Beginner's Guide to Reels

The chances are that most of us were just handed a fishing rod and reel as young children, and we didn’t have much say in the type of reel.

Understanding different types of fishing reels isn’t a difficult as you might think. While there are several variations of fishing reels on the market, like surf reels and trolling reels, there are just four main types to consider when learning how to choose a fishing reel.

4 Main Types of Fishing Reels


Spincast Reels

Spincast reels, more often called closed face reels, are the type of reel young anglers are introduced to fishing with. While those initial spincast reels are often cheap and covered in cartoon designs, there are higher quality spincast reels that offer a lot of benefits. Spincast reels are also a good option for the casual, take the family out fishing adventure. They are easy to maintain and use. These qualities make spincast reels perfect for a family trip to the lake.


Spinning Reels

Some people think of spinning reels (open faced reels) as the next stepping stone to the baitcaster, but spinning reels can be the type of reel that anglers use for the rest of their life. They are one of the more popular reels in the United States because of their versatility and relative ease of use. Spinning reels do have a learning curve and can be difficult for those new to casting. With a spinning reel, you will begin to have a lot more options regarding fish you can catch, lures you can use, and retrieval techniques. All three are important for the more serious angler.


Baitcasting Reels

Watch any professional fishing tournament or take a peek at anglers on your local lake who look like they know what they’re doing and more often than not, they are using a baitcaster reel. Most people will tell you that baitcasting reels are reserved for professionals and the most serious of anglers. This is because there is a pretty big learning curve when it comes to using baitcasters and the more serious anglers simply put the amount of time in that is needed to use one efficiently. Anyone can learn to use one of these reels, and when you become proficient with them, your fishing world expands greatly.


Trolling Reels

When looking at a trolling reel, you can immediately tell that these things are durable and built to handle big fish. Unlike other reels above, trolling reels are quite a bit different and serve a very specific function. Anyone can use a trolling reel, as there is nothing complex about them. However they are for a very specific niche of fishing, and unless you are focused on that niche, a trolling reel is not going to be for you. Because of the type of fish these reels are designed for, you do need to have quite a bit of strength to handle the fish properly so putting a small kid behind these reels and letting them fend for themselves is not a good idea.

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