For thousands of years, our ancestors have taken to the water to hunt fish for their communities. Fish are full of essential fats, vitamins and minerals – perfect for a healthy diet.
As we evolve and technology continues to improve, recreational fishing has become less about feeding the village, and more about relaxing with friends and family on the water’s edge. That being said, competitive sport fishing is becoming more and more popular for anglers looking for that added challenge and glorious prize-winning fish.
Before you throw out your line, it is important to understand the key components to a traditional fishing rod. In its most basic form, a fishing rod uses a line, hook, bait, pole and reel. The pole makes up the body of the fishing rod, while a reel is located towards the bottom of the pole with the handle. A reel spools up all the unused fishing line and can be wound to raise or lower the line. On the opposite end of the line is the bait and hook. A hook is a metal ‘U’ shaped barb which catches the fish’s mouth when it bites down onto the bait.
It doesn’t matter if it’s your first time casting out your line, or you’re a seasoned surfcasting angler, bringing the right fishing gear with you allows you to change your setup on-the-fly when the fish aren’t biting or the weather makes a sudden change.
Bringing a few different fishing rods allows you to mix up the fish you are hunting as well as the different lures and baits you might use. It’s also good to bring a spare just in case your main rod gets damaged.
Most rods have interchangeable reels so you can use different strength lines and braids with your pole.
Depending on where you will be fishing, there is a good chance you are going to get wet. Dress the part with some fishing clothing. Most pieces come waterproof and they all have been specially designed to use while fishing.
Bringing a wide range of fishing tackle and lines doesn’t restrict you to a single type of fish to hunt. Different tackle setups and lures suit different fish, so changing your target fish is a simple as switching tackle.
Using a net to scoop up your catch is a far safer way to handle your fish. Big fish in particular can be quite heavy and slippery, so using a net to pick it up ensures you don’t accidentally drop your catch before you release it again.
Fishing kayaks are a great way to get closer to the fish without scaring them with a noisy outboard motor. Fishing kayaks come in a variety of different types, with some suited to flat water fishing, while others being better equipped to handle rough ocean conditions.
If you need more advice about fishing, check our beginner’s guide to fishing to get started!