Weapons of Cast Destruction
By Phillip Gentry
In the world of catfishing, there’s a certain level of performance that’s demanded when it comes to catfishing rods. The question is “Will the rod hold up with a truly massive fish, even one weighing over 100 pounds, at the end of the line?”
B’n’M Fishing started its line of top-quality catfishing rods in 2012 with the introduction of the Silver Cat series. Right off the bat, the rod was a winner with plenty of room to grow. Fast forward to 2023. With over 10 years of testing and development under our belts, B’n’M produces the most dynamic catfish exclusive rods on the market. Over the years B’n’M rods have landed countless fish over 100 pounds. However, maybe the ultimate test of strength, durability and endurance of a catfish rod isn’t measured by just catfish.
Across the southeastern coastal states of the country, several states offer recreational alligator harvest seasons. Several methods are used to target alligators, but one of the most common, and effective, methods for capturing these Jurassic aquatic lizards is snag-hooking and fighting them with rod and reel.
Snag hooking of alligators is done by stalking the animals on the surface and trying to get close enough to cast a weighted treble hook across it.
In the recreational harvest of alligators, the use of baited hooks is typically not allowed, so hunters stalk the animals from boats. Where legal, spotting alligators is done at night by shining high beam spotlights across an expanse of water where gators are known to lurk. Because these animals hunt with only their eyes and nostrils above the water, their eyes shine in the glare of the lights. Once the animal is spotted, hunters slowly stalk to within casting range.
Judging the size of the entire alligator is difficult with the animal mostly submerged, fortunately one incredibly accurate way to do so is by judging the distance between the eyes and nostrils. Each inch between the nose and eyes equals one foot in overall length.
Rods paired with spinning or baitcasting reels spooled with 60 – 100-pound test braided line work best with snagging hooks. Commercially made hooks are available or hunters can use 10/0 to 12/0 high strength treble hooks and either wire 2 – 4 oz wights to the gap under the hook or mold weight to the shank.
Once the alligator has been worn down and brought to the side of the boat, a final securing line should be attached before dispatching the animal.
Gator hunters have several choices of B’n’M rods to choose from when snagging alligators. This list includes the Silver Cat Magnum, the ProStaff Bumping rod, the Silver Cat Elite and the Silver Cat Heavy.
The blend of strength and sensitivity manufactured in each B’n’M rod allows the angler the precision to cast accurately and the strength and durability to both get a good hook set into the gator’s tough hide and ride out the powerful runs alligators make when hooked, eventually tiring the animal out.
In the case of extremely large gators weighing 500 pounds or more, it’s not uncommon to use multiple rods to snag the animal and wear it down.
Confidence in your tackle is knowing it’s more than up to the task at hand.
After an intense fight, bringing the animal boatside is usually followed by snaring the head or tail of the beast with ½ inch nylon rope or a wire snare. Other methods include large grappling hooks, gaffs, or harpoons to secure the final line to the animal before it is dispatched with a large caliber handgun or bang stick.
Then the choice is either hoisting the gator aboard the boat or towing it back to the landing for takeout.
While catfishing was and will always be the ultimate use of B’n’M’s lineup of catfishing rods and tackle, there’s nothing like setting the hook on a potential tournament-winning sized catfish or personal best fish knowing the same rod you’re relying on now has bested bigger and meaner quarry.
Wherever fishing takes you, B’n’M has been there. Check out our complete lineup of fishing rods and tackle at bnmpoles.com before your next adventure.
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