The choice of fishing line is the most controversial point. It’s not easy to choose the right line for surfing fishing.
Braided superlines are a favorite of some surf anglers. Monofilament is another option. I have yet to meet anyone who uses the fluorocarbon mainline.
We have already dispelled the myths about fishing line, and now we are back to do so again. Below you will find in-depth discussions of all your options as well as our top picks.
A quick look at the best surf fishing line:
- Trilene Big Game– The Best Mono for Surf Fishing
- Stren Original
- Sufix 832– The Best Braid For Surf Fishing
- Power Pro
Review of the Best Monofilament Line for Surf Fishing
Trilene Big Game –Best Mono for Surf Fishing
|Weights8, 15, 20, 25, 30, 40. 50. 60. 80. 100. 130
Colors: Clear, Green, Solar Collector, Steel Blue
Trilene Big Game is your best choice for heavy-weight mono. You won’t be disappointed whether you cast for bull reds, monster striped bass, or sharks off the coast.
My favorite Big Game test weights are 15-, 20, and 25-pounds. However, I will go up to 30 or 40 if I have to for a great fight with big sharks or when I need a shock leader in a braid. Trilene Big Game is very resistant to abrasions, especially as you gain weight and increase in diameter. Trilene Big Game is the best product for large fish that are prone to fighting near rocks and reefs.
Big Game’s color palette is almost invisible, so wherever you fish, you will find an excellent choice.
It is strong and easy to tie, even at heavyweights. It casts well, despite being limp and light on memory.
Is there a better mono to surf fish?
It’s not true!
|Weights4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 14, 15, 17, 20, 25, 30,
Colors: Clear, Clear Blue Fluorescent Clear, Hi-Vis Gold, and Low-Vis Green
Stren Original is a brand that I’m sure every angler knows.
It has been around for a while and it does exactly what it should in every test and fight. This is one of our favorite monofilaments. We strongly recommend that you try it from the beach.
I have spooled Stren original in 12-, 14- and 17-pound tests. I also spooled Stren Original for reds, specks, and flounder. I have a quality rod, reel, and rod that I wouldn’t feel outgunned if I hooked into something truly meaningful.
One of my friends actually landed a 41-inch red on a 12-pound Stren Original last week!
There are many colors available in low- or high-visibility options. Clear and Low Vis Green are solid options, as well. There’s likely a color that matches the water where you fish.
Stren Original shines when abrasion becomes a problem. More than a few fishermen have also discovered that it is a great leader material for braid. SaltStrong confirmed this statement. Stren Original was the winner in a head-to-head four-way contest!
Stren’s line, which is quite limp, leads to incredible casts and it ties easily, as you would expect.
It’s affordable, easily available, and highly productive: What’s not to love?
Review of the Best Braided Surf Fishing Superlines
Sufix 832Surf Fishing: Best Braid
|Weights6, 8, 13, 18, 20, 26, 29, 39, 50, 53, 63. 79. 86. 99
Colors: Camo, Coastal Camo, and Ghost.
Material Dyneema plus a GORE fiber
Sufix 832 is a well-known and loved the product. It has amazing colorfastness, incredible strength, and remarkable castability.
Sufix uses fiber from GORE, the company behind Gore-Tex! This fiber is then braided with seven Dyneema Fibers to form a cohesive whole. Sufix claims this increases strength, casting, and abrasion resistance. One feel will show that it is a very smooth and round braid.
Sufix 832 is a great casting line. It doesn’t shed any tiny particles onto your reel or feel stiff in the hands, unlike other braids with a thick coating.
You can find a color that blends well with the water in a variety of weights and colors. However, braid can fade so be prepared for some.
Remember that even braids like Sufix 832 are not strong enough to withstand shock and knots. This is why I prefer to test my braids from the shore at 30- and 39-pounds.
|Weights3, 5, 8, 10, 15, 30, 40, 50 and 65.
Colors: Vermillion Red, Moss Green, and White.
Strands4 or 6
MaterialSpectra with resin infusion
We doubt that any angler has heard of Power Pro, just like Stren Original.
Power Pro is made of Spectra fibers infused in resins to improve its shape and abrasion resistance. It’s slick and slow to let water penetrate. This line is extremely limp and has almost no memory according to my experience.
It casts very well as you would expect, but it can sometimes be noisy through the guides. This is not a big deal for us, especially since we can see our lures landing where they want.
We have one complaint about this line: the limited color options. You have three high-visibility colors: red, white, or green. This isn’t a lot, but it will do the job.
I love the 30- and 40-pound beach tests, but as with all braids, I prefer to use monofilament shock leaders and be careful with my knots.
Our Picks: Trilene Big game and Sufix 832
For most surf anglers we recommend mono over braid.
Trilene Big Game is our favorite line for surfing. It’s available in a variety of colors to match the water, making it almost invisible to fish. It is also available in heavy and moderate weights making it an excellent choice for all fish species, from specks up to sharks.
It casts well too, and memory isn’t an issue for us.
It’s easy for us to understand why we love it.
We think Sufix 832 is the best choice for braiding.
It casts beautifully and is as soft as pasta. This is the line I’d reach for if the distance was my priority when casting from the shore.
It’s not as invisible as Trilene Big Game, but it’s more likely to snap under sudden loads. Knot strength will suffer, so make sure you use strong knots such as the Palomar.
Line Choices: A Head to Head Comparison
Monofilament is a staple of our lives, and we are unapologetic advocates for it.
We have run the tests and done the research.
This doesn’t mean that we don’t use braid when it is necessary, but most of the time our reels are spooled with mono.
Surf fishing is no different. Mono is the better option if you compare braid to mono.
Let’s look at the most common lines to understand why. Although we won’t get into all the science again, you can check out the links below to see the full details.
Monofilament is made up of one strand of nylon. Nylon is naturally flexible and acts as a shock absorber.
Mono ties well because it can bind to itself better than braid or fluorocarbon. This doesn’t mean that you can tie mono knots easier. It’s also proven to be the king of knot strength and results in far fewer break-offs.
Monofilament can also be used to protect against abrasion. It is inexpensive and comes in a variety of colors, including clear.
It casts well too, especially if you take time to correct any line twist.
Its weakness is its sensitivity. Mono is not dense and has a good stretch. This makes it a poor choice for ‘feel’.
Surfcasting requires the use of quality circle hooks with a sand spike. Fish will usually take your line by themselves, but they might need some assistance from an insurance hook set.
Mono is a better choice than bass fishing because “feel” doesn’t matter as much.
- Incredible shock power
- Strong knot strength
- Extraordinary knot-friendly
- It is very resistant to abrasion
- You can choose from a variety of colors, including clear.
- It’s affordable
- Casts work well
- It is not as flexible as braided super line, and will generally not cast as far.
As we have said, fluorocarbon is best used by anglers as leader material. It is made of polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF), which is a type of thermoplastic. It’s harder than nylon and has a higher density.
In theory, this makes fluorocarbon-diameter for diameter-more abrasion-resistant than standard mono. It also increases its sink rate and sensitivity.
Fluorocarbon lines can be multi-layered. This allows for a core to be bonded to a coating which improves abrasion resistance and handling.
Contrary to what you may have heard, fluoro is flexible like mono and absorbs shock. However, its low plasticity means it will stay stretched even after it has been deformed. However, it does provide a slightly better feel than monofilament which is important for certain types of fishing.
Even the most expensive fluorocarbons can be stiff. This makes them difficult to cast and gives them a deep memory. They are also difficult to tie and will not bend easily. This results in low knot strength.
Its supposed invisibility is still a matter of debate. This seems to be dependent on the species as well as the line.
We don’t recommend fluorocarbon surfcasting.
- Incredible shock power
- Extremely resistant to abrasion
- Casts are not good because they’re too stiff and likely to have deep memories
- Not knot-friendly
- Low knot strength
- Mono is more invisible than mono
- It’s expensive!
Braided super lines are made of spun polyethylene fibers which are then woven together to form a single strand. Dyneema or Spectra are two types of fibers that manufacturers have at their disposal. The only difference is in how they are processed.
However, braided lines can vary in the number of fibers they weave together. They can range from three to eight. To reduce water absorption, increase handling and casting, and provide greater resistance against abrasion, many super lines of high quality are coated.
Braid is a great choice when you want superior casting, more line on the spool, or the highest tensile strength per diameter. Braid is very sensitive and works best when there is a lot between you and your terminal tackle.
It can be a great choice for surfing fishing as it allows you to cast long!
However, its weaknesses might cause you to have reservations. Spectra and Dyneema are not great at shock resistance. They can also break if they are subjected to an unexpected force.
Braid can stretch, typically between 1 and 8 percent of its length. However, it cannot handle heavy loads for short periods.
These materials are so slick that they don’t tie well. Average braid will have problems at half of its actual tensile strength. TackleTour’s tests showed that the average knot strength was just 49 percent. This means that a 20-pound braid will experience knot failure at 9.8 pounds.
Contrary to what you may have heard, braided lines are not very abrasion-resistant.
It is also very visible in water because it cannot be easily colored.
What is the verdict? The verdict?
- Casts very well because it is extremely limp and has low-to-no-memory
- A very small diameter test allows you to load up to a ton on your reel
- Poor shock strength
- Poor knot strength
- Not very knot-friendly
- It is not very abrasion-resistant
- Very high visibility
What to Consider when choosing a surf fishing line
When we choose a line to fill our spools, there are four things that we care about.
Let’s face it, if your tackle isn’t able to reach the back of the breakers or you can’t drop it in the hole 60 yards offshore, then you won’t have a great day. Casting is the most important aspect of surfcasting tackle. You want your line to work for you, not against you.
Braid is hands down the best for this.
High-quality braided superlines combine exceptional limpness and little to no memory. However, monofilaments may be able to give them a run for their money.
This is a huge deal and any person who claims otherwise is trying to sell you something.
The knot will form the weakest point of your line 99 percent of the time, no matter how strong it is. Your line will fail if your knot is weak.
It’s game over!
Knot strength is just as important as a test or tensile strength. We can make a strong argument for knot strength taking the top spot. A chain is only as strong and durable as its weakest link.
Monofilament cannot be touched at this point.
We’ve discussed knots a lot, as all anglers do.
You want a line that is easy to tie and quick to use, as well as more or less foolproof. You can’t tie amazing knots at home, but they don’t work well on the beach if something goes wrong.
When the fish bite and you are busy re-tying terminal tackle, a line that can quickly tie a simple knot is worth its weight.
Mono simply outshines all other options in this area.
Few anglers venture out to find the big guys. Everyone’s heart starts racing when they see a true monster take their line and start a run.
You’ve never felt the crushing disappointment of a broken line if you don’t believe shock strength is important in a fight.
If you have a bruiser on the hook, and it decides that it wants to fight hard, you need a strong line. The line that can handle unexpected loads.
Mono is also strong on this point.
A properly-set drag, a strong rod, and some skill can make it possible to chain a large fish to the shore like steel cable with a 30- to 40-pound braid.
Why is braid heavier? Poor shock strength and low knot integrity are two of the concerns. The extra test helps to alleviate these concerns.
Whatever option you choose to use, make sure your drag is about 1/3 of the line’s rated test.
You’ll be amazed at how quickly even large fish can find the drag tires.
It’s not necessary to carry the heavier line. In fact, it will reduce the amount of line you have on your spool and affect performance (and visibility in the water).
It doesn’t matter if you go for mono or braid, the key to success at the beach is choosing the right line. There are many myths and rumors about fishing line performance. It’s worth finding out the truth.
We hope you found this article helpful and would love to hear your feedback!
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