A Beginner’s Guide to Fishing

Rod & Reel

For a beginning or casual angler, I like a telescopic fishing rod with a spinning reel. They compress to a matter of inches and expand to six or seven feet. Their portability makes them a great choice for hikers, campers and bikers. They are easy to carry, store or keep in the car. Some will even fit inside your tackle box.


Fish hooks should be small and sharp. If the hook is too large it makes the bait appear unnatural to the fish, and he is less likely to bite. Small sharp hooks also penetrate more readily than larger or dull ones, helping you to land more fish. To test a hook for sharpness, rub the tip lightly along the top of your fingernail. If it leaves a scratch, it’s sharp.

All hooks will become dull over time, but, depending steel bite pro on the quality of the steel used to make them, even new nooks may need to be sharpened. This is done using a hook file or a sharpening stone.

Fish hooks sizes are named in two ways.

1) They are sized by number, ranging from 1 to 32, with the highest numbers referring to the smallest hooks.

2) Other hooks are sized as fractions. In this system a 1/0 (referred to as one-aught) is the smallest, and 19/0, the largest.

Bottom line:

1) Larger hooks are for larger fish.

2) Always use the smallest hook possible for the type of fish you are going after.

3) Always use a sharp hook.


Bait is highly individualized and hotly debated. Basically you want to give the fish something he likes (or thinks he likes) to eat, with the hook embedded in it. Popular choices include live worms, crickets and artificial bait.

Weighted Bobber

The bobber floats along the top of the water, with a small attached weight descending into the water. Both are attached to the same fishing line as the hook. When a fish bites the hook, the bobber will bob up and down in the water as the fish tugs on the line.

Fishing weights are made from lead and steel and attach to the line by pinching, twisting on with a rubber insert or by tying. Another type of weight, a slider, allows the fishing line to pass through it, like a two eyed button. The weight needs to be just heavy enough to allow you to detect fish strikes.

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