If you were to have three rods to cover all fishing situations which three would you choose?

A question from a reader

It really depends on your field and the tactics you want to play.

Let me first share with you what I have experienced in the course of my development in SPJ.

I fish around 100m mainly. Range is from 70m to 200m.
I started with 603-3 and 603-6. It seemed to me that they are the best combination to cover all the conditions and slow pitch tactics around 100m. Then I got High Pitch Jerker 600. It was a great addition for tougher conditions (more currents or more depth). Slow pitch with 300g or heavier jigs. It also applies high pitch jigging with 260g or lighter jigs, mostly under 120m.

Then I started exploring 150m to 200m, and I felt the need for a high pitch rod and purchased High Pitch Jerker 504. High pithing 300g and 350g jigs around that depths.

Next I added 603-4. Right away I realized that I had missed this rod all this time. It really expanded my slow pitch tactics. It feels right the most when I want to slow pitch around 100m with 180g to 260g jigs. Now my general rod usage for slow pitch is like this, 50% 603-4, 20% 603-6, 20% 603-3, 10% 600.
Then I installed long fall techniques into my recipe with Beat Longfall Expert 702-2. I wanted a longfall rod to target demersal fish in shallow waters, around 70m.

Note that I am on boats with spanker sails with which the captain controls the drift to keep me vertical. If you are not on this kind of boat, it’s harder to stay vertical and the water resistance is bigger, and 600 will help you a lot with heavy jigs around 100m.

Water resistance varies by the currents, the depth, your line, the place, the time of the day (tide), and how vertical you are. You need to build up your senses to judge how heavy the water is at the time. What action tones (soft / medium / strong) is your rod with what jig weight? That is the most critical point that SPJ anglers have to pay attention to.

If you are free-drifting and geting the first rod, I recommend to get a Power 4 rod (Slow Jerker 603-4 equivalent) and explore 50m to 80m, with PE2.0 and 150g to 250g jigs. If you feel the water is light, you can explore the deeper waters with the same tackle. If you feel the water is too heavy, just drop your SPJ tackle and do other games with a spinning tackle. If it’s shallow, tungsten jig is a good play. If it’s a little deep, Ebing is a good bet.

>> micro jigging with tungsten jig

>> Ebing, plastic lure for big game

Good luck!