What To Look For
The first thing to look at when choosing a fishing pole is the materials used in the construction. The materials should be lightweight, but still be durable and reliable, such as fiberglass or aluminum. Check the rod grip and ensure that it fits your hand comfortably. Most rod grips are made of cork, but the quality of the cork and the size varies depending on the manufacturer. Also pay attention to the length of the fishing pole. It's possible to find poles of over 10 feet, but these are often associated with fly fishing. Longer fishing poles are generally used for those who need to cast over long distances, while shorter rods work better in areas with debris and vegetation.
Before you invest in a fishing pole, decide on the type of fishing you plan on doing. Fly fishing rods, ice fishing poles and the fishing poles used in freshwater fishing are all different; using the wrong one will result in problems and you may not catch anything. Ensure that the fishing pole is small enough to handle. If you purchase a larger fishing pole, you may discover that you can't easily carry the pole or cast with it. Try out a few different poles before making your decision.
Where To Buy
Fishing poles are sold at thousands of different stores, including big box or mass merchandise-style stores and even pawn shops. If you have a fishing supply or dedicated fishing store in your area, make this your first stop. If you don't have access to a fishing supply store, look for an outdoor or sporting goods store. Take some time to try out the fishing pole before you make your final decision and ensure that the pole feels comfortable in your hand. Staff at the shop are trained in helping you pick out the right fishing pole, based on your needs and budget.
Fishing poles come in a wide range of prices, but it's possible to find a well-crafted fishing pole for less than $100 as of 2010. However, you'll also find fishing poles priced at over $400. You also need to pay for a reel, if your pole doesn't have one. Reels retail for $10 to $150 and up, depending on the manufacturer. It's possible to use a fishing pole or rod on its own, without a reel, but most fishermen prefer using a combination.