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bdnoble

Prefered rod for heavy current

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As mentioned in another post today, i was having trouble connecting on bass in strong current. What are your guys' opinion regarding rd action n current. I was using a quantum response mh with a fast to xf action. Love the feel of the rod, has good backbone for working swim jigs but as mentioned in another thread, i missed 10 or so fish (up to 18 or so inches). Ive been thinking about rod action in current lately as my normal river rods are baitcasters in medium w/ a more moderate tip and i really like that for cranks and light spinnerbaits but the feel isnt there with jigs. Be interest to hear your guys opinions

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I seldom if ever use bait casters on the river. My rods of choice are ML and M spinning rods with fast actions. 8 or 10lb braided line with no leaders. My preference in baits is usually smaller stuff that I'd have a harder time throwing with a bait caster.

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Im the same way most of the time when using small grubs, hair jigs, shakey heads, stick baits, etc but for bigger baits i.e. Spinnerbaits, swim jigs crankbaits tr worms i really prefer a baitcaster

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perhaps using a smaller diameter braid line will help cut the heavy current. walleye jig guys use the thinnest they can get away with. rich mc

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it depends on the current flow and size lures I'm using . generally for most lures and all current condition i use a 7 ft medium action spin rod with a 30/300 size reel spooled with co poly or mono .

i primarily use a 7 ft medium lite spin with a 20/200 reel co poly or mono for creeks or very low flows in the river when i just fish smaller lures or live bait to catch more of a variety of size/species .

i use a 7 ft medium heavy spin with a 40/400 reel co poly or mono when i start throwing the really big stuff like 1/2 oz jigs tipped with 5 to 6 inch swimbaits, 5 to 6 inch crankbaits , dragging 1/2 oz or better jig/pigs on bottom upstream and such like .

 

sometimes i play with braid and nanofil when the mood strikes me . i no longer use straight fluro especially with slower presentations the line snagged in rock crevices before the lure did . i never tie on any sort of leader with the exception of certain live bait rigs .

 

keep as much bow out of the line as possible, keep your hooks sharp , multiple hook sets and watch your line are the best ways to improve your hook up/landing ratio . kirbing your hooks and opening the gaps also help a lot especially with rattlebaits . length and gap of hook also should be considered . not enough gap of hooks leads to missed strikes . at times using a longer hook to set the point back a little further back in the lure can make a difference , experiment .

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Thanks for the thoughts guys. I've caught alot more fish on spinning rods in the river than anything else, i probably like the idea of baitcasters more than they are actually worth in the river i fish. But i do feel like some baits work better when using a baitcaster. Especially crankbaits and spinnerbaits in current.

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I know Norm has a lot more river experience than I do and he likes to throw crank baits but I have never been a fan of crank baits in current. Most shallow diving cranks will run a bit too deep in the shallow rivers I fish grabbing weeds and rocks. The current also effects the way they run.

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Scott

 

Use rattlebaits instead of crankbaits if that's the case . When the Kank gets all algaed up , I don't bother with cranks myself .

 

BD

 

I've been fishing cranks and spinnerbaits on spinning gear in rivers for over 5 decades, never had any issues .

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When smallies are on crayfish and active its pretty hard to beat a rapala dt 4 in craw pattern bouncing off rocks for reaction strikes but the stream i normally hit doesnt seem to have the algae issue.

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If you are using a MH rod in general I would consider that too heavy for smallmouth fishing. Characteristics of rods vary I would pay more attention to the feel or action of the rod versus the rating. I have a ST Croix ML rod that I like a lot but it fishes closer to a medium and I use that for light jig/grub presentations in lesser current situations. On the flip side I have another rod that is MH and it's rather whippy and fishes more light a medium (probably since its 7'6") Fast current I'm usually with a medium rod with medium fast action tip. If fish are in very fast current they may have to attack extra hard, especially with crankbaits. Recently I had my yak anchored (actually double anchored) in very fast water and all I did was short cast and set the rod in a rod holder and the crankbait was just banging away on the bottom as if I was retrieving it fast. The smallmouth would hit the crank so hard since current was flying by I'd almost thought the rod holder would break. In that case I cutover to my medium action rod with a deeper backbone and that eased the shock of the fish hitting with a rod that has too fast of a tip.

 

As Norm mentioned if you are losing hook-ups check the quality of the hooks. I've definitely noticed that lures with a lot of fishing time and fish caught may lose sharpness and you can actually tell that hook-up rates reduce. If you like crankbait fishing I'm really fond of Bandit crankbaits both 100 series (shallow) and 200 series (medium). I like the size of the hooks they are a tad bit smaller and good for smallmouth fishing, the hook-up percentage is good and I can usually free them up when snagged in rocks. They also behave very nicely in current.

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