Wind fishing - are we missing a trick?
And no, it's not a direct reference to some secret technique that will enable us to overcome these rather interesting winter conditions we have been getting - although it would be handy - 3lb jig heads anyone? No, I am talking about this wind fishing stuff from Japan. Initially I thought it was "wind" as in "gust", but it's actually "wind' as in turn the reel handle. Check the video out below and you will see that it seems to be about relatively fast jigging with soft plastics and I think also various metals, and I see no reason why stuff like this would not work for say bass and pollack in the right kind of areas.
I am sure there is a whole heap to "wind fishing", but it doesn't look like anything massively complicated. I bet plenty of angers fish variations on these methods anyway. What is actually interesting me at the moment (cabin fever) is the rods that the Japanese lure anglers are using to fish these techniques, in that I have a growing feeling some of these specialist Wind rods might be applicable to how many European lure anglers like their lure rods to be...............
When I was kindly sent that very impressive 9' Major Craft Skyroad rod to have a look at last year (see my review here), I then went hunting around online to see what other rods might be within the range - and I saw a couple of these 8'3'' "Wind" rods rated around 7-21g and 9-28g. I asked what they were all about, I got some answers, and I asked if I might see one simply to see what it was all about. What really pricked my interest was some of the feedback coming back along the lines of these wind rods are generally very light with a faster action than your more typical Japanese (sea) bass rods (if there really is such a thing). Lure fishing with some of these Japanese rods makes increasing amount of sense to me, but I do appreciate that more lure anglers want to drop down the casting weight scale to say sub-30g rod but at the same time do not want to give up that almost French kind of rod action (if there really is such a thing - sensing a pattern here?).
So might these wind rods be worth thinking about? Well one of these 8'3'' Major Craft Skyroad wind rods turned up the other day, the SKR-832M/W - described as having a Regular/Fast action with a roughly 7-21g rating. With this lovely weather we have been getting I have only had a few chucks with the rod so far, but already I would describe it as Lightening Fast and potentially frigging lovely for all manner of lures. When I have had a chance to fish with the rod for a bit I will do a proper review, but already this rod has got me interested in how I think it might appeal to plenty of anglers, and bear in mind that there is a heavier version around 9-28g which I imagine is a real powerhouse. I don't like trying to compare fishing rods, but I can't help thinking "lighter weight, lighter rated (cheaper) Tenryu Injection" with regards to this Major Craft rod. I also see that the Lure Heaven bods are importing an 8'9'' 15-35g Palms Wind rod. I also noticed on Matt Jones' blog from Japan the other day (check here) that Graphiteleader are bringing out some Wind rods later this year, including a 9' 10-28g Tiro version which has already got me dreaming. I haven't even seen it and already I'm talking myself into how I really need one.
Do we need rods like this for what we do? Well it doesn't matter really. One could argue that you need this or you need that, and some anglers say so and so sort of rod works best for so and so lures, but ever since I confused the hell out of my head a few years back, I have given up worrying what rod is meant to be for what and instead I just concentrate on what I like using. Is a very fast but fairly light rated rod the way to go for the sort of lures we use? Well if it works for you then it is, and don't let anybody tell you otherwise.
This Major Craft Wind rod feels incredible, and yes, I suppose I do like a fairly fast action, although I categorically do not want a lure rod that is too stiff and heavy and designed to fish much larger lures - because where I fish does not warrant it. There is actually a bit of merit for me having a lure rod rated up to around 21g, especially considering that for large parts of the year I am just not fishing with much more than about say 18g, and increasingly it's soft plastics at fairly close quarters anyway. I see no reason why this particular Major Craft rod would not work well for wrassing with plastics as well, and if the weather ever sods off I will be giving it a go.
Look, it's nothing remotely revolutionary, rather it's a case of me getting to grips more and more with some of the lure fishing techniques and tackle over in Japan, and then trying to filter the stuff that I think might work for me and where I tend to lure fish (and I hope for some of you). I am increasingly fascinated with a lot of the Japanese lure fishing, and I would ask but why not when there is so much we seem to share with similar fish species, habitats and techniques. OK, so the language can be a problem, but give it time and it's amazing what you can learn. Should I be looking at a few Wind rods for "our" lure fishing? Well why not? If they end up working well then that's great, and if they don't then so what? Nothing ventured, nothing gained and why sit still when there is so much interesting stuff out there to find out about? Helps with the old cabin fever as well..........