Interested in fishing? No matter where you are going or what kind of fish you plan to catch, the most important item to take along on your outing is a durable fishing rod. Few fishermen today still rely on a cane pole. Granted, in situations where you are stuck in survival mode, a stout branch with a hook and line attached is far better than trying to catch your dinner bare-handed. However, successful fishermen are the ones who choose the type of equipment designed specifically for the style of fishing they enjoy. The wrong kind of rod coupled with incorrect fishing line or bait can increase your chances of returning home empty-handed.
Fishing rods can be classified as being fast, moderate, or slow depending on their individual bending characteristics. A slow rod will bend more than halfway. This brings to mind the image of an angler hauling in a trout while fly fishing in a mountain stream. A rod which only bends along the outer 1/3 of its length is considered to be fast, while the moderate version falls somewhere in between. Fast fishing rods are constructed from lightweight and durable graphite. They are designed to be stiffer, providing extra hook setting power and increased sensitivity to movement. This type of rod is suited for shorter casts using lightweight line and a single hook.
If you prefer to use heavier line and larger weights, a moderate or slow action fishing rod is the best choice. These rods are manufactured using fiberglass to create more flexibility, and their inherent toughness permits the use of bigger lures with multiple hooks. The only downside is the larger and heavier the fish, the longer it takes to reel it in. That is a nice problem to have!
An important feature to look for in any fishing rod is the grip. It should be durable as well as comfortable. The best grips are made from cork, which is available in several different grades. The highest grades provide the most comfort and sensitivity to movement but also are the most expensive. Another consideration is the number of guides located along the rod. More guides translate into better casting results. Be sure the rings are made of a durable material such as silicon carbide to avoid breaking them while hauling in your catch. Finally, check out the reel seat on the rod you select. Try to avoid cardboard if at all possible since it can disintegrate when wet and allow your reel to move. Cork is a much better choice.