Travelling abroad is great fun, especially for a fishing trip, but who remembers road trips as a kid? Mom & Dad loading up the car with enough stuff to last a decade, then squeezing you & your siblings in the back and if there’s any fighting, we’re all going straight home!
Sounds fun? No? Not really? Yeah, I figured, but it doesn’t need to be like that anymore, we live in the 21st century, cars have airconditioning and kids have ipads! You know what’s even better? You can get a 10′ 3 piece rod, that pulls apart and only measures in at 3’6″/107cm. That means, no more rods poking through the middle of the car, bouncing around, breaking guides, snapping tips off and getting in the way of annoying your sibling.
I’ve personally been using Hamachi rods for the past few years and absolutely love them! The Hamachi XOS GT’n’Doggie 10′ 3 piece, is my choice for beach & rock/cliff fishing like I said, pulls apart and is only 3’6/107cm, that’s easily put in the back of your car and hardly weighs over 1lb, which is insane considering the rod is available from PE 3-5 all the way up to a PE 8-12!
But I’m lucky enough to have my own boat to tow away and nothing beats a trip away with your with own boat and if you’re stuck at home this year and want something exciting to do when travelling domestically, get into Japanese jigging, I’ve very recently got into slow pitch jigging and purchased my first propper slow pitch jig rod and being the good little fanboy I am, I choose Hamachi, specifically the XOS GT’n’Doggie Slow Pitch/Fast Punch 6’0 2 piece.
If you’d like to know why I didn’t buy, Diawa, Ripple Fisher, Shimano or some other brand, excluding my subjective opinion on Hamachi, Hamachi is the only company that offers a lifetime warranty on all their rods, none of the other manufactures offers that anymore, Hamachi is the only company I know of that still has a lifetime warranty on their rods.
Enough of the sales pitch, let’s talk fishing! As someone who predominately does, bottom fishing, trolling and floater baits, trying jigging for the first time was a lot of fun, I didn’t catch anything, but it was fun having something to be actively doing, when the fish are really biting, yeah the types of fishing I normally do are great fun, but when it’s a bit slower, you do a lot of sitting & waiting and that gets boring, jigging, on the other hand, you’re doing something all the time and it’s just that little bit of something to do if you’re a bit bored of ways you normally fish like I was.
From a very beginners perspective, what are some tips for jigging I have? Make sure you use a jig in the weight range written on the rod, I was using a PE 2-4 and my rod has 2 ratings depending on the style of jigging you’re doing, hence the name, slow-pitch/fast punch, for slow pitch jigging, Hamachi says use 6-10oz/150-250g jig, for fast punch jigging, 3-5oz/90-150g jig.
I was slow pitch jigging and thought, I’ll use this 3.5oz jig because I can’t be bothered finding a heavier one. Trust me, be bothered to find or buy a heavier one, you can feel it in the rod when using too light of a jig, it wants to flex the way it’s meant to, but it can’t and it feels weird doing it. After an hour of being creeped out by my new rod, I did the one thing no man should have to do and listened to the instructions, once I located a new jig weighing 6.3oz, tied it on and threw it over the side in hopes of having another story I can bullshit to all my friends.
After a few minutes of using the correct jig weight, it went from feeling as weird as a prostate exam from an overly enthusiastic doctor, to smooth as an after-work beer, the XOS GT’n’Doggie slow pitch/fast punch is so much fun to use jigging and it uses a high tensile nano carbon blank which just gives such a smooth and natural action to my jigs. My only complaint and this is due to me being 6’6 tall, I have very big hands and wouldn’t mind a slightly bigger grip, but everyone else I’ve let use it hasn’t had a problem as their hands are not massive, it by no means makes it unusable to me and for 99.9% this won’t be an issue and i can easily fix it by wrapping some tape or something around it if I really want.
I also recommend getting a good quality jig reel, I’m using an Accurate Tern 400X, weighs 15oz/425g, I got 500-550m 30lb 8 strand braid + 10ft 50lb mono leader on mine, again the same complaint that won’t affect anyone bar giants, I wish it had a bigger knob on the handle, kinda like what they use on the ATD reels but a little wider, so that should help put in perspective how big my hands are as Accurate uses fairly large knobs, I’d also strongly advise using 8 strand braid like I am, 8 strand is so much smooth to wind on, doesn’t cut into your thumb when feeding it back and forth, ties knots easier and it’s more sensitive.
I paired the Tren 400x with the XOS GT’n’Doggie slow pitch as the rod and reel balance nicely and with the rod only weighing 7.5oz/212g the whole setup comes in just under 1.5lb/650g with line. So make sure you find a reel and rod that balance out very well, you’re going to be jigging all-day and the last thing you want is to have sore arms after 20 minutes, with a light set up like I’ve got, I have no issue fishing for hours on end.
If you’re staying home this year, but still want to go fishing somewhere new, drive there and give jigging a go, without a doubt have a look at both Hamachi for your rods and Accurate for your reels, yes they’re both expensive, but Hamachi offers cheaper jig rods, like the Zenku/Zenku JDM, Duel Nano JDM or Wicked Reef JDM, all 3 of those rods are more than capable for slow pitch jigging and have a lifetime warranty, I honestly don’t know who can beat that. Accurate, although only has a 1-year warranty on the reel I have, it’s Accurate, American made and very hard to beat at the price they sell them at.
Have a look for a freshwater post in the coming weeks and find out why the butt of my rod is yellow.