top of page


I'm often asked just why fishermen like me and you appropriate so much tackle, especially when " one will do."

The first thing to be realized is that the person espousing such a viewpoint is either a novice fisherman or has confined and limited himself for some reason to only fishing for one particular specie under one specific method. If you're anything like me you enjoy fishing for a variety of species under a variety of conditions , both seasonal and geographical.

Imagine a golfer who carried with him only a putter. That's a-ok with me so long as all you ever wish to visit is one particular miniature golf or " putt-putt" course. I enjoy the totality of what has long been my favorite hobby a whole lot more than that.

Garcia Conolon, a premier tool in its day.

Here then is my overview of my particular arsenal , and my utilizational goals for each outfit. Let me note up front that my one combo not pictured is out at our boats storage and is the ultimate Ohio specialty outfit -my steelhead combo. This is special gear , both for the unique behaviors of pursuing this specie, and the somewhat unique seasonal aspect of the pursuit. The rod is a sentimental favorite gifted to me at our booth at the Cleveland Outdoors Show by a terminally ill fan of our TV program, when we were on PBS in the early years. He had heard me mention that my very first rod as a youngster was a Garcia Conolon, a premier tool in its day. This man presented me a pristine 7' 6'' medium-light spinning version that I now cherish. I matched it with a quality medium sized reel loaded with 6lb. clear mono and the rods parabolic action makes it ideal for flinging those smallish trout bites and the real is big enough to hold a sufficient amount of line for a specie that is renowned for making long runs.

The arsenal of outfits pictured are as follows :

The authors arsenal of rods and reels

Ultra-Light spinning reel , 4lb. mono/ 4'6'' one -piece graphite rod - my super-sensitive choice for vertical jigging deeper waters for panfish like crappie, perch, and bluegill.

Ultra-Light reel/ 4lb.mono/6'6'' two-piece fiberglass rod - my live bait bobber throwing outfit , whether conventional or slip bobber.

UL reel / 6'6'' two-piece fiberglass rod - my go to system for mini lures like twister -tails, 1/32 oz. spinners and tiny crankbaits for panfish of all kinds.

1000 series spinning reel , 6lb. mono /5 '6'' 2-piece composite rod - my favorite rod for walking streams and ponds. Light enough for small fish, Ideal for Ned rigs... stout enough for trout and most stream bass.

(2)Medium-Light spinning reels filled with 8 lb. mono, / 6'6'' one-piece graphite rod -this much-used smallmouth rod doubles as the occasional walleye jigger. Note the graphite rods are almost all one-piece. Why by a more expensive graphite rod essentially for sensitivity and break them in half for misled portability ?

3000 series spinning reel , spooled with 10lb. fluorescent mono / 6'6'' medium spinning reel - use primarily for casting bass lures perhaps a little light to effectively cast on the levelwinds .Bright, visible line indicates how often it works for soft plastics.

A variety of line used for ultralite angling

Medium action 7' carbon rod /Casting reel filled with 12 lb. mono - spinnerbaits, buzzbaits .

M/Hvy casting w/12 lb. fluorescent mono / 6' graphite rod - ideal for pitching soft plastics under extended shoreline cover and docks for bass. Pistol-grip handle really helps.

M/Hvy casting w/10 lb. clear mono /6'graphite rod -as above , only primarily for horizontal baits.

M/Hvy casting 6'6'' graphite 1 pc. w/ fluorescent blue line - soft plastics, jigs .

M/Hvy casting reel w/ 10 lb. clear mono /7' fiberglass rod - ideal combo for horizontal presentations like spinnerbaits and crankbaits. Fiberglass is far superior for such applications than graphite ; parabolic flexibility provides longer range casts and greater break strength -and economy.

M/Hvy low- speed casting reel w/ 12 lb. clear mono , rod as above. - low- speed reel helps inhibit reeling crankbaits too fast. A very bad habit for many, including yours truly.

Casting reel loaded with 30 lb. braid / 7' Heavy action glass rod - primary buzzbait and froggin' rod. Plenty of strength for whatever might occur. Also doubles as primary pike and musky outfit. (2)Large Levelwind reels , spooled with ultra-clear green mono / 7'6'' -fiberglass trolling rod - big water trolling outfits, mostly in holders. Walleye usually the primary targets.

Watch Jack's special episode on ultralite fishing here:

*** Jack Kiser is the long-time Outdoors Columnist for the Record-Courier and Ohio Angler, Ohio Valley outdoors, and " Midwest Outdoors " magazines, as well as host for " Buckeye Angler " and PBS and Fox Sports. You may reach him at the Buckeye Angler Facebook site, or the new

329 views0 comments

Recent Posts

See All


 the JACK KISER show
PODCAST Now Available

bottom of page