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Metal rods value isnt judged by collectors
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Recently, an uncle of mine passed away. Fishing was one of his passions along with being an avid hobbyist.

At one time he owned a houseboat on the Delta which he fittingly named “The River Rat.” He used to allow us to stay on the boat while we were fishing the Delta out of our bass boat.

I’ll never forget those times; vacationing on his houseboat was so much fun for me back then. While docked, we could fish right off the back of the boat and catch just about every species of fish in the Delta.

One of the many things I remember about the houseboat was the closet where my uncle kept all his fishing gear. His equipment seemed so outdated that I wondered how he ever caught a fish.

One of his set-ups was a fishing rod made out of a metallic material with a trigger mechanism built into the rod itself.

Before he passed away he slowly started to part with some of his possessions and gave me several of his old fishing rods — one of them being what I’ve been calling “the metal rod” since I was 12 years old.

Lately, I’ve been wondering about the origins of the “metal rod” and found out that it dates back to the 1950s and was made by Shakespeare.

Surprisingly, they aren’t worth too much to collectors. To me, since my uncle’s passing, it is worth more than any rod-and-reel combo I’ve ever owned.     

Delta Report

All throughout the Delta the spawn has started, anglers fishing soft plastics and flip baits are doing the best fishing weed pockets and weed lines.

Frank’s Tract continues to be a hot bed lately, as several tournaments have been won by anglers fishing it.

Crappie fishing on the Delta is also turning on for a lot of anglers fishing around Whiskey Slough while using Minnie jigs and medium-sized minnows.

New Melones Lake

Trout fishing has died down.

Anglers are struggling to find a decent bite, especially anglers fishing off the bank. Crappie continue to bite well as anglers are catching a fair amount of fish while fishing submerged tree tops with minnows or crappie jigs.

Bass fishing is hot right now, as a lot of fish can be found on beds.

Swimbait anglers have tried to keep quiet lately but there is a decent swimbait bite right now for bigger fish while working the points with a Huddleston Deluxe Swimbait. 

Lake Don Pedro

The bass have made their move to the banks and many beds can be found. Recently, while out on the lake, several anglers expressed their disgust as they were struggling to get a bite.

They were fishing deep; a large majority of fish can be found shallow or on that first break getting ready to spawn. They also didn’t have any polarized glasses on them, if you’re going to be looking for bedding fish, polarized glasses are a must.

As far as baits go, shaky head worms and swimbaits are producing well right now.  

Lake Pardee

Anglers are catching trout  early in the day while fishing power grubs under a bobber. Bass fishing continues to be really good, as many fish are on beds and several large swimbait fish are being caught.

With the moon and temperatures the way they are, look for some big fish to be caught out of this lake once again this week. 

New Hogan

Bed fishing for largemouths is at its prime throughout the lake.

A lot of coves adjacent to the launch area have been planted with underwater structure which the bass have taken a liking to.

In the back of these coves there are many bed fish to be caught, in those same coves there are schools of large bluegill that have came shallow to spawn shortly.

Product Review

Robo Worm has been a favorite plastic bait of mine for some time. The main reason for my love for these plastic baits is their unique color schemes and plastic composition. Unknown to a lot of anglers is Robo Worms salt release system.

Their products are designed to release salt through time. A favorite color of mine as well as a lot of local anglers is the Margarita Mutilator.

Only by holding one up to the light can you see the precision and attention to detail put into making a Robo Worm product.

There are a lot of different brands to choose from when dealing with soft plastics but when the fishing gets tough it’s hard to beat a Robo Worm.

To contact Jarod Ballardo, e-mail