If your going to do something you may as well do it well, fishing isn’t all about the catch it’s a great way to relax, either alone or with friends; of course you may as well try and maximize what fish you catch and especially if you are out with some friends and things get competitive.
With your Rod it isn’t just quality, you can pay a fortune for a rod but its no good if it isn’t right for your type of fishing. A smaller rod is generally fine for smaller fish, especially if they will be found in the shallows. If you are freshwater fly fishing though and constantly casting your line out then you will need a rod that is long but also flexible and can cope with the constant action. A rod of six foot or more in length is a good idea for fish like trout and salmon and you can always shorten it for smaller fish of course.
For sea fishing and larger freshwater fish you may need a thicker rod but again one with some give, carbon fiber are the best and most expensive but they can take a lot of tension and twisting before snapping, anything big enough to snap these will probably pull you and the rod overboard before these rods snap. A fiber glass rod is a cheaper option but a good buy if you will only get occasional use and aren’t planning on going after any really big game fish. Cheap plastic rods aren’t worth buying no matter how infrequently you use them.
When choosing your rod it may be best to buy a holder at the same time: firstlythe stockist of your rod is likely to have compatible holders often of the same make, secondly you may be able to negotiate a discount if buying both at once. If your spending a lot on a new rod as well a holder makes it less likely you’ll lose your rod if a big fish pulls it away as you can attach it to a railing or to your waist.
Then to reels then, speed is vital but also control is important. For stream and river fishing you may just want to get fish in quickly while for sports fishing on the ocean you need to be able to bring in and let out the line with lightening fast reactions and the wrong reel may hinder you. For bringing in really powerful game fish think gears too and go for a well made reel that when locked won’t let out a fish by slipping or simply breaking, which can happen.
Reel’s are also of course made for different amounts of line, for sports fishing you may need a lot of extra line whereas for freshwater extra line will just increase the chance of a snag or a break: though the right reel and good line should stop this from happening to begin with.