Park Falls, WI – A ¾-oz. bucktail spinner was the prototypical lure employed throughout the early decades of musky fishing. In the years since, however, musky terminal tackle has become increasingly diverse and highly specialized. As lure manufacturers cranked out the big, bigger and gigantic baits demanded by musky anglers, St. Croix Rod eagerly owned the mission of designing and selling the equally specialized rods engineered and built to effectively fish every one of them.
Legendary musky angler and longtime St. Croix pro, Joe Bucher, has not only witnessed the evolution of musky fishing, like St. Croix, he has directly influenced it. “Today’s musky angler is diverse and constantly evolving,” says Bucher, who believes strongly that much of what defines success in musky fishing depends heavily on efficiency. “Staying efficient while hunting muskies today requires a complete selection of rods designed to effectively fish lures between one and 16 ounces, which is an incredible range. Now we’re seeing the pendulum swing back towards smaller baits for a bunch of really good reasons.”
Fellow St. Croix pro, Jeremy Smith of Lindner’s Angling Edge, agrees. A self-described small-river musky nut, Smith espouses the results-oriented benefits of the full spectrum of smaller baits during early and late-season cold-water conditions, as well as whenever and wherever muskies receive reduced fishing pressure. “Throwing smaller baits helps any angler to stay in the game longer by decreasing angler fatigue and maintaining the focus and concentration it takes to convert on any given cast," Smith says. "Those critical benefits aside, smaller baits are also better options for the precision target casting that’s often required on small waters.” Smaller baits are also a great option for throwback applications when fish have followed—and ultimately refused—a larger bait.
The angler’s dilemma is that small baits don’t automatically equate to small fish, so rods that make presenting downsized baits more efficient must still be capable of hooking, fighting and landing monster muskies. St. Croix’s new Legend Tournament Musky “Downsizers” consist of three unique musky models, purpose-built for fishing smaller bucktails, topwaters, crankbaits, jerkbaits, jigs and gliders with maximum efficiency.
St. Croix Legend Tournament Musky “Downsizer” Rod Models
- LMD710MF / 7’10”, Medium Power, Fast Action, 1-pc (Twitchstick)
- LMD86MLF / 8’6”, Medium-Light Power, Fast Action, 1-pc (Lil' Dawg)
- LMD90MLF / 9’0”, Medium-Light Power, Fast Action, 1-pc (Bantam Bait)
St. Croix Legend Tournament Musky “Downsizer” Rod Features
- Integrated Poly Curve® (IPC®) mandrel technology.
- Advanced Reinforcing Technology™ (ART™).
- High-modulus/high-strain SCIV graphite with FRS for unparalleled strength and durability.
- Fuji® K-Series tangle-free guides with Alconite rings and Corrosion Control™ (CC™) matte finish frames.
- Fuji® LG tangle-free top with Alconite ring and Corrosion Control™ (CC™) matte finish frames.
- Fuji® PLS-SD deluxe reel seat with frosted silver hood.
- Split-grip handle with super-grade cork.
- Machined-aluminum wind check and trim pieces.
- Kigan hook-keeper.
- Two coats of Flex-Coat slow cure finish.
- 15-year transferable warranty backed by St. Croix Superstar Service.
- Technique-specific musky series features unrivaled technology and performance.
- Designed and handcrafted in Park Falls, U.S.A.
St. Croix Promotion Manager and in-house musky nut, Rich Belanger, talks about the balanced performance characteristics of these three carefully engineered rods. “The Medium and Medium-Light power ratings are key to loading and casting with the smaller, lighter lures these rods were designed for. And while that seemingly light power might concern some, fast tapers and generous lengths provide rapid access to that power during the hookset; they really are the perfect tools for presenting downsized baits with the guts to hook, fight and land even the biggest fish.”
New St. Croix Legend Tournament Musky Downsizer rods will be available through established St. Croix retailers in August 2018 at a retail price of $350-$370. Learn more atstcroixrods.com.