July 15, 2019

A Review of Rheos Floating Sunglasses

I guess I am one of the lucky ones. I have never dropped a pair of sunglasses into the water only to watch them slowly descend to the bottom. But, I have seen it happen in my boat, and it wasn't a fun sight.

The good news for those who are fearful of this and/or clumsy enough that it happens is that there floating sunglasses available. There are actually quite a few different ones on the market.

One of those brands is Rheos, who contacted me about doing a review, and I was game to try them out.

The first thing I did when I received them was to put them on, of course, but once I hit the water, I threw them overboard. They do indeed float.

So they passed the first test. But, that doesn't mean we are done here. The real test would be how they feel, perform, and look.

For the most part, they are solid and well-built sunglasses. I didn't have any issues wearing them off and on for the past two months. Plus, they are polarized meaning you can see into the water with ease. This is a must for fishing, and they do that job well.

On the looks side, they are fine. I wouldn't rate them as incredibly stylish or downright ugly. They are a useful pair of sunglasses that do the job, and they are quite lightweight actually. My wife has borrowed them more than once to go running just because of how light and comfortable they are to wear. That's a plus and is a welcomed change from the heavy glass lenses I usually wear.

When compared to my regular sunglasses that cost five times as much, these $50 shades are a bargain. They do the job, feel good when wearing them, and the lightweight feel is a nice plus.

Overall, I feel that the Rheos brand of sunglasses is a smart choice for someone looking to get a good pair of sunglasses at a reasonable price. They have quite a few different styles and colors...plus they float!

August 22, 2018

Cadence Fishing CS10 Spinning Reel Review

Over the past two months, I have been fishing some rods and reels from a company named Cadence Fishing. I had never heard of them until that point. When we think of fishing reels we usually think of the big names and those that have been around for years and years. A new company has some work to do to break into the market (and stay there) and after fishing some of their stuff...I think they just may do it.

I'm going to post several reviews in the future but wanted to start right at the top with their CS10 Spinning Reel which is their current highest priced reel that retails for $119. One of the biggest things about this brand is that they are affordable. Their direct to consumer approach leaves some room to lower costs and still be profitable and the result is better gear for you at a lower price.

Here are a few of the specs before I dig into my thoughts and performance of the reel.

  • 10 ball bearings + 1 instant anti-reverse bearing 
  • Magnesium frame 
  • Carbon composite rotor and side plate 
  • Carbon Fiber Drag 
  • Machined Aluminum Spool
If you look at those you will see they are premium features that a lot of other brands include in reels that are double the cost. Having fished many of those reels and this one, I can say that the performance is nearly identical with a much lower cost.

The reel that I own is the CS10-3000, a 3000 size reel that I have used for a variety of finesse presentations. The 3000, or 30, size works well for light braid like I use and the bigger spool is something I really like for its versatility compared to smaller models.

Fishing the reel has proven that the drag can handle bigger fish and I have been pleased with the results for both the drag, smoothness and how it has held up so far. It has only been two months, but so far so good on the durability.

Another few things I have liked about the reel is the carbon fiber handle. This looks cool but also helps to keep the reel fairly light. It weighs in at 7.3 ounces which is definitely on the lighter side for any spinning reel and much lighter than most of the other reels I checked out in this price range.

Having fished it pretty regularly since June, I haven't found anything I don't like about it. It has a nice comfortable knob on the handle and casting distance is in line with all of my other reels. Time will tell how it holds up after a few years of hardcore fishing, but so far it is been a solid reel for me.

Like I mentioned earlier they retail for $119.99, but they have frequent sales on the reel so make sure to check this link to see if you can snag one for a lower cost. At the time of this post, it is selling for $95.99.

Here are some of my thoughts on all of the rods and reels I have used from Cadence.

June 16, 2018

The Best Way to Buy and Sell Fishing Gear

If you are like me, you probably have tons of fishing gear. Some that you use and some that you could probably get rid of and use the money to buy more. I buy, sell, and trade tons of gear on Facebook groups and also on eBay. It can be annoying weeding through all of the useless things people are selling and trying to figure out all of the fees on eBay.

When selling on eBay you often have listing fees as well as fees on the total of the items you sold. Then after that, you have a fee for PayPal and they will even charge you a fee on the shipping amount. When all is said and done you easily lose 10% or more. I have had enough of it honestly. 

There is a solution and it is a similar site to eBay except it is ONLY for outdoor gear. It's called ReelTrail.com. The best part is that the fee is only 7.5%, which you only pay once your gear sells. You can ship your items worldwide via their prepaid labels you can print from the website or mobile apps. That makes it much easier to swallow when you are selling something and leaves some more money when you go to buy more gear.

It is a new site and this is a great chance to be part of it as it grows. The site already has tons of listings for things like fishing reels, waders, line, and more. I think this is going to be the next big thing for outdoor enthusiasts. Download the ReelTrail app for free in the App Store and Google Play Store, and you can also visit them at www.reeltrail.com!

Brought to you by ReelTrail.com

December 5, 2017

Anglr Tracker Review

This review is long overdue since I have been using the Anglr Tracker most of the year. That has given me some time to explore it in depth, use it in multiple situations and really get a good feel for what this little device can do.

If you are not familiar with it, it is a small tracker that attaches to your rod to give you all kinds of data. Originally, my impression was that it was like a FitBit. It tracks your casts and lets you know how many fish you have caught that day. It does do that (which is really cool), but it captures so much more valuable data that can really help your fishing. It basically eliminates the need for a written log book since it tracks exactly when and where you caught a fish as well as more info which I will talk about in a bit.

The whole thing works with their mobile app and the Tracker "talks" to your phone and app via Bluetooth. It's pretty common for devices nowadays so chances are you have hooked something up via Bluetooth. It is really easy to get going and doesn't take away a bunch of fishing time (which is a huge plus) since it only takes getting set up initially and then it connects right away on your next trips.

Before I forget, the app itself is free (App Store and Google Play) and you can even use it without even purchasing the Tracker. The app allows you to manually enter details of each fish catch, mark waypoints and get weather info. The app is cool by itself, but with the Tracker it is even better.

The Tracker lets you push a button to record catches and mark waypoints without ever having to use your phone. I like to keep my phone in the glovebox so I don't drop it over so this makes sense for me. I also liked how it tracks how many fish you caught compared to how many casts you made. Take this shot, for example, I made about a cast per minute for just over an hour and caught five fish. Pretty cool info. I also took a few selfies of fish I caught and added more detail about how I caught them.

You can see it also marked each fish catch and pin I dropped along this area when I got a bite. I would like to see some additional mapping like Navionics included and hope that is coming soon.

Each time I caught one I had all of the weather info right there. It was cool to see and with enough data you could really put together a nice pattern for certain conditions. The app allows you to mark lures, rods, etc. to further help. I liked how it had more info than just simply temperature and wind or something. It had all kinds of weather-related info and I didn't have to enter any of it, it just included it automatically.

The Tracker connects to your rod with a simple mount that attaches to your rod. It is easy to pop in and out, but I would say this is one drawback to the system. When I fish, I typically have tons of rods on the deck and sometimes make a cast or two and then switch. It comes with two mounts and if you have two solid patterns going it will really help you gain valuable info for fishing those techniques as it wouldn't be hard to go back and forth between two rods.

It is not cheap, but not expensive either. I just saw it on Amazon for $89 instead of the $129 retail and that is a great price for something that can give you so much data. Here is a list of all of their retailers.

Overall, I was impressed with how easy it was to get so much information about your fishing trips. I am a "numbers guy" and this kind of stuff really appeals to me, so for someone like myself, it is a great tool. If you are like me, I would definitely recommend checking it out.

November 29, 2017

Rapala BX Brat Squarebill Review

This fall I have been playing around with a new squarebill from Rapala,  the Balsa Xtreme BX Brat Squarebill Crankbait. Even though fall is not my normal time to throw them, it has worked well and I have come away impressed with these little baits.

One of the first things that caught my attention when I received them was how small they are compared to other squarebill crankbaits. Not that that is a bad thing, it was actually pretty impressive that they can get down to 4 and 6-feet deep depending on the model. They are compact yet get down quickly thanks to the bill angle. This will allow me to fish a little deeper and still get that squarebill action.

Speaking of the action, both of the baits have a nice, tight wobble. It is fairly "aggressive", but not too much. I think this is why I was able to catch a few with it this fall when the water was starting to get chilly.

Another key to these baits is the durability. I fished it over the course of a few days and have had no issues. Squarebills are meant to bang and bump into everything so they need to be built to last. These are part of the Rapala Balsa Xtreme series, so they have the great action of balsa with a protective copolymer coating surrounding them.

The one thing I would say is a negative to the bait is the price.The bait retails for $9.99 and while that isn't outrageous, many of the squarebills I use are sub $6 baits because I lose more than my fair share. 

Overall though, the bait is solid, catches fish and comes in plenty of good colors. I would give it my approval as it does the job and if it is as durable as they claim it will make up for the cost.

They are available at TackleWarehouse.com and many other retailers.