BlogNovember 2017

Essential Beach Shark Fishing Tackle & Gear for Next Trip

Essential Beach Shark Fishing Tackle & Gear for Next Trip

By Debbie Hanson

Nov 21, 2017

Use this list of essential beach shark fishing tackle, gear to help prepare for your first shark fishing trip. Learn about shark fishing gear for beach anglers

If you happen to be a bit of an adrenaline junkie, beach shark fishing might be right up your proverbial alley. Keep in mind that sharks are powerful fish that command a great deal of respect. This means that having the right shark fishing gear is crucial for safety and success.

Some of the species that can be caught while beach shark fishing include hammerhead sharks, blacktip sharks, lemon sharks, spinner sharks, bonnethead sharks, and nurse sharks. While many of these species can get rather large, the majority of the sharks that are targeted while beach fishing are 7 feet or less.

Shark Fishing Gear for Beach Anglers

Are you wondering what type of shark fishing gear for beach anglers is best? Look for heavy-duty shark fishing tackle and gear that has been made for strong saltwater adversaries.

While these are examples of saltwater gear and tackle that you can use when targeting sharks from the surf, you should always check your state fishing regulations to make sure your gear is within the legal requirements.

  • Use a 7 to 10-foot heavy-duty, fast-action saltwater fishing rod or surf rod with plenty of backbone.
  • Use a heavy conventional saltwater star-drag reel with a very high line capacity (5200/100-pound braid) and low gear ratio. A heavy conventional reel will allow you to land a shark more quickly, decreasing the amount of stress on the shark and increasing its chance of survival after the release.
  • You can use 100-pound test braided line. Braid is generally preferred over monofilament since the smaller diameter of braid allows you to get more line on your reel. The extra line will help prevent a shark from "spooling" all of the line off of your reel in case it takes a long run.
  • Use a long shock leader of 400-pound mono and attach this leader to your main line using ball bearing swivels or snap swivels. Your shock leader should be about 15-feet in length to hold up against any structure or brushes with the shark's rough skin. Your shark fishing rigs should also include a second leader section of wire (10 feet or more) that is attached to your hook.
  • Use hooks in sizes from 10/0 to 16/0.
  • Bring along cut bait, such as ladyfish or bonito.

As you prepare for your first beach shark fishing adventure, keep in mind many shark species feed more actively in warm water (water temperatures in the mid-70s and up). Keep this tip in mind when considering the timing of your trip, and when deciding which places might make the best shark fishing spots.

From there, all you have to do is bring along a friend, a pair of release gloves, and a commitment to caution and shark fishing safety.

Debbie Hanson
Debbie Hanson
Debbie Hanson is an award-winning outdoor writer, women’s sport fishing advocate, IGFA world record holder, and freshwater guide living in Southwest Florida. Hanson’s written work has appeared in publications such as Florida Game & Fish Magazine, BoatUS Magazine, and USA Today Hunt & Fish. To learn more about her work, visit or follow her on Instagram @shefishes2.