Inshore Rod and Reel for $200

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Here is a question I received today:


Name: Juan T

Email Address: VividScopez@...

Subject: Fishing Gear (South Texas)

Message: Hey I've been trying to get help from many people, yet they don't reply, i'm hoping you can help me with this. I usually target Red Drum and Speckled trout. I also enjoy fishing for many other species from Jetties, wading, and Kayaking. What type of gear do you recommend for In shore fishing? My budget is $200. Thank you.

(Sent via Saltwater Experience Fishing Blog)


This is a very common question.  How do I find some equipment on a budget that I can trust to get the job done and also be something that is not just a waste of money or wont last very long? 

Luckily for all of us, the tackle industry is always progressing.  As new technology comes out, the older technology becomes less expensive and more available.  Today, there are tons of options for a budget minded consumer.

My favorite introductory reel that is something that I actually use in my boat all the time is the Quantum Iron Spinning Reel.  This reel is better than anything I ever fished with 15 years ago.  It is a little heavier than the top of the line reels, maybe not quite as smooth, but it has a drag that will stop any fish you hook and the materials and construction will hold up to just about anything if you maintain it.

For Juan, I suggest a 40 size if he is doing more trout fishing and less jetty fishing but I suggest that he step up to the 50 size if he is on the jetty more often.  The jetties can hold some of the biggest fish and they are often very hard to walk on to chase after a big fish.  This application requires more line capacity.

The Quantum Iron 40 and 50 retail on Quantum's website for $129.  They have 6 ball bearings and will be a great choice for your budget.

We now have $71 to work with to get a quality rod.  With a quick look through Worldwide Angler today, I found just the thing...

I like the 7 foot length and 10-17 pound rod action.  This rod comes in at $79 which puts the total at $208.  If you have to come in under $200, then go with a less expensive rod.  Do not sacrifice the reel.

I hope that helps Juan!  Send me some pictures of the big fish you catch with your new setup.

All the best,

Tom Rowland