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Complete ICAST 2016

Shimano Stradic FK Spinning Reel Review
Kistler Rods Magnesium 2 Review
DUO Realis Onimasu Swimbait Review

First Look Inside Shimano's New Compact Curado


Latest Featured Articles


Pro Angler Aaron Martens and DUO Talk About the New Partnership

A Better Jig? NuTech's Lures are Designed Not to Hang Up The Stuff of Wonder, Graphene Infused G-Rods It’s all about the Journey – The Shimano Stella FI Spinning Reel
Abu Garcia Blends Flagship Status with Big Bait Aspirations

Looking Lively! Live Target's Threadfin Shad Swimbait

Is Fenwick's New Flagship Really World Class? America's Best Selling Reel?

Additional Recent Articles

Fishing Jigz with the Z Man BatwingZ Trailers
Jigs are one of my absolute favorite baits to throw. I've paired my jigs up with several types of trailers over the years, but they don't always last very long or stay on the hook very well. From a durability standpoint, the Z Man BatwingZ trailers look like they should have no problems withstanding a lot of abuse. I grabbed some new jigs and a bag of these trailers and hit the water to find out for myself!

The Ludicrous PowerRay, a Fishing Drone that Uses Sonar and 4K Video to Catch Fish
It was just a matter time before the drones conquered the seas and this CES PowerVision, a robotics company and maker of consumer drones, introduced the PowerRay submersible at CES 2017 in Las Vegas. The company boldly states that the PowerRay underwater robot brings “ground-breaking features designed to revolutionize freshwater, saltwater, or ice fishing for today’s recreational fishing enthusiasts and casual hobbyists.”
Phenix Rods Goes High End With K2
Phenix fans have been clamoring for the company to build a series of high end sticks based on their K2 blanks that are sold to the public but hadn't been available from the company as a fully built rod until about 2015. We managed to get our hands on one of these coveted sticks and here now is our look at the TX-713C K2 from Phenix Rods.
Double the Protection? Simms ProDry Gloves
With Simms when you hear the word “ProDry” then you know these garments represent the top of the line offering from the popular fishing apparel brand. Designed to pair with the company’s other premium foul weather gear garments the ProDry gloves are designed to keep you fishing contentedly in even the most adverse cold, windy, and wet conditions.
Shimano Japan's New Gateway JDM Reel
Shimano has been on a tear of late introducing new, budget friendly reels like the $99.99 Caenan and $79.99 Caius. When I first heard about the new Casitas, I confused it with the discontinued Castaic thinking this new reel was a reintroduction model of the former flipping reel. It wasn't until Zander had his USDM model out on a few trips before it clicked in my head that this was an entirely new model inserted between the Citica and Caenan.
MB Levante Part 2 : Stinger Shot
The most popular model for Megabass in spinning is their F3-610S spec - give or take an inch or two in length. Of course, throw in that infamous stinger tip and you approach the spec of their most coveted spinning rod the Hedgehog Evoluzion. One would expect that in the Levante lineup, a standard F3-610S like the former Aaron Martens Limited would be enough, wouldn't it?
Kistler's New Feel N Reel Hybrid Cranking Series
Seemingly on the hunt continuously for new and innovative materials to incorporate into their fishing rods, Kistler Custom Rods was at it again at ICAST 2016 where they introduced us to their latest "Feel and Reel" series of sticks within their KLX lineup. These new rods are built from a blank made of S2 Glass and T800 graphite.
TackleTour Autopsy: How does the Rapala Tube Scale Measure Up?
While more and more anglers are moving towards digital scales due to their accuracy and ease of use they are also prone to their own challenges and limitations, including having to rely on batteries. That is exactly where traditional handheld scales like the Rapala Tube Scale come in to play.
Abu Garcia's Ring Leader, the Villain 2
Abu Garcia has worked hard in recent years delivering stylish, high performing fishing rods at value prices. Today, we take a look at a series of rods from this manufacturer that sits near the top of their product offering. Reintroduced at ICAST 2015, Villain 2 features a blank made from 40 ton graphite all in a rod for only $199! Here's our review of the Villain 2 VC70-6.
Organized Arsenal with the KastKing Rod Rack
If you are like most anglers you probably started out with one or two rod combos and as your passion for fishing grew so did your collection. It really doesn’t take long for most anglers, especially bass fishermen, to accumulate such a large collection of rods that it starts getting hard to keep everything organized. Eposeidon’s Kastking brand tackles rod organization and storage with their aluminum rod racks...
St. Croix Ups the Travel Gear Ante with Legend Trek

If there's one little niche missing in the fishing market, it's the availability of multi-piece, higher end fishing rods for travel. Don't get me wrong, there are choices, but I've yet to find an enthusiast worthy choice in terms of quality, components, and aesthetic. I mentioned this in conversation with St. Croix's president, Paul Schluter, and he asked me if I've seen their Legend Trek series. I had not.

Light on Weight, but not on Performance, the STORMR NANO Foul Weather Gear
STORMR, the garment company that is best known for their neoprene based foul weather has expanded their offerings with new garments that are both more lightweight and packable, yet are still designed to be an effective shield from the elements. The new Nano shell jacket and pants are designed to be a lighter more affordable option for anglers...
Cranking It Up with Abu Garcia's Orra Winch
My personal go-to, low profile cranking reel over the last few years has been Abu Garcia's Revo Winch. But this reel retails for $199.99 - a price while not out of the realm of affordability is still beyond the budget of many crankbait enthusiasts. Abu recognizes this obstacle and has chosen to address it head on with their new, $99 Orra Winch - another counterpart to an established Revo classic.

Evergreen International's Light Cavalry CLCC-71H
Earlier this year, we introduced you to an Enthusiast worthy travel rod in St. Croix's Legend Trek LTC76HF. Of course, there are those who won't consider a stick, no matter how worthy, "enthusiast" grade unless it's made for the Japanese market. We were able to hunt down a multi-piece stick made by the one and only Evergreen International, so here now is a close look at their Combat Stick, Light Cavalry CLCC-71H.
Stay On Top With Storm's Arashi Top Walker
I've certainly wasted money ordering unfamiliar baits in the past only to be disappointed by their on-the-water performance. Storm's Arashi Top Walker was one of these new-to-me baits, and it was one that I was eager to put to the test. How could I not get excited about testing a surface bait?! 
No Flash, No Frills, Just Protection : S1 Series Stormsuit by Frabill
While Simms, Gill, Huk, Underarmour, Stormr, and others are making a big splash in the bass market with their high-tech fabrics and eye-catching color schemes, one company has been quietly producing rain gear for fishermen for almost eighty (80) years with little to no fanfare. Frabill's suits won't cost you an arm and a leg but they will keep them warm, dry, and comfortable. Here's our look at their F1 Series storm suit.
Hydrowave - Fact or Fiction?
Last Fall, I spent some time on the water with BASS Elite Series Pro, Jeff Kriet. It had been a tough bite all week - as it usually is when you get a bunch of media members out on the water at the same time - and that morning was none too different. I noticed Kriet had a Hydrowave unit on his boat so I asked him to turn it on to which he replied, he was just about to do that.
Fenwick's Elite Tech Entry to Our Search For One... the ETB69MH-FC
Late last year I shared a little nostalgia with a look at Fenwick's Elite Tech spinning rod, the ETB69M-MFS. A stick that turned out to be a good all purpose choice for those who prefer spinning gear to casting. Today, we take a look at that stick's counterpart in the casting side. Let's see how the ETB69MH-FC suits in our Search for One campaign.
Shimano’s Sleek Curado 70 Baitcaster - Smaller, Faster, and Better
For over two decades the Curado has been the baitcaster series that has defined Shimano’s baitcaster lineup. There may be more refined and more expensive low profile Shimano reels, and many more affordably priced options within the company’s lineup, but there are none that have found their way into the hands of so many anglers.
Gear Up With the 3D Shine Glide From Savage Gear
With their unique actions, glide baits have really caught fire in recent years and are responsible for some pretty epic days of bass fishing. While the 3D Shine Glide looks outstanding at first glance, we set out to see if it's truly worthy of taking up real estate in your tackle box!

Kistler's New Flagship ZBone LEXF Casting Rod
Once only available as a custom, made to order rod, the ZBone is now available in several stock builds. For our review, we're taking a closer look at their Search for One candidate in the LEXF-3MH-70, a seven foot (7'-0") stick built on a North Fork Composites HM Graphite blank.

Cranking It Up with Megabass's Orochi XX Swingfire
On our trip with Megabass of America back to their factory in Japan in 2013, we bore witness to the design process involving pro-staff and factory designers - their STW program. One of the items on the drawing board at that time was a cranking stick for the Orochi XX series of rods...
TackleTour Tournament Interview : Chad Pipkens
In our continuing series of interviews, we're sitting down with different pros and going through their tackle selections for each day of our tourney, one at a time. Today, we sit down with Chad Pipkens, BASS Elite Series Pro. Chad Pipkens's sponsors include Damiki Fishing, Powell Rods, Poor Boys Baits, Costa Sunglasses, Yamaha, Skeeter, Sunline, Gamakatsu, Douglas J Companies.
The Search for One Spinning Rod? Daiwa's TDS-701MXS
Earlier we saw Daiwa break the $100 price threshold in a bass rod with the TDS-701-MHXB casting rod. A stick that turned out to be a solid performer at a more than reasonable price. Today, we take a look at one of that stick's siblings, the 7' medium powered TDS-701MXS. Does Daiwa deliver the same type of performance in the spinning interpretation of this line? Let's find out.
Delivering Performance Over Features : Abu Garcia's Silver MAX
Abu Garcia's MAX line of casting reels are designed to deliver the "maximum" amount of value for more than reasonable prices. Featuring similar a similar profile to the company's other two low profile casting reel families (Orra and REVO), MAX is stripped down in refinement, but how is the performance?


Shimano's JDM-esque Zodias 172MH
Though they are a recognized leader in fishing reels, and their JDM rod offerings are highly coveted, Shimano has had to fight hard to gain recognition from enthusiasts in the North American market with their bass rods. In an attempt to rectify this situation, the manufacturer imported their JDM line, Expride, and last year, they introduced a new series of rods with an even more JDM feel - Zodias.
Topwater Action with the Live Target Sunfish
As someone who loves throwing frog-style baits, the Live Target Sunfish series of baits really caught my attention. Although these are topwater sunfish imitators, they can be used just like one of my favorite offerings—the hollow-body frog. That's a great thing! 
The Search for One: The 13 Fishing Archangel is the Very Definition of a Halo Product
With a name like “Archangel” it was pretty clear where 13 Fishing intended to position this rod series. The Archangel rods were introduced two seasons ago as the flagship rod line of the fast growing tackle company, and one of the first rods to implement the Fuji Torzite guides.
Is the Search Over? St. Croix's New Legend Elite EC70MF Casting Rod
High end tackle is what moves the needle for me. I can appreciate more budget oriented product, and of course, fish it all the time because of my job here at TackleTour, but when the opportunity to fish something high end comes around, that's when I get excited to go fishing. The subject of today's review, St. Croix's new Legend Elite, is not only super high end, but high end at an extraordinary price!

Re-Energizing Their Drive : Denali's New Lithium Mag Crank Stick
With the emergence of the L.O.U.S. (lures of unusual size) syndrome, rod manufacturers are busy cranking out sticks (pun intended) that can launch these oversized plugs over the next breakline. Today, we take a look at one such product from a manufacturer ready to break out of the pack and distinguish themselves. Introducing Denali's Lithium L945XD...

Re-Test : Megabass's F4st-69RSDti Hedgehog Evoluzion!
In 2006, I fished a rod that met up with the most unfortunate demise in the F4st-69RSDti Orochi Hedgehot Evoluzion by Megabass and documented this occurrence in the product's incomplete review...
Fulfill Your Destiny With Shimano's 2015 Metanium DC
Once the buzz around the fishing industry, Shimano's DC cast control system has been really quiet as of late. Instead, the manufacturer's newer SVS Infinity braking system has taken center stage - and rightfully so. Still, in today's age of digital everything, it's difficult not to wonder if Shimano has abandoned the system all together or of their continuing to refine it.
Gary Loomis Maintains his Edge
It's been a couple of years since we've had the chance to catch up with Edge Rods, but when we saw Gary Loomis's smiling face at the booth, we knew they must have had something good baking in the rod oven. Here's what we found out.
Fenwick Extends Elite Tech and Updates Aetos
Fenwick continues their steady and deliberate revival refining existing rod series with lighter, higher performing blanks. Last year, it was about their new top end World Class series of rods - which, by the way, are currently under review by us. This year, Fenwick turned their attention to their popular mid-level rod for some serious refinement.
Gammy Extends Their Swivel Reach
It was a relatively quiet show this year for Gamakatsu - at least on the bass side. The company continues to refine their G-Finesse series of hooks finally bringing to market a hook Shin Fukae shared with us some time ago - the Swivel Shot Worm.
Getting a Handle on Gill Marine
With their big introduction of the Vortex Hood during last year's ICAST, things were a bit more quiet and subdued in the Gill booth this year. We stopped by nonetheless to see what the company had to show.
Owner's Turn to go Beast-Mode
It can't be easy for terminal tackle companies to continually innovate and develop new product to debut each passing year at ICAST, but Owner managed to address something this year sorely needed by big bait fisherman - larger swimbait hooks!
New Smoother Braided Lines from Sunline
Having nearly exhausted what can be done with fluorocarbon material in fishing lines - at least for now - Sunline turned their attention to some new braided lines this year leveraging a new IZANAS PE material to develop two new eight (8) strand braids.











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