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Smaller Rods Increase the Fun When Fighting Fish

Not all tarpon come in extra large size, but even smaller silver kings can still offer incredible sport on light Quantum tackle. To maximize the fun, Capt. Robert Moore minimizes the tackle, but never shirks on quality.

“When I’m targeting smaller tarpon, those in the 20- to 50-pound range, I use a flats-style rod,” said the captain who guides in the renowned tarpon waters of Charlotte Harbor off Punta Gorda, Fla. “These frisky and fun to catch juvenile tarpon are best taken on live or artificial baits using lightweight tackle. I prefer a Quantum Cabo PT 40 spinning reel on an 8-foot Cabo PT inshore medium action rod. With this rod and reel combination, we can fish with live bait or toss lures and I do a lot of both.”

Despite the sturdy, solid one-piece aluminum frame and side plate, the legendary Quantum Cabo PT 40 spinning reel, model number CSP40PTS, only weighs 14.3 ounces but can conquer monsters. It holds up to 230 yards of 10-pound test line, but Moore strings it with 20-pound braid. Built to take any challenge with its 5.2:1 gear ratio and rugged MAGLOK multi-stack ceramic drag system, the Quantum Cabo PT can withstand up to 24 pounds of drag.

Although a long rod, the 8-foot Quantum Cabo Performance Tuned inshore rod, model number CBIS80IMA, performs well with extremely small, light lures. The medium action rod can throw lures in the 1/8- to 3/4-ounce range on 10-pound test line. Made of high-strain graphite blanks with titanium-frame guides and Nanolite inserts, the Cabo PT inshore rod provides tournament-proven ultra lightweight and super-sensitivity, yet offers enough strength to battle a beast.

“It’s good for catching snook and redfish on the flats, but it’s also strong enough to handle a good-sized tarpon,” Moore emphasized. “It was not designed for fighting 80-pound fish, but I’ve caught tarpon up to 50 pounds with this combination. If I’m targeting smaller tarpon, it’s the perfect setup for that type of fishing. The rod enables me to make the cast and still provide a lot of backbone to put pressure on the tarpon. It has enough flexibility for fishing with live baits, but also enables me to get really long casts.”

For booking trips with Capt. Robert Moore, call 941-628-2650 or go online to visit