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06 Jun

Adjusting Your Drag For Inshore Fishing

We’ve all done it and if you say you haven’t, you’re lying….that’s had a fish break the line when you’re either fighting it or reeling it in. So, how do you avoid it? It’s simpler than you think.

The first thing you do is make sure you have a good reel. One that operates smoothly both casting and most of all retrieving. A reel that reels and casts inconsistently will only give you problems, so avoid that by buying a good reel. Thinking you can buy a cheap reel and it will get better the more you use it is a bad strategy. My suggestion is to stay off Amazon and take a trip to your local tackle shop where you can get the advice of the guys behind the counter. He deals with anglers all day, and he’s likely a pretty good fisherman himself. He’ll advise you to what you’re looking for. Besides, Amazon may give good discounts, but they’re not known for giving good advice. Trust me on this.

Next, check out a couple of reels that the guy behind the counter recommends and find one that has a nice smooth spooling action. Try it for a few minutes, making sure the cranks are a good fit for your hand and there’s minimal or no wobble. That will be the one.

Now, when adjusting your drag for fishing, say Speckled Trout, make sure the drag is just tight enough to provide movement for your lure. In my case, it’s usually a MirroLure. It’s important to remember that the more drag you set, the more bend will occur in your rod and the straighter the rod, you set less drag.

However, the tactics change when it comes to redfish. If I’m fishing for redfish along a bank, I set my drag by pulling the line with my hand to determine a good amount of resistance. If I’m fishing for redfish around a dock or other structure, I lock the drag down considerably, still able to pull the line. This is where I use a stronger line, something between a 30 and 50-pound test.

Just remember, you can be in a great spot with perfect conditions, but if you have a super smooth reel and the drag is set incorrectly, you’re likely to have a far less successful day of fishing. Just remember to think “super smooth”.


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