Although ice fishing and outdoor expos did their part to keep cabin fever at bay, it was undoubtedly necessary to do some shopping these past few months to effectively stave off the winter blues. More than any other spring, I am totally stoked to get back on the water for no better reason than to try out some sick new gear. I'm confident that I did a stellar job of researching these puppies before buying them, and am sure they will serve me well for years to come.
Here is the 2010 Key Off-Season Acquisition List...
1)Humminbird 345c Portable Sonar
My Fishin' Buddy served me well for over a decade, however, a big lake and big quarry called for an upgrade. I looked at a lot of units, and this was the best. It has a color display, rechargeable battery, speed guage and a even a flasher mode for next year's ice season. I should be breaking this one in on March 28th on Lake Hopatcong and it will be a vital asset during a week-long September summer finale on Black Lake in NY State.
2)Wright and McGill Tessera Skeet Reese Signature Crankbait Rod
Out of all my fishing rods, I lacked a fiberglass casting rod for the sole purpose of tossing crankbaits. With the addition of a few cranks from Koppers LiveTarget Series and a few Lucky Crafts to my tackle bag, I wanted a set-up that would do them justice. After doing my homework, this was the rod for the money. I paired it with an Abu Garcia Revo SX which has been spooled with 10-lb. test P-Line Fluorocarbon. The low stretch of fluoro helps the "give" of a glass rod. The rod was already tested successfully with a Binsky on Round Valley Reservoir, but will have much more playing time when I hit the Watergate Pond with Pat on April 3rd.
3)Abu Garcia Revo SX
After a long phone conversation and more homework, I decided this was the reel for the Tessera Cranking Rod. I'm normally a Shimano guy, but wanted to broaden my horizons. I'm glad I did. In the few swings I took with this on Round Valley, I can tell it's solid, and it came at a great price, brand new, from Ebay. It will be at the Watergate Pond with a Binksy and lipless crankbaits on the 3rd of April.
4)Wright and McGill Tessera Skeet Reese Signature Senko/Shaky Head Rod
I liked the feel of the cranking rod so much, I wanted another. Seeing as these rods are technique specific and I throw a ton of Yum Dingers, I figured a Senko rod was in order. I have a very special and very new Shimano Stradic Ci4 to go with this. It will also see plenty of action at the Watergate Pond on April 3rd.
5)Shimano Stradic Ci4
With the introduction of carbon fiber, this new for 2010 Shimano is the coolest reel I now own. The 2500 model I bought weighs a measley 7 ounces and with 6-lb. P-Line Flouroclear makes the perfect compliment to the new Senko rod. This will get plenty of action with plenty of Yum Dingers, starting April 3rd at the Watergate Pond. It will also get the call on a Loomis of my choice for spring trout on Hopatcong.
6)Shimano Sustain 3000
This was a bonus. Setting aside the untouchable Stella, this is the top of the line and the choice of pros. It will most often be found on my GLoomis GL3 6'6" Medium action spinning rod and used for tossing Rapalas and Bomber minnows. It will also see plenty of action and will be with me both on March 28th on Lake Hopatcong and the Watergate Pond on April 3rd.
7)Tsunami Trophy Series 11-foot Extra-Heavy Action Surf Rod
I intend to do more surf fishing this year than in years past, and one of my targets will be brown sharks come July and August. I needed a hefty rod without a hefty price and this was the ticket. This thing has a ton of backbone, and with my Penn 750 Metal Spinfisher, should be able to handle anything I might catch from the beach. This one will most likely be christened some time in mid-April off the beach in Long Branch, with a fish-finder rig, a surf-clam and hopefully a spring striper.