Wednesday, January 28, 2015
The Orvis Recon is here in the shop and has been received with high reviews by all of us at Fins & Feathers. These mid-price rods from Orvis have an interesting place in the world of fly rods as they lack in much of the high-end technology, but perform very nicely nevertheless. Made in the USA, these are the first rods designed from start to finish by Shawn Combs, the “newish” rod shop boss at Orvis in Manchester. If a rod that fishes well is on your wish list for 2015 but you just can’t justify the $700+ price tag, the Orvis Recon should be on your list of rods to test cast.
My first experience with the Recon was back in October on a Redfish trip to the Louisiana coast. I borrowed a 908 and put it into the hands of several buddies over the course of 3 days. We were targeting large fish in the 25-30 pound range, but also bumping into much smaller fish as well. However, we had perfect weather and found ourselves surrounded by big fish more often than not and an 8 weight just isn’t ideal for the big fish.
Nevertheless, we gave it a workout and everyone thought the rod was great when compared to the other 8 weights on the trip. It had plenty of power for pushing big flies around and turning heads on some 25+ pounders. I even purposely put some extra deep, extra crisp pressure on the rod while fighting fish to see how close I could get to exploding the rod! Never did break it and never felt like I was close to that awe-inspiring “snap-crackle-pop” phenomena that happens when a fully loaded fly rod blows up in the butt-section.
I’ve been excited about the release of the Recon rods ever since and think that there are a ton of anglers that will really enjoy them too. The rods feature a new ferrule design, which greatly reduces the tendency for sections to come apart as was the case in the Orvis Access rods. The graphite blanks feature multiple-modulus graphite to help precision placement of flex points and increased durability. Traditional scrim technology, as opposed to advanced resin scrims, helps keep the cost of the Recon lower than most high-end fly rods. Each model has been designed with its’ primary fishing situation in mind so there is some differences between each model in terms of feel and how they load throughout the casting stroke. Made in the USA applies to the rod and the metal rod tube too.
As always, we recommend giving the rods a test cast here at the shop so that you are sure to get the best rod for your needs. Every rod is unique and some people cast one model better than another, that’s why we really believe in giving people plenty of choices. Compare the Recon to some other mid-price, USA made rods, like the Sage Response and Scott A4 in our shop before you make your final choice. Each of these rods represent significant upgrade to most “starter” rods and shine in terms of craftsmanship to the many “offshore” rods on the market today. Which one is best? Come cast them all at Fins and Feathers and see which one you like best!