I’m often asked which Dobyns rod to use bank bass fishing. Anglers find there are times when there is no boat access or limited time before or after work to hook up the boat. Often shore fishing is the only chance we have to catch a bass. It’s always a dilemma trying to decide which rod or rods to take. When bass fishing from shore, anglers are faced with a host of challenges. The biggest of which is the amount of tackle to carry along the banks of a favorite pond, lake, or stream. Should I carry one, two, or even three rods? Not knowing what the pattern of the day will be, an angler will want to take as many rods as possible. However, carrying several rods may be impractical if the selected body of water has access limiting cover around it or if excessive foot travel is expected.
When bass fishing, whether from shore or a boat, our rods need to be able to wear a bass down so we can land it. Wearing a bass down is accomplished as the tip and power of a rod work together applying constant pressure on the bass. Rods also need the tip action necessary for properly casting and working selected baits. With the exception of fishing small ponds, our bait choices may not be very different between angling from shore or boat
Dobyns Rods currently has five rod series to fit the needs and budget of every bass angler. With a starting price of $109, the Dobyns Fury is an excellent starter rod for any angler. Next up is Dobyns Rods micro guide series called the Savvy Micro Guide, it starts at $159. The Savvy Micro Guide series gives anglers all the benefits of micro guides in a well-balanced, sensitive, and affordable rod. Moving up is the recently introduced Sierra series. Also starting at $159, the Sierra series is being touted as the industries best rod for the money right now. The Sierra series is very sensitive because of its quality materials. The Sierra series also meets Gary Dobyns high standard of balance, allowing budget minded anglers to fill their arsenal with tournament quality equipment. Probably the most popular in the Dobyns Rods lineup is the Champion XP Series. Priced at $259, the Champion XP series is the backbone of the Dobyns Rods lineup. Offering the most variety, the Champion XP Series allows an angler to dial in a precise balance of action and power for any bass catching technique. Finally, if one desires the ultimate in sensitivity, light weight, balance, and design there is no better rod than the Champion Extreme HP series. It’s starting price is $339 and anglers quickly discover it’s worth every penny.
Each of these five series is excellent for shore angling. I cannot suggest a particular series as this is entirely angler needs-driven. I use the Champion XP series for nearly all my techniques; they are exceptionally sensitive rods with a ton of options at a fair price. When bank bass fishing, the Dobyns rod an angler should use is determined by the expected presentations. With these thoughts in mind let’s discuss which Dobyns rod to use bank bass fishing based on the number of rods being carried.
Which Dobyns rod to use bank bass fishing – ONE ROD
One particular rod in the Dobyns Rod line up is truly a one size fits all rod and won’t limit presentation possibilities. If there is only room for one rod, then it has to be the 734C. The 734C is a seven-foot-three-inch rod with a heavy power rating and a fast tip action. It’s available in all the Dobyns Rods series except the Champion Extreme HP series, in which case I’d recommend the DX 744C. The 734C or DX 744C is a “do it all” rod. From spinnerbaits, chatterbaits, and various topwater, to Texas rigged plastics and jigs the 734C will provide excellent casting abilities and bass fighting strength. While fishing with treble hook baits or light wire hook presentations like a drop shot, I would loosen the reels drag slightly to help the tip action prevent bass from pulling free or straightening of hooks.
After setting the hook on a bass, the 734C allows an angler to quickly take control of the fight and get the bass headed towards the shore. The fast action tip allows this rod to cast virtually any bait, yet provide incredible sensitivity when using bottom bouncing baits like jigs and soft plastics.
To further dial in the 734C as a one rod fits all, carry an extra reel. An additional reel with a different line type or size will increase the presentation options available with the 734C. The 734C matched with 10 or 12-pound monofilament will effectively cast any reaction type bait; spinnerbaits, crankbaits, treble hooked topwater. This set up is also exceptional for most Texas rig and lighter jig presentations. However, swap the reel, with one spooled with 50-pound braid, and now anglers are suited to fish around vegetation or wood cover with heavier jigs, Texas rigs, and even a hollow body frog. Simply put, the 734C is a masterpiece of balance, sensitivity and efficiency rolled into a single rod, and a must have. No matter which series an angler decides to use, the 734C should be their first purchase.
Which Dobyns rod to use bank bass fishing – TWO RODS
If I already have a 734C, and I’m strictly bank bass fishing, which Dobyns rod should I buy next? For me, this is just as easy as picking the 734C as a first choice. Number two on the list is the 735C. This rod is also available in all the Dobyns Rods series except the Champion Extreme HP, in which case I’d recommend the DX 745C. It’s power and tip actions ratings vary slightly across the Dobyns line up, but no matter which series, think of the 735C as a heavy cover rod. When fishing cover, grass or timber, the 735C (across all the series) gives a shore angler, the power needed to pull bass from heavy cover. The 735C also enhances presentations such as surface frogs, heavy jigs, and heavy Texas rigs with more backbone to drive heavy single hook techniques through the hard jaws of a giant bass. The 735C also provides the ability to cast heavy spinnerbaits, swimbaits and smaller umbrella rigs an angler might use from shore.
With the 734C and 735c rods, a shore angler is set for any presentation needed. Spooling the 734C with a 10 to 12-pound monofilament or Fluorocarbon line, sets it up for all reaction type baits. Then spool the 735C with a 40 to 50-pound braid and an angler is ready for jigs and Texas rig presentation, or a surface frog if the situation arises.
Which Dobyns rod to use bank bass fishing – THREE RODS
Now if a third rod is an option in bank bass fishing, then we need to look at lighter presentations. Or techniques which require the rod tip to help land bass. I’m referring to mostly treble hook bait techniques like small surface lures and crankbaits, or light line and light wire hook presentations like drop shotting. While the 734C can efficiently handle these presentations with proper drag settings and line choices, the 733C provides the tip action to help cast these lighter baits and help prevent bass from tearing hooks free or breaking light line on surges.
When fishing from shore, casting longer distances can be crucial. Limited access prevents anglers from reaching desired targets. The tip action of the 733C will load with smaller baits allowing for the extra few feet needed to reach spread out targets. The 733C is a medium heavy fast action rod across the Dobyns Rods lineup, except for the Champion Extreme Series in which case I’d recommend the 743C.
When fishing smaller ponds, it may be necessary to downsize baits to match the forage available to the bass. Food sources are often only minnows and various bugs, so small or light lures like tiny torpedoes, small spinnerbaits, or trick worms can be very effective. A 733C will cast these lures very well and provide the proper tip action to battle bass with these smaller lures. The forgiving and shock absorbing tip allows anglers to use lighter line and lighter hooks without fear of breaking the line or tearing the hooks free.
WHEN SHORTER IS BETTER
A shore angler can find themselves wanting for a shorter rod than the 7-foot 3-inches of those I’ve discussed. At times a shorter rod is necessary to manipulate baits around bank line cover and tree branches overhanging the water’s edge. Dobyns has several rods to fit this situation. The Micro Guide Savvy SSM 664C, Sierra SA 684C, Champion XP DC 684C are all six-foot versions of the four power rods. While many anglers enjoy the shorter versions when shore fishing, keep in mind anglers can achieve greater casting distances and enjoy better control over a hooked bass with a longer rod. Base rod length necessary for the task at hand on the ability to make overhand casts. If there is plenty of space when making a cast, the longer rods will be more efficient. If it’s difficult to cast without hitting objects with the rod, a shorter rod will be more effective.
ONE FINAL TIP
To save space, it might be easier to carry extra reels with various line weights or types to expand the techniques available with a single rod. Additional reels fit in tackle bags and with a quick swap, it can double the possible techniques available for a single rod. When looking through the Dobyns Rod line up, notice Gary has listed primary and secondary uses for each rod. With a line change anglers can take advantage of these multiple techniques very quickly.
Which Dobyns rod to use bank bass fishing? Even with the multiple options, it’s not complicated. Using the available budget pick a series. Then decide how many rods can reasonably be carried to the selected waters. If there is only room for one, make it the 734C or 744C. If carrying two rods is possible, add the 735C or 745C. With no space limitation, add a third rod, the 733C or 743C.
Shore fishing can be a great adventure leading to untouched waters with large hungry bass. Be prepared with a quality rod ready to handle a multitude of lures. Look to the Dobyns Rods line of rods to ensure the next trophy bass is a photographic moment and not a tall tale about the one which got away.
Visit the Ultimate Bass Forums for a lengthy discussion about which Dobyns Rods are best suited for shore bass fishing. The thread is titled “If I could only have two Dobyns Rods”
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