Best Surf Fishing Reels for Making Waves and Catching Big Fish

Get ready to reel in your next big catch with our handpicked selection of the best surf fishing reels. Whether you're a seasoned pro or a beginner, our guide has something for everyone.

Ready to hit the beach and catch some waves? Why not some fish too?

Surf fishing is a great way to combine relaxation with a thrilling challenge. But it takes the right kind of gear to have success - especially when it comes to choosing the perfect surf fishing reel. You need something that can handle harsh conditions while casting out long distances.

Don't worry, we've got you covered! Our guide will help you find the best reels for your needs no matter if you're an experienced angler or just starting. With ratings and reviews from experts, this article was made so all you need to do is grab your bait and get ready for adventure!

Read our guide now to find the best surf reels of 2023! Fish on!

Selecting The Best Surf Fishing Reels

Surf fishing can be a lot of fun, but it's hard to know which reel is right for you.

There are a lot of factors to consider when choosing a surf fishing reel, and it can be tough to make a decision when there are so many options available.

We've done the hard work for you. After researching and consulting with experts, we've compiled a list of the seven best surf fishing reels available today. Read on to learn more about each one and find the perfect reel for your next fishing trip.

We know you want the best, so we work hard to provide it. Our team of experts is constantly selecting products for our site that meet high standards and offer great value too! Our opinions are based on independent trials and tests but as an Amazon Associate, we may earn from some qualifying purchases. This helps us to keep the site running without costing anything extra for you.

PENN Battle III Spinning Fishing Reel

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Why You Will Love This

For the avid fisherman, the PENN Battle III Spinning Reel is just what you need to get your day on the lake off to a good start. This high-performance surf spinning reel offers a variety of features that make it top-notch among fishing gear.

The PENN Battle III Spinning Fishing Reel comes in a variety of sizes ranging from 1000 to 10000. What sets this reel apart is its incredibly durable design, complete with a 5+1 sealed stainless steel ball bearing system, line capacity rings that will tell you about how much fishing line is left, and a super line spool that requires no backing.

Enhance every fishing trip with this ultimate surf fishing spinning reel that delivers a powerful performance as well as reliability so your adventures are worry-free - choose PENN’s Battle III Fishing Reel today!

What You Should Know

With PENN's proprietary CNC Gear Technology, you can rest assured that this reel is designed for superior strength, smoothness, and superior durability. The HT-100 carbon fiber drag system offers unbeatable power for those days when you hook onto something really big - no matter how rigorous the fight gets, you can count on Battle III to do the hard work and land whatever catch comes your way.

And since it has a Full Metal Body, you can rely on it to withstand any type of abuse or wear and tear over time - especially if you’re an aggressive angler out in rougher waters!

Whether you're a serious angler or just starting out, you'll appreciate the strength and smoothness that this workhorse of a reel provides. With the PENN Battle III, you can rest assured that you're equipped with the tools you need to tackle any challenge that comes your way on the water.

What Could Have Been Better

The Penn Battle III is a reliable reel for Surf fishing, though it is a little pricey. Penn is a trusted brand for high-quality reels. While there have been a few rare cases of the drag system not holding up to saltwater fishing, those cases are extremely rare. And you can still feel confident with the one-year warranty that comes with the product.

Daiwa BG Spinning Reel

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Why You Will Love This

The Daiwa BG Spinning Reel offers an incredible fishing experience with its high durability, power, and line capacity. Engineered to enhance your angling ability, it delivers outstanding performance and smooth casting, unlike anything you've ever seen before.

This reel is perfect for surf fishermen looking for a powerful, reliable tool that is always up for the challenge. The built-in braid-ready stripping means you won't have to worry about knotty lines or loose ends when out on the water.

You can easily strip your fishing line when needed without having to worry about constantly re-tying it. With increased power and improved handling characteristics, you are sure to have plenty of fun on the water while staying safe with this fantastic reel.

It's time to take your fishing game to the next level - get your hands on the Daiwa BG Spinning Reel today!

What You Should Know

The Daiwa BG Spinning Reel is a must-have for any saltwater fishing enthusiast. Thanks to its corrosion-resistant durable aluminum construction, this reel is built to withstand even the harshest of saltwater environments.

These saltwater spinning reels feature an aluminum body and machined aluminum screw-in handle. With a waterproof drag system and Digigear System, it ensures optimal performance. It also includes a cut ABS spool, air rotor, dynamic cut aluminum ABS spool, and a spool for braided lines.

But the real magic of this reel lies in its advanced features, including a series of carbon fiber drag washers that provide superior smoothness, strength, and drag pressure. The result? A beastly performance that will help you reel in even the toughest catches with ease.

The Daiwa BG is ideal for achieving your surf fishing goals whether you are a seasoned angler or a beginner.

What Could Have Been Better

If you enjoy fishing from the boat and require a high-speed reel, the lightweight Daiwa BG, may not feel durable enough for your needs. However, if you plan on having a relaxing day of fishing on the beach, the Daiwa BG is an excellent option.

Penn Slammer IV Spinning Reel

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Why You Will Love This

If you are a serious surf angler in search of the best saltwater fishing reel on the market, look no further than the Penn Slammer IV Spinning Reel. This powerful and durable reel stands out thanks to its full-metal construction and corrosion-resistant body, ensuring your investment will last you for years to come.

The full metal body with an IPX6 sealed design ensures that not just internal parts like the ball bearings, but also external components like the body and spool will stay protected from sand and water.

The generous drag system of this surf spinning reel is also worth noting, with an adjustable lever button and super line spool that gives you control over your line without compromising on quality or power.

With all these features combined, this super reliable reel guarantees a truly premium fishing experience – if you are willing to pay the premium price tag.

What You Should Know

If you're in search of a saltwater reel that can take on the toughest conditions and fierce fish, then look no further than the Penn Slammer IV. This beast of a reel is packed with power, durability, and guts that will make your next fishing trip one to remember.

The Slammer drag system has been redesigned with better sealing and a wider range of usable drag, giving you the confidence to tackle even the most challenging catches.

With an all-brass CNC gear technology, 8+1 stainless steel bearing system, and a hydrophobic line roller bearing, the Slammer IV offers extra smoothness and reliability for those intense moments.

So if you're ready to take your saltwater surf fishing game to the next level, get your hands on the Penn Slammer IV and feel the power and durability of this mighty reel.

What Could Have Been Better

This reel is ideal for serious surf anglers who are looking to take their surf fishing game to the next level. However, this reel is expensive, and though we really liked this reel, the high price tag can be a deterrent for some anglers.

Nevertheless, if you're willing to pay a premium price tag for a durable and powerful spinning reel that will last you years to come, you won't be disappointed with the Penn Slammer IV.

Penn Spinfisher VI Spinning Fishing Reel

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Why You Will Love This

The Penn Spinfisher VI spinning reel is the perfect choice for all types of saltwater fishing. With its sixth-generation design and available sizes from 2500 to 10500, this spinning reel offers something for every type of angler.

Featuring an IPX5-sealed body and spool design, the Penn Spinfisher VI is designed to keep saltwater out and ensure your reel runs smoothly even in rough conditions. With a powerful drag system, a dependable gear system, and a growing list of other features, the Penn Spinfisher VI won't let you down.

Whether you're fishing inshore or off-shore, the Penn Spinfisher VI spinning reel will provide you with great performance that gives you confidence when going after your favorite fish.

Get yours today so start reeling them in!

What You Should Know

The Penn Spinfisher VI Spinning Reel is a great option to consider if you want a spinning reel that is both dependable and long-lasting and can handle big saltwater fish. It comes with a 5+1 sealed stainless steel ball-bearing system and a super line spool that make it robust yet smooth.

Additionally, it comes with HT-100 drag washers that are housed in a fully sealed spool, providing the stopping power you need for those hard fighters. The reel is available in multiple sizes, with automatic or manual bail trip options depending on the size.

The line capacity rings give you an idea of how much line is remaining, which is a big plus when you are going after the big ones. Overall, the Penn Spinfisher VI is a versatile and reliable reel that can handle serious abuse and keep on performing.

What Could Have Been Better

Although the Spinfisher Reel is a bit pricey and heavy, it remains a fantastic option for surf fishing enthusiasts.

Shimano Ultegra XTD

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Why You Will Love This

Are you a serious surf fisherman looking to upgrade your gear? If so, look no further than the Shimano Ultegra XTD!

This reel is designed with serious surf casters in mind, meaning you get consistent long-casting performance and super slow oscillation—so the slower the line spools up the easier it will leave on the cast.

And that's not all! The Ultegra XTD also features G-Free Body technology which shifts the weight of the reel closer to your rod, so you don’t have to worry about becoming fatigued and can spend more time casting and less time resting.

With its advanced design and helpful innovations, using the Shimano Ultegra XTD will make sure fishing an even more enjoyable experience.

So don't wait—upgrade your equipment today and start taking full advantage of everything this great reel has to offer!

What You Should Know

The Shimano Ultegra XTD reel is a must-have for any angler in need of a high-quality and reliable fishing reel. Its Parallel Body design guarantees smooth line flow, preventing line slapping and improving casting distance.

Moreover, the Propulsion Line Management System ensures that backlashes and wind knots become things of the past, allowing you to cast with confidence. The X-Ship feature adds to the reel's durability and precision, maintaining a precise alignment with the drive gear under heavy loads.

And when you need to adjust your drag on the fly, the Instant-Drag feature allows you to do so with just half a turn, ensuring that you won't miss a catch.

What Could Have Been Better

The Shimano Ultegra XTD reel has a stylish design and can cast smoothly over long distances. However, some users have reported that the grease-felt drag washers can cause some unneeded turns from free spool to locked. If this bothers you, you can change the washers.

Nonetheless, the Shimano Ultegra XTD saltwater spinning reel is a great choice for anglers who want a powerful surf reel that can cast long distances.

Frequently Asked Questions

Surf fishing can be a lot of fun, but it's hard to know which type of reel is right for you.

There are so many different types of surf fishing reels on the market, it can be hard to figure out which one is best for you.

We've created a comprehensive FAQ section that will answer all your common questions about a saltwater surf fishing reel. With this information, you'll be able to pick the perfect reel for your next fishing adventure.

What kind of reel is best for surf fishing?

While there are a variety of reels available on the market, choosing one that's specifically designed for the unique conditions of surf fishing is essential. Spinning reels with a large spool and a high gear ratio are generally best for surf fishing. This will allow for longer casts and faster retrieves, so you can cover more ground and increase your chances of a catch. Baitcasting reels can also be used, but they require more skill and experience.

Additionally, look for a reel that's made from corrosion-resistant materials to withstand exposure to saltwater, as well as one with a strong drag system for reeling in larger fish. By selecting the right reel for your surf fishing adventures, you'll be well-equipped to reel in some impressive catches.

What size reel to use for surf fishing?

Choosing the right size reel requires careful consideration of the type of fish you are targeting, the weight of the line you intend to use, the rod you are using, and the conditions of the surf. Generally, a reel in the 4000 to 6000 size range is ideal for surf fishing. A 4000-size reel is perfect for smaller fish and lighter lines while a 6000-size reel is ideal for larger and heavier fish.

Also, keep in mind that a larger reel provides you with more cranking power and a faster retrieve speed, which is crucial for landing larger fish in rough surf conditions. Remember to use a balanced rod and reel combination and adjust your drag correctly.

Is a 2500 reel good for surf fishing?

The 2500-size reel can certainly get the job done, but there are some factors to consider before making a final decision. The first thing to consider is the size of the fish you'll be targeting. If you plan to go after larger fish in calmer water conditions like striped bass or bluefish, you may want to opt for a larger reel with more line capacity.

Additionally, consider the weight of your rod, if you have a heavier surf rod, a 2500 reel may not balance well. Still, a 2500 reel can be a great option for smaller fish or for anglers who prefer a lighter setup or fish during high tides. It's all about finding the right balance of power and comfort for your needs.

Is a 5000-size reel good for surf fishing?

Surf fishermen often prefer to use a 5000-size reel because it is both large enough to handle big fish and cast long distances, but still light and maneuverable enough to be used for extended periods. With a 5000-size reel, you can catch a variety of shore-dwelling species including snook, redfish, trout, pompano, jacks, and even large flounder.

What is a surf reel?

A surf reel is an essential component of any serious angler's fishing gear, especially for those who enjoy fishing in the ocean. Unlike a standard fishing reel, a surf reel is specifically designed to handle the harsh conditions of the surf zone.

It is larger with a strong, sturdy construction to withstand the power of waves and strong currents. Additionally, a surf reel has a long spool which enables the angler to make longer casts into the deep water. The drag system in a surf reel is also stronger and more durable, to enable you to catch even the biggest fish that roam through the surf.

How do I choose a surf fishing reel?

Choosing the right surf fishing reel can be a daunting task. With so many options available, it can be hard to know which one is best for you. To help you make the right decision, here are some key factors to consider when selecting a surf fishing reel:

Construction Quality: Pay attention to construction quality when selecting a surf fishing reel, as this will affect its durability and performance over time. Look for reels made from high-quality materials such as aluminum or graphite for maximum strength and reliability.

Price: Surf fishing reels come in a range of prices, so decide how much you're willing to spend before making your purchase.

Size and weight: The size and weight of your surf fishing reel should be comfortable for you to use all day. A lighter reel will allow you to cast for longer periods without fatigue.

Gear Ratio: The gear ratio of a reel determines how fast it retrieves the line. Higher ratios mean more revolutions per turn of the handle and faster retrieval speeds, but lower ratios provide more torque and power for fighting larger fish.

Line Capacity: Line capacity is an important factor when choosing a surf fishing reel, as it determines how much line can be stored on the spool. Reels with larger capacities are great for longer casts and deeper waters.

Drag System: A good drag system will allow you to adjust the tension on the line while fighting fish. Look for reels with adjustable drag systems that offer smooth performance and consistent pressure.

By considering these factors, you'll be able to find the perfect surf fishing reel for your needs!

How do I maintain my surf fishing reel?

Regularly cleaning and lubricating your surf fishing reel is crucial for its maintenance. First, rinse the reel with fresh water after every use to remove salt and sand buildup. Then, disassemble the reel and clean every component with mild detergent and water.

Make sure you use a light oil or grease to lubricate the gears and moving parts. Afterward, store the reel in a dry place. Additionally, taking it to a local tackle shop for professional servicing is also an option.

What size reel for a 10-foot surf rod?

The best size reel for 10-foot surf fishing rods would be in the range of 6,000 to 7,000. This will provide enough line capacity for casting out deep, as well as significant drag for large, powerful surf fish. However, if you have a medium-class rod, you can use a smaller reel size of around 5500.

How are spinning reels different from conventional reels for surf fishing?

Spinning reels and conventional reels are both used for surf fishing, but they have some significant differences.

Spinning reels are easy to use and are mounted below the rod. They have a fixed spool that rotates around a stationary bail and allows for uniform winding of the line onto the spool. Due to their precise control and accuracy, they are ideal for casting light lures and baits over long distances. Additionally, they are smaller and more lightweight than conventional reels which makes them easier to handle for extended periods.

In contrast to spinning reels, conventional reels are placed on the top of the fishing rod and come with a rotating spool. A conventional reel is ideal for catching bigger fish and handling heavier lines. Their higher gear ratio lets them retrieve lines faster. Nonetheless, they may be challenging for novices to cast.

How much should surf fishing reels weigh?

Surf fishing reels come in different sizes, materials, and intended uses that affect their weight. They should be light enough for comfortable usage but also heavy enough to handle bigger fish in rough surf conditions. Typically, these reels weigh between 10 to 30 ounces, with larger ones being heavier than smaller ones.

To choose a surf fishing reel, don't just focus on its own weight. Also, take into account the weight of the line, the rod, and any extras. The key is to create a balanced setup that feels comfortable to use. This will help you achieve better results and avoid getting tired during long casting and reeling sessions.

How do I cast a surf fishing reel?

Surf fishing is a great way to get out and enjoy the outdoors, but it can be intimidating for those who are just getting started. If you're looking to cast your surf fishing reel, there are a few key tips that will help you get the most out of your experience.

The first step is to make sure your reel is properly set up. You'll want to adjust the drag so that it's tight enough to keep your line from slipping off the spool, but not so tight that it prevents you from casting. Once you have the drag set correctly, you're ready to start casting.

When casting with a surf fishing reel, it's important to use an overhead motion. This will help ensure that your line is released in a smooth and controlled manner. Start by holding the rod at an angle of about 45 degrees, then bring it back over your head and release the line as you move forward in one fluid motion. It's also important to keep your wrist straight throughout this motion - if you bend it too much, you won't be able to generate enough force for an effective cast.

Once you've released the line, let it drift out until it reaches its desired distance before reeling it in slowly and steadily. Make sure not to jerk or pull on the line too quickly - this can cause tangles or even breakage if done improperly. When retrieving your line, make sure not to let any slack build up as this can cause problems when trying to set a hook or retrieve a fish.

Finally, remember that practice makes perfect! The more time spent practicing with your surf fishing reel, the better prepared you'll be when heading out on your next trip. With these tips in mind, you should be well on your way toward mastering this popular form of angling!

Final Thoughts on the Best Surf Fishing Reel

Fishing is one of the most rewarding outdoor activities you can experience. Even if you are a beginner, making sure you have the right fishing gear, including the best surf reels on hand, alongside your trusty rod and tackle box, will ensure you make the most of your day out at sea.

Whether you're an experienced angler or a newcomer to the sport, these recommendations will ensure that you have the perfect reels to meet your needs. Our choices vary in style, design, and price point, so there is something available for everyone's budget.

Out on the waves, having the right fishing gear can make all the difference between a mediocre and memorable surf fishing trip- so choose wisely!

Don't hesitate to click on the 'Check Price on Amazon' buttons and add your favorite reel to your cart. With this expert-backed knowledge backing you up, what are you waiting for?

Grab your rods and head out fishing; happy casting!

A man fishing on the beach
To make the most of your surf fishing trip, you need the right setup