I should start this interview with a disclaimer. Dock Talk 365 is not sponsored by Ontario’s Carrot Stix in anyway. In fact, I personally don’t even own a Carrot Stix rod. I chose to do this interview with Carrot Stix pro staff Chris Wetzel because I have always been intrigued by their rod lineup. I also knew the discussion on rod choice with Chris would help all of us regardless of brand of rod in figuring out the best rod and reel combos for various types of fishing. So thank you to Chris for taking the time to do this with us. As you will see, this interview is filled with great advice for rod selection strategy and tips.
What do you love about representing Carrot Stix?
I’ve been with Carrot Stix for one year now. What I like about representing this company is the quality and craftsmanship they put behind the brand and how they look after their pro staff.
Ok, lets start breaking down your rod and reel choices. Summertime is coming and that means slop and frog fishing for us. What rod and reel are you using for your frog fishing?
The rod I’m using is the Wild Wild Black 7’6 Heavy Fast tip by Carrot Stix, with the Carrot Stix dual speed 6.3:1 casting reel. I spool it with 50lb braid. The Frog of my choice is the Lunkerhunt Lunker Frog. This frog is great for thick cover and open water situations.
This set up is ideal for frog fishing because the 7’6 give me casting distance with maximum backbone. The 6.3:1 casting reel give me enough cranking power to get those bass out of the cover quickly.
Now what if you are punching heavy grass with jigs. How do your choices differ from your frog fishing?
The rod of my choice for punching heavy grass would be a Wild Wild Black 7’0 Heavy Fast tip, spooled with 50lb braid. I use the shorter rod because I’m not looking for distance, I’m looking more for accuracy. I don’t want that jig too far away for me while I’m working it.
More and more Northern anglers are fishing swimbaits. What rod and reel are you using for your swimbait fishing?
Unfortunately I don’t use swimbaits very often, but if I was going to use a rod it would be similar to my frog rod a 7’6 heavy Wild Wild Black with 50lb Braid.
I noticed that you will throw Senko type baits on spinning gear. What is your favorite spinning setup for this style of fishing?
I like to throw the Lunkerhunt Lunker stick on a 6’7 Medium Heavy Wild Wild Orange rod. The reel of choice is the 2500 series spinning reel, spooled with 30lb braid line. This set up is very effective for skipping under docks and throwing small crankbaits. There’s enough of a soft tip for easy control and enough backbone to haul the fish out of tight places.
How about for your summer cranking? What are your favorite Carrot Stix for spending a day cranking?
My favourite rod for cranking is the 7’0 Wild Wild Black Medium Moderate Fast tip casting rod with the Carrot Stix duel speed casting reel. I spool it with 10lb mono which give me the maximum ability of power from the rod, with the right amount of hook set power, so you don’t rip those trebles hooks out of the fishes mouth.
I also use a 6’7 Medium Moderate Fast tip rod for topwater and jerkbait fishing. I like the shorter rod for this cause I give me more control over the bait.
Moving away from largemouth and smallmouth, you also enjoy catching Crappies. What is your Crappie rig?
This past weekend it was my pleasure to be able to use the new Carrot Stix Orange Lite panfish rod. Carrot Stix makes there rods tighter and more responsive, they didn’t cut corners here. This rod is really sensitive to the lightest of bites, yet has the power to control the fish out of the most troublesome cover. I rig it with a 1000 series reel, spooled with 4lb test line. I tip it off with 3/16 jighead and the Lunkerhunt Fishbone or the Lunkerhunt Waterbug Bait.
If someone is on a limited budget but wants to have quality tackle, or a bank or small boat fisherman that can’t have a rod box of 10 or more setups, what are Carrot Stix’s most versatile setups?
The best most versatile spinning rod and reel set up would be the Wild Wild Orange 6’7 Medium Heavy Fast tip rod with a 2500 series reel.
The most versatile casting rod and reel setup would be the Wild Wild Black 6’7 Medium Moderate Fast tip with the 6.3:1 dual speed casting reel.
I pick these rods because they are the most general rod and reel setup for all situations and are very affordable.
Who are your other sponsors?
I’ve been sponsored with Lunkerhunt premium fishing lures of six years now. What I like about there products is that they are always innovating new baits and staying two steps ahead of there competitors.
Again, thank you Chris. This breakdown of rod choice is certainly helpful to anyone considering their next Carrot Stix outfit as well as others who may be thinking in more general terms. Though I have to say after this interview, a Carrot Stix may just need to be a new purchase in my near future.