New Okuma Cold Water Pro Rods A Premium Solution For Copper And Wire

As the waters of Great Lakes have become cleaner and more clear, top anglers are fishing more and more copper and wire lines in order to draw strikes. Many hundreds of feet of copper line gets heavy, and is best fished on rods designed specifically for the task. Offering a premium solution for copper and wire lines, Okuma Fishing Tackle has introduced the Cold Water Pro rod series.

Cold Water Pro Rod

Premium construction includes aluminum reel seat and triangle shaped fore grips.

Cold Water Pro rods begin with a lightweight, yet extremely durable 24-Ton carbon rod blanks with moderate actions for trolling. The build then focuses on components that deliver maximum strength. The guide system features ALPS heavy duty stainless steel guide frames with Zirconium inserts for durability. The tip guide is a premium swivel roller tip to prevent tip wraps and kinks with wire line. Fully-loaded reels get heavy, so machined aluminum reel seats offer ultimate security when running and fishing. Collectively, the component set is purpose-driven for wire line fishing.

The handles are comfortable EVA. Fore grips are shaped triangular to help prevent twisting in the hand when cranking. The rubber gimbal butt cap positions the rod securely in rod holders when running and fishing, yet remains comfortable when working the rod around the body when fighting fish.

A swivel, roller tip manages wire lines better than traditional rod tips, helping to prevent kinks and tip wraps.

A swivel, roller tip manages wire lines better than traditional rod tips, helping to prevent kinks and tip wraps.

Cold Water Pro trolling rods include three, medium-heavy power models. The primary difference between the CWP-WL-802MH, CWP-WL-902MH and CWP-1002MH is rod length, being 8-, 9- and 10-feet in length, respectively. The actions are all moderate/moderate-fast and designed for 30- to 45-pound wire.

Cold Water Pro rods carry an MSRP of $189.99 and are backed by the Okuma Limited Lifetime Warranty.

Choosing a Catfish Combo

By Capt. Scott Manning
Okuma Pro / Professional Guide / Outdoor Writer
Licensed US Coast Guard Captain

Catfishing tackle has progressed a long way over the past few years.  We have access to so many well crafted products that picking a rod/reel combo can be a daunting task. Okuma Fishing Tackle has removed the guesswork with the Battle Cat Rod series accompanied with a Coldwater line counter reel.


As a professional guide who puts a lot of demand on his equipment; I can say this combo is legit. They fish better, feel better and handle the big catfish with ease whether drifting or anchor fishing.  They are not too bulky which makes them kid friendly and strong enough for any tournament or seasoned angler. They come in both casting and spinning models in 7′ 6″ and 8″ lengths.

The reels come in both right or left handed models with various sizes. I prefer monofilament fishing line; but have had success with braided line as well. An excellent choice for rod holders and/or planer board fishing techniques. My fishing gear has to be made with quality materials, tough, and user friendly.  Being a multi-fish / multi set-up combo makes these Okuma products a staple of my guide business.

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The Battle Cat rods are also sensitive for fishing livebaits, but have enough backbone to pull the big brutes out of heavy structure. With this combo you can feel if something isn’t right, so you don’t need to pull the bait every 10 minutes to check it. The more patient you are and longer your bait is in the water, the more fish you’ll catch.

I use both J-hooks and circle hooks with great success with these combos as well. I often mark fish I see on sonar on my Humminbird GPS and then move upstream and anchor off. Using the Coldwater line counter reels, I can present baits at precise distances downstream to the fish. If I’m drift fishing I can strategically place baits at different depths to target both bottom feeding and suspended catfish.

Hopefully, you will get out and try these combos. Trust me you will not be disappointed with the quailty or feel of this gear.  Always remember to let someone know where you are on the water and be safe.

Mark Romanack’s Essential Walleye Rod and Reel Combinations

For every fishing situation there is a combination of fishing rod, reel and line that’s “perfect.” In other words, for the specific application, the rod and reel combination do everything right. It’s balanced, both in the hand and with regard to power. If the technique requires sensitivity, the rod delivers. If it’s a trolling application, the rod action and reel’s features and performance enhance success.
Mark Romanack, Jigging Walleye

It’s no secret that the number one essential rod and reel for walleyes is a jig stick.

Through direct contact between members of our Product Development and Pro-Staff teams, new product releases like Dead Eye walleye fishing rods and reels, or Cold Water line counter reels approach fisheries from a broad view, then break them down into their unique characteristics and angler techniques.  What follows are technique-specific products with actions, powers, capacities and features that are constructed to excel in these environments.  Within Dead Eye walleye fishing rods, that selection now includes 30 specific rod models for everything from jigging, to trolling bottom bouncers to big board rods and “slow-death” rods.

This is great for the serious angler.  The deep availability of options allow many choices to fit personal preferences.  For the more recreational angler, however, too many options can lead to confusion, and nobody benefits from that.
For anglers that simply need a place to begin on the best footing, or any angler looking to cost-effectively increase their walleye rod and reel selection, we asked Okuma Pro-Staff member and host of Fishing 411 television, Mark Romanack, to detail his walleye fishing systems. The goal is to provide a place to begin, and a plan to effectively add depth to the selection.
Romanack detailed eight walleye rod and reel combinations, beginning with what he views as “essentials” and advancing from there.
These first three combinations are, as described, the essential, day-in day-out workhorse walleye rods and reels Romanack relies upon.

1) Dead Eye DE-S-701ML rod (7-foot for 4-10# line) matched to new Dead Eye DE-25 spinning reel and 10-pound test super braid. This essential walleye fishing rod and reel is perhaps the most universal combo an angler can own. This single set up is ideal for pitching jigs tipped with soft plastics or live bait, it’s also perfect for casting slip bobbers, casting small crankbaits, slip sinker rigging and for vertical jigging with up to 3/8-ounce jigs.

2) Dead Eye DE-C-861M-T rod (8’6″ telescopic for 6-15# line) matched to the new Cold Water 203D line counter reel, loaded with 12# test monofilament. This rod and reel combination is ideal for trolling with both standard sized and mini in-line planer boards used in combination with crankbaits, spinners or spoons. The backbone of this rod is matched perfectly to handling the resistance of planer boards and trophy sized walleye. This workhorse trolling rod can also be used for trolling lead core line and bottom bouncers. The telescopic feature of this rod allows it to store nicely in the rod locker of any fishing boat.

Cold Water Line Counter Reels

New Cold Water Line Counter reels are available in sizes 15 and up, in both right and left hand retrieve.

3) Dead Eye DE-CBR861M-T bottom bouncer rod (8’6″ telescopic for 6-20# line) matched to the Akena-250 round baitcasting reel loaded with 12# monofilament. The ultimate set up for fishing bottom bouncers and if any rod and reel combination deserves to be designated to a single presentation, it’s bottom bouncing with spinner rigs. Among walleye tournament anglers bottom bouncing with spinners is considered the “money rig” as this simple presentation produces walleye in just about every body of water in North America. The Dead Eye telescopic bottom bouncer rod stores easily in the rod locker of any fishing boat and quickly expands to provide the perfect soft tip action needed for pulling bottom bouncers ranging in size from 1/2- to 3-ounces.

Romanack calls these next three walleye fishing systems “important.”  Not essential, but very nice to have to round out your technique on different water bodies.

4) Dead Eye DE-CSD-1062M Slow Death rod (10’6″ for 8-17# line) matched with a Citrix Ci254v low profile baitcasting reel and 10-12 pound test monofilament. The Slow Death presentation is practiced with a bottom bouncer, 4′ fluorocarbon leader and a single Mustad Slow Death hook baited with half a nightcrawler. This unique presentation catches walleye when other presentations will not. The extra length and super slow action of the Slow Death rod makes this set up especially deadly. The length is important because the Slow Death presentation is normally practiced with a pair of rods positioned in rod holders on either side of the boat. Bites are detected by monitoring the soft rod tip, which loads up when a fish is hooked. The soft action also makes it especially difficult for hooked fish to escape.

Trolling planer boards.

The Dead Eye rod series offers many options for planer boards and open water trolling.

5) Dead Eye DE-CBB-701ML Big Board Rod (7′ for 10-20# line) matched with a Cold Water 203D line counter reel and 12# monofilament or 30# super braid line. Fishing with a planer board mast and ski system requires a rod and reel set up specific to that presentation. The Big Board Rod is short enough to make it easy to reach the rod tip and grab the line which is in turn placed in a line release and attached to the tether line connecting the board to the mast. Secondly, the Big Board Rod features a soft tip that enables the angler to detect hooked fish by noticing an obvious bend in the rod tip. Thirdly, the Big Board Rod has enough backbone to fight stubborn fish flawlessly. Any angler who prefers to troll using a mast system will appreciate the value of the Big Board Rod. Line counter reels like the Cold Water series are invaluable to this style of trolling. Lead lengths are varied and monitored closely. When a fish is landed using a specific lead length, the line counter reel makes it easy to duplicate a productive lead length to other rods.

6) Dead Eye DE-CAP-701M-T All Purpose Baitcasting Rod (7′ for 8-17# line) matched with a Akena-250 round baitcasting reel and 12# test monofilament or 30# test super braid. This 7′ medium action baitcasting outfit will handle a lot of walleye fishing chores including fishing bottom bouncers as a hand-held rod, fishing jigging spoons or blade baits, casting crankbaits, flat-line trolling chores and trolling applictions involving mini in-line planer boards. Because this rod is telescopic it travels well and will fit in the rod locker of any fishing boat. The All Purpose Baitcasting Rod does a lot of things well and fills a unique niche among walleye anglers.

These final two walleye combinations fill in for special situations or provide extensions to specific techniques.

7) Dead Eye DE-601MHFRT spinning rod (6′ for 8-17# line) with Dead Eye DE-25 spinning reel and 10-15# test super braid line. The six foot one piece MH action Dead Eye spinning rod is ideal for some specialized jig fishing applications including rip jigging in weed cover and vertical jigging with heavy jigs often used in deep or swift rivers like the Columbia, Detroit and St. Clair Rivers. For vertical jigging applications the 10# test super braid is the perfect line option. For rig jigging, a little heavier 15# test super braid is a little tougher and better able to tear through weed cover without abrasion issues. In both cases using a short fluorocarbon leader of 8- to10-pound test is a good option.

8) Dead Eye DE-C-701M Dead Eye Crankbait rod (7′ for 10-20# line) matched with the Citrix Ci-254v slow speed (5.4:1) baitcasting reel and 10# test fluorocarbon line. This soft action fiberglass rod is designed for casting medium sized crankbaits, but is also useful for several other presentations. This same rod is a good choice for hand holding a bottom bouncer rig while fishing off the bow of the boat with an electric motor, structure trolling lead core line set ups in rivers or along meandering bottom structure and in a pinch this rod is also a good option for trolling crankbaits or spinners with in-line planer boards.
As gear becomes more technique-specific, there will always remain a core, highly versatile set of rods and reels that have proven themselves to be the most used, most productive gear on the water.
Mark Romanack

The best results come from beginning with a core selection of balanced rod and reel combinations, then adding as angler technique and interest increases.