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First Striper- help with line counter reel

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Been reading and learning what I could lately about striper fishing.   Took off Sunday (Jan. 3rd) with a friend, 4 rods, 2 planer boards and way too many brood minnows on my first outing.  Put in at Prairie Creek about noon, (no clouds) as I had heard good things recently.  Immediately realized I was in trouble not having a line counter bait casting reel knowing I wasn't sure how deep I was actually dragging my minnows with my 3/4 oz- 1 oz weights.  I was trying to hit the 35' depth.   Some how screwed up and caught this nice striper.  Absolutely could not believe the strength of this fish.  Had to turn the trolling motor in his direction to gain on him, as I didn't have the proper rod/reel.  So here is my question:  Suggestions on a line counter bait casting reel under $100.  My main fishing is for local creek fishing for smallies with a trip or 2 up north after the same.   Anytime someone asked me about a GOOD, INEXPENSIVE SPINNING REEL, I always feel confident in recommending a pflueger president.  For $40-$60 I don't feel there is a better reel out there.  Hoping someone can suggest a line counter bait caster under $100 that may serve me well.   Thxs


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Agree with Lance on Okuma reels. I use Coldwater line of reels from Okuma in the smallest size. Around $100. I had a Magda but really prefer the Coldwater. 5 years, zero issues. JMO

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I've had several Striper guides down there take me back to the dock at 9am as they have said its impossible to catch one after 9. 😂

Glad you proved them wrong, but I'm going to suggest early and late are probably better fishing.  

On another note go when you can. Not many of anything caught from the couch  

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