not in casting but in preventing tangles in the line as you cast. This is a finesse reel and works great but requires practice.
  4. Flyfishing reel - Ok, so this is completely different from the rest and is arguably easier, as a reel, to use. However, the proper casting motion is a thing of art and beauty. It takes time to learn and is wholly unique to what is now considered conventional fishing.

3. Determine Your Price Range

If you were going car shopping you would have a budget in mind. You wouldn't go to the Porsche dealership when all you could afford is a used Ford Focus. Surprisingly to many, fishing equipment can be the same. You could spend less than $100 USD for a basic flyfishing set up or pay well over $1000 USD for a nice flyfishing rod alone. Be careful to avoid having champagne tastes on a moonshine budget.

4. Research Your Prey

This could fall under the first point but it is important enough to consider alone. Each species or group of fish have their own tendencies and gear. You can spend hours and days researching just bass, or just panfish or just walleye or just tuna. You can spend truck loads of money on each as well. And while some gear will work for several species the generally are better suited for one group of fish. For example, I have caught bass, bluegill, perch and pike on a split back minnow even though that particular lure is more for bass.

Before you go in and buy every type of lure listed take some time and home in on the gear that is best suited for the type of fish you want to fish for. This will keep you from junking up your box with rattletraps meant for pike when your are aiming to catch crappies.

This concept is a bit different if you plan on using live bait. However, you will still need to consider mouth size and typical habitat of your target fish. For example, if you are fishing for panfish you will want a small bait hook. However, if you are fishing for pike you will want a larger hook and a perhaps a steel leader. Furthermore, some fish, like catfish, rarely leave the bottom of the waterway. If you plan on buying and fishing with bobbers you may be completely out of luck.

5. Sometimes Less is More

If you've walked down the lure isle you will have already noticed the plethora of colors shapes and sizes of the lures available (this goes for every aspect of gear from rods to line to vest). It is the beauty of a competitive market. It can, however, be overwhelming at times. Should I buy the 6" chartreuse worm with wigglers, the 8" red shad worm without, or the 7" Tequila Sunrise? This doesn't even address scent and flavor infused baits. And while variety can be the spice of life, lean and mean is often the best way here. Otherwise you could spend hundreds of dollars on tackle boxes alone to house all the varieties of lures.

Instead, buy a basic array. Want to fish with plastic baits? Buy two colors of lizards, worms and grubs. Chances are you'll catch fish on them the first day out but you won't be worried about changing your lure every 3 casts because the fish might be hitting on purple instead of red and blue. It will also allow you to experiment with a smaller set of variables.

Keep in mind that on any given day it could be feast or famine when you fish and what worked Monday may not even get a nibble Tuesday.

What kind of fishing do you do?

What type of fishing do you normally do?

See results


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)