If it helps, for trout and small reds, ( 20-26 inches), my lady friend uses a 7 foot ugly stick with one of the cheaper Shimano spinning reels on it. I think it's a 2500 series. She also has a cheap,big, ugly, 8 ft. Garcia Bruiser two piece surf spinning rod with a huge Okuma spinning reel on it for bull reds. (We dont eat big reds, but they are fun to catch.)
Each rig we use has a thin, 12 to 24 inch steel leader attached before the hook.
Set your drag light ! Reds like to run....but dont let them run under the pier.
You might try surf fishing ( wading) right at daylight. You dont have to get more than knee deep in the morning. ( Most people try to wade out too far, and the fish are in 3 feet of water, behind them, in the first "gut")
I prefer live croakers, live shrimp, or plastics for wading. A 1/4 oz leadhead jig is all you need for live bait or plastics. Just dont keep any fish on a stringer unless you actually WANT to attract sharks. Take them to the shore as you catch them. Your ankles and calves will thank you for it. Wear blue jeans and old tennis shoes. ( they will be toast after you're done, so throw them away. I buy a pair of $10 walmart tennees for wading) Make sure there is nothing that sparkles or shines on the shoes. You dont want to be mistaken for a baitfish.
One more thing...and it's important.
Shuffle your feet. Slide them. NEVER take a back step, either. Sting rays will feel the pressure wave as you come up behind them and they will move out of your way. They sometimes circle back to the same place.....thus the reason for no back steps. I've been wade fishing since I was 10 ( over 50 years now) and have never been hit by a ray using this technique.