Russ Sy­mons has some tips if you are buy­ing a new rod…

Trout Fisherman (UK) - - Advice Squad -

BE­FORE part­ing with your hard-earned cash, ask your­self this. Why are you buy­ing a new fly rod? Has the old one worn out? Have you out-grown the rod you al­ready have? Hon­estly, has your cast­ing im­proved that much that you feel the need for a faster, tip-ac­tioned model, which you have con­vinced your­self will cast that ex­tra 'fan­tasy' yard or two? Af­ter more than 50 years of fly-fish­ing and lis­ten­ing to some of my more cyn­i­cal friends over all those years, I know that most an­glers would ben­e­fit more from a £50 in­vest­ment in an hour or two’s cast­ing les­son from a pukka in­struc­tor. This would help them more than spend­ing sev­eral hun­dred pounds on the lat­est and great­est rods. Let me be hon­est with you, to­tally hon­est! A decade or more ago I dam­aged my cast­ing arm and, af­ter it had mended, my cast­ing had truly and frus­trat­ingly gone to pot. I knew what I was do­ing wrong, but no mat­ter how hard I tried, my cast­ing would not come right. It took me sev­eral hours with a trusted cast­ing in­struc­tor and a lot of prac­tice to get it back on track again. Nowa­days, I go back and have an hour’s in­struc­tion ev­ery year or two, be­cause it is sur­pris­ing how small faults creep in and you prac­tice those lit­tle mis­takes un­til you have them off per­fect! Some­times you need an­other pair of eyes look­ing at what you are do­ing, and that’s the truth of it!

Few duff rods th­ese days

In the last decade or two, fly rod tech­nol­ogy has come on in leaps and bounds. To­day there are few, if any, re­ally poor rods in the UK mar­ket place. There’s com­pe­ti­tion at ev­ery price point and re­lent­less hype and mar­ket­ing. So buy­ing a new rod should be a rel­a­tively easy ex­pe­ri­ence, but then an­glers are faced with a blitz of claims and coun­ter­claims to the point where some­times it can be­come in­tim­i­dat­ing and a lit­tle con­fus­ing. So what should you do? Hope­fully th­ese tips will help.

“There's com­pe­ti­tion at ev­ery price point and re­lent­less hype and mar­ket­ing.”

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