The Best Reels for Pike Fishing - (Full Guide On Free Spool & Spinning Reels for Predator Fishing)
Toothy, predatory, ferocious. There’s so much to love about pike fishing. Pike are one of the few fresh water species that can be caught using different methods. You might be the kind of angler to throw out a sprat and then sit and wait.
Or, you might be more of a go getter type, throwing plugs and lures out when it’s quiet to entice a bite out of these monsters. Whichever type of angler you are, having the best reel for pike fishing will increase your chances.
In this article we are going to explain exactly what you should look when seeking the Best Reel for Pike Fishing and give a few suggestions to suit all levels.
Strapped For Time?
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The Best Reel For Pike Fishing is the Shimano Catana RC Spinning Reel. It has a fearsome retrieve speed, combined with a big enough spool to accomodate casting heavier baits.
If you have time, Have a look at some of the key features that go into making the best pike fishing reel...
Last updated on 2021-10-21 / Images from Amazon Product API
What is a Pike Reel?
There isn’t anything too fancy in a pike reel. Generally, in the UK, it is common practice to use a fixed spool reel. But there are one or two specifics that make fixed spool reels especially suited to pike fishing.
What we will say generally is that the best reel for pike fishing is one that is slightly larger, hardier and capable of dealing with the stresses and strains associated with such a hard fighting and sizeable fish.
The best reel for pike fishing needs to be adaptable too. You may very well be fishing two styles if pike is your target. You want something that can withstand the casting forces of dead baits and heavy weights or floats, but also has the necessary refinement to allow you to cast a relatively lightweight lure or plug too.
Often pike reels come as a pair so you are guaranteed matching performance.
How to use a Pike Reel
A pike reel is used in exactly the same way as any other fixed spool reel. You disengage the bail arm and cast the line in the usual manner. With regards to drag systems whether you use front or rear drag is up to you. The best reel for pike fishing may have a front drag which will be easier to reach and much more intuitive, so you’ll be able to keep your eyes on what the fish is doing.
What features do you need in a pike reel?
Pike can grow pretty big. If you are more accustomed to fishing for roach or the occasional perch then you might be in for a shock if you hook a pike. They are hard fighters, packed with muscle and genetically designed to ensure speed and power.
Therefore, you will want a reel that is up to the task. Whilst you can use your standard coarse fixed spool reel, take your cues from other anglers who fish for predatory species as a matter of course. Bass sea fishermen are used to pulling in hard fighters of enormous sizes, and they tend to beef up their ideas a little to accommodate.
The best reel for pike fishing will tend to emulate this. That goes for the retrieve ratio, the spool size and the line. The best reel for pike fishing will encompass all of this in one package.
How big does the best reel for pike fishing need to be?
With regards to size, we recommend a 3000 size reel at the very minimum. Depending on your venue you might find that the best reel for pike fishing is more akin to a 4000 size. For casting dead baits in huge places like a reservoir our advice would be to go for something that is in between a big pit reel and your normal coarse reel.
The retrieve ratio is also important. What this basically means is that for a higher ratio you get more line on the spool for each turn of the handle. Why is this useful? Well Pike are fast and hard fighters. If it is swimming toward you, and manages to get enough slack, it may very well be able to shake the hook loose, the best reel for pike fishing should have a quick retrieve ratio meaning you can keep the pressure on.
If you are lure fishing you need the flexibility in retrieve speed to be able to mix things up in order to provoke a bite. If your bait is moving too slow for the pike’s liking and you haven’t got the oomph to get it going any faster, you are out of options.
One final note on the size of your pike reel, it's important that the size compliments and balances with the rod you are using. The correct pike rod & reel combo will make your fishing much easier and more enjoyable.
What line to use on a pike reel
Wire traces are good for terminal tackle, but as main lines go it is entirely down to personal preference. The best fishing lines are not always one type as it depends on the circumstances you are fishing with.
Braid will cut down on wind resistance and is super strong, meaning you can fit more on a reel, but it tends to be a nightmare if it gets tangled.
Fluorocarbon offers a nice middle ground, and you can go up a little in the breaking strain due to its density without sacrificing line capacity when compared with mono.
Pike fishing can be a bit of a skill. Check out our video featuring one of the greatest anglers of all time using dead baits, or if lure fishing is more your thing then you'll be able to see examples of how much the best pike fishing reel has to perform...
Here are the products we recommend: -
Best Reel For Pike Fishing combo
Hunter Pro 2 X Pike Reel
Offering excellent value this reel is made even better by the fact that they come in a set of two. The line even comes included as well. With a spare spool for each reel included you can try a couple of different kinds of line until you find your sweet spot.
The reels have a smooth and relatively quick action, ensuring even line lay. As the reels each weigh 400g they will work both for fishing static baits or for the more active lure fisherman.
Best Lightweight Pike Fishing Reel
FISHING GHOST 3000
We really like this reel. It has a high gear ratio so you can retrieve as fast or slow as you desire. It is made of light and durable plastic. That’s not a bad thing. For lure fishing especially you will be casting constantly, so anything to reduce arm fatigue is good in our book.
Pike fishing is often a winter pursuit, so the potential for rain and cold means you need a reel that doesn’t corrode. This could fit the bill nicely.
Best Reel for Pike Fishing Using Lures
Penn Sargus II 4000 Spin Reel
Penn have been famous in the sea fishing game for years, and as we have said, the best reel for pike fishing will include many key features of sea fishing reels. The reel weighs just a fraction over 200 grams and with a deep spool you will be able to fit more than enough line to cast as far as you need.
The reel has anti reverse technology ridding you of troublesome snags or inadvertently winding the wrong way when you are busy. The interior workings are stainless steel, preventing degradation. With this reel, Penn offer really good quality at a reasonable price point.
Best Budget Pike Fishing Reel
TF Gear Airlite Free Spool Reel
If you want a reel that will do just about everything at a bargain price then this may be the best reel for you. It is slightly larger than a couple of our choices, but that is because we were looking for something which will throw and retrieve a lure easily, but also has the firepower to handle bigger weights and baits.
We must admit it looks pretty good too.
Overall Best Reel for Pike Fishing
Shimano Catana RC Spinning Reel
This reel is a great choice for all types of Pike Fishing. It is lightweight and balanced enough to tick the spinning box but also strong and robust enough to send a decent sized dead bait to the horizon.
We found the drag on this reel to be ultra smooth which was particularly handy when playing double figure Pike and some hard fighting Zander.
Being a good looking reel, made by a reputable brand, completed the overall package for us and as such it claims the coveted status of being our choice for the best reel for pike fishing.
Pike Fishing Line
Although this article isn't about Pike Fishing Line, it makes sense that we mention some good offers to compliment the purchase of a Pike Fishing Reel. Below is a list of the top 5 best selling reels of Pike Fishing line on Amazon today:
Last updated on 2021-10-22 / Images from Amazon Product API
The best reel for pike fishing should be one that is up to the task and balances nicely with your pike rod.
If you can make something else work for you then by all means give it a try. The features we have described will definitely help you convert bites into fish landed. Whichever reel you choose, it always pays to think about what you are trying to achieve and catch.
So there you have it, our top 5 choice for the Best Reel for Pike Fishing in 2021.
If you need any fishing tackle please consider visiting one of our recommended online fishing tackle shops.
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