I love my surf fishing; it’s a facet of our sport that has inspired me since I was a young fisho. I love the freedom you feel and the rewards that are available from this raw and untamed environment.
I started getting into surf fishing when I was around 11years old. At that stage I couldn’t afford a surf outfit of my own so I commandeered my Dad’s 11 foot 4120 glass-wrap surf rod. It did the job fine, but a session firing out lures was certainly hard work for a light-framed fisho like me.
I still spend a lot of time on our surf beaches, and it remains one of the most uncomplicated forms of fishing we have access to. I enjoy soaking baits for bigger targets off our surf beaches, but when it comes to a low-stress quick beach session, I love nothing more than grabbing a handful of lures and walking along a surf beach, firing lures out into the fringing gutters.
It’s made even more exiting when a school of salmon is visible and within casting range. When this visual form of fishing combines with a hard fighting, acrobatic species like salmon; it becomes a recipe for exciting fishing. I must admit I get a bit cheesed off when fisho’s ‘talk down’ salmon. I can tell you there’s nothing wrong with a good salmon session in the surf.
And although the surf environment hasn’t changed a lot in the past 25 years, the fishing tackle certainly has. The quality of off-the-shelf rods we have access to these days is so far ahead of the heavy multi taper glass rods that were once standard-fare for surf fishos. Heavy rods paired to bulky reels made for cumbersome fishing in the surf, and there was certainly no light tackle surf fishing back in those days.
Shimano Australia have recently added the new Dialuna XR range of lightweight shore-casting rods to their growing range of quality off-the-shelf rods. With seven spin rods available in the range from 2.59m in length up to 3.35m, the Dialuna XR rods are lightweight yet super-strong.
I have been using two models from the new range over the past 6 months, and can honestly say they are the lightest, easiest to use casting rods I have ever owned. While they’re not designed for heavy bait fishing in the surf, they suit the application of flicking lures and small baits into the surf, or any other land based situation for that matter.
I have the XR S1100M which is the longest of the range, and also the XR S906ML which, at 2.9m (or just under 10ft) is the second shortest. Because of the crisp action and lightweight construction, these rods are very responsive and sensitive.
I have been using the longer S1100M for casting 40g raider lures into the surf, and matched with a 5000 sized threadline reel and 20lb braid it casts an absolute mile. I have also done a bit of bait fishing with this rod, casting pilchard cubes for salmon and flathead in the surf, and also some night time fishing for gummy sharks. Rated at 5 – 10kg, the rod loads-up well under the weight of a good fish, and there’s actually a lot more pulling power in reserve than what you might think.
I have been using the S906ML for targeting KG whiting off the rocks. This rod is rated at 3 – 7kg, and is ideal when matched to a 2500 or 3000 sized threadline reel and 10 to 15lb braid. This rod also suits land based soft plastic fishing as well as flicking squid jigs from the rocks or a local jetty.
Dialuna rods combine a unique construction of carbon fibre tape woven at a 45 degree cross pattern creating a very strong blank. Combined with quality Fuji K stainless steel guides, a Ci4+ reel seat and custom EVA grips, the overall finish of these rods is first class.
If you’re thinking of upgrading your old multi-taper glass wrap surf rods for something a bit more lightweight and user-friendly, then check out the new Dialuna XR range. You won’t be disappointed.