Buying A Rod And Reel For The Novice (me)
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Buying A Rod And Reel for the Novice (me)

I have been fishing since I was about twelve, but I have never really become involved in the technical side of the gear. I forget how to hold the rod, how to cast, how to bring a fish in. The problem is, those long periods of time in between fishing trips don't let me really get into the sport. But I do love it, and every once in a while I get antsy—I want to go fishing. I don't want to catch a derby-sized fish; I just want to be able to get my gear out of the Yukon XL and have the line out in the water with some degree of capability, if not actually finesse.

This brings us to my youngest brother, camping and fishing fanatic and best friend. Recently I have made fidgety gestures and said, "I want to go fishing. I want to go fishing this year." He promised to take me to a store so I can get a new fishing rod, my beloved Shimano having been killed in a freak camping accident involving a windy day, a tarp, and a heavy wood pole.

He comes in a few days later bearing a Berkley Tactix Light Trout 7 foot rod. Perfect for a beginner, this little beauty is so light you could use it as a conductor’s baton. This is the write-up for it: "IM7 graphite blank with unique carbon fiber orientation pattern creates an extremely resilient yet sensitive rod. Hard chromium ss304 guide system that is 20 times tougher and 55% lighter than conventional aluminum-oxide guides." What this essentially means is that for about 60-80 bucks you get a rod that's light, easy to handle, and the entire length will bend instead of just the tip if a good-sized trout grabs your hook, so the tip won't snap. It also means you can feel the faintest action of your fishing rod. (C'mon you sneaky bait-stealing fish; I dare you!) Incidentally, there's more about this story, and about how the rod and reel below act, at Camping and Hiking Ideas.

The reel he selected for me is a Penn FRC 2000 Fierce spinning reel, a pretty little thing that spins like it has more than its 4 stainless ball bearings. Its full metal body and sideplates keep precise gear alignment under heavy load, a stainless steel main shaft, and has a machined and anodized aluminum spool. Its handle is machined and anodized, too, with a soft-touch knob that makes it feel like you're touching leather. It has infinite anti-reverse and a techno-balanced rotor which gives smooth retrieves, and yes, I am reading from the product description again.

I'm thinking all told with tax and everything it probably came to a hundred, a hundred fifty bucks with the fishing line thrown in (8 lb. test). Not what you would get as a first fishing rod for your kids, but certainly one for a rank amateur who loves to fish like me.

So I’m off to go fishing, and a happy little camper I am indeed.


Street Talk

Deven  

Great article, thanks for sharing! I too started fishing around the age of 12. I've always loved it but like you never bothered learning too much about the technical side of fishing gear. The Tactix rod seems really nice. Not sure if I will need it though, I mostly fish in ponds and catch loads and loads of Sunfish.. Great fun haha. Do you think that rod would be too much? Do you have a different recommendation if so? Thanks for sharing!

Reply
  about 8 years ago
  

The tactix rod is great for all pan fish, Deven--it doesn't seem to matter what I throw at it in terms of fish--trout, mostly, but I've even caught a few walleye on it. It can handle larger fish but the little ones can't get away either because the rod is so sensitive and transmits the slightest fish movement through the rod to your hand. I suppose I could get another rod, but this is doing me just fine so far. I don't want any other. Thank you so much for commenting!

Reply
  about 8 years ago
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