A leader line is a game-changer. Choosing the right fishing line for a leader may not be an easy task. For example, it took me a lot of trial and error before I was able to find the best leader line for surf fishing.
If you are currently trying to figure out things, all the details around leader lines can be confusing. You probably have a lot of questions and at the same time, not enough answers.
Many professional anglers can testify to the benefits of leader lines. So keep reading as I will make it worth your while.
Choosing a Leader Line for Surf Fishing
When choosing a leader line, there are several things you need to keep in mind. Here I will go through some of their most essential features and benefits and why you need to use a leader line.
More importantly, a leader line needs to be suitable for the type of fishing, fishing conditions, and fish species you will be after.
Some of the best surf fishing lines tend to be the braided lines. They certainly do bring a lot to the table. However, they do have some drawbacks. You can negate some of these drawbacks quickly by using an appropriate leader line.
What Is a Leader Line?
A leader line is an extra piece of fishing line that we add to the mainline. You can attach a leader line in two different ways: (1) through the use of swivels, (2) and with tying special knots.
According to many of the professional anglers adding a leader is one of the most simple methods to up your fishing game.
Advantages of Leader Lines
A leader line will do two main things for you:
First, the fishing lines that are used as leaders are very tough and have high abrasion resistance. This will give you peace of mind if you are fishing in rocky and areas that are structure heavy.
And of course, a leader line will offer better protection against the fish species that are known to have sharper teeth.
Secondly, you can frighten the fish quite easily. It doesn’t take much for that. Also, some fish can be brilliant and will not bite if they can recognize the fishing line in the water.
The type of fishing lines that anglers use is one with the lowest visibility possible. The lower the profile of the fishing line, the higher the chances of catching the fish.
The Type of Leader Fishing Lines
Anglers use a few different kinds of fishing leaders. All of these have their advantages and disadvantages.
- Monofilament leader line – Its main advantage is its price. It is super cheap. However, this means some sacrifices were made. The monolines are more stretchable and have somewhat decent resistance to abrasions. The monoline absorbs both water and sunlight. This absorption is not a good thing as it makes the line weak over time.
- Fluorocarbon leader line – Fluoro leader line is almost the complete opposite of monolines. Fluoro lines don’t absorb water or sunlight. This neat little feature is making them very tough and long-lasting. And on top of that fluoro lines have an excellent abrasion resistance. Fluoro lines are also practically invisible in the water. And the biggest disadvantage fluoro lines have is their price. (This is part of the reason why a lot of anglers prefer to use braided line with a fluoro leader line.)
- Steel leader – Steel leaders are usually the go-to solution when you have to deal with a fish that’s been known to have sharp teeth. Steel leaders are commonly used for trolling.
Types of Leader Rigs
There are truly a lot of fishing rigs out there. Some of the most popular are the Texas Rig, the Carolina Rig, the Flapper Rig, Clipped Rigs, Pulley Rig, etc.
Although some anglers prefer different rigs like the Hi-Low Rig, my personal favorites surf-fishing rig is the Fish-Finder Rig.
A Fish-Finder Rig has its weight attached to the mainline with a plastic sleeve and a sinker snap. Then the leader line is connected to the mainline with a swivel. The plastic sleeve allows the fish to inhale the bait while feeling minimal amounts of weight resistance.
The Fish-Finder Rig works great with Striped bass and Surf Perch and other species.
The Tensile Strength
There is a lot of discussion on the topic, but there is not a right or wrong answer here. It will all depend on your fishing preferences.
- Leader line lighter than the mainline – It is usually used in areas where there is lots of heavy cover, snags, and structure. This way, you will have a chance to get your sinker or tackle back.
- Leader heavier than the mainline – It is best for abrasion resistance and fish that may have sharp teeth. It may also improve the casting distance.
The Leader Length
The leader line length is going to be up to your personal preferences. Some anglers prefer to have a short leader, and some prefer the opposite.
My preferred set-up typically about 3 to 5 feet long depending on the rod length. And it fits my style of fishing.
Seaguar Blue Label 100-Yard Fluorocarbon Leader Line: I Personally Use
This leader line from Seaguar is excellent for any angler both beginner or advanced that fishes from the surf. Seaguar wants to offer every angler a leader line that will allow them to cast at longer distances with minimal effort.
Their product aims to bring the best of both worlds through the clever use of a double structure technology. They report it as having limitless possibilities.
The double structure technology is a feature unique to Seaguar that makes their leader lines ideal for any angler even if they are not into surf fishing. I will not judge!
- Great abrasion resistance.
- Sinks fast.
- Good knot strength.
- It is expensive.
Advantages and Disadvantages of the Seaguar Blue Label Fluorocarbon Leader Line
There are several reasons why I like this leader line from Seaguar.
Right off the bat, this is a fluorocarbon line, and they synergize very well with any braided line used as a main. What’s more, is that fluoro lines are very versatile and can be used in almost all situations.
The Double Structure Technology
Double Structure Technology (DTS) is unique to Seaguar.
Through the use of DTS, they can create a leader by using two different resins. This allows them to play around with the features of the line and create one leader line that incorporates the individual aspects of the two resins.
This allows Seaguar to manufacture a line that is both with excellent tensile strength, sensitivity, knot strength, and castability.
The inner core is extra durable, making the whole line have increased tensile strength and sensitivity. The outside is soft and smooth, which will produce less resistance, thus allowing for greater casting distance.
The extra sensitivity is always great to have since not a lot of anglers like placing an extra knot between them and the fish.
Fighting the Big Fish
This leader line from Seaguar has proven itself to work really well.
Has great abrasion resistance and can withstand fighting some of the large fish species you can hit when surf fishing. The extra toughness of the fluoro line is a welcome sight as this means we can fish even in places with heavier structure.
Better Catch Ratio
In my experience, if a fish can see the fishing line, it is almost guaranteed that it will be the one to getaway.
This is why a leader line that is clear and hard to spot is a must-have. And Seaguar delivered just that. Their leader line is practically invisible to the fish giving you a significant advantage even with some of the smarter big boys.
Fluoro lines are known not to stretch, which provides you with better sensitivity.
A line that has less stretch to it is excellent for surf fishing because it will aid you in setting the hook when the fish bites.
Better Knot Strength
Knots are essential when it comes to fishing as this is the crucial connection between you and the fish. A line with a good knot strength is vital to your fishing success.
Seaguar describes its leader line as having significantly better knot strength. And the knot strength is one of the things I like about this leader line.
The main disadvantage of fluoro lines is their price. They are always going to be more expensive than other kinds of fishing lines.
This is why a lot of anglers prefer to use fluoro lines as leader lines. That way, you can make use of the benefits of fluorocarbon lines while keeping the expenses as low as possible.
The KastKing FluoroKote Fishing Line
Here’s another line that I use for my leader. This fishing line from KastKing is an ideal mixture between performance and price.
With this fishing line, they wanted to offer a hybrid type of line that takes the best of both worlds — offering a fishing line that is almost invisible to the fish that also packs longer casting range and low memory.
It comes in a variety of different sizes and tests pounds so you can use it for various fishing conditions and techniques.
- It is very thin.
- It casts well.
- It is very durable.
- It has low memory.
- It is somewhat stretchable.
Features and Benefits of the KastKing FluoroKote Fishing Line
First and foremost, let’s take a look at the materials that KastKing use for the manufacturing of this fishing line.
1. The Materials
It is a copolymer fishing line with a fluorocarbon coating.
But WHAT exactly is copolymer?
The copolymer is a lot like the mono fishing lines. Both are usually made of nylon that has been stretched. The thing that differentiates them is that with mono manufacturers use one type of nylon (hence the name mono). Copolymer lines, on the other hand, have two different types of nylon.
This is usually a good thing. Consider it as an upgrade over the standard monolines. When using two different types of nylon manufacturers can play around with the various aspects of the line and improve its qualities in specific ways.
The consensus is that copolymer lines can be considered as a golden mean. They offer outstanding durability, longevity, and sensitivity. They are doing really good visibility-wise as well.
2. Hard to Spot
KastKing FluoroKote uses the combination of the copolymer and fluoro coating to their advantage.
The fluoro coating is making the line hard to spot.
The copolymer gives you the ability to cast at longer distances due to the low friction it has, and it also has little memory.
3. Other Aspects
The line seems to have a very low stretch to it, which is something I like as it makes it more sensitive when those sometimes hard-to-notice bites and pulls happen. Still, the stretch may be too much for some more experienced fishermen.
It tends to sink faster than other fishing lines, even without any weights.
The fluoro coating is giving the line a lot of abrasion resistance so that it will last a long time. It also has an overall good knot strength.
Final Words on Choosing a Leader Line for Surf Fishing
When money is on the line, a good leader line is what you want to have. Many people underestimate the impact such a small thing implemented the right way can do.
This is why after the first time I tried a fluoro leading line; I never went back to the regular monolines. A fluoro leader utilized the right way brings so much more to the table!