Finally, the weather forecasts are telling good news. For the next week, temperatures should stay above zero even by night which is the key factor in making the ice melt. And no, this is no April Fool's tricks!!
Just to maintain my (partial) sanity while being kept away from the water for five long months, I've tried to keep myself busy by tying flies and testing new equipment.
I tested my latest fly rod, Colton Tradewinds #9 9', which proved to be just what I expected. It's a powerful casting machine, capable of casting heavy lines with ease and produces high line speeds when necessary.
To compare it to my favourite rod, Five Rivers FT #9 9', Colton has a stiffer tip section and and it is more front heavy, making it a bit more heavy to do powerful casting strokes. I'd say that Colton could be regarded as a #10 rod, where the FT is a #9 fast-action rod. Colton is a saltwater rod with great ability to lift heavy sinking lines and re-cast them with longer overhangs. FT can throw almost any line because of the fast, but sensitive tip. The blank is very light and the rod feels like casting a #7 weight rod.
Where the FT shines in soft power delivery, light castability and yet very high line speeds, the Colton is a brute. You can and should use a little more force and all the force goes to the kinetic energy of the line. It will also help when casting big flies in windy conditions, with a cost of an extra effort. We'll see how it performs in one month or so.