Sunday, May 15, 2022

Jigging World Shadow JW-SH902S-MH Surf: A Powerful Option for Fishing Lighter Jigs in the Surf

By Derek Benoit, January 19th, 2022

The Jigging World Shadow JW-SH902S-MH Surf is a solution I’ve explored for fishing jigs under 1 1/2 oz off of New England beaches. This is especially true where a bit of power is needed in addition to the capability to toss (as low as) 1/2oz bucktails with trailers. Certainly, shad baits and jig head/plastic combinations within this range are also baits I wanted to be able to throw with this rod. More on the use follows below!

The Shadow JW-SH902S-MH and BG 4500 make a stout outfit for beach jigging in New England. Photo by Derek Benoit

My Jigging World Shadow JW-SH902S-MH Intended Use

Firstly, know that I purchased this rod for a very specific use in the surf: bucktails, lead heads and plastics, and Storm Shad-like baits. Specifically, this is NOT intended to be a light plugging rod, despite the rating of 1/2-2oz. As you will read later, it can throw plugs in a pinch, but if you’re looking for a rod to throw lighter jigs in the surf, this may be it. 9ft might be short for the ladies and gents fishing the Montauk surf, but there are other models in the Shadow lineup that would fit the bit for jigging that area.

Jigging World Shadow JW-SH902S-MH Casting Performance

This rod has a solid preference for weights toward the top end of it’s rating. Moreover, it does not load fantastically with 1/2oz (bucktail jigs sans trailer) but loaded very well with a 2oz Kastmaster. Mirroring this, a 1/2oz Rebel Jumpin’ Minnow will not win any distance contests. However, if you’re focusing on the surf zone instead of the shipping lane, as one should, you’ll be in business. Given the added weight of a trailer, 1/2oz bucktails will be no issue. Don’t expect to launch lures that weigh in right at 1/2oz. 1oz allows the rod to load well, but I’d place the sweet spot slightly above this mark.

Jigging World Shadow JW-SH902S-MH Action and Fishability

Shadow JW-SH902S-MH’s MOST Ideal Application

This is without doubt a fast action rod. With a name like “Jigging World,” one should expect such. I love the action for fishing lighter to mid-rating jigs and swim baits. Such baits are where this rod seems to excel. Specifically, if you focus most on imitating small baits with jigs instead of larger plugs, this rod will be excellent for such. I would LOVE to say that I’ve landed many cows with this rod, but that is unfortunately not true. That being said, with keeper size stripers to 35 inches, the rod had plenty of back bone. Moreover, I don’t see any angler getting housed by cow stripers given good technique and adequate drag usage.

Shadow JW-SH902S-MH’s LEAST Ideal Application

Unfortunately, this rod is not for you if you prefer swimming plugs and topwater lures. If you NEED to fish a topwater like the Jumpin’ Minnow, it CAN do it. A freshwater bass style “tip-at-water” or jerkbait retrieve will allow for a walk-the-dog presentation. A classic rod-tip-high pencil popper action will be difficult to make work. It can be done, but it’s a lot of work.

Can the Shadow JW-SH902S-MH Fish Swimming Plugs?

Ultimately, yes, the Jigging World CAN fish swimming plugs. However, swimmers should be a decided “backup” plan for this rod. Should you choose to fish swimming plugs, it would be wise to back off the drag a bit to allow more “give,” allowing the fish to stay hooked. Again, this style of fishing isn’t ideal for this rod, but it can be done.

Jigging World Shadow JW-SH902S-MH Surf Rod Pricing

I wouldn’t call this rod cheap as far as off the rack rods go. However, it is within the budgets of many surfcasters. It retails for $299.99 at https:” Paired with the reel described below, you’ll have an effective and capable combo that will serve you well for jigs off the beach.

Reel Pairing and Balance with Jigging World

I fish this rod with the Daiwa BG 4500 spinning reel. According to Daiwa USA, this reel weighs 22oz and hold 270 yards of 50lb braid. 340 yards is the capacity for 40lb braid. I’ve got 30lb braid and backing on mine and see zero issues with capacity. Additionally, the max drag setting is 22 lbs. That should be plenty for most surf environments. This reel balances beautifully with the Jigging World surf rod.

Find more on the Jigging World Shadow JW-SH902S-MH and Daiwa BG 4500 at

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