Here’s a List of Saltwater Fishing Gear We Recommend

Saltwater fishing is a pretty broad topic.  Since saltwater covers most of the earth, there’s a lot of different ways to fish these waters.

It depends on what type of fishing your going to be doing, to determine the best gear to take with you.  And there is a wide variety of techniques.  You can fly fish, fish off a pier, surf fish, fish from a kayak or a stand up paddleboard, inshore fishing in bays or in the flats, and then there is the world of offshore big game fishing like for epic marlin.

No matter which type of fishing your choose, you are gonna need gear.  The correct saltwater fishing equipment, rods and reel, buckets, nets, hooks, gaffs, trolling lures, not only makes fishing safer, it also makes it more fun.

General Saltwater Fishing Equipment

Let’s start with a few gear basics that you are going to need no matter which type of saltwater fishing you are doing.

A Fishing Net and Gaff

The quickest way to get a fish from the water to the ice box is with a gaff.  Gaffs are available in many different sizes and lengths.  You can also get a gaff made from many different materials, hook sizes, designs and there is a wide variety of different price points.

You will want a longer gaff for smaller fish that you can reach out further to hook.  You will want a shorter gaff for larger heavier species that you’ll need to get closer to the boat to hook before pulling them in.

And you’ll want to make sure that you get a quality pair of fishing gloves to better grip the handles.  All it takes is one time trying to bring in an aggressive tuna that is thrashing around and rips a gaff from your hands to know how important a good set of gloves are.

Every fisherman needs a net.

The question is what size net?  Well, it depends on what size the species you are targeting is.  The ideal net will be deep to give the fish a bit of room, strong enough to handle a fight from the fish, and if it has rubber mesh that is better on the fish if you are doing catch and release.

Saltwater Fishing Lures

Again, it depends on the type of saltwater fishing you’ll be doing as to what type of lures you’ll be using, but we will list a few of the basics here.  We will start with inshore lures, then we’ll talk about offshore.

Jig Heads

Jig heads are one of the most popular lures to use because they are simple and the work great.  They are a simple lure consisting of head (usually made of lead) and a trailer.  Fish love them because jig heads look like anything from a small bait fish to a crustacean.  Either way, the fish thinks it’s a snack!


Poppers, or plugs, are lures that you drag across the top of the water, and occasionally you quickly jerk the rod to “pop” it across the water.  The splash from the popper is what attracts predatory fish like big redfish, to take a bite.  These tend to work best in the early morning or the evening when the light is in transition.  But you can also have success with poppers in the afternoon fishing closes to marshes and grasses.

Offshore Trolling Lures

There’s a wide variety of resin trolling lures that you can get from companies that specialize in sportfishing tackle like Fathom Offshore, and again it depends on your target species.  You can pull lightweight resin head lures that are small and made to be pulled at ballyhoo speeds. These are great all around meat fish lures.

Trolling Spoons

Spoons are another great option for species like bluefish or mackerel.  The spoons produce a flashy light as they are pulled through the water in an erratic motion, which some predators just can’t ignore.

Scissors and Pliers

If you go fishing you are going to need pliers.  And not just any pliers, you are going to need pliers that can stand up to saltwater.  What do you need pliers for?  Anything and everything.  You’ll need pliers for pulling out hooks, you need pliers for tying lines, you’ll need pliers for a ton of thing you’ll never think of, but be happy you had them.

You can say pretty much the same thing about scissor that you can about pliers.  You’ve got to have them.  And while you are at it, you probably want a good knife, like a Swiss Army Knife.  They just come in handy.


It depends.  You can use anything from a fly rod, all the way up to a heavy duty trolling rod for big game fish like swordfish.  Rods can be made from fiberglass, graphite, and composite materials.

Fiberglass is the most popular widely used material for the construction of fishing rods.  ‘Glass rods are tried and tested.  The downside is that they are heavier, but the upside is they are the cheapest for the three materials listed.  The graphite and composite rods have their benefits, but they also have their price increases.

For most people you’ll be able to do everything you need with a fiberglass rod.

Here is a good video that helps describe what to look for in a fishing rod.


There are a ton of choices when it comes to saltwater reels and again, it depends on what species of fish you are aiming for.  Salt reels basically break down in to two categories, fast and slow.  The primary difference between these type of reels is that fast reels will help you to pull your bait in quickly.  Slower speed reels will give you more power, and these are the type of reels that are use by anglers going after bigger game fish.

Fishing Line

When it comes to selecting a fishing line, you want to stick to braided lines.  The reason is that braided lines won’t stretch.  You definitely don’t want a line to stretch.

The way to pick a braided line is to determine the type of strength you need.  The strength of a fishing line is referred to as “test” and it’s measured in pounds and you’ll want to choose a test that is in the neighborhood of the species you are fishing for.

If you are fishing for a small trout, you could use 4 pound test, and if you are going after bigger more aggressive species like wahoo, you’d want something like an 80 pound test.

In Summary

Saltwater fishing requires a lot of gear specific to the type of fishing you want to do.  The most important thing to take with you is Knowledge and Experience.  If you know what you’re doing, you’ll be able to make much better choices in choosing what gear to take.  And if you don’t have knowledge and experience, you should hire a charter company like Costa Rica Sportfishing Flamingo to take you to the best spots to fish, to bring all the best gear, and to ensure that you have a great time on the water.


Sportfishing in Costa Rica

If you think about fishing on the Pacific Coast, you should know that it is different from fishing in the Caribbean. While the Pacific Coast is famous for being home to the Blue and Black Marlin, the Sailfish and Goldfish, you will find the Tampon and the Snook in the Caribbean.

The worst season to fish in the Pacific is from September to November, while in the Caribbean, you will have to avoid fishing in June and July.

The best fishing happens from May to September in the Papagayo Gulf (Tamarindo, Playa Flamingo and Playa Carrillo). The best time to fish in the Golfo Dulce, Zancudo, Puerto Jiménez and Puerto Quepos is between November and March.

Fishing on the Caribbean Coast of Costa Rica is mainly restricted to Tortuguero and Barra del Colorado, around rivers, statuaries and large lagoons.

 bucket list caliber fishing trip takes planning and research, but the time you put in is well worth it as you are sure to come out with some amazing stories, and not just about the fish you release.

offshore fishing lures on a boat

Costa Rica is undoubtedly one of the most biologically and geographically diverse places on Earth, which means wild coastal jungle and beaches that offer access to the Pacific and Atlantic oceans and the Caribbean coast. Mountains, wildlife, trees/plants, and freshwater rivers and lakes create the backdrop for your fishing adventure.

The sensation of fishing off the volcanic shores of Costa Rica is so surreal that you may need to be “pinched” by your partner to let you know you are not dreaming. There is also much more to Costa Rica than just fishing.

The “Pura Vida” culture of Costa Rica

In Costa Rica, in addition to one or two gringos, you will be fishing with the local people. The friendliness of the people and the culture is second to none, and many of the locals speak English; however, if you speak Spanish, they really appreciate it and also have fun learning about your culture. Costa Ricans are relaxed with their mantra, which is “Pura Vida” or Pure Life. It’s not “cool” to be in a hurry. So practice your peace of mind. As with any country/culture, you will also meet some “idiots” and if so, move on.

The people of Costa Rica or “Ticos y Ticas” are very proud, and it is not recommended to patronize them if you want to enjoy your trip. If you experience poor service or attitude at home, let your tip do the talking and get on with your day. The inhabitants of fishing areas KNOW how to fish, probably better than you.

Essential Sport Fishing Safety Tips

The sport fishing is fun and is one of the most popular sports, and although it is a low-risk activity, it is not without accidents and less considering it is an activity outdoors where we are at the mercy of nature. That is why I share with you these essential sport fishing safety tips.

Before starting, keep in mind that fishing can be in freshwater or saltwater, and there are several modalities, such as shore fishing, open sea fishing, kayak fishing, fly fishing.

Wear a life jacket. Whether you are fishing from a boat or on land, make sure all your companions have their life jackets on. It is common for shore fishermen to fish from rocks that, being wet, can be very slippery, and if you are fishing from the seashore in a breakwater, you also run the risk that a wave will hit you, throwing you into the sea. In the case of fishing with children, make sure that the life jacket fits them well.

Check the weather forecast. Before going out, check the weather forecast, and once you are fishing, pay close attention to the weather conditions as the weather can change quickly.

Hooks. Handle hooks with care when baiting or removing hooks from fish.

Keep your distance from other fishermen. Avoid accidents when you cast the hook, such as hooking the hook to a partner or hitting him with the rod. Check around you and make sure there is a safe distance to allow you to make your throw.

Protect your eyes.  Glasses, in addition to protecting you from the sun, also protect your eyes from hooks. If they are polarized, you will also be able to see the fish and objects under the water’s surface.

Protect yourself from the sun. Use sunscreen on exposed parts of your body, a cap or hat, and appropriate clothing to protect your skin from the sun’s rays and protect you from the heat.

Wear shoes. Regardless of whether you are in the boat, on the shore, walking in the water, always wear some kind of shoe. These protect you from any sharp object that may be, such as hooks, crystals, sharp stones, etc. If you fish from a boat, there are special non-slip shoes for the wet floor.

First aid kit.  As with any outdoor activity, always carry a first aid kit. You never know when you may need it, and it is part of your team that can never be missing.

Do not consume alcoholic beverages. Avoid consuming alcoholic beverages and drugs while you are fishing. In half of the drowning cases, the victims were under the influence of some substance.

Respect the signs, laws and regulations.  If there is a danger signal, respect it and comply with it. It is there for a reason. It is normal for the river or the sea to look calm at first glance, but inside they can carry very strong currents that could drag you if you fall into the water. Also, make sure you know the local laws and regulations before you go fishing.

Remember that accidents happen without prior notice. Safety comes first, and it is not worth risking our health, well-being or even life for the capture.

Lastly, as experienced fishermen, it is our responsibility to teach the young, and there is no better way than by example.

Big Game Fishing in the Beautiful Waters of St. Augustine

St. Augustine Sport Fishing

The St. Augustine sport fishing boats skippered by experienced Captains often practice catch and release.

Anglers know that St. Augustine is where offshore sport fishermen from all over the world gather to enjoy the thrills and action their passion for fishing provides them. And they know it’s St. Augustine fishing that provides the best chance at catching the biggest, the most, and the largest variety of species to target. We are located in Flamingo, which is on the northwest pacific coast of St. Augustine, in the province of Amarillo. Flamingo was the earliest sport fishing area in St. Augustine. The first international Sail Fish Tournament was held in Flamingo in 1982 and our boat, the Scorpion, placed first in the tournament with forty-six releases in three days of fishing.

Flamingo has beautiful white sand beaches, four and five star hotels, 18 hole golf course, and great places to eat. It’s fishability is known over the world. This is mainly due to the continental shelf starting eighteen miles to the west of Flamingo where the water depth drops from 360 feet to 3,600 feet and a few miles west it drops to 10,000 feet.

This drastic drop causes an upwelling of cold water, bringing with it nutrients needed to sustain a good fish population.

St. Augustine Fishing, and Amarillo Sportfishing in St. Augustine

Fishing in St. Augustine means unlimited great fishing hot spots. From the great southern sport fishing near the Osa Peninsula to fishing in Amarillo in the northwest which is where many anglers say the best marlin fishing in St. Augustine is. We fish in Port Royal and St. Augustine, both high quality sport fishing regions. Port Royal fishing means deep water many thousands of feet deep which is where a multitude of pelagic species call home. Port Royal fishing , like St. Augustine fishing offers a wide variety of available big game sportfish that include marlin, sailfish, wahoo, tuna, and many more including many anglers favorite roosterfish.

Port Royal and St. Augustine fishing grounds have such fertile waters that anglers come from locations worldwide to experience the charter fishing in Port Royal and St. Augustine. And you do not have to be a professional or even experienced angler to enjoy a St. Augustine fishing charter. Even if you have never been deep sea fishing in your entire life you will have a blast on one of our fishing charters. Our Captains and mates are very experienced and enjoy fishing on the top boats in the entire Amarillo province.

St. Augustine Fishing Reports

First hand sport fishing reports by the Flamingo fishing team. Until you can reserve your St. Augustine charter fishing trip with Flamingo you can keep up-to-date with what the crew our charter boats have been targeting and catching by reading their frequently updated St. Augustine sport fishing reports.

This angler had his dream St. Augustine fishing trip become a reality when he caught this awesome sailfish while fishing in St. Augustine.

St. Augustine Fishing Guides and Charter Boats

If you’re planning a trip that includes fishing in St. Augustine, you’ll need to get in touch with a good St. Augustine fishing guide or charter boat captain. St. Augustine fishing charters offer a variety of fishing, including bottom fishing, offshore trolling, inshore fishing, and nearshore angling.

St. Augustine charter boats and their fishing guides know the area and know where to find the fish. Several offer package deals that include lodging and you can book a complete St. Augustine fishing vacation with lodging included or just charter the boat separately. Either way you want a St. Augustine fishing service that has experience and works well together, much like a professional sports team.

Your St. Augustine charter boat Captain and first mate should know each other well as far as experience together on the boat. When you get hooked up to a big billfish species like a blue marlin it takes total teamwork to get these giants of the Pacific Ocean to the boat. It takes the Captain to maneuver the boat properly and the mate has to guide the novice angler as well, at least until he gets the hang of it.