Last modified on March 12th, 2022 at 10:22 am

Saltwater Fishing Setup For Beginners

Saltwater fishing usually refers to any kind of fishing activity in the ocean. Whether you’re fly fishing into the waves underneath the piers, catching fish from a kayak, or luring a line behind you on a boat—all can be classified as saltwater fishing.

It doesn’t matter; if you’re a seasoned angler or an amateur, saltwater fishing has something for everyone. When you want to relax by fishing on a pier or looking for an adrenaline-filled thrill of fishing in the deep blue ocean— saltwater fishing is the ideal setup for an enjoyable fishing experience.

If you’re learning about saltwater fishing, this guide has everything you need about saltwater fishing basics. We have provided an intro about the overall backdrop and provided recommendations about specific fishing equipment and pro tips that will ensure you experience an enjoyable trip.

In this article, we will be talking about:

  1. Fishing license
  2. Reels
  3. Fishing rods
  4. Lines
  5. Tools
  6. Hooks
  7. Lures and Bait
Fishing License

Before you embark on your saltwater fishing trip, ensure you’re fully aware of the rules and regulations of the place you’ll be catching fish. Do your research and find out what fishing licenses are required and how you can obtain them. Some fishing spots ask for a single license, while others might require a license that specifies what you’ll be fishing. And, yes, keep your license with you at all times.


If you just got your feet wet in saltwater fishing, it will be better to opt for a quality medium weight spinning reel. This type of spinning reel will enable you to cast further and easily compared to a baitcasting reel.  A spinning reel rated for 10-25 pound test lines is overall good for the pier, surf, and bay fishing.

Fishing Rods

Mainly knowing the length of the fishing rod is necessary for fishing in saltwater. Longer fishing rods provide a more casting distance, but shorter rods are powerful and robust when reeling in larger fishes. By ‘powerful’ fishing rods, we refer to the weight that the rod itself will not snap when lifting and reeling in fish.

Fishing Lines

When it comes to saltwater fishing, it’s always good to go for high-quality lines and replace them frequently. The reason is constant exposure to sun and saltwater will cause wear and tear to the lines. Your lines need to secure and reliable when fishing, especially saltwater fishing. There are various types of fishing lines available, including monofilament lines and braided lines, and each is designed for different circumstances. Therefore, do your research and choose a line that is the right one for the job.

Fishing Tools

There are many types of tools used in saltwater fishing, but here we will be talking about three important tools for fishing in saltwater.

Gaffs and nets

You will need a good quality gaff or net that is made for saltwater. It would be best if you had these tools for lifting your catch out from the water.

Pliers, clippers, and scissors

These essential tools are needed whether you’re trying to cut off the distressed lines or to remove a hook from the fish, or in some unfortunate cases—your hand! Having a good quality pair of line clippers, and needle-nose pliers also come in handy.

Fishing knives

Fishing knives for saltwater don’t rust in seawater and come with quality waterproof grips. These types of fishing knives also don’t erode even repeated exposure to saltwater. Besides, you’ll need them to clean and gut the fish.


You will need the right hooks for fishing in saltwater, and the ideal way to pick the best ones is to match the hook with the bait that you use. If the hook is too large, the bait won’t look recognizable to fish, or the fish will avoid it. If the hook is too small, the fish will eat off the bait or steal it, and the fish won’t get caught. There are three main types of hooks for saltwater: The J hook, the circle hook, and the live bait hook.

Fishing Lures and Bait

For saltwater fishing, use baits that are made for it. Make sure the baits you’re using match the natural diet of the fishing you’ll be catching. There is a wide array of baits, and you’ll need to research to discover the best baits. You may also consider using strip or chunk baits for experimentation purposes. Also, ask other anglers for the advice of what kind of baits they’ve been successful with.

Now let’s talk fishing lures. If you prefer artificial lures, consider using plugs, spoons, poppers, and soft plastic baits. If you’re an environmental warrior, there are biodegradable lures that emit a chemical in the water that triggers the eating drive of the fish when used.

Final Thoughts

The two significant factors to look out for when buying fishing gear are the types of saltwater fish you’ll be catching and how the tackle will be affected by the conditions. Saltwater gears degrade and wear faster than freshwater fishing. Saltwater will rust the metal components like the fishing rod guides and reels at a rapid rate. This is why it is imperative to get the proper fishing gear that will last and easier to maintain.

Maintaining fishing equipment is simple. All you require to do is appropriately washing your rods and reels with fresh water, and lubricating the moving parts regularly after every fishing excursion.  High-quality saltwater gear can withstand these conditions. Just make sure you minimal amount of care and maintenance to extend its lifespan. Furthermore, you also need to consider the size and depths of the saltwater areas you’ll be fishing. So, choose the proper size and strength of your fishing gear appropriately.

The fishing lines, fishing rods, and reel are found in various measurements and strengths depending on the fish you’ll be catching. Additionally, the type and fish size will also wear and tear your lines and gears, and do keep these factors in mind when making your purchase decision.