|Ardent Apex Grand|
Over the last couple of weeks I have been using an awesome reel from Ardent. This is the real deal when it comes to casting and smooth action. Here are my initial thoughts on the reel, how I rigged it up, and what I think of it after use.
Ardent Apex Grand
- 7.3:1 Gear Ratio
- Helical Aircraft Aluminum Gear
- Dual Breaking System
- 12+1 High-Precision Ball Bearings
- 5.9 Ounces
- Strike SystemÔ Drag System
- Power Carbon Fiber Handle
|Easy Adjust Dual Breaking System|
When I opened the box and held the Ardent Apex Grand my first thought was that it was LIGHT. Weighing in at 5.9oz. it is the lightest low profile bait caster that I have used. The next thing that stood out was the large carbon fiber handle. This handle has huge cranking abilities.
|Large Spool holds plenty of floro|
Rigging the Ardent:
Since it is the winter time, I knew I would need a good crankbait/jerkbait reel. I spooled the reel with 12lbs fluorocarbon and put it on my St. Croix 7' Medium/ Heavy crankbait rod. The fast 7.3:1 gear ratio is perfect for jerkbait fishing and as long as I cranked slowly it was good for my crankbaits. I was pumped to get this reel out on the water.
|Photo By: Rob Choi|
Using the Ardent:
My first trip with this reel was to a small local reservoir for bass and pickerel. I had my Ardent rigged with a Spro Little John crankbait in a Spring Craw color. I took a few practice cast at the ramp to adjust the breaking system. The brake system is super easy to adjust, and after only a few casts it was ready to go. The fishing was slow that day, and I fired off a ton of cast with this reel. I never heard a single noise, and never got tired from holding it. I caught a few fish with it, including a chunky bass. The drag was super smooth when I was fighting the fish. On my next few trips I was primarily fishing jerk baits. The quick gear ratio was perfect for picking up the slack line after each jerk. I caught a few pickerel and small bass on the jerkbaits, and once again never had an issue.
What I Like:
After using this reel several times and catching some good fish I can tell you that this reel really impressed me. The thing that stood out the most was how smooth it is. It is definately the smoothest reel in my arsenal. I can cast crankbaits and jerkbaits a mile with this and even under sub-freezing conditions, there were no issues. The smooth drag also impressed me. Many crankbaits have very light-wire hooks that pull easily, so having a smooth drag is very important. Unfortunately, due to our winter weather I was unable to test the Ardent Apex Grand in the salt. All indications are that it will make a great redfish and speckled trout reel for topwater and jig fishing. I do not know how well it will hold up in the salt but I plan on putting it to the test.