Rod & Fly 'River to Reef' Fly Rod

Brett Goodman tests an affordable and versatile salt rod

by Thursday, 21 September 2017

Made exclusively of Nano-helix technology, the latest rod offered by Rod & Fly is sure to impress the budget conscious fly-angler looking for technology normally limited to high-end brands. 

In technical speak, the construction process of the River to Reef fly rod involves precision alignment of carbon fibres to form a helical structure. Next, tiny (nano) resin particles fill the gaps among the carbon fibres, and permanently lock them into position. The end result is a blank that is 60% stronger and 30% lighter than a standard carbon fibre rod of the same specifications. 

As the name suggests, the River to Reef Nano-helix is designed for anglers intending to fish large rivers and estuaries, through to open bay and reef environs. 

How does it cast? The River to Reef has an 8–10 line weight rating, so I used fly lines ranging from 8 to 10 weight. Initial casts revealed the rod has a fast action, which should make it ideal for most estuary and saltwater applications. When casting an 8-weight line, the rod had plenty of feel and smoothly handled false casting with most of the line out of the rod tip. The rod also had great tip feel when casting a #10 weight-forward fly line, which enabled smooth casts at distances of 30 feet and less. Adding more line, the rod continued to feel and load smoothly and had substantial power for casting greater distances. 

This rod can cope with throwing heavy saltwater flies accurately and quickly, as is often needed when targeting fast-moving pelagic and flats species. 

The River to Reef comes as a 9-foot, four-piece rod. The blank is unsanded, and has an appealing natural finish in dark grey. The blank is fitted with hard-wearing chrome-plated stripping guides and snake guides, secured using black coloured wraps. 

Alignment dots allow for precise alignment of the rod pieces during set-up, and the grey powder-coated aluminium reel seat has two locking rings that securely lock the reel into position. A full-wells handle and fighting butt made of a durable cork and rubber-mix complete the ensemble of saltwater resistant fittings.

The River to Reef rod comes with a cloth bag and a cordura covered rod tube with carry handle. Like all Rod & Fly rods it also comes with a first owner life-time warranty. www.troutflies.com.au