Very specific equipment must be perfectly suited to the fishing conditions. Here are a few tips to help you start surf casting in the best conditions so you start to enjoy this kind of fishing quickly.
Rods: Get Some Height
Generally speaking, the rods used for surf casting are between 4 m and 5 m long to keep the line above the waves. To start with, it's better not to exceed 4.5 m because beyond that, the handling is more technical.
The rod must also be strong enough to propel heavy rigging or bulky bait. A fast action rod will make it more sensitive to touches and less reactive to the movement of the waves.
A rod with a casting weight of 100 gr – 200 gr such as the SURF C450 will be your best friend to cope with all situations.
Reel: Large Volume And Resistance
By the side of the sea the elements can be hostile with sea winds, salt spray and rain. Surf casting reels must be sturdy enough so as not to break away from you in mid swing. The other specific feature of a surf casting reel is its "long cast" spool otherwise known as large volume (300 m – 400 m) for long distance casting. This large reserve of line could turn out to be precious when a record fish makes a big rush.
Carp fishers can use their reels for surf casting, on condition that they carefully rinse the reel in freshwater and dry it each time after they use it in the sea.
A 300m spool of 40/100 nylon line would be perfectly suitable to fill the reel.
Rod Support: Spike Or Tripod?
This is an indispensable accessory for all surf casting trips. A support means you can set up your rod properly facing the sea so that you can keep the line taut above the waves. You can use a tripod or a sand spike as a rod support.
Spikes stick into the ground easily so you can set up your rod quickly. They are the ideal support for changing your fishing spot quickly.
Tripods are suitable for pebble beaches or on the Mediterranean where the lack of tide means you don't have to move your equipment when fishing.
Sinkers: A Question Of Current
Sinkers mean you can propel your rig and keep it on the bottom. There are several kinds of sinkers depending on the strength of the current and the wind:
- Lead shot is suitable for calm conditions because it doesn't get caught on the bottom. It's ideal for muddy bottoms.
- Star sinkers catch on sandy bottoms. They can also be used when it's windy or in medium currents.
- Sinkers with metal rods are mainly used in the Mediterranean for precise casting with a self-hooking rig.
- Breakaway sinkers hold firm on the bottom to fix the line when the waves are big or in strong currents.
Each of type of sinker is available in several weights. 110 gr is a versatile weight for starting out surf casting.
If you want to travel light by the side of the sea, modular sinkers are perfectly suitable. They mean you can change the weight of the sinker easily and quickly without having to cut your rigging. CAPERLAN sinkers also have the specific feature of being lead free to reduce the impact on the environment. They are also available in a breakaway version for strong currents.
Rigs: Keep It Simple To Start With
There are as many surf casting rigs as there are anglers. With time and experience, you will be able to work out which one suits your type of fishing best.
For starting out, there are leaders which are assembled and ready to be attached. This solution is the most suitable to start with.
Bait: How To Lure Fish?
There is lots of bait which is very effective along the length of our coast. Worms are versatile and effective bait for sea predators and other flat fish but they're not selective if you're looking for the record fish. Small fish such as sand-eels or smelt are perfect bait when fishing for large sea predators such as bass.
Cephalopods (octopus, squid, cuttlefish etc.) are irresistible for large sea predators. Many anglers consider them to be the best bait for surf casting.
Now you have all the information you need to choose your surf casting equipment effectively.
It only remains for us to move on to the practical side to make progress and discover all the treasures and pleasure this type of fishing has to offer.