Light Tackle Freshwater Fishing
If you aren’t acquainted with light tackle fishing, you might have some questions on the topic. For starters, light tackle is a system that includes a specific rod, reel, and line size, in order to make it easier to use light baits. It means using downsized, more sensitive equipment. I often light tackle fish on local ponds. I grab my rod and reel with 4lb test and my favorite tackle backpack and spend a few hours fishing.
There is a general misconception according to which light tackle implies fishing with tiny baits and soft rods. While it could be like this, as well, it doesn’t have to be.
I prefer using a wide range of baits so that I can have a large variety to choose from. We could argue that light tackle is a system that requires using specific equipment and certain methods in order to achieve a goal. And that goal could be catching more fish.
Check out this video of PK Yi using light tackle for Smallmouth Bass.
Why Light Tackle?
Many professional anglers prefer using a light tackle as a safety strategy, in the event in which traditional methods don’t bring fruitful results. And this is definitely true. To be honest, this tactic will make fish bite, not just when they are particularly picky.
If you reduce the line size and baits, you actually make your offerings more enticing to a more extensive population of bass species. That would result in more strikes and catching more fish – which is the ultimate goal of every enthusiast fisher.
Light tackle fishing is really fun. I always like to spice up the fishing techniques I use, to keep things interesting and exciting. Plus, I believe that experiencing different techniques teaches us versatility. Not to mention that, when other methods fail you, light tackle fishing could help you attain your target.
Does Light Tackle Fishing Harm Big Fish?
You might believe that, when using light equipment, there is the likelihood of harming the fish. Still, just as traditional gear poses a range of risks, the same applies in the case of light tackle fishing. However, there is a myth according to which light-tackle angling requires longer to land larger fish. Eventually, this could create more stress.
Nonetheless, if you’re using a 4 or 6 lbs. light line, it shouldn’t take much longer to land a large fish than it would with a normal line weighing 10 or 12 lbs.
The only way in which you could harm the fish is if you mistreat it. If you handle it accordingly, the odds are you’ll be able to release the fish safely into the water. That being said, my advice is to always handle fish gently, whether you use standard or light gear.
Is Light Tackle Fishing Suitable for Any Type of Water?
Yes – you may use light tackle fishing techniques anywhere you fish. In fact, as soon as you come to master these techniques, you’ll become much better at catching fish – take my word for it.
I hope that this brief article has clarified the topic of light tackle fishing. Experimenting with different techniques can definitely make fishing more pleasurable and enticing – so don’t hesitate to give new things a go. Who knows? You’ll end up loving them more than you’d thought.
Here is a another video from the World Fishing Network on light tackle fishing.
Bass Fishing Gear
Bass fishing is one of the most common sports. People love it because bass can be found all over the country, it is easy to learn to fish and bass can grow up to 20lbs. Beginners will need to choose fishing tackle that is versatile and can be used in the most common situations. This article lists some of the main bass fishing tackle necessary for a successful fishing trip.
Fishing rod and reel – There are different options available when selecting bass fishing reels to go together with your fishing rod. The most popular reels for bass fishing include Baitcast reels, Spincast reel and the Spinning reel. Each of these reels works in a different way. The Bait casting reel is the most difficult to use for beginners but it is very accurate and strong.
The Spin casting reel is more simpler to learn on and more comfortable to use. The Spinning reel is widely used and the second easiest to use after the Spin caster. It is recommended that beginners use an open faced spinning reel which is more manageable.
Bass fishing rods are typically made from graphite or fiberglass. Graphite is the preferred type because it is lighter and stiffer than fiberglass. A good bass rod should have a heavy strong butt, and a sensitive tip. Just like rods and reels for other types of fishing, it is important that the bass fishing rod and the fishing reel are balanced. Do not use a heavier reel as this would impair the balance and sensitivity of the rod. For beginners choose a 6 1/2 foot medium action rod.
Mono or Braided Fishing line – Fishing lines come in many styles and strengths. Beginners should use low visibility green mono-filament lines and a 10 pound line which is suitable for most situations.
Hooks and Terminal tackle – It is important to have some hooks, weights and terminal tackle like swivels and split rings in your tackle box. To create the right presentation and to catch more bass you will need to select the proper hooks, weights and swivels. Get a variety of weights between 1/8oz and 1/2oz weights. The common being the bullet head weight and drop shot weight. For the hooks, the popular ones are a worm hook and a drop shot hook. Make sure they are razor sharp and very strong so that you easily catch the fish. Get some barrel swivels and split rings to prevent the line from twisting and tangling and also to help make rigs.
Live or Artificial Baits – There are different types of lures and baits that can be used to catch bass. These include bass fishing spinnerbaits, crankbaits, jigs, live bait and surface lures. Artificial plastic bait is more commonly used to catch bass. Soft plastic ones in a green pumpkin color are preferred. A spinnerbait is also preferred by most anglers. They can be used at the surface and also at the bottom of the water body. They are easy to use and you can be certain to catch some bass. Crankbait is another type of bait necessary for your tackle box. They are easy to use and can catch fish all year round.
Tacklebox or Tackle Backpack – This is vital to keep all your lures neatly. Get one that is clear so that you are able to see what is inside. Make sure that it is one that has removable dividers so you can customize the compartments. Click here to read about our recommended tackle backpacks.
Other equipment – Ensure that you fill your tackle box with essentials such as line clippers, needle nose pliers to remove the hooks from the bass and a sharpening stone to sharpen your hooks with.
Walleye Fishing Guide for Starters
Walleye also known as Pickerel are one of the most popular sport fish. They are normally dark olive and yellowish gold in color. They are characterized by their spiny dorsal fin and many sharp teeth. To catch walleye, you will need an array of fishing equipment for you to successfully catch them. The list below lists some of the accessories needed for beginners starting walleye fishing.
Bait: Live bait can be used to catch walleye. There are three types of live bait used when fishing for walleye – Minnows, Leeches and Night crawlers. Artificial bait include jigs and these are the most common types of lures for walleye. They can easily be used to the depths where walleye are found. Jigs are good to use in rivers and other moving water. Jigs with rubber tails are more commonly used. Buy jigs is colors such as white and chartreuse. A combination of jig and live bait is recommended as you are more likely to catch walleye that way.
Walleye rod and reel: For beginners, it is advisable to use a 6 foot medium-action rod with a very sensitive tip and a spinning reel with an 8 pound line. The type of rod you buy will depend on certain factors: Whether you are fishing for walleye in deep water or shallow water, current or calm, trolling or jigging. Graphite is a better suited material for walleye fishing because it is very sensitive to the light vibrations of a possible bite. Select rods with light spinning reels that have instant, anti-reverse features. Reels of about $50 to $100 are more durable and have more bearings. They are made from carbon fiber or titanium and are lighter weight. Ensure that the reel matches the rod in weight and balance. A heavier reel will result in too much weight closer to the handle and your wrist action will suffer when casting.
Fishing line: An 8 or 10 pound line is suitable for a medium-action rod and reel combo. The use of a mono-filament is more common, it is very popular because it is reasonably strong and slightly invisible to the fish. However, because it stretches a bit, it makes it less sensitive to the bite of the walleye.
For jogging use a non stretch super line with mono-filament. It has great sensitivity to the bite of a walleye fish. When trolling use a good strong line that can stretch easily and that can withstand the abuse a trolling line is subjected to.
Sliding sinker rigs: These are also known as “Lindy” rigs. These live-bait outfits place a sliding sinker in front of a swivel that is connected to a leader. They come in different weights.
Hook: Get good quality hooks that are sharp so that you catch the fish easily.
Landing net: Use a strong net that can safely hold big fish once caught.
Hook removers: These are important for removing the hooks from the fish. Long needle-nose pliers can also be used to remove the hooks.
Sinkers and floats: There are different weight sizes that can provide enough options if you want to get the bait to the bottom. Floats are used to keep the live bait at a particular depth.
Bottom bouncers: These are a weight on a wire bent at 90 degrees and are good for trolling spinners, cranks and live bait.
Tackle box: This is necessary to keep the gear neatly and safely organized including your bait and pliers. Buy a satchel-style case that holds plastic covered trays.
Electronics: A sonar system, underwater camera and a GPS system can all be used to locate the walleye in the water especially in murky water.
Basic Trout Gear
These fish are found in abundance and can be caught with basic tackle. These fish are known to always put up a fight. So be prepared to get active. Some essential equipment for trout fishing are listed below.
Bait and Lures: There are various types of artificial lures used for trout fishing. Examples include tubes, swimbaits, worm imitators, cranks, salmon eggs, spoons, spinners, and powerbait. Live bait can also be used for fishing trout. Anglers use grasshoppers, grubs, leeches, aquatic larvae and large earthworms.
Rod and Reel: Trout can be caught on both spinning and fly rods. If you prefer the spinning use a spinning ultralight rig which combines the short, flexible rod with a reel featuring a fully exposed spool at the front and with a 4 or 6 pound monofilament. The reason for the fully exposed front is because some experienced anglers suggest that beginners stay away from the enclosed type fishing reel. They typically have a button on it that you press to release the line during the casting of the bait. This type of reel is usually prone to internal tangles, and will definitely frustrate a new angler.
This provides the most flexibility during fishing. For those that would prefer fly rods, the common ones are 7-9 foot models of about a 4-6 weight range with floating or weight-forward lines. If you are fishing in the lake then you must have longer rods around eleven feet
Waders and boots: Sometimes fishing for trout will require you to go directly into the water. Trout are typically found in streams and the waters can sometimes get too frigid. Invest in chest waders which will protect you from the water and also keep you dry. Get wading boots that have rubber knees with a tight ankle fit. These will keep you dry but you will still be comfortable.
Fishing vests: These can act like a tackle box when heading out into the water. Since you will be wading most of the time, you will not be able to carry many things with you. Get a trout vest made of good cotton fabric or a blend of polyester and cotton. Ensure that they have a lot of pockets to hold your lures and hooks. Other essentials include a wide brimmed hat and sunglasses.
Landing Nets: When getting a net for trout fishing consider the following; the depth of the net, the material and the mesh size. This is to prevent damaging the fish as soon as you catch it. Trout have more delicate skin than many other fish species, and a good net will protect their slime coat so they can swim away unharmed. They are also hardy fighters that do not give up easily, so it is important to always have a durable landing net.
Forceps and clippers: It is sometimes difficult to unhook them because they teeth and a narrow body mouth. Get a good pair of forceps so that you can quickly and safely unhook the fish. You can also use needle nosed pliers to remove the hooks. Finger nail clippers are a necessity for any trout tackle box. They are used for cutting the trout fishing line.
SALMON FISHING GEAR
For most people, one image comes to mind when someone mentions salmon: an excited fish dramatically swimming against the current and jumping up waterfalls. You’ll be glad to know that streams aren’t the only place salmon are found.
Fishing salmon can be an immensely rewarding experience; but as a wise man once told me, “before fun, comes preparation”. Let’s have a look at some of best the fishing equipment you’ll need on your trip:
Waders (optional) Waders are waterproof footwear that extend all the way to the waist or chest area. If you don’t feel like bringing out your boat and want to get closer to the fish rather than cast from the shore, waders are the way to go. Sometimes physically being in the water can have a calming effect and make you feel like you are “one with the fish”. Don’t know if that last part does much for your overall fishing technique, but it wouldn’t hurt to try.
Rod and Reel We just talked about how salmon have the strength to swim against the current and leap out of the water. That strength doesn’t suddenly disappear when they feel trapped. Salmon can put up one heck of a fight when caught, and the fact that they can weigh up to 25 pounds doesn’t help matters. We’re not suggesting you start buffing up for your showdown against the fish, we just recommend you take time to pick out a strong, quality rod-and-reel combo that can manage a little extra stress.
There are a wide variety to choose from. Try a 10-12’ rod to start. For the reel, we suggest you look into ones with disc drags. They provide added inner resistance and a consistent level of restraint. Both come in handy when you’re wrestling with fish that’s trying to make a break for it.
Fishing Line A 15-30 pound fishing line should do the trick.
Salmon Lures While you have a wide variety of lures to choose from, you’ll want to be careful with your final selection. It could mean the difference between a successful and a hella-stressful fishing trip. Fish differ in what they find attractive. You may want to do a little research to find out what kind of salmon you’re most likely to catch in your area and the kind of lure they respond to. You may even find that bait works best. In this case bait means any substance that fish can actually feed on – bits of food, critters (alive or dead). Lures are artificial bait. Ones that the fish can’t consume and so can be used over and over.
Sliding Float You will want to use a slip bobber to keep your lure or bait at a certain depth. The advantage of the slip bobber over a fixed one lies in the adjustability. Fixed bobbers become a nightmare when you would like to attach a long line to your hook. Most only work with a few feet. That becomes a problem when you know that the fish you’re hunting swim much deeper. Slip bobbers allow the line to slide through them. Meaning you can cast the setup as usual, and then adjust for depth after the bobber is already in the water.
Float Stopper Since you’re working with a slip bobber you’ll need to ensure you’ve properly set its stop. Otherwise your line will keep sliding through, lowering your bait deeper and deeper in the water. After measuring for the level of depth you’d like to fish at, tie a uni-knot before the bobber and string through a sizeable bead. The knot stops the bead, and the bead stops the bobber. This setup keeps the bobber from wandering higher than its supposed to.
Don’t forget to attach some split shot weights to your line. Fishing too close to the surface will hardly yield any success. And there you have it: tips on what tools you’ll need for a successful salmon fishing adventure.