Gander Mountain Guide Series Rods
GM's spinning rods are just way too stiff, and not very sensative for walleye jigging. They're action classes are all screwed up. Like I've said before, their ML, which last time I checked was the lightest action rod you could get, is more like a M or a MH. Its like your morning coffee saying "decaf" on the label, but after a drink or two...you realize you got a double espresso. Tough to gingerly lob a minnow and an 1/8 oz leadhead with a pool cue.
Again, in MY opinion, they're just not sensative enough. If you fished heavy leadheads and fireline or some sort of superbraid, you could jig walleyes and feel a bite. To me, their rods are geared towards a casting application for pike.
Maybe they've totally changed up their linup and I'm just babbling about old stuff. But I bought my last GM spinning rod in the summer of 06, and was still disappointed. Kept the ones I bought just to have spares or for when I take the little woman out crawler dunking for cats/bass/carp/sheeps, etc. Rods are perfect for bottom fishing for hard pulling fish like the above.
And, like I've also said, their musky rods are really nice, and are very, very hard to beat for the money.
For 30-$40, darn nice rod. More fancy than you need for trolling boards, really. They've been proven up to 40+ pound fish this year, can't argue with that. Also use them for walleyes.
As I said below, there's lots of folks making really nice spinning and casting rods, but GM is not one of them. If you want a musky rod...fine. But unless they've changed something in the last 18 months, GM rods are junk IMO.
A friend of mine bought a 7'6" MH Guides series muskie rod and I felt it was pretty OK. I'm a St. Croix Avid guy, and I still liked this rod. Pretty light in weight, not too whippy, yet not too overly stiff. All in all, seems a nice muskie rod for 80 bux. Only think I don't like about the GM rods is cosmetic: they have this stupid looking silver/chrome tip that just totally does not fit the rest of the rod. I'm sure they're probably fine, but they look funny and are even kind of shaped weird. Different design than the rest of the guides on the rod.
On the action, or weight, of a muskie rod, I'd get at least a 7'6"er. The trend in muskie fishing is longer, somewhat more limber rods. Those short "pool que" rods are a thing of the past. Longer rods help you control a bait easier, are far superior in a figure 8 and the more limber rods will help you absorb the shock of a thrashing fish. I've got a 6'6" (MH or H, can't remember) Avid that I never use because its waaaay too short, and stiff.
On GM's guide series spinning rods: junk. I had one of GM's "walleye" series rods that I bought about 10 years ago and that thing was amazing. Limber where it needed to be, stiff where it needed to be and it had great sensativity. But, it got stepped on and the tip was broken off. The one I got to replace it is pure junk. The other guide series rods I have are pure junk too. GM's lightest action rod is called ML, but its more like a M or a MH in weight. Waaay too stiff, and near zero sensativity. Not sure what its intended for, but its realistically a rod that would be fine for casting #4 mepps spinners and spoons for pike.
If you're looking for a nice, affordable, sensative rod with good action, I just picked up a St. Croix 6'6" Triumph spinning rod. Seems nice so far. Its St. Croix's low end rod, and sells for 60 bones. Not even in the same category as the GM Guide Series rods for action and sensativity, but about the same price.
Good to know! I have a couple of Guide Series rods and 1 Tournament Series rod for my bass and walleye stuff, and they've been great, but I never looked into their muskie rods.
Do they have a longer butt end behind the reel seat, and the larger fore grip? The fore grip is not so important since I palm my reel, but the longer butt end is nice when working jerkbaits. Also, do they have a good variety of lengths and actions? I would definitely look into them for back-up combos or for friends that come out fishing with me. Thanks!
Workblows....definitely check out the muskie rods then since they have them in that series. The same lengths and weights I gave you will still apply, but the muskie rod will be better balanced then a bass rod is for throwing bigger and heavier lures. Believe me, that means allot when your out chuckin' muskie lures for 8 or 10 hours!!