What size spinning Reel for Salmon (Find Out the Answer)

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 If you’re new to fishing, the number of different types of equipment can be overwhelming. One of the most important decisions you’ll make is choosing the right size spinning reel for the fish you’re hoping to catch. 

The best salmon reels are usually the 3000 or 3500 size reels. They’re great for most great lakes and rivers, where you can walk the bank and chase running salmon if necessary. however You can also use other sizes of spinning reel if you are comfortable with them 

In this article, we’ll break down everything you need to know about sizing spinning reels for salmon fishing.

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Understanding Spinning Reel Sizes 

The size of a spinning reel is generally determined by the diameter of its spool. The larger the diameter, the more lines it can hold. The size also affects the power of the reel, with larger sizes able to hold more line and handle larger fish.

There are four main sizes of spinning reels: •

Small or ultralight or light :

These reels are best suited for light tackle and smaller fish. The smaller size also makes them easier to carry around.  1000 to 3500 size reels are usually considered small or ultralight reel. These reels are light weight and used for small light applications. 


Medium sized spinning reels are versatile and can be used for a variety of fish and techniques. Usually 4000 to 6000 size reels are considered medium reels. 


Large spinning reels are best for heavy tackle and big fish. They can hold a lot of line and have more power to fight fish. 7000 to 9000 size reels are counted as large reels. These reels are suitable for saltwater heavy fishing. 

Extra large:

These reels are the largest size and are best suited for saltwater fishing and very big fish. They can hold a lot of lines and have the power to handle anything. Usually 10000  or more size reels are considered as extra large size reels. These reels are used for offshore fishing. 

How to Choose Right Size Spinning Reel for Salmon Fishing 

Choosing the right reel for salmon is challenging if you do not have sound knowledge on the gear. However, you can pick your desired reel following our tips. 

Reel SizeMono Line StrengthBraid Line StrengthApplicationsSpecies (North America)
1000 to 35002-10lb4-14lbUltralight Fishing in FreshwaterBass, Trout, Crappie, Bluegill, Yellow Perch
4000 to 60008-14lb 8-25lb freshwater and inshore saltwaterCatfish, Muskie, Snook, Redfish, Snapper
7000 to 900012-18lb15-50lbfreshwater ,inshore & offshore saltwaterStriped Bass, Salmon, Snook, Redfish, Wahoo (Red Drum)
10000 to 3000020-60lb 30-80lbinshore & offshore saltwaterTuna, Wahoo, Dorado, Shark

Types of Salmon 

The first thing to consider when choosing a spinning reel is the type of salmon you’re targeting. There are five main species of salmon found in North America: Chinook, coho, sockeye, pink, and chum. Each species has different size requirements, so it’s important to know which one you’re after.

Here are the general size guidelines for each type of salmon:

Chinook: 20-30 inches (25 to 30 pound)

Coho: 24 to 30  inches (8 to 12 pounds)

Sockeye: 18 to 31 inches (4-15 pounds)

Pink: 20-25 inches (3.5 – 5 pounds)

Chum: upto 43  inches (around 19 pounds )

Once you know the general size of the salmon you’re targeting, you can start to narrow down your reel options.

Line Capacity: 

The next thing to consider is the line capacity of the reel. This is the amount of line that the reel can hold, and it’s measured in yards. For salmon fishing, you’ll want a reel with a line capacity of at least 200 yards. This will give you enough line to handle even the biggest fish.

Gear Ratio : 

Another important consideration is the gear ratio of the reel. This is the number of times the spool rotates for each turn of the handle. A higher gear ratio reel will spin the spool faster, which is important for salmon fishing. A good rule of thumb is to choose a reel with a gear ratio of 5.1:1 or higher. This will give you the speed you need to reel in a big fish.

Reel Size : 

Finally, you’ll need to decide on the size of the reel. This is measured in inches, and it’s the diameter of the spool. For salmon fishing, you’ll want a reel with a large spool. This will give you the line capacity you need to handle a big fish. A good rule of thumb is to choose a reel with a spool diameter of at least 4 inches.

Final Verdict : 

Now that you know the important considerations for choosing a spinning reel for salmon fishing, you’re ready to start shopping. With so many different options on the market, it’s important to take your time and find the perfect reel for your needs.

Happy fishing!


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