I wanted to try an “Area Trout” baitcasting rod since I already have a “Native Trout” baitcasting rod. The difference is that “Area” designated rods tend to be a bit more limber. They are whippier and have more of a parabolic bend in the blank. In theory, it should be easier to use the rods inertia to assist in casting a light lure.
I have a cheap BPS Sensilite fiberglass rod that I practice with and kind of liked the action…hence getting this rod. As soon as I can get some free time I will definitely give this rod a shot.
Major Craft Finetail Area Stage Rod FAX-B642UL specs…
-6ft 4in- 2 piece rod
-lure weight 1.0-5.0 grams
-line weight 1.5-5 lbs or 0.2-0.6#PE
I definitely like the low profile and minimalist rod handle. I am excited to try this one out…
Like I do every spring, I hit a local park and practice my fly casting. I consider it a “tune-up” if you will. To me, flycasting is somewhat of a perishable skill and I try to set aside time to practice so I’m ready for the upcoming season. Plus, there was a 10-15mph cross wind this afternoon which is normal conditions here in Oklahoma and it was good to work through it.
The Fenwick Aetos 9ft 5wt is one of my favorite rods and I love fishing with it. Yah, it’s not a high end rod, but if you ever cast one, you’ll see why I like it. The Loop XACT 9ft 5wt was a rod I got towards the end of 2019 and haven’t even fished with yet. It has a heavier swing weight than the Aetos but it’s still a good rod.
We have had a lot of rain lately which has made fishing problematic. It’s sunny and 70F right now but will drop into the 30’sF come Tuesday. We also have a chance for some snow…I sure hope it doesn’t though.
We waited for the temps to climb this morning and then headed to a local lake. I wanted to take my Shimano Calcutta Conquest BFS reel and my Major Craft Finetail Stream FSX-B502L rod. I figured that the only way to become proficient with it was to use it for several hours. I only experienced one minor backlash in 3 hours of fishing so I was pretty happy. I managed to catch 6 fish, 5 Largemouth bass and 1 Warmouth but I didn’t get a single picture. As anyone who is familiar with Oklahoma knows, wind is always a factor and today was no different…it was blowing at 20+mph today.
Due to previous commitments, we had to cut and run after 3 hours.
This was quite a surprise. It is a Shimano Calcutta Conquest BFS reel on a Major Craft Finetail Stream Stage FSX-B502L rod.
I guess she noticed that I had been watching lots of videos about this reel and this style of fishing. I kept mentioning in casual conversation that I would like to try it and apparently she was listening lol!
Now, let me say this, baitcast reels are not my specialty. I can use them passably but not really well. I can use them from a boat but have never tried them from a kayak or while wading a stream. So I practiced in the front yard for several hours until I got the hang of it. I will definitely be trying this combo out on several streams soon.
I’ve never been one to care about matching rods to reels when it comes to colors, but when I saw the Finetail Banshee…I couldn’t resist! When I ran across the rod on Digitaka’s website I thought WOW, “that rod would pair up perfectly with my Daiwa Presso LTD 1025 spinning reel.” So I pulled the trigger.
I have been wanting to try a rod with Fuji Titanium Guides and Torzite inserts. CHECK
I wanted to try a Fuji TVS reel seat. CHECK
So I took the rod out this morning and was pleased with its action and power rating. With a flick of the wrist I can cast a 2.2 gram jig a LONG ways. And as you can see…they pair up nicely with each other!
The wife opted to try her new setup (new to her) which was a Tsunami Air Wave TSAWSS702M coupled with a Van Staal VR50 running 15# Power Pro braid.
I didn’t get on with the Van Staal VR50 because the reel stem is too short and it constantly smacked my knuckles when reeling. Apparently this has been fixed with the newer versions of this reel. But she loved the reel and her fingers are smaller so she didn’t have the same issue. She made several comments about the aesthetics of the reel and how solidly it was built. I have been sorely tempted to get the Van Staal VR50 Black but keep talking myself out of it.
This was her first time really casting lures on a short surf rod and she did great. It takes a bit to get the hang of it but she did fine and actually had fun casting for the few hours we were out there.
She tried the Major Craft Seabass CRX-904ML and liked it as well and was able cast it just fine. Come summertime, we will be going after catfish and white bass for sure.
We went to a nearby lake to test cast a couple of rods and reels. The lake was about 7 feet high and still in the Low-50’s if not upper 40’s temperature wise. We threw a cast net for shad but they hadn’t moved up close to shore yet which is understandable.
My rod choice was the Major Craft Seabass Allaround Game CRX-904ML coupled with a Shimano Stradic FL 4000XG running Power Pro 20# braid. As the name implies, this rod is aimed at fishing for Seabass, but I think it will work just fine for our local Stripers, White Bass, Hybrids and Catfish. Its a 9-footer but it breaks down into 4 pieces which makes it convenient for small cars and it would be possible to travel by air with it as well.
The reel worked flawlessly as you’d expect with a Shimano. I think Shimano has finally got its head in the game on mid-priced reels. This Stradic is really, really good.
I tested various lure weights from 1/4 ounce up to 1 ounce and the rod handled them easily. Its rated for 10-30 grams. I still haven’t found a rod from Major Craft that I haven’t liked.
Today I wanted to test the TenRyu Lunakia LK6102S-ML-T rod coupled with the 2020 Shimano TwinPower C2000S spooled up with Varivas Super Trout Advance Twitch Master VLS Nylon in 4 pound test. All performed brilliantly.
I chose the TenRyu Lunakia as my stream rod because the action, length and weight are perfect for the stream fishing I do and the target species-the Velox. I could easily cast bank-to-bank if I wanted to. The sensitivity was superb since I could feel every rock, stick or reed I swam my lure through or over. And for me…the Nishijin weave in carbon fiber for the reel seat is classy.
The 2020 Shimano Twin Power C2000S seemed to pair much better with the Lunakia than the Daiwa Presso LTD 1025. The balance and swing weight were spot on for me.
I’m always leery of spooling up a reel with line I have never tried and taking it fishing. But this time, it worked extremely well and I experienced zero issues with it. I am VERY impressed with this line. And I was pleasantly surprised that Varivas US carries it. The cost is $14.00 per spool which isn’t bad for this level of quality.
As a bonus, the Abu Garcia One Shoulder Bag Waterproof (quite a mouthful) worked very well. We fished through intermittent rain and everything stayed dry. I can attest to the fact that it floats because I stepped in a hole and went up to the tops of my waders and the bag was fine.
I have wanted a decent “pack rod” for a long time and finally found one that’s really good.
So let’s get the specs out of the way first:
-Rod length is 4ft 6in up to 5ft when adding the “switch section”
-Lure rating is: 1-8 grams
-Line rating is: 2-6 lbs or 0.3-0.8 #PE
-Weight is: complete package – 12 oz/340 grams
– rod and sleeve- 3.6 oz/102 grams
– rod only- 2.4 oz/68 grams
-Length is: full case- 16 5/8ths inches
-butt section- 14 3/4 inches
It has a wood reel seat, double up-locking rings, wood spacers, cork grips, Fuji K-frames with SiC inserts and an EVA foam butt cap. As far as power goes…its rated as an UL or ultralight, but since its a “stream” rod, it feels more like an LL or Light-Light rod to me. It’s definitely stiffer than an “area” ultralight rod. Fit and finish is as expected from a Major Craft rod.
I can confirm that this rod (in it’s complete package) fits inside a Patagonia Stormfront/Stormsurge as well as a Yeti Panga 28 pack. More than likely I will just carry the rod and sleeve to save weight.
I am extremely excited to try this rod out. I have a couple of rivers in mind where this rod will be perfect.
As the temperature begins to warm and the days get longer, I’m anxious to start fishing. It won’t be much longer.
On the Left is the 2020 Shimano Vanford 1000F which I have shown on a couple of previous posts.
In the Middle is the 2017 Daiwa Presso LTD 1025 which I have also shown on a previous post or two.
And on the Right is the 2017 Shimano Soare Ci4+ 500S which I purchased for a couple of ultralight rods I have. Namely the Majorcraft Finetail Works Tune Area Spec FTA-582UL and the Majorcraft Finetail FTX-46/505UL Multi-piece Switch Style rod.
If things stay on track…we’ll be fishing really soon