So custom rods are too expensive – and too valuable to fish in a kayak?
I would like to offer a fresh perspective – as I once believed that custom rods and kayaks did not mix. This was before I lost more than a few rods on the river bottom.
An angler can spend a large amount of money on 4 high performance, versatile custom rods – but much more money can be spent on 10 technique specific rods. Consolidating is an advantage to the kayak angler – seeing that taking 10 technique specific rods in a ‘yak is unrealistic. Fewer rods allows for a clean, functional, and safe deck – and a kayak angler should be able to cover most bass techniques in a line-up of 4 rods. This makes for a safer and less expensive fishing experience in the long run – seeing that in my own experience, I have lost enough rods on the river bottom to cover the cost of the 4 custom rods that I now own. The reason I lost these rods? I was simply carrying too many.
The key to covering a wide range of techniques with as few rods as possible is to make sure that the blanks the rods are built on meet the specifics of what you are looking for. Once you have found the correct blank, a functional and beautiful rod can be built on it.
Here is my line-up of custom rods and the techniques that they cover:
Rods shown are Carolina Custom Rods and are in order left to right as listed below.
Crank Bait / Spinner Bait / Buzz Bait – 7’0” Medium Heavy moderate/fast Action casting blank – spooled with 15 lb Berkley Big Game monofiliment. The mono allows some stretch and gives the rod a chance to load properly while using moving baits.
Top Water / Jerk Bait / In-line Spinner / Underspin – 6’8” Medium Light x-tra fast casting blank – 20 lb Suffix 832 braid. The medium light action of the rod allows for great action on walk-the-dog type baits and jerk baits. This action coupled with braid also allows for great hook ups at a distance and the ability to fight airborne fish on trebles. Again, I tie a mono or flouro leader suitable to the conditions.
Jig / Texas Rig / Frog / Weightless Plastic / Soft Swim Bait – 7’0” Medium Heavy X-tra fast casting blank – spooled with 30 lb Suffix 832 Braid. The braid coupled with an x-tra fast tip allows for great hook-ups at a distance or up close. I tie a mono or flouro leader dependent upon the situation and bait being used.
Grub / Tube / Shaky Head / Light Cranks / Weightless Plastics- 6’10” Medium Light fast action spinning outfit with 10 lb Suffix 832 braid with flouro leader. Long casts with light baits are important so a spinning outfit is my first choice for these baits. Braided line allows for great hook sets at a distance and allows for great feel on grubs and tube baits. Light cranks such as the Rapala Shad Rap are a breeze to cast on a ML action spinning rod – especially with the Micro-Wave Guide System.
Taking fewer, more versatile rods has given me peace of mind. The simplicity of knowing I can cover any situation with four rods has allowed me to load up quicker – and come back with all of my rods, which was not the case before I learned the lesson of versatility.
Give Brett Hinson at Carolina Custom Rods a call and he will treat you right!