First, the name caught my attention – “Tickle Stick”. I was captivated by the unusual design of the ice rod. It felt great in my hand. Then came the test on the ice. It was no laughing matter – I may have found the perfect ice rod!
13 Fishing is known for fishing tackle innovation and thinking outside the box. They focused their ingenuity in designing this wonderful ice fishing rod.
The most obvious unique feature is how the rod tapers to a completely flat tip, which is extremely sensitive and is finished in a bright chartreuse color. This sensitivity combined with high visibility helps you detect the lightest bites, even ascending, or “up-bites,” that are so hard to detect. The tip is integral to the rod blank, not a separate piece. Backing up this unique tip is a perfectly tapered rod with sufficient strength for setting the hook. Landing a fish on a Tickle Stick is pure joy!
The thin wire guides add no weight to the rod and aid sensitivity. I like how the guides are tightly spaced near the tip. It seems to help in jigging and discerning light bites.
Many competing ice rods have sliding rings or require tape to secure the reel. The Tickle Stick has a perfectly proportioned reel seat and cork handle that locks your reel firmly in place. It is very comfortable in your hand. Combine the Tickle Stick with an ultra-light spinning reel like an Okuma Avenger B or a 13 Fishing Black Betty In-Line Reel and you have an ice fishing outfit that will give you years of service, reliability and pleasure.
The Tickle Stick is offered in 23-inch (light), 27-inch (ultra light, medium-light or light) and a 38-inch (light) model, ranging in price from $49 to $59. Make no mistake, these are finesse ice rods best suited for 4-pound line and under. It is an excellent match for perch, crappie and bluegills.
The Tickle Stick performed flawlessly for me while using a wide range of lures and bait – tiny jigs tipped with plastics or maggots, small spoons, the 1/8-oz. (W2) and 3/16-oz. (W3) Jigging Raps, and of course, live minnows.
If you are a serious ice fisherman honing your skill at making delicate presentations to panfish, I think you’ll agree this just may be the perfect ice rod!