St. Croix just released its Tundra Series rods at the 2021 ICAST. They say the exciting new series is a culmination of ice-centric features and technologies wrapped in an extremely durable package at a retail-price range of $100 to $130.
Crappie Basics – St. Croix Targets Hard-Water Anglers
In northern climates long rods and long casts are giving way to hardened surfaces and vertical presentations with short sticks as impassioned anglers search for crappie through the ice.
Our friends at the National Professional Anglers Association (NPPA) say technique-specific custom ice rods like St. Croix’s hyper-performance Custom Ice Series have increased the ice-IQ of anglers across the Ice Belt.
Fishing guide Rob Manthei of Wisconsin enjoys chasing schooling crappies which congregate in basins come first ice and often remain there throughout much of the rest of the season. Schools of moving fish can require additional drilling and searching, making basin crappies a cat-and-mouse game until you settle over the group of fish. He says once found, teasing fish into biting can be the most important part of the equation. Electronics are key, and so is being able to get down to marked fish before they disappear.
“It’s fun to settle in over the top of a big school of fish and figure out what trips their trigger,” Manthei says. “So often for us, that’s a 1/16-ounce spoon. It offers them some finesse and smaller profile, yet also provides flash and the ability to fish down to the crappies fast.”
Hi-vis orange tips on select St. Croix Tundra rods help anglers detect strikes from light-biting panfish like crappies, making the entire process of visual bite-detection that much easier.
“I really like the models with a soft, extra fast tip. If they breathe on it, you’ll see it; there’s just no need for a spring bobber on these light power, extra-fast glass rods,” says Manthei. “That’s true when they just thump it and the rod tip drops, and also when they rise up and hit it, which often makes the rod tip lift in the process.”