First time fishing? Here's all you need to know

Fishing is a sport as old as time. But if you are going for the first time, it can seem a bit daunting.

We created this article specifically to help out new anglers. You really do not need a lot to get started and we’ll go over all the items in detail. Follow these handy tips and you’ll be out on the water in no time.

The first thing you’ll want to do is grab a fishing license for your state. They can be found online and sometimes in fishing stores. A typical day license usually costs less than $20 but you’ll have to check with your state for the exact price. There are also annual licenses that could save money in the long run if you plan on fishing again.

Next, you’ll need to pick a good fishing spot. Check out this helpful article on how to find the perfect fishing spot. Always try to talk to people about what spots they like to use. Do your research before heading out to the spot to figure out where the best spot to catch a fish might be. Lakes may be the best spot for beginners.

So, you’ve got your license and picked out the perfect fishing spot, now what? Now you need gear.

A spinning reel and rod combination is the best way to start. Check out some of the helpful products below. If you are still unsure what you need, visit a local fishing supplies store and ask an employee for help. They should be able to point you in the right direction.

Daiwa Tatula Elite Series Spinning Rod

Daiwa Tatula LT Spinning Reel


After you get a rod and reel, it’s time to find lures and bait. Live worms are a good starting point. Another good option are lures, which are decoys designed to attract a fish’s attention.  Below are some helpful products for lures.

Picasso Lures Fantasy Football Head Jig


Strike King KVD 1.5 Crankbait


There are a couple of other items you’ll need including fishing line, bobbers (floating balls that indicate you have a fish), needle-nose pliers to pull lures out of a fish’s mouth, and a small tackle box to keep everything stored in one place.

Seaguar Flippin Fluorocarbon 

Rapala Fisherman’s Pliers


Rapala Utility Box

Ok, so we’ve got the gear and the spot picked out. Now what?

Now we want to cast the baited line into the water. To cast, start with about six inches of line out from the end of your rod. Hold the line with your finger and bring the tip of the rod slightly behind you and cast forward using the wrist and elbow. When your lure is in the water, flip the bail back and start reeling.

The hope is you will feel a fish tug on your line. To prevent the fish from spitting out your lure, you’ll need to set the hook in the fish’s mouth. When your bobber sinks or jerks, pull the rod back to keep the lure in the fish’ mouth.

After the hook is set, you’ll want to allow the fish to tire itself out. Trying to reel in the fish immediately could result in the line breaking because the fish’s power and weight can be stronger than the line. If you tire it out, you will not have to worry about the line breaking and you’ll be able to properly reel it in.

When reeling it to shore, having a net will help tremendously. Once the fish is within arm’s length, scoop it up with the net. Avoid letting it flop on the bank or rocks as this could cause harm to the fish. If you intend to release it, weigh it with a ConnectScale 3 and enter it into a personal log with the ConnectScale app.

Happy fishing!