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Rods For Top Water


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During the winter of 2009-2010 I built a new rod based on a St. Croix blank with micro guides. I posted pictures here. It was 6'3" and strong medium power, fast action. I intended it to be my top water rod and double as a jerk bait rod. I think I would have liked it, but I slammed the rod box lid on it during the second trip with it.

In a fit of self disgust, I bought a Falcon Cara React jerk bait rod. 6'5", split grips, MF action, 8-17 pound line. I fished it all last summer and this spring and summer until a week ago. It is an excellent rod and versatile enough to use for more than jerkbaits and top waters. I have thrown warts and small spinner baits with it. I have also fished small grub heads with it.

Last week, I changed things around. I do that from time to time. I put my top water back on the rod I retired when I built the new rod. It is a 2002 Falcon Cara 6' medium power, medium fast action rated 8-17 pound line. Sounds a lot like the new rod doesn't it?

There is no comparison. The old rod is easier to throw, easier to walk the dog, and seems lighter in my hand.

I will keep the new rod (I rarely sell, give away, or trash fishing equipment) but I am back using an old school ten year old rod for my favorite bait.

The point of this review? Newer isn't necessarily better when purpose is the criteria.

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I bought a Dobyns Champion 704 this spring specifically for walking the dog, especially with a Gunfish. It does a fine job, but I could not find a topwater bite on Beaver this spring. Did catch a couple here on the BV lakes, but just haven't done the topwater fishing this year that I planned on. Maybe this fall. But I do like the rod, it's day will come.

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I recently voiced the opinion in another post that this year, for me, has only been mediocre for top water fishing. I know it takes gall to say that when I have posted a picture of a 6+ fish I took on top. However, the number of fish 2 to 6 pounds last year was more than three times this year.

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Falcon has an saltwater Inshore Rod that is a 6'9" rod "Topwater Special" That I really like for lake fishing. This is listed as a "L" rod, but keep in mind it is a "L" saltwater rod. Baits up to 1/2 oz.

Chunks a bait a long way. Rod loads well and throws ez. Shorter straight grip so walking the dog is a breeze.

I use my Browning Medallion 6' medium rods for shorter casts where more accuracy is needed. This rod aslo has a short straigh grip. Loads and throws ez.

Both of the rods are medium fast in speed. Don't believe the hype that faster is always better. Medium fast rods are great for hardbaits with multiple hook points.

Every Saint has a past, every Sinner has a future. On Instagram @hamneedstofish

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  • 3 weeks later...

RPS, is your old rod a little slower than the Cara? The only Cara I ever held was TrophyFishR's, and it had a really fast action. I didn't realize they made them application specific, but I would think that a rod they tout as a jerkbait would have a little slower action that would be money for topwater baits.

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Both are Cara rods. Just built a little different and about ten years apart.

The old rod is a touch softer (slower) than the jerk bait rod. What it feels like is that the jerk bait rod was cut off from the bottom so I have the top 6 feet of a 6'5" rod in my hands.

Does that make sense?

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I have always like a short rod for walking the dog and jerkbaits. 5 1/2' is about right I think.

Today's release is tomorrows gift to another fisherman.

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Yeah, it makes perfect sense. A shorter and slower rod is where it's at for topwater. One of my favorite top water rods is a pistol grip that I built on an old cheap blank with a spiral wrap. Even with the Lew's pistol grip, it's under six feet.

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Just wrapped a 5' casting rod for canoe use.....the 5'6" I broke a couple weeks ago was a bit too long for working a plug while sitting in the boat..Epoxy needs to harden a bit more before I test drive it.

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