How to set up a fishing pole
Learning how to set up a fishing pole is one of the most important skills you’ll need if you want to be an angler. It’s possible to have an experienced angler with you to set up your fishing rig, but you’ll have a hard time fishing alone. And you’ll never truly get to embrace the sport of fishing. It’s the same as learning to clean your fish. You could ask someone else to do it, but knowing how to do everything from beginning to end makes the experience more fulfilling.
What should you know about setting up a fishing pole?
First, let’s take a look at the items you need to set up your pole and go fishing.
You’ll need to choose your fishing rod if you don’t already have one. For the true novices, fishing poles are slim rods that are used to cast your fishing line out into the water and to pull the fish to you once it’s on your line. Fishing poles tend to be lightweight, but should be made of durable material that is able to withstand a good fight from a strong fish. The exact rod you’ll need is based on the type of fishing you’re doing and your personal preference.
Other items you’ll need include:
- Fishing reel spool (usually part of the rod)
- Fishing line (cord that is made of nylon, silk, or polymers and is the right weight and durability for the type of fishing you’re doing)
- Live bait, lures, or flies
Setting Up Your Fishing Pole
Now that you have everything you need, you can learn how to set up a fishing pole. We’ve broken the process down into 10 steps for you:
1. Start by cleaning the rod. Wipe the length of the rod with a dry cloth and check for buildup of dirt. Ideally you’ll clean up the rod after you fish to prevent smells from soaking into it, but it’s a good idea to double check it before setting it up for a new outing.
2. Next, you’ll assemble the rod if you haven’t done so already. Some people store their rods in pieces if they’re able to break them down. If your rod is in pieces, put it together according to the manufacturer’s guidelines.
3. Attach the reel. At this point, you’ll push or slide the reel into place and tighten it. There’s a foot attached to the reel spool that you’ll feel settle into place as long as there are no breaks or misalignments. Take your time tightening the reel and don’t force it too much if you feel resistance. Instead, just remove it and start again.
4. Thread the pole. If you store your casting rod fully assembled with the reel attached, you can skip from step 1 to step 4. At this point, you’ll be threading the fishing line onto the reel and locking it into place. You’ll need to lift the bale arm and pull the thread through the guides on your fishing pole. Most rods have about four or five guides. Once it’s through all of them, close the bale arm so the line is taught but not too tight.
5. Choose your bait. Now that your pole is set up, it’s time to deal with the bait. You’ll want to make sure the bait you’ve chosen is appropriate to the type of fishing you plan to do. It’s also a good idea to learn a little bit about what the species of fish you’re after find appealing. There’s a lot of trial and error involved in choosing bait, so give yourself time to get to know the likes and dislikes of your prey. It’s all part of the sport.
6. Hook your lure. If you’re using a lure, you’ll need to thread the fishing line through the lure. It helps to practice tying knots to get your fingers used to the motion. Fishing line is transparent and can be tough to tie with, so be patient with yourself. Remember, if you get a fish on your line, they’ll have the lure in their mouth, so you want your knots to be tight and tough.
7. Add a sinker. If you choose to use a sinker, now is when you add it to your line. This adds weight to your bait, which slows the fish down once you hook it. It also makes it easier to cast because you aren’t just throwing lightweight line and bait out into the water. Sometimes sinkers aren’t needed, but we do recommend them for beginners.
8. Get ready to fish. The last step is to get fishing. If you’ve assembled your fishing pole properly, you’ll have a smooth experience. This doesn’t guarantee you’ll catch a fish, but if you do manage to hook one, a properly set up fishing pole increases the odds you’ll be able to keep the fish on the line and bring him in.
We’d also recommend practicing a few times setting up the fishing pole before you’re out on the water. This way you won’t be dealing with your fishing rod while under a lot of pressure. You don’t want to be burning daylight trying to figure out how your fishing pole works when you could’ve dealt with it beforehand and not wasted any of your precious fishing time. This goes for beginners as well as anyone experienced who has recently invested in a new fishing pole.
It’s also a good idea to add one more item to the list of things you need to set up your pole and go fishing: a first aid kit. It might seem like overkill, but a lot of people tend to experience minor injuries when fishing. This is especially true if your line breaks while you’re out and you need to rethread your pole. You can even combine your tackle box with first aid items you might need while you’re out so you have it all in one convenient location while you are fishing. This way you won’t need to worry about cutting your outing short because of a mishap.
Source of featured image: canva.com