Thursday, 4 June 2009

Harrison Advanced Rods - an update from the water.

No pictures on this one… just an update on the Harrison Advanced Rods I own and a bit of a thank you to the team at Harrison's.

As many will know Steve Harrison is an old friend of mine as is Mike Helliwell who is part of Steve’s team (Mike introduced me to Steve many moons ago when we all used to race on the Mersey… I think Steve is the only one of us that sails regularly now, I digress). I’m a firm believer in home grown kit where possible and for me that means Harrison’s now that I’ve come back to fishing. I have my Harrison designed 4Surespin which is marketed by Veal’s in Bristol and my 9 foot 9/10# 4 piece fly rod built and fettled in Liverpool.

The rods are perfect partners for the fishing I do. The 4Surespin was bought after reading Mike Ladle’s diary on pike and sea bass fishing and has landed all my lure caught pike as well as barracuda and jack trevally, I forgot I’ve used it for mackerel fishing as well. This is without a doubt one of the best workhorse rods you can have in your bag. It is a true traveller and a rod that I would be sore to lose!

A couple of weeks back I broke the upper mid section, a complete operator error! But true to form my pal Mike was able to rebuild my rod and have it ready for action again (didn’t mean I’d catch anything though!).

The rod of the moment is without a shadow of a doubt my Harrison fly rod that I named Caledfwlch (Welsh name for Excalibur). The rod is perfection and suits me and my style of fishing… it is kindly to my casting style and I have grown with it to now be able to cast rabbit skins and hunks of bucktail almost a full fly line away! It isn’t a fast rod – I suppose medium fast is where it stands although I’d be happy to have this corrected by my friends at Harrison’s. Toby my fishing partner from Chew had a brief cast with it and it was certainly softer than his Loomis Crosscurrent… this didn’t detract from Toby’s ability to cast further than me! It also proves a point that in the right hand the rod is dynamite.

The rod has been teamed up with Cortland’s 333 Pike WF10F and Guideline’s new Pike Sink Tip WF10 and both of these lines work well with the rod.

Next rod? Well, I almost bought a Sage RLPXi from Toby BUT hesitated long enough for it to be sold to someone else. Why the hesitation… it’s down to the fact that I want another version on the Harrison fly rod (the blank has been ordered)… I found the benefit of having a two rod set up at Chew… sadly the other rod was lacking in the butt and on two fish of around the same weight I felt more in control with the Harrison.

If you want a Harrison rod custom built I would recommend that you look at Steve’s website as he lists rod builders there (Dave Lumb and Steve Parton to name just a couple)… I can tell you this; a custom rod beats any “off the shelf rod” as it is very personal and feels part of you.

As a final point. The two characters that I mentioned at the beginning are two of the nicest folk you could meet; Mike is an all-round great guy and honest as the day is long and knows his fishing, Steve is one of those rare beasts whose blog I try and read every day and if he doesn’t post something new that day I feel somewhat cheated. In addition to the fishing aspect of the blog it gives an insight into the perfectionist Steve is, linked to the business acumen and drive he has. Both are much respected.

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