Monday, November 28, 2011

Top-5 products of the year

Had a lot of new gear on the water this year and there's been some that have been a bit dissapointing, but most of the new gear have been really, really good. Don't want to thrash around and mention the dissapointments, so I'll just keep things positive and do a top-5. I was unable to work out a exact order on the things I liked the most, so don't worry about the order that the gear are mentioned. If I wouldn't be so lazy I would do a top-10 as there was lots of cool stuff around this year to choose from.

Vision 10'11" #8 switch rod:

When I first got my hands on this rod it just instantly felt right. The handles(grips) are pretty much perfect for my taste and they suit my hands better then any other switch rod handles.

The blank looks good and the overall quality is top notch. The reel seat is nice and shiny and all my reels fit in it with no problems. It does tend to loosen up a bit while fishing so be sure to check it once in a while.

Action on this rod is pretty easy going and you can start shooting away right from the first moment. It has a flexable tip that progresses to a semi-soft middle and butt section. Most of the casting is done with the upper 2/3 of the rod with the butt kicking in nicely with every cast. It's not a "true" full flex rod - it's more like a medium-fast rod with a deep(ish) bend, what ever that means...:)

It performed really well with the recommended 29gram shooting head, but I liked it more with a 31-32gram head as it takes the action more down to the sweetly kicking butt section of the rod. It launches bombs with very little effort. For skagit casts rig it up with a 510gr Airflo skagit switch and enjoy the ride!

It was also very smooth with a fish with lots of reserve power when you need it. No problem using this rod even with the biggest river fish.

Overall this rod was an very effective fishing tool that let's you enjoy your days on the river. With the right line selection you can just sit back and let the rod do the work. Very enjoyable fishing rod that has just the right amount of, should I say "balls" in it:)

The rod is almost perfect, but not quite. With a little tweaking it could take over the top switch rod spot from the Echo SR. Really a great addition to a vibrant switch rod market. Kudos to Vision for some nice designing.

Here's a few youtube clips of the rod in casting action: and

Additional  info can be found here: 

Here's few pics(by I.Neva and myself).

Even the cats like this rod:)
 Putting some pressure to the fish with the Vision switch rod

Easy casting.

Echo Edge rods:

I had an opportunity to fish with the 9' #9 and 8'4 #9 Edge rods this season and they we're fantastic.

The 9' model has a nice mid-tip bend and crisp recovery on it. It was a perfect rod for Striped Bass and Bluefish on the shallows with an intermediate line and a very nice river rod for Pacific salmon. You can throw some serious line with it and it has the most fantastic feel on it when fishing.

The 8'4 model was faster and more progressive in action with lots of power in the butt. It flexed more uniformly then the 9' model. Great with big fly's and has tons of fish fighting power. Not as good in my hand as the 9' model, but my fishing pal just simply loves it. The best short rod(under 9') that I've used. Anyone intrested in Pike fishing should get one of the 8'4 models ASAP.

Only thing I would change on these rods would be to add some rubber cork or something similar to the front end of the handle(grip). As these are not 800€ rods there's always small issues with cork, so some rubber cork to the front would make these rods last a bit longer. The best sub 300€ saltwater rod that I've ever tried!

More info in english here: Edge and in finnish here:

My man Ike bending the Edge to the edge...

A decent bluefish caught with the 9' Edge

Doubled up with the Edge's
Beulah Seawolf 9' #10 rod:

The new saltwater rod from BeulahGB. I have been fishing for Striped Bass, Pike and Bluefish with this rod and it is a true master piece.

It has a marvelous mid-tip bend on it and a really fast recovery on it with absolutely no "stiff" point's on it. It's butter smooth with a very authorative feel to it. It has made me look much better on the water then I really am... I think the three piece construction has something to do with it's greatness.

The quality and components are top notch and all this for just over 300€!! Get it, now!!:)  

More info: Seawolf and in finnish:
Giving the Seawolf a proper workout

The stupidest pose ever with the Seawolf hanging on my shoulder

Meiser S rod 13'6 #8-9:

Having had previous experience with S rods I kinda expected this rod to be good. Well, it was even better then I expected!!

As expected, the workmanship on the rod is outstanding. All the components are the best, the cork is spotless and the focus on detail is amazing. Bob and he's crew are one of a kind!

This rod has a mid-tip action on it with a sensitive butt section that let's you know exactly what going on with the line. The recovery is lightning quick. The combination of a sensitive mid-tip action and really, really quick recovery makes this rod throw amazing lazer loops.

It's kind of hard to put in to words how I feel about this rod... I think that this type of action is the future of high performance short-medium head rods. You have the great casting ability's of good shooting head rods mixed in with the "fishy" feel of the medium-fast and full flex rods.

Put an 35gram shooting head on it and feel the magic... It's also very good with short and medium spey's with head lenghts from 55' to 65'. For my style the 540gr Compact skagit was spot on for SA-casting.

If you want to treat yourself to something special and want a beutiful rod that also fishes really well, give Bob a email or phone call.

More info: S rod

The beutiful S rod

My man Ike shooting some line with the S rod

Echo Ion 8/10 reel:

I have to admit I was a bit skeptic of this reel when it first came out - another cheap reel that will fail me after the first few fish, I thought. Well, I was wrong! The reel did an excellent job with many big pacific salmons and performed as well as it's more expensive counter parts.

The drag is smooth and powerful, the drag adjustment is precise, the spool has a nice V-shape and the retrieve is silky. It really suits my needs very well and the ergonomics on it are really good.

I'm sure I will have many good days of fishing with this reel. The only real downside to it compared to let's say a Vision XLA or a Galvan Torgue is that it is more sensitive to dents and bumps so you need to be a bit extra careful not to drop it or anything like that.

This reel really got me thinking that what do I need my expensive reels for?

Really a nice reel for any freshwater fishing you might do.

Here's some more info on it: Ion reel

You can also use this reel as an fly tray...

I'm really looking forward for next year's new stuff. There's going to be new two hander's from Echo and a line from Airflo I'm super excited about: The Skagit intermediate. Also tons of other new and exciting stuff.

Hopefully I'll get to try out as much new gear next year as I did this year.

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