Shopping For Surf Rods – The Best Hints
Shore fishing presents one of the most exciting ways that any fisherman can test his or her mettle against the forces of nature and a huge variety of prey species – and this is especially true when it comes to surf fishing. However, for the novice evaluating surf rods to find that perfect piece of equipment can be a challenge. Here are some factors to consider when making that purchase.
Firstly – length. Most surf rods will measure between 9 and 14 feet in length – and a good rule of thumb is the longer the better as the length aids in distance casting (you need to get bait out and over the breakers). However, surf fishermen need to be aware of their physical limitations. It does no good to purchase a 14 footer if it is uncomfortable to use. Around 12 feet is usually the sweet spot.
Ask a salesperson to help out with an evaluation of the power that the rod will supply. This will impact the weight of the line that can be sued. Most people will be comfortable with a medium/heavy option as this is the most versatile, allowing a wide variety of species to be targeted and allowing the fisherman to cope with varying sea conditions.
Then there is the action – think of this as the amount of ‘flex’ a rod is capable of delivering. Fast action rods show that bend near the tip, while a slow action rod will bend nearer the center. Fast will provide the power for distance casting heavy lures beyond the surf line and supplies the power required to set a single hook. Those who are using treble hooks can choose a slow action rod – that hook setup doesn’t require the power strikes that are part of the single hook experience.
Those using live baits should go for a medium/fast action due to the heaviness of the sinkers and the baits themselves while those using lures will find a rod leaning towards a fast action as most suitable.
When you are making your selection take that rod outside and give it a few test casts. Some tackle dealers will even have rods preloaded with line and sinkers. you’ll get the best feel for how that rod suits your particular style and requirements. Tight lines and enjoy that first surf catch.