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BrackishBassin

Bank Fishing

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So, I spend 99% of my time fishing from the bank. The lake I fish is heavily wooded, and it has a soft bottom with lots of grass. Yesterday, I went out with the intention of fishing my newly respooled baitcaster. I figured a Carolina Rig would be just the ticket for dealing with all the grass. After about 15 minutes, I went back to my spinning set up and hardly touched my baitcaster the rest of the day. I'd tag a tree limb or cattail on the cast and end up picking out a tangle. Thankfully, I'd just respooled it with braid so they were easy to untangle.

I have been kicking around the idea of getting a new baitcasting set up (med rod instead of med heavy with a decent reel), but after yesterday I'm doubting whether or not I'd ever use it. A spinning set up just seems superior when you're dealing with casting from the bank, in a wooded area, and fishing soft bottom so you throw lots of weightless plastics and very light lures. Everything I tried that had any weight to it just drug in a pound of grass with every cast.

Am I correct in my thinking, or is this just a case of me not having enough practice with the baitcaster yet to be effective in those conditions? Any and all insight would be appreciated. 

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You are going to get a lot of different answers since reel/rod selection is mostly personal preference. Both spinning and casting setups will get the job done so choose which one you like best.With that said, I am pretty good at fishing with bait casting gear (I can cast a Penn Senator 4/0 which is much harder to cast than a bass baitcaster) but I mostly use spinning gear for most of my bank fishing.

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Just now, soflabasser said:

You are going to get a lot of different answers since reel/rod selection is mostly personal preference. Both spinning and casting setups will get the job done so choose which one you like best.With that said, I am pretty good at fishing with bait casting gear (I can cast a Penn Senator 4/0 which is much harder to cast than a bass baitcaster) but I mostly use spinning gear for most of my bank fishing.

Yeah, but they definitely have areas where they excel. I'm just wondering if there's someone out there that has had success fishing baitcasters in the conditions I'm describing. 

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1 minute ago, BrackishBassin said:

Yeah, but they definitely have areas where they excel. I'm just wondering if there's someone out there that has had success fishing baitcasters in the conditions I'm describing. 

I have had success catching fish in the conditions you mentioned with bait caster setups ,but prefer using spinning gear setups.

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21 minutes ago, soflabasser said:

I have had success catching fish in the conditions you mentioned with bait caster setups ,but prefer using spinning gear setups.

Ok, thanks!

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Of course spinning set up would be excel in your condition especially with unweight plastic and tight space If I were in your shoe I would take my spinningjng gear as well.

But baitcaster also has it place where you dont have to deal with line twisting easy casting and retreving and also more power to deal with bigger fish.

I think you'd better use your spinning gear and in the same time pratice casting unweight plastic like senko or super fluke with your caster. How long is your casting rod anyway? I hope is not longer than 6'6" but in your condition I prefer 6'6" or shorter.

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I'd be the first to say I love my baitcasters.  That said I have to admit that spinning wins hands down for shore work.  I can't remember how many times all it took was one weed stem to fluff a spool of line for me.  One way to compensate is to use shorter rods.  Sadly, they're harder to find these days.

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I only fish from shore and I rarely use my spinning setup. My baitcaster can cast lite lures just fine, plastics and such also. 

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1 hour ago, JustJames said:

Of course spinning set up would be excel in your condition especially with unweight plastic and tight space If I were in your shoe I would take my spinningjng gear as well.

But baitcaster also has it place where you dont have to deal with line twisting easy casting and retreving and also more power to deal with bigger fish.

I think you'd better use your spinning gear and in the same time pratice casting unweight plastic like senko or super fluke with your caster. How long is your casting rod anyway? I hope is not longer than 6'6" but in your condition I prefer 6'6" or shorter.

It's a 6' 9" Mh. The med I'm looking at comes in 6' 7" and 7' 1". I think the Mh is just too stiff to cast the plastics, especially with the 50 lb braid I spooled it with. Probably should have gone a little lighter, but I have a pond full of lily pads that I wanted to try punching.

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@BrackishBassin I feel your pain! I am doing most of my fishing from the bank as well!

My advice: do not give up! Weightless plastics are better thrown on a spinning gear, but since you have that combo already covered I would rather look into the next baitcaster combo. Try to think long term here. What I mean with this is: try to make sure that you buy technique specific combos and try to avoid buying similar combos.

A little mistake that I did and I had to learn from.

If I was you I would go for a MH, 7'3'' to 7'5'' with a fast to extra fast taper (lure weight 3/8-1oz or similar). Get something like a Curado I or a Lew's Custom Speed Spool MSB or Daiwa Zillion SV TW (more expensive). That should allow you to pitch weighted plastics and jigs and also a weighted carolina rig. 

That combo should also be good to do some punching with.

I thought as well that Spinning Gear is 'better' than a Baitcaster. But especially when you want to punch (to a target) a baitcaster combo can not be beat IMO.

Cheers!

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50lb braid should be around 12lb mono diameter.  On my MH baitcasting setup I'd have issues too I believe with light baits.. especially if I were trying to cast far from shore.

If your baitcaster reel is lower quality (like mine) then that plays a part as well, I am going to find a good Black Friday deal on something that is regularly in the 100 dollar range.

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16 minutes ago, freelancer27 said:

@BrackishBassin I feel your pain! I am doing most of my fishing from the bank as well!

My advice: do not give up! Weightless plastics are better thrown on a spinning gear, but since you have that combo already covered I would rather look into the next baitcaster combo. Try to think long term here. What I mean with this is: try to make sure that you buy technique specific combos and try to avoid buying similar combos.

A little mistake that I did and I had to learn from.

If I was you I would go for a MH, 7'3'' to 7'5'' with a fast to extra fast taper (lure weight 3/8-1oz or similar). Get something like a Curado I or a Lew's Custom Speed Spool MSB or Daiwa Zillion SV TW (more expensive). That should allow you to pitch weighted plastics and jigs and also a weighted carolina rig. 

That combo should also be good to do some punching with.

I thought as well that Spinning Gear is 'better' than a Baitcaster. But especially when you want to punch (to a target) a baitcaster combo can not be beat IMO.

Cheers!

Thanks for the advice, but I think I need something in a med action and shorter rather than longer. Like I said, there's lots of trees and brush. With a 7' 3", I'd be in the trees all day. I've got a med heavy now and it's too stiff to load up when casting plastics.

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38 minutes ago, bchase44 said:

50lb braid should be around 12lb mono diameter.  On my MH baitcasting setup I'd have issues too I believe with light baits.. especially if I were trying to cast far from shore.

If your baitcaster reel is lower quality (like mine) then that plays a part as well, I am going to find a good Black Friday deal on something that is regularly in the 100 dollar range.

Yeah, I was worried about that when I spooled it up. Probably should have gone with 30 lb. Oh well. I've got a frogging/punching set up now, in case I ever make it out on a boat again.

It's a Black Max combo I picked up for a steal ($29). Works great considering what I paid for it, but you're right. Probably need to upgrade, if I want something that's a little more reliable and versatile.

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27 minutes ago, BrackishBassin said:

Thanks for the advice, but I think I need something in a med action and shorter rather than longer. Like I said, there's lots of trees and brush. With a 7' 3", I'd be in the trees all day. I've got a med heavy now and it's too stiff to load up when casting plastics.

Be aware that you still need to set the hook with plastics ;)

Maybe consider something like this: G. Loomis E6X Casting Rod 6'8" Medium 802 JWR  I use it for plastics and jerkbaits.

 

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Can I assume when you say your lake is heavily wooded, you are talking about along the shore rather than what is in the water?  If that is the case then my personal opinion is stick with spinning.  In that scenario the only way to cast with a baitcast reel is to flip or pitch.  At least it is for me.  Sure there is the occasional spot with enough room to make a cast with a baitcast outfit, but I'd be missing a lot of spots that I wouldn't have to miss if carrying a spinning rod.

I'd like to see how these guys are casting when surrounded by trees and bushes.  I need a lot more room when using a baitcasting setup.  I have to admit that I try to avoid those places with baitcast gear.  I've yet to try casting a baitcast rod like I would a spinning rod.  Maybe it could be done, but I think you would need a sophisticated thumb.  I also think if I were to try this with a baitcaster, I'd want to be using a rod with a tip that loads easily because my casting stroke would be very abbreviated and most likely very jerky.  The soft tip would help in both cases.

I think you are on the right track picking a Medium power rod if you want to pursue the baitcast route.  I do not consider your question to be the typical case of "Which is better, a baitcast or spinning rod?"  You have a specific set of circumstances where I think spinning is definitely the way to go.  This from a guy whose baitcast gear outnumbers his spinning gear by about a 9 to 1 ratio, and who seldom uses a spinning rod even when he knows it would be the better option.

Also I consider light lures on a baitcast reel to require more than the average ability.  By light I mean less than 1/4 oz.  Some old timers have no problem with 1/8 oz. on a MH rod using 15# line.  I ain't one of them.  Old, yes...just not a long time baitcast user.  :D  I have several outfits that will cast a 3/16 oz. Shad Rap, but it took me time and practice to get that low.  I definitely need room to swing with these lures.  A recent purchase has allowed me to get to 1/8 oz.  Weight like this isn't normally the fare for a typical baitcast reel.  The reel should be designed for this type lures, and normally costs quite a bit.

Lucky for us a used Pixy has come way down in price the last couple of years.  I would suggest one to go with that Medium rod.

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14 minutes ago, new2BC4bass said:

Can I assume when you say your lake is heavily wooded, you are talking about along the shore rather than what is in the water?  If that is the case then my personal opinion is stick with spinning.  In that scenario the only way to cast with a baitcast reel is to flip or pitch.  At least it is for me.  Sure there is the occasional spot with enough room to make a cast with a baitcast outfit, but I'd be missing a lot of spots that I wouldn't have to miss if carrying a spinning rod.

I'd like to see how these guys are casting when surrounded by trees and bushes.  I need a lot more room when using a baitcasting setup.  I have to admit that I try to avoid those places with baitcast gear.  I've yet to try casting a baitcast rod like I would a spinning rod.  Maybe it could be done, but I think you would need a sophisticated thumb.  I also think if I were to try this with a baitcaster, I'd want to be using a rod with a tip that loads easily because my casting stroke would be very abbreviated and most likely very jerky.  The soft tip would help in both cases.

I think you are on the right track picking a Medium power rod if you want to pursue the baitcast route.  I do not consider your question to be the typical case of "Which is better, a baitcast or spinning rod?"  You have a specific set of circumstances where I think spinning is definitely the way to go.  This from a guy whose baitcast gear outnumbers his spinning gear by about a 9 to 1 ratio, and who seldom uses a spinning rod even when he knows it would be the better option.

Also I consider light lures on a baitcast reel to require more than the average ability.  By light I mean less than 1/4 oz.  Some old timers have no problem with 1/8 oz. on a MH rod using 15# line.  I ain't one of them.  Old, yes...just not a long time baitcast user.  :D  I have several outfits that will cast a 3/16 oz. Shad Rap, but it took me time and practice to get that low.  I definitely need room to swing with these lures.  A recent purchase has allowed me to get to 1/8 oz.  Weight like this isn't normally the fare for a typical baitcast reel.  The reel should be designed for this type lures, and normally costs quite a bit.

Lucky for us a used Pixy has come way down in price the last couple of years.  I would suggest one to go with that Medium rod.

I'll check out the Pixy. Thanks!

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Firstly you need the right rod. Something around 6'8 - 6'9, soft tip that will load with small baits, but it should also have some backbone in the lower section. 

You also need a reel with a strong shallow ish spool, but it needs to have decent line capacity. The Alphas SV is priced nicely and will hold plenty of line up to 12 lb test. 

If you know what lies below the surface in the area you fish, learn to become efficient with a casting reel. Target casting and the ability to stop the spool on a dime with your thumb rather than grabbing the spinning reel spool or line wins the day imo. Again, the Alphas SV is about as user friendly as it gets and you'll have it down in no time flat. 

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New2bc4 bass is right, pitching might be the way to go in your case or learn how to do underhand cast. Now you rod and reel ( abu max combo) might not be suitable for light plastic but you can do weghted texas rig in those lily pad where you might be surpise with some big bass in there. 

If you cannot exchange your right now, I recommend to learn how to cast in tight space with whatever you have before checking out new reel.

 

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9 hours ago, freelancer27 said:

I thought as well that Spinning Gear is 'better' than a Baitcaster. But especially when you want to punch (to a target) a baitcaster combo can not be beat IMO.
 

You can punch,flip,etc with spinning gear, contrary to what many believe.Its all personal preference in the end,both spinning and baitcaster setups get the job done well in bass fishing. I tend to favor spinning gear and I often cast in places most experienced bass fisherman are afraid to cast in and do it with spinning gear.Places most people get their lures stuck in (under trees,under docks, thick lily pads,various types of man made structure,etc)

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2 hours ago, soflabasser said:

You can punch,flip,etc with spinning gear, contrary to what many believe.Its all personal preference in the end,both spinning and baitcaster setups get the job done well in bass fishing. I tend to favor spinning gear and I often cast in places most experienced bass fisherman are afraid to cast in and do it with spinning gear.Places most people get their lures stuck in (under trees,under docks, thick lily pads,various types of man made structure,etc)

Fair enough. I guess it comes down to personal preference. I personally favor a baitcaster combo for such applications. BY A LOT. 
 

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20161120_162543.jpgBank fishing with a bait caster...rocks galore...**** loads of stand ups...it's all about what you're comfortable with and confident in...

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3 hours ago, MikeWright said:

20161120_162543.jpgBank fishing with a bait caster...rocks galore...**** loads of stand ups...it's all about what you're comfortable with and confident in...

Also I use a 6'4" Ugly Stik GX2, 12 lb flouro, with that 50 dollar baitcaster lews reel from walmart...just gotta get out there and keep practicing and fish do the mojo...tight lines 

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