Surf Rods for the Beginner

Surf Rod

So you're going on vacation and you thinking about purchasing a surf fishing rod or you have decided to hit the beach and doing some surf fishing in search of stripers and other surf fish. Surf fishing is one of the most enjoyable things you can do on vacation or start as a hobby. What could be better than sitting on beach and watching the waves while waiting for something to take down a rod. And that's the real thrill your waiting on something to bite and you never know what that something might be.

That something could be striper in the winter and spring to sharks, skates, and kingfish in the summer, to red fish (Puppy Drum) in the fall. Surf Fishing is a sport that all can enjoy it just takes some basic knowledge and learning how to cast big weights into the surf. With a little bit of practice, knowledge and using your common sense you to can enjoy this sport we call surf fishing.

Surf Rod & Reel Needed

The surf rod you will need is a 9 to 12 foot rod depending on what you are targeting and how much weight you will be throwing. There are a wide variety of surf rods that come with very different price tags. If you are only planning on using your surf gear once or twice a year you don't need the top of the line Daiwa Ballistic surf rod. I would try to spend under $100 dollars and look at brands like TICA and Tsunami or Penn makes a good entry-level surf rod. When you start to surf fish more and really get into then you can move to a top of the line surf rod with a 525 Mag reel, but to start stick with basics.

Here is my go to gear when hitting the surf

11 Foot surf rod (spinning) with an Okuma bait runner reel that is the largest that Okuma makes. The 11 foot rod is a Tsunami Surf Rod and can easily handle up to 7 oz of lead and a bunker head. I use this rig when targeting stripers, red fish, chopper blues, and sharks. When fishing for smaller fish I have a 9 foot Tsunami surf rod that is perfect for throwing up to 4 oz of lead and can pick up the lightest bites. I pair this up with not as large spinning reel which makes for a great combo when fishing for flounder, kingfish, snapper blues, and other smaller species of fish. I also own an 8 foot Tsunami surf rod that I use when fishing on piers, inlets, and jetties which is perfect for throwing metal jigging spoons, poppers, swim shads, and my favorite the soft plastic jerk bait with a 2 oz jighead. So there's my go to fishing rod and reels when I head to the beach. By no means do you need all these rods to go to the beach but you will want to figure out what is biting and match your gear. I like the Tsunami rods if you can't tell, they aren't very expensive and they have a nice feel to them. I've fished with other brands as well, but I can buy three Tsunami's for the price of one of the other rods I've used.

Here are some safety related rules to remember before going out to the beach or jetty you are planning to fish.

  1. Use a Shock Leader - Those big sinkers can bust loose and seriously hurt someone.
  2. Korkers - If you fish the jetties where felt boots or Korkers that are steel cleats this will help with the slippery rocks and consider wearing a life jacket. Jetties and inlets are no joke and big wave can take you out.
  3. Practice casting before trying it for real - These big weights are not like casting a spinner to trout and they are dangerous. Never cast where there are swimmers in the area!
  4. Have Fun!  - Be Patient