If you’ve read my heartfelt article “The Grieving Process” then you know that a month or two ago I broke a rod that had a lot of sentimental value to me. Not to mention I used it a ton because it was a slick little rod, perfect for any water smaller than your average two lane highway. With spring right around the corner I had to move on quickly, and find something to replace the short 3 wt.
I stumbled upon what appeared to be a nice deal online for a bright blue 7’ 4wt fiberglass rod made by Powell. Apparently Powell used to be a pretty well known rod manufacture specializing in some of the best fiberglass rods available, news to me I’m still to young to really know much about “back in the day”. The original Powell was bought out by a larger company who moved the business to China and started selling rods that most people assumed were of less quality. Which they probably are, but less than “really damn good” may still be “damn good” or at the very least just “good”.
That’s enough background information, lets move on to the review.
First of all I think making a 7’ 4wt fiberglass rod was a great idea. Why? Well the diminutive size means it can fit in some pretty tight places where only bow and arrow casts work and its harder to set the hook then get a strike. The fact that its a four weight gives it enough backbone to be accurate and controllable without much finesse, which there often isn’t much room for on little streams and creeks. But, since it’s glass it has a slow enough action that placing flies softly is easy. That's everything a skinny water rod should be.
I like the look of the rod a lot. The baby blue is quite vibrant even on overcast
days. The wrappings are solid and the cork handle is not top of the line, but still smooth and firm. The fact that it comes in three pieces instead of four gives it a fighting chance to hold its own against “top of the line” competition.
The reel seat does feel quite cheap, I worry about its durability in the long run. The guides also appear to be on the cheaper side but not drastically so. The pieces fit together averagely and after a long day of whipping casts up under trees and around obstacles the tip may get a little loose. The rod tube is nice, however the little fabric pouch thing it comes in is average quality at best; it feels more like one of those long bags that the tent poles for your child's play tent goes in. But, I would never pass on a rod for that.
It is an excellent fishing rod that has just about everything you’d want for creeks, small streams, and beaver ponds. There are some durability questions that may cause problems overtime, but it’s difficult to tell one way or the other. For the money, this is a great buy, and a great rod. I often times find myself pulling it out of the truck over my 3 wt Classic Trout. Besides if you catch a fish with this, you can buy one of those hats that says “Glass is Not Dead” for twenty-five bucks and confuse people that don’t fly fish at Walmart and whatever hipster coffee shop you know doubt visit. There’s certainly no shame in that.
Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars
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