What gears to use for bass fishing- complete tackle guide

If you are looking for some bass fishing to start your fishing profile, I would say you absolutely took the right decision. No wonder why these fishes are #1 choice for anglers in North America. And it’s a great start to beginning fishing profile with bass fishing.

Bass fishing will teach you something which is very important to learn for any kind of fishing. It will make you consider that, fishes are not waiting for us to take the bait or lures and then hooked by us! What I tried to mean is you won’t get any catch if you just randomly cast your line somewhere in the water and wait for a bite.  

You have to find the perfect spot first where there could be some fish, choose the lure or bait which is preferred by the fish, cast your lures in the perfect depth and mimic it like it’s real. Only then you will get a handful of catch. It may seem to be super hard but trust me it’s not! Just You have to be aware of the fish habits and behavior and a little bit tricky. That’s it! By fishing several times will help you to gain knowledge about that.

What gears to use for bass fishing? Must need Bass fishing tackle

Here’s a reason why bass fishing is a perfect option for everyone! The gears you need for any kind of bass fishing can be super cheap. You always can go for an expensive rod and reel setup depending on your budget. But the good news is, even an inexpensive rod and reel setup can completely serve your purpose.

So let’s dive into more deeper now. What gears do you need? All you need is-

  • Fishing rod (baitcasting, spinning or flyfishing)

  • Fishing reel (baitcasting, spinning or flyfishing)

  • Line and hooks

  • Lures and baits   

To be honest, in bass fishing the critical part is to choose the lures and baits. You don’t have to be much concerned about bass fishing rods, reels, and lines. In this blog, we won’t dig much deeper but discussing the basics of what to use for bass fishing.

The Rod you need for bass fishing

Pick a type

At the primary level, choosing a rod is not a daunting task at all! At the very beginning, decide what type of rod you want to use! Cause each type of rod is designed for a specific type of reel. Here is an article about some of The Best bass fishing rod for the money, you will find Bass fishing rods from all types here in this list! There are 3 most popular type of rods for bass which are-

  • Baitcasting rod- you can use a baitcasting reel with it. These rods a great option for bass fishing. As you know, only the baitcasting reels can be used with this rod which can be attached to the top of the rod, the 95% of the knowledge and techniques can be covered with this baitcasting rod and reel setup.

The downsides are its difficulty level and higher price. We will continue this discussion at the reel portion.

  • Spinning rod- allows you to use spinning reels with this rod. If you are a complete beginner, spinning setup is a great choice for you. Though baitcasting setup is more effective prior to bass fishing, spinning reels are not too far from it. With great affordable price and ease of use, a spinning setup made a place almost to the top.

  • Fly fishing - only can use flyfishing reels with a fly fishing rod. Flyfishing is a fully different kind of fishing where there’s a major difference in casting techniques and equipment. It’s super fun to catch smallmouth bass with flyfishing rod and reel. An inexpensive rod is more than enough to catch bass for a couple of years. Just proper maintenance is all it needs.

Power, Action and size of the rod needed for bass fishing

For those who don’t know, we can categorize any single rod by its unique characteristics- power, action, and size.

  • Power- the overall strength of the shaft or rod blank

  • Action- How much the tip (upper portion of the rod) flexes or bends while

  • Length- the overall size, how long the rod is from top to bottom

So now you simply understand the certain characteristics of any rod, let’s jump straight into the ideal specification for a bass fishing rod.

Recommended specs for a beginning bass fishing


7-8 feet


Heavy or medium heavy



What reel to use for bass fishing  

You must need reels to retrieve your catch in your bucket, but before choosing the one you need to consider a few essential facts. Likewise, you can choose between these 3 reels-

Baitcasting reel- As I mentioned earlier baitcasting reel is the best option for bass fishing it’s what meant to be bass fishing. But I promised to talk about the issues you have to face dealing with it! Actually, baitcasting reel requires more experience. It takes a lot of practice to make a successful cast. Or you could end up with a disgusting Backlash or Birdnest. Trust me, nobody want’s a backlash!

Another issue is the price issue, it’s a bit expensive than all other reels. Apart from this, baitcasting reels are the most versatile reels of all and a low profile( less weight and small ) baitcasting reel can rule over these sunfishes( bass ). As I said before, 95% of the learning can be acquired by these baitcasting reels. So yeah, highly recommended.

Spinning reel- spinning reels are more budget-friendly and super easy to use, anyone can handle it without ending up with backlashes. They are extremely popular among all level anglers. It allows you to use lighter lines and small lures/baits. Smallmouth bass needs smaller lures, so it can be a perfect match to catch smallmouth basses with these spinning reels. Hey, we got an awesome list of best bass spinning reel under 100$ which are simply the best bang for money! You can check this out!

Though low-profile baitcasting reels are highly recommended but then again, a spinning reel is also a very good option. After practicing with spinning reels several, when you gain advanced knowledge about bass behavior, covers, spot then you can go for the baitcaster setup.

Fly fishing reel- I don’t do much flyfishing but it’s great fun to catch them with flyfishing setup. With a flyfishing setup, anyone can catch bass. You don’t even need an expensive reel to catch bass. It’s similar to other setups like baitcasting and spinning. Just instead of topwater, chatterbait or other heavier lures used in those fishing, fly fishing lures are basically required different types of flies to imitate these food sources for bass and present as naturally as possible. So yeah, fly reels are a great option too. The choice is all yours, folks!

Size and gear ratio

If you do flyfishing then it’s a whole new different topic and less to worry about. But if you use baitcasting or spinning Reels, they have major specifications to consider. Such as-

  • Size of the spool

  • Gear ratio

  • Drag

  • Brake

In bass fishing, we can overlook the drag and brake of any reel. As bass fishes are from small sunfish family, relatively small in sizes they couldn’t put much pressure on the line. So any drag can control this small amount of resistance.

For typical bass fishing, You should be mainly looking at one thing which is The gear ratio. The gear ratio is the amount of line the reel takes in per turn of the handle. Higher gear ratio reels are considered as High-speed reels. But remember one thing, with higher-speed it’s more difficult to control the reel. Let’s not go much deeper, lemme tell you the reel specifications for bass fishing.

Size -

try to pick the bigger size reels so it can retrieve more line per turn

Gear ratio

6:4:1 or 7:4:1 depending on your experience. Both will be the correct ratio for bass fishing.

Wrap up

Bass fishes are great fun to catch. These little sunfishes are literally everywhere, you can catch them anywhere in rural and urban areas. They are aggressive, strike hard and jump off the water which is quite of a show! The fun part is, with just a basic setup you can do unlimited bass fishing. It’s won’t put pressure on your wallet as some other fish does!

Here we discussed all the basic gears or equipment you need for bass fishing. Over time you will be mastered with this fishing equipment. It’s ok to be back with an empty bucket someday, even expert anglers faced these days. That’s more like a charm of it. But don’t forget to fish again and again, cause everytime you fish you will learn something new. You won’t be empty handed but some quality experience. Ultimately that’s the secret of it, by fishing it again and again and gaining experience.   

Ted Thomas

Hi there, I'm Ted Thomas, an ardent adventure writer. I write for readers with a genuine interest in enjoying the great outdoors. By sharing my experiences camping, hunting and fishing, I hope to inspire others to fully explore the depths of their passion.

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