The type of salmon fishing equipment an angler packs and uses can make or break a successful fishing trip. The fishing location is important, to be sure, but if the fisherman doesn't have the proper gear, the best spot in the world simply makes for beautiful scenery, and landscapes in view ports will probably be the only things caught that day.
Basic salmon fishing equipment comprises a pole and reel, lines, weights, lures, hooks and nets. Anything else is case-specific and personal preference and convenience.
The Pole and Reel: Which type of salmon fishing pole is best depends on what type of fishing the angler will be doing: casting, spinning, trolling or fly fishing.
A popular type of fresh water salmon fishing is bait-casting; therefore, bait-casting gear is the most commonly used salmon fishing equipment.
Bait-casting or simply casting rods allow the reel to sit atop the pole and have a trigger type of handle. The casting reel provides line release and line lock control. The top-seated reel allows the bait and hook to travel over the rod en route to the water, which avoids potential tangling or catching on the rod, snagging the line.
Fishing Lines and Leaders: Alas, there is no set rule on what line is right or wrong. As with other salmon fishing equipment, the right line depends on the target type of salmon on the To Catch list. Specialty lines exist for distinct fishing conditions, including fish weight range and water conditions.
The material from which the line is made is of paramount consideration. Mono-filament line enjoys perennial popularity, but some contribute its continued use to lower cost than other types: It usually doesn't cost a lot to manufacture a single strand of fishing line. Fluorocarbon line is definitely stronger than a mono-filament nylon, and it usually lasts longer, all other considerations being equal. However, drift fishermen or trolling fishermen often find fluorocarbon line more productive, because it reflects light very similarly to the water on which it rests, so the salmon doesn't see the line clearly—only the object at the line's end.
Choose the right line type, strength and weight to suit the rest of your salmon fishing equipment and target fish for the best chance of keeping the fish hooked and tethered to the line.
Leaders should be just heavy enough to keep a cast straight and to gently sink the bait to the bottom of the stream or pool. Sinking too quickly will warn the salmon that something isn't right or natural, and it will often avoid the bait even if hungry. A leader that's too light won't allow proper directional casting or proper depth in the water.
Salmon Nets: Large catch baskets, handles that allow reaching to the end of the pole but doesn't impede balance or maneuverability counts more than cost or brand. Strong netting is important to withstand the strain of a struggling salmon is imperative. With proper care and maintenance, the nets should outlast almost any item among your equipment inventory.
The fisherman's height, strength and reach melds with target fish and environment to determine the best salmon fishing equipment for any occasion. Salmon fishermen often take along more than one fish or environmental set when they head into salmon territory, because being prepared for adaptation often brings home a prize catch.