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Who Said Fishing is Simple?

Dancer145Dancer145 Homosassa FLPosts: 5 Deckhand
You need a laugh there is two places that you are guaranteed to get one. A RV park dump station or a boat launch ramp.
    I am for sure a Greenhorn!  A few of my coworkers were into fishing and two of us green horns did go with them a few times. On our first trip out the other green horn ( Jerry )started to go over the side of the boat to cool off in the water (or pee) and got his balls caught on the iron dock cleat railing and just hung there without being able to ask for help totally lost his voice momentarily. At least I did not do that.  However I knew nothing about what I was doing including rigging, casting , how to top water fish as well as I did not own any of the fishing gear.  I really felt like I hampered them from a good fishing day.  Jerry did get a new nick name at work "Hang Time" 
I had other hobbies, airplanes, racing, motorcycles, & RV camping (glamping really).
    Saturation learning has always been the way to go for me when starting out in a new thing. Fishing may seem simple for those of you that have done it all your life but for us Greenhorns it is kind of overwhelming.
   If  I were to take you up in an airplane then told you to take the controls keep the altitude and heading you will be a intimidated or scared $hitless.
    So where do I start in this learning curve? Like my RV forums when a newbie ask that I say start with a budget. Is $250 enough?  I could easily hook a 15 pound fish and have no idea what it is. What is in or out of season, length you can keep, what is worth keeping or even how to clean them so I am wearing out Youtube. Got the advise to charter a boat with a professional guide. Not so sure if that is going to feel like the flying lesson I mentioned above or as frustrating as my first time on a golf coarse with a used set of clubs. That is however where I am going to start.  I am just learning the difference between spinning and casting equipment so needing advise on what  to start with to keep the budget down. Thanks to Butch for recommending this forum to start learning.  Maybe I just set the hook.


  • zachb34zachb34 GreenacresPosts: 7 Deckhand
    I think you need to start by providing a target species, or at least where you're fishing. I see you're in Homosassa, a quick google search shows me you have a lot of inshore areas to fish. I don't know the area, but would think you're on the northern end of snook territory but also have some good trout and red fishing.
    Start with a spinning reel, there's not much learning curve there compared to a casting reel. Every company does their sizing differently but I think a 3000 size Shimano or equivalent line capacity in another brand that fits in your budget will get the job done. You could also step up to a 4000/5000 size instead (In the Shimano line these reels will be the same body, just a deeper spool on the 5000 which makes the 5000 more versatile) but a 3000 will be better for throwing smaller baits and lures as well as freshwater species. As for the rod, you'll need something with a line rating of say 8-17# for the 3000 or a 10-20# line rating for a 4000. These can be pretty interchangeable to your needs and as you get more gear you can better match the rods and reels. It's not a big deal if you put a 3000 on a 10-20# rod or vice versa. I'd use 15# braided line on the 3000 and 20# braided line on the 4000. Buy some 20-40# Ande (or another brand) mono leader material, its cheap and you'll need it for most saltwater species. tie this to your braid with a uni to uni knot.
    If you plan on using bait, I can't help you much since I always fish with artificial. If you want to use lures, get some top waters like a spook, rapala skitter walk, yo-zuri hydro pencil, etc. Mirrolure makes the mirrodine 17mr that's a classic. Rapala xraps work well I think I use the size 10. I like paddle tail swimbaits from 3-5" with jigheads from 1/8-1/2 oz. This should get you started as far as gear goes. you can tie all of these with a regular uni knot to get started. Pretty much everything I mentioned will apply to most inshore or freshwater fishing. 
  • Dancer145Dancer145 Homosassa FLPosts: 5 Deckhand

    zachb34 Thanks for the suggestions. The research I did had me looking at Kastking. Do some fishing and see if I am going to be hooked on the idea.   
  • Dancer145Dancer145 Homosassa FLPosts: 5 Deckhand
    As for target fish , Well all I know is what I like to eat. Grouper and Red Fish are my top choices. Nephew wants to fish Crystal river when he comes down to visit so that is also an area I may set out in. 
  • ivnivn gvillePosts: 242 Deckhand
    Depending on where you are and what kind of fishing you want to do, a sub-$100 budget is very possible.  The extra $150 can be spent on luxuries and things that can help you save money in the long run.

    Most of my fishing is either ultra light small pond and creek freshwater stuff in urban environments or from shore at Shell Mound or other spots around Cedar Key.  Occasional road trips to other beach areas as well. 

    7' to 9' medium to medium heavy spinning rod w/ appropriate reel spooled with 12-20lb test mono.  Get it as a combo from Walmart, Bass Pro, etc for $30-40.

    Some 1/0 circle hooks, some 24-36" light weight nylon leaders w/ swivel and snap, some 1/2oz and 1oz pyramid or bank weights, a 5 gallon bucket for bait (purchased live shrimp) and a bubbler.  Sharp knife for cutting bait (I buy a $1 dollar store knife every few months as they break, get too dull, or get too nasty to rescue.... or get lost).

    All that should total to about $100 but now you are ready to go fishing off just about any beach or pier in the state.   

    Then the extras.... At $15/50 live shrimp got to me so I spent $20 on a cheap cast net (and just replaced it when too damaged with a smaller mesh $50 one) and get mud minnows, finger mullet, anchovies, etc for bait for just the cost of my time throwing the net.  If you live close enough to be able to set a trap and wait a few hours, possibly a minnow trap as well.  Saw lots of big fish lost and lost some myself due to the way the pier I fish is set up, so I got a pier/bridge net.  More rods out equals more fish caught, and I take friends w/o equipment, so extra rod/reel combos got added.

    Extras you'll want to add - the usual outdoors stuff - sun screen, baby wipes *and* hand sanitizer, couple of towels/rags, pair of pliers, floppy hat, polarized glasses, possibly a camp chair, maybe a umbrella (sun shade), maybe a cart to tote it all. 

  • Dancer145Dancer145 Homosassa FLPosts: 5 Deckhand
    Thank you Ivn, I will give your suggestion a shot. The space in my RV basement I set up for fishing gear I will do inventory and see if I have the basics.  
  • tankeredtankered Gainesvill, FlPosts: 1,606 Captain
    If you want to actually catch decent fish, avoid the leaders Ivn mentions. Sorry, less is more. Tie your own, and use as little hardware as possible. Pyramid sinkers too, I find them to be obtrusive and they snag too much, and they're only (somewhat) useful in very heavy current, which you're not going to find much of in the big bend. But to each their own.
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