Gotta-See 2018 Summer Bass Fishing Gear

by Mark Melotik

HuntStand Pro Contributor MORE FROM Mark

Early summer means power fishing. Warm water sparks aggressive fish that are ready to pounce on fast-moving lures. Here’s a smattering of great new summer bass gear.

SeaguarTatsu900Seaguar Tatsu Fluorocarbon Fishing Line. Seaguar delivers an amazingly strong, yet supple, fluorocarbon line unlike any other through a superior, state-of-the-art double-structure process. It fuses two custom, 100-percent fluorocarbon resins, creating the world’s only double-structure main line. Fill your spool with virtually invisible Tatsu and fish fierce with extraordinary knot strength and castability. Available in 4, 6, 8, 10, 12, 15, 20 and 25 lb. tests, Tatsu retails for around $35 for a 200-yard spool. StCroixAvidX 900St. Croix Avid X Series Rods. The heart of these awesome rods is St. Croix’s stellar SCIII graphite blank with IPC mandrel technology. Its soul banks on the advanced micro-guide platform and efficiently comfortable handle design. Ten models ($200-$220) are available for 2018, with the introduction of the new AXS70MXF. The seven-foot, medium power, extra-fast action, one-piece model is rated for 6- to 12-pound line, and is expected to become a new all-around favorite among bass and walleye anglers. The extra-fast action delivers extreme sensitivity and fast access to the rod’s power on the hookset, making it an ideal choice for worm, jig, and dropshot applications.RapalaBXbrat 900Rapala BX Brat. This new bass-catching square bill ($10) features unique construction: A balsa inner core with an ultra-durable, armor coating of rugged copolymer. The modified flat side and “V” Cut Belly deliver hard flash, wild tracking, and kick-outs that trigger more strikes wherever your next adventure takes you.  ArashiSilentSquare 900Storm Arashi Silent Square. Looking for a lively rolling action and pronounced tail kick? So are your local bass, and this new crank delivers. This square lip design delivers increased deflection and is a perfect match for contacting structure; non-rattling performance makes for a silent approach to wary or pressured fish in shallow water. Terminator 900Terminator T-1 Original Titanium Spinnerbait. Early summer is peak spinnerbait season, and this proven Terminator ($8.55) comes in a variety of sizes and blade types, allowing you to find the perfect presentation for your favorite honey hole. Equipped with a willow blade, these spinnerbaits cruise through the water and trigger bold strikes from fish in all types of moods.ZManSpinnerbait 900Z-Man SlingBladeZ Spinnerbait. Built with a collection of subtle yet smart features, the Z-Man SlingBladeZ ($8-$9) boasts two primary talents: deep, palpable vibrations and exceptional lure balance across the full spectrum of retrieve speeds. One key to the intense vibration is the 17-7 stainless steel wire; the high-grade wire has excellent strength and resiliency and is intentionally not electroplated, giving it a muted, neutral finish that blends in rather than standing out. Double willow or tandem willow-Colorado blades are each stamped from custom dies and electroplated with a jeweler-quality finish. Debuting at the 2018 ICAST show, the Z-Man SlingBladeZ will hit tackle stores in mid-October.TerminatorBuzz 900Terminator Super Stainless Buzzbait. When bass are on buzzbaits the strikes don’t get more violent or exciting. This smart design ($7.09) rips through vegetation and rolls through structure without getting snagged, and lets you cover lots of water quickly with the right amount of flash to catch the attention of big bass. Don’t forget they’re also effective in wide-open water, especially in overcast conditions.LIVETARGETFrog 900LIVETARGET Hollow Body Frog. You love bass. Bass love frogs. The LIVETARGET Hollow Body Frog ($13.50) is available in three lengths and weights and a full spectrum of fourteen strike-provoking color patterns. No matter which size, color or species of living frogs inhabit the shorelines and emergent vegetation on your favorite lake, you’ll find this frog mimics them perfectly.ZManFinnesseTRD 900Z-Man Finesse TRD. Pick up a few packs of the original Ned Rig bait—Z-Man’s Finesse TRD—($5/8-pack) plus a few Finesse ShroomZ jigheads—and you’ll never fail to catch fish again. The little 2.75-inch stickbait doesn’t look like much, but the bass beg to differ. Widely regarded as one of the best, most foolproof fish-catching concoctions ever created, a few 8-packs of these tough ElaZtech-formulated baits can last for months. AquaVuMicroRev900Aqua-Vu micro Revolution 5.0 Underwater Camera. The micro Revolution ($350) is the most user-friendly underwater camera ever built. Complete with a 5-inch color LCD, thumb-sized underwater camera and 60-feet of cable, the micro underwater viewing system also features an integrated camera cable reel system for instantly deploying and retrieving the optics. It’s simply the fastest, most entertaining way to discover fish and other secrets lurking beneath the surface. Includes camera fins and weights for both ice and open water use, as well as a built-in lithium ion battery and battery charger. AquaVuPoleBracket 900Aqua-Vu XD Pole Camera Adaptor. Beneath the surface, things rarely match the imagination. Consider the unknown waterscape beneath a boat dock. And do you really know what’s living in that big sunken tree you’ve tried to fish? Are there crappies hiding in that cabbage patch? What sonar can’t show, Aqua-Vu can. This innovative underwater viewing company now gives anglers the ability to literally reach out and spy on fish in those difficult-to-reach locations. The new XD Pole Camera Adaptor ($30) connects Aqua-Vu optics to any threaded telescopic pole. Think of it as an underwater telescope, bringing remote fish and hard-to-reach sweet spots within visual range. RaymarineAxiomPro 900Raymarine Axiom Pro High Performance Multifunction Navigation Display. Axiom Pro is engineered for bass anglers who want it all. Available with RealVision 3D, 1kW CHIRP sonar, and Raymarine HybridTouch control, Axiom Pro (starting at $2,300) is the new standard for “all-in-one” multifunction devices. With a blazing fast quad core processor, a super bright IPS display, and the smart LightHouse OS, Axiom Pro delivers a fluid and intuitive navigation experience. Available in 9-, 12.1-, and 15.6-inch display sizes. OldTownPredatorPDL 900Old Town Predator PDL Kayak. The most-advanced pedal-powered fishing machine of its kind, the 13-foot-2-inch Old Town Predator PDL ($2,800) will get you to the spot fast, and keep you there without paddling. Forward, reverse, and loads of maneuverability and stability ensure precise boat control while hands remain free for fishing. The removable pedal drive installs in seconds and tips up instantly for shallow water docking. The revolutionary pedal drive hits an impressive 5.5 MPH with a 10.3:1 gear ratio for efficient pedaling in forward or reverse. The entire boat was overbuilt for simple boat control, toughness, ease of transport, ample gear storage, rigging, and fishability. Available in Camo, Lime Camo, Urban Camo, and Black Cherry.



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