How To Make A Fishing Rod In The Wild? Full Guide

How To Make A Fishing Rod In The Wild Full Guide

If you are an avid adventurer, you should hone your surviving skills. You may get lost while hiking in a forest or wilderness with no food available. In such cases, you will have to survive by eating wild fruits, hunting wild animals, or catching fish! But to catch fish, you will need a fishing rod. So, how to make a fishing rod in the wild?

You can make fishing rods using sturdy branches or bamboo. Finding a suitable wood in the wild is quite challenging. Then you have to learn to craft hooks from natural resources like bones and trees. You will also need something to use as a fish liner.

In this article, I will teach you how to make a fishing rod from natural resources found in the wild. Before that, let us learn a few reasons why you should practice making a fishing rod.

Why Should You Learn How To Make A Fishing Rod?

There are several reasons why learning how to make a fishing rod can come in handy. If you go for a walk in a remote natural area and get lost, food will be your biggest concern. You can manage it by catching fish from nearby water sources. For that, you will need a fishing rod. Chances are that you won’t have a fishing rod with you all the time.

While hiking, you may come across a pond/lake, and plan to catch some fish. If you do not have a fishing rod with you, you will obviously need to make one. Or, you may just want to go primitive for one day to feel how people used handmade rods to catch fish. Some people enjoy the thrill of making things from scratch. 

No matter the reason, knowing how to make a fishing rod with limited resources available is a convenient survival skill. You will have fewer worries about managing food.

How To Make A Fishing Rod In The Wild?

When you go on an adventure in the wilderness or any remote area, you should always carry some necessary tools with you, especially a survival knife. A good quality survival knife is enough to cut or chip wood, ropes, cardboard, tin, and other things. Thus, it is essential to make a fishing rod. 

Now, here are the steps you need to follow to make a fishing rod in the wild:

Make The Fishing Rod

The first thing you need to do is find a suitable tree branch. Then you have to prepare it to turn into a fishing rod.

Step 1: Choosing The Right Wood

To make the rod, you have to search the area to find a suitable branch. It would be great if you could find trees like hickory, ash, and bamboo, but do not feel hopeless if you do not find them. You just have to find a piece of wood that is strong enough to catch fish for the time being.

Make sure to choose a branch from a live tree. Do not use a branch from a dead tree or something that has already broken. These are more prone to breaking easily. Branches from alive trees have better flexibility and strength. They have less possibility of snapping under a bit of pressure.

The branch or bamboo you choose should be tapered from bottom to top. The base must be thicker than the top. It will give you more control. Check the strength of your rod by bending the tip with a bit of force. If it snaps, look for a stronger stick.

Step 2: Cutting and Sizing the Branch 

The branch that you choose should be at least 2 to 10 feet long and the diameter of your thumb. You have to consider your size and the area you will be fishing in. The fishing rod should not go below 2 feet because they do not have much torque, which is necessary for a fishing rod. 

If you want to catch small fish, use shorter rods as they provide more accuracy and precision. For larger fish, you need a bigger rod. Bigger rods have more leverage and let you fish in deeper water. 

Step 3Cutting off the extra branches and leaves

After you cut off the branch of your choice, you will need to prepare it. And a branch from a live tree will have smaller branches and leaves sticking out of it. Having a strong and comfortable grip is important for fishing. So, use your pocket knife to cut off the extra branches and leaves from the rod.

Add Fishing Line 

After you have finished making the road, you have to add a fishing line. If you know you will make a rod in the wilderness, carry a fishing rod kit with you. Then you will already have the fishing line and hook.

But you may have to make the rod from scratch. So, you do not have a fishing line to attach to the rod. In that case, look for an alternative. If the ropes are not thin enough, you have to take apart the threads and make a thin and long fishing line.

In extreme cases, you have to look for live vines strong enough to catch fish. You can attach some vines together. Make a long line so that you can wrap it around the rod as well as lure the fish. Start wrapping the fishing line around the stick from the thickest part, maintaining an equal distance to the top.

Leave the extra lining hanging from the top. You can check whether the length is enough by casting the line in the water.

When a fish pulls the bait, it is important to wrap the entire rod with the line. It will provide maximum support. The pressure will not be just on the top.

Making The Hook

Now, you have to attach a hook to the fishing line. But making a hook in the wilderness is a bit tricky. However, you have a few options, like using bone or wood. If you have an aluminum can or a trashed can around, use its pop-top to make a sturdy fishing hook.

Secondly, you can use a bone with a hooked shape or a V-shape. You can look for dead animal carcasses to find a bone.

Thirdly, you can carve a tree branch into a hook with your pocket knife. When your fishing hook is ready, attach it to the fishing line. You can either make a hole to tie the line or wrap the end of the line around the hook.

Finding Baits

So, you assembled your fish rod. Now the last step is getting some bait to catch the fish. Look for worms and insects in moist areas or under rocks. You can use worms to lure the fish. Crickets are also a brilliant choice as bait for catching various types of fish.

Practice Making Fishing Rods

Now that you know how to make a fishing rod, you should practice making one before going on a new adventure in the wilderness. Regular practice can make you better at making a natural fishing rod. So, when you have to make a fishing rod in a survival situation, you will know exactly what you need and can do.

Reading only written instructions will not make you an expert at crafting fishing rods. So, practice with branches, bone, wood, and vines to make your own rod at home. You can also practice fishing in a river, lake, or pond near you.


Hopefully, you have learned how to make a fishing rod in the wild. Knowing how to make tools is an essential survival skill. Moreover, making a fishing rod does not take much time, and it can be made with natural components. Besides, it is exciting to craft something and use it for yourself. 

So, next time you find a river or lake in the wild, use your pocket knife to craft a fishing rod from natural resources and catch a fish with your primitive tool.

Kevin Noyes

Hey there, I'm Kevin, a former infantry soldier in the U.S. Army. I've been through it all - from grueling training to intense combat situations. Now, I'm here to spill the beans on survival. None of that dry, textbook stuff - I'm talking real-world, practical tips to help you conquer any wild situation. From setting up camp to keeping your cool, we'll tackle it all together! So let's dive in and get ready to rock the survival game!

Recent Posts