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Another reason to go with heavier line is if the fish you are after have sizable teeth. Freshwater species such as pickerel, pike, and muskies; and many light-tackle saltwater species such as bluefish, weakfish, sea trout, and summer flounder, can bite right through a line if the fish is hooked deeply enough. (Many anglers use a wire or heavy-line leader, which is a short length of line tied between the bait or lure and the end of the reel line, when fishing for these species. More on leaders in Chapter 11.)

Although there are numerous variables and exceptions to the proper pound-test line to use for each species, Table 7.1 gives you a general guide for freshwater fishing.

Remember that your choice of tacklerod, reel, lures, and baitalso has a bearing on your line choice. The kind of line you use is a factor as well.

Table 7.1 General Pound-Test Line Ranges for Various Fish

Species Pound-Test Range

Largemouth bass, northern U.S. 612

Largemouth bass, southern/western U.S. 1020

Trout, streams and small rivers 26

Trout, large rivers and lakes 614

Trout and salmon, Great Lakes 1720

Perch and panfish 26

Catfish less than 5 pounds 610

Catfish more than 5 pounds 1020

Pickerel 612

Pike and muskies 1020

Fish Recipes

Fish Recipes

This is a great collection of delicious fish and shell fish recipes that you will love.

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