Figuring out what rod and reel setup to pick for Striped Bass fishing can be tricky.
After all, what equipment you need changes with the size of fish you want to catch, where you are, and what technique you use.
However, some rod weights, rod actions, reel sizes, and lines work in more situations than others. Let’s discuss which setups work in what scenarios.
Striped Bass Setup Terminology and Common Concepts
Before we get into what setups you should use for Striper fishing, let’s cover a few terms you should know beforehand:
Large bass that has dark horizontal lines on its sides; also known as Stripers
A setup used for fishing made of one or more lines, hooks, sinkers, bobbers, lures, or other fishing tackle and held by a rod, by hand, or attached to a boat or pier
Fishing with an artificial fly on a rod and reel setup that has a heavily oiled line
A single hook that imitates natural fish food with fur, feathers, hair, silk, or other materials
Pulling a lure behind a boat at various speeds and depths
Fishing between one hour after sunset and one hour before sunrise
Seeing a fish in the water and then targeting it and trying to coax it towards your bait
Using a jig and keeping the boat stationary or slowly moving to keep the lure vertical
How much weight a rod can handle; categorized into ultra-light, light, medium, medium-heavy, heavy, and extra-heavy
Where and how a rod bends; separated into fast, moderate, and slow
What Are the Components of a Good Striped Bass Setup?
Now that we've covered some basic terms, let's discuss the best components for catching Stripers.
What Weight Rod for Stripers?
When considering rod weight, look at the power. For Striper fishing, look for a medium. These poles are the most versatile and can handle keepers. You can use anywhere from small to medium size lures with these rods.
Remember, you can use other power settings to catch these fish, depending on the size you’re going for. If you’re trying to catch smaller Stripers, consider picking a light power rod. When fishing for monster catches, go for a medium-heavy or heavy rod.
What Action for Striped Bass?
How much bend do you want when Striper fishing? Well, this decision depends on what type of lure you’re using. However, the most adaptable action is moderate.
Moderate rods are fantastic for catching Striped Bass. Fighting large fish with this setting allows you to feel more. This factor increases the excitement. Plus, these poles can handle both smaller and larger lures, including jigs and plugs.
If you’re targeting smaller Stripers, consider using a fast action rod. These rods work well with a smaller bait. For vertical jigging or trolling, go for slow.
What Size Reel for Striper Fishing?
Reel sizes can be confusing because they are categorized using two different systems. But, these systems correspond. A size 10 reel is the same as 1000, a 20 the same as 2000, and so on.
The best reels for catching these bass are in the 4000 to 5000 class. This size corresponds well to the ideal Striper rods, which have medium power with moderate action.
What Line Do You Use for Striped Bass?
What line you need depends on what other equipment you have. When using a medium rod for these bass, your line should be 12 to 20 pounds. This equipment will handle most casting and drifting techniques.
Common Striped Bass Rod and Reel Setups
Striped Bass equipment depends on what type of fishing you're doing: fly fishing, trolling, night fishing, or sight fishing. Below we explore typical setups for each of these techniques.
Stripers are stronger than most other fish that fly anglers target. So, catching these fish requires a heavier rig than usual. Fly rods have designated weights, and for Striped Bass, you want a 10 to 12.
These fish tend to be deep in the water, so you want to use a fast-sinking line. As for bait, look for flies that replicate food they like, such as herring, squid, and eels. Lures with built-in swimming motion also work well.
There are a few different rigs for trolling for Stripers.
In shallow and warm water, a tube-and-worm rig works best. This setup consists of a sea worm attached to a tube with a hook on the end, which attracts fish by slowly wobbling in the water. Attach your tube-and-worm to 15 feet of 50-pound fluorocarbon on the end of your main line.
Another standard setup is the umbrella rig. These lures have wire arms with multiple baits. Striped Bass love this setup because it resembles the schools of shad they feed on. Attach this lure to six feet of 80 to 100-pound monofilament on a ball-bearing swivel.
Most anglers who night fish for these bass use live bait. Attaching halogen or fluorescent lights to your boat will help attract fish. To catch your bait, cast jigs, stick-baits, or diving plugs in dark colors.
Rig up your live fish with a light leader and thin hook, then throw your line out just past the line of light. Stripers tend to feed a few feet past this division.
Anglers enjoy sight fishing for these bass in the Northeast, where they frequent shallow, sandy waters. For this technique, we recommend an eight to nine-weight fly rod with a floating or slow-sinking line. Fish love sand eel and crab flies in these areas.
A universal Striper setup is a medium power, moderate-action rod with a 4000 to 5000 reel and a 12 to 20-pound line. You can find common rigs for fly fishing, trolling, night fishing, and sight fishing.
The diversity in tactics makes Striper fishing exciting for any angler. So get out there and try catching one of these bass with your favorite technique!
People Also Ask
Have more questions? Find answers below!
What’s the Best Time to Fish for Striped Bass?
The best time to fish for Stripers is just before sunrise and just before sunset. These fish feed during dusk and dawn, so most bites occur at these times.
Where Do Striped Bass Hang Out?
These bass hang out near the edge of turbulent waters. Stripers have strong tails and large fins that can handle fast currents that disorient their prey.
What Color Lures for Striped Bass?
You can catch Stripers with a variety of lure colors. However, the four go-to colors are white, black, chartreuse, and yellow.
What Size Hooks for Striped Bass?
Ideal hook size changes based on what size Striped Bass you’re fishing for. For smaller Stripers, use a 2/0. For larger fish, go for a 7/0.
Can You Buy an All-in-One Setup for Striped Bass?
You can buy a Striper setup that works for most scenarios. When looking for versatility, go for medium power, moderate-action rod. Use a 4000 to 5000-class reel and a 12 to 20-pound line.