Jan 26, 2008 at 6:46 pm #1226953
What is the lightest fishing kit that you have come up with (spinning or fly)?
Here is my current spinning kit:
Bass Pro Shops MicroLite Pack Rod: 6.13oz
BPL UL Rod Case: 5.1oz
Bass Pro Shops MicroLite Reel: 6.27oz
Cabela's Soft Reel Case: 2.75oz
6 Lures (Panther Martin): .84oz
UL Tackle Box: 1.48oz
Any ideas for a lighter kit?Jan 26, 2008 at 7:16 pm #1417845
i have a pflueger microspin reel – 6oz with 4lb test spooled. there are lighter reels by a little (i think around 4.75oz is lightest i've heard of), but they are more pricey – this one was around $22 on sale.
i use 2 different rods depending on what i'm expecting – a 4 piece eagle claw fiberglass rod (6.5 ft) called "pack it" that weighs 4.25oz / or a 5 piece shakespeare "excursion" 4.5 ft rod that weighs only 2.75oz. the eagle claw is actually nice action/feeling for me & i've caught fish over 4lbs on it comfortably, but the light action tip makes even tiny brookies and goldens feel lively. the shakespeare rod was around $12 and the eagle claw around $20 if i remember right.
i sometimes use the cheapo plastic rod tubes that came with them, but more often i actually just pack them without a tube. likewise, i go without a reel case of any kind. btw – these tubes are very light: the small one is 1.75oz and the larger one 3oz, but i haven't cut it back yet (there is about 3" extra space – i may also make a lighter cap & butt for this one).
i use small, round plastic container (like they sell on this website) for my tackle box – it weighs like .3oz or so
tackle varies depending on what i'm expecting, but usually a couple spinners, a couple jigs, a few flies & a small casting bubble or two. all together maybe 2-3 oz. most of the time.
i think my entire fishing setup when i went on jmt last year was in the 11 ounce and change ballpark (i took the smaller rod)Jan 26, 2008 at 7:39 pm #1417847
I will look into those tackle holders. Thanks for posting your kit, I always appreciate the opportunity to see what other people are carrying.
Where did you fish on the JMT? Any recommendations.
Last summer, I hiked part of the JMT starting from Lake Edison (around Silver Pass) and went north. We caught some nice fish along the way.Jan 26, 2008 at 8:08 pm #1417849
@fperkinsLocale: North East
My Shimano AX SULA reel is 5.5 ounces and Cabella 6'telescopic rod is only 2.8 ounces with .7 ounces of the handle trimmed off.
The Cabella rod I believe is only 20 bucks and can shave 3-4 ounces off of your kit. Search for the forums for my own research on this same topic.
[Sure would be nice to have a sticky fishing topic or Wiki]Jan 26, 2008 at 8:11 pm #1417850
Aaron SorensenBPL Member
@awsorensenLocale: South of Forester Pass
I would say Noodleing would be the lightest.Jan 26, 2008 at 8:17 pm #1417853
but loved the fishing in lyle fork – one of my favorite all time places to fish
i was really looking forward to fish creek, bear creek, mono creek and the san joaquin – maybe next year i'll pick up where i left off
btw bubb's creek is another of my all time favorite places to fish, though mostly not on JMT (JMT crosses it near Forrester Pass)
i used to use telescoping rods but they drove me crazy with breaking or just untelescoping or twisting on me
i really like the eagle claw rod – it has a lot of fishing on it & seldom acts up on me :)Jan 26, 2008 at 8:24 pm #1417856
my father used to be quite adept at this in creeks with brook trout (he learned on brown trout growing up in post depression era in nevada city/grass valley). apparently, rainbows are more sensitive & much harder.
i've done it once – tried a few other times. i usually don't have the patience.
i did have the fortune one time of being on a small raft with an otter swimming around me, watching with curiosity as i attempted to get sleepy trout to bite in bull run reservoir, nevada. suddenly, the otter did a sort of seaworld porpoise over the side of the raft and plopped a 13" trout into the boat!
so noodleing maybe, if you can't get an otter to assistJan 26, 2008 at 9:02 pm #1417858
That is an interesting story about your father! I had never heard of anyone noodleing for trout. However, I have seen people noodle for catfish in the MidWest (I am originally from KS–I think most catfish noodlers must be from OK:). Here is a YouTube link about some of the "interesting" participants:
I have heard that people have actually died doing this. It is actually illegal in KS.Jan 26, 2008 at 9:06 pm #1417860
but a good survival skill nonetheless
and my dad actually calls it "guddling"Jan 27, 2008 at 8:22 am #1417879
You can probably come close to cutting your entire kit in half if you really wanted to. The really obvious ones are your rod and rod case. There are a lot of really decent rods out there in the 2-3 ounce range. Take a look at fly rods – they work great with spinning reels for high lake fishing once you figure the technique out. The case could be zero if you pack it right in your pack. Even if you want a case, you can go lighter than than 5+ oz. I've used Office Depot mailing tubes with good results. Little savings could be had with a lighter reel (~2 oz.), wrapping your reel in a puffy jacket instead of bringing the reel case, using a foam Morrell-style fly box that's almost weightless.
I estimate you're pretty close to 1.5 pounds there. With just a few tweaks you could be under 1 pound. With a total overhaul you could probably get close to the 11 or 12 ounces someone else mentioned.
Regardless, it's the best weight you'll carry in my opinion. I'd rather leave just about anything behind than my fishing kit these days. There's nothing quite as relaxing as tossing flies as the sun rises on an alpine lake when it's dead-still in the middle of nowhere. Doesn't even matter if you catch something – I'm convinced you're adding years to your life at times like that!Jan 27, 2008 at 9:06 am #1417884
I agree! Fishing does make my trips that much better. I could go lighter by getting rid of ALL my fishing equipment, but fishing is (and always has been) "in my blood". There is nothing better than fishing for trout at 11000' in the Sierras! My hiking partner and I usually plan our trips around fishing.
Thanks for the tips on lowering my weight. Ditching the rod and reel cases would significantly lower my weight, so I will try that. My only problem with getting a new rod right now is that I am a Ph.D student with limited funds, so that may have to wait until I am paid more than pennies for my labor.
I am learning how to flyfish this spring, so that may present some new options.
Thanks again everyone, I appreciate the feedbackJan 27, 2008 at 9:39 am #1417888
@fperkinsLocale: North East
Could you post come recommendations for 2 oz reels? The lightest reel I could find is ~5oz
FrankJan 27, 2008 at 9:48 am #1417889
These rods are actually much better than I expected. Works out to $15 each when you buy a pair and the world doesn't come to an end if you break it! I would be too worried carrying an expensive rod into the backcountry. They have a nice soft flex that allows light tackle to be cast a long way with a bubble and they're very light action so even the little trout feel pretty fun. Barely over 2 ounces, I believe. You could carry two and be lighter than your current rod! Certainly much, much better than most sporting goods store cheap stuff.
I've been on a quest for the best telescopic rod for years. Not much out there – that's for sure. These have worked well for me. I've used their 7 1/2 spin/fly rod, too. Almost too soft, but pretty fun to play with.
Here's a great book on using fly gear with a spinning reel. Completely tailored for high-lake fishing – one of the only books out there as far as I know. It's focused on long-distance casting and I can vouch that it's pretty unbelievable when you get the right rod/reel/line/bubble combination. I've had some funny looks from longtime fisherman when I send the rocket launcher out. It's really almost funny how far the right setup can cast and it allows you fish an incredible amount of water.
Good luck!Jan 27, 2008 at 9:51 am #1417890
I meant that he could SAVE ~2ounces with a lighter reel, not find a 2 oz. reel. Should have been more clear, sorry. Like you, the lightest I've seen are in the 4-5 ounce range. I'm using 2 different ones that are between 5 and 6.5 oz. I know there are lighter ones but these have the performance I'm looking for that makes it worth the extra ounce or so.
Sorry to get you excited about a 2 ounce reel. That'd be amazing!
-CurtJan 27, 2008 at 10:09 am #1417893
@hechoendetroitLocale: South Kak
I'm also interested in an ultralight fishing setup. After a short search I found this 2.8 oz mini baitcast reel. It is mean to be mounted on a 2.0 telescoping pen rod that they sell on the same site. The package deal is 4.30 oz and $18.
They also have a 2.8oz fly reel and a 5.2oz spincast reel for the same rod.Jan 27, 2008 at 10:26 am #1417895
Nia SchmaldBPL Member
I got the spinning version of the pen rod from these guys. The reel is in MYO junk and the rod broke quickly. I went back to my cabelas telescopic rod and a decent spinning rod at 6.5 oz.Jan 27, 2008 at 11:28 am #1417898
@hechoendetroitLocale: South Kak
"I got the spinning version of the pen rod from these guys. The reel is in MYO junk and the rod broke quickly. I went back to my cabelas telescopic rod and a decent spinning rod at 6.5 oz."
—Nia, is your whole setup 6.5 or just the reel?Jan 27, 2008 at 11:41 am #1417900
Nia SchmaldBPL Member
"—Nia, is your whole setup 6.5 or just the reel?"
Just the reel. The rod is 6' and weighs 2.75 oz including the small plastic cover that goes over the eyes when the rod is collapsed.Jan 27, 2008 at 1:48 pm #1417919
Those rods look pretty nice (and affordable)–and it would definitely lighten my load! My only worry is durability. How does the rod hold up?Jan 28, 2008 at 5:58 am #1417999
They're surprisingly durable. I've babied my "main" rod and used one of these as my "beater" rod. It's never busted on me. In contrast, I've had two of Cabela's IM6 telescopic rods (one of the nicer ones our there) and on both the tips broke off. On the Pucci I've never had that problem. I now have 3 of them. One 7.5 foot spin/fly and two of the 6.5 foot spinning rods. They work just fine – and the fish don't know that it's not a $2000 trophy rod :) They only care about the last centimeter of your setup, after all.
Best thing about the telescopic – and the reason I keep trying to find them – is that you can keep it setup if you want to. This makes it super easy to just pull out and fish as you pass by water. With a 4 or 5 piece, you have to stop, put it together, string it, and tie on whatever you're using. Even though my 4 piece is a much nicer rod, I found I didn't fish as much because of this.
-CurtJan 28, 2008 at 8:30 am #1418014
Just purchased the rods off of e-bay. Thanks for the tip, I appreciate your help and your input.
Ryan LukeJan 30, 2008 at 12:35 pm #1418419
I'm going to do something outside of the normal here on the forum. I'm going to *add* a few things to your list for technique reasons. Or really I'm guess I'm going to discuss some cool potential options.
First of all I'm going to suggest you go w/ Curt's previous advice and recommend that you go w/ fly fishing. Right there you've cut out the weight of lures. For that same weight you could have handfulls of flies. Plus, I think there is nothing more enjoyable than wilderness fly fishing.
Secondly I suggest that you make at home a lanyard (necklace) of pea-cord or some other lighter weight cordage that has an a place for your hemostats and a light pair of clippers. This increases your efficiency fishing by quite a bit (especially fly fishing). Lets also add a small knife as part of the fishing kit weight, because you need it to clean fish.
In addition, I think the lightest way to go is to ditch the rod entirely and just go handline. You can buy a spool of monofilament and wrap it around anything. A small piece of wood or a pop bottle are good classic options. Maybe 5lb test? If you take a few leaders and learn a few knots you can then take both flies AND a few spoons or spinners. Also some hooks to use with small fish you catch cut up for bait. That's the lightest simplest option. No rod. No reel. Old school. Not messing around.Jan 31, 2008 at 11:24 am #1418560
David NollBPL Member
@dpnollLocale: Maroon Bells
I picked up an ultralight rod and reel from Scheels(their own brand), 6 lures, a rod case from BPL, a lure box and the total weight is 14.5 oz. That also includes 4 snap swivels and 4 non
lead sinkers.Jan 31, 2008 at 11:45 am #1418569
I will take your advice on the fly fishing recommendation. I am taking a class this spring and I already have an ultralight fly rod that I can use.
Thanks for the advice about the lanyard also. I will try that.
I do have a knife that I forgot to put on my list. It is a Kershaw Scallion that weighs 2.3 oz. I have used it to clean fish before and it works quite well.
I may eventually go without the fishing gear and use hand line, but there is just something therapeutic about casting a line into a mountain lake or stream:).
Thanks for taking the time to give me your advice!Jan 31, 2008 at 11:48 am #1418572
I will check that out.
Thank you for your help!
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