Saturday, November 27, 2010

Angler's Roost: "Euro-Style" spey rod blank review and giveaway


  Congratulations to Teresa "TBird"! Random.org selected comment #43 as the winner. I will get your new A.R. spey rod in the mail on Monday.  
A big thanks to Angler's Roost for sponsoring this review and giveaway!   


 

Angler's Roost  recently came out out with a few new additions to their already talked about spey rods and spey blanks.  I have used the standard 13' 7/8 wt. A.R. spey blank with good success for a few months now and for the money it is an excellent blank.  The standard 13'  7/8wt. spey blank is a medium to full flex rod that loads deep and is perfectly suited for Skagit casting.  It throws a 520 and 560 grain Scientific Angler Skagit Extreme head with ease and has enough heft to throw a lot of line with a little amount of work.



In addition to the standard blanks and rods offered by Angler's Roost, a new "Euro-Style" spey blank and fully built rod have recently been released.  The new spey blanks feature IM8 graphite and like its predecessor, the "Euro spey" rod comes in a dark mahogany/brown gloss finish and features reinforced ferrules.  It is available in three line weights including 5/6, 7/8, and 9/10.  Each blank is 14' long and consists of four pieces. 




The review

From my experience most "Euro" or Scandinavian style rods are known for being very fast.  They tend to load in the tip and are well suited to throwing shooting heads with mono or shooting line great distances.  I decided to string up the A.R. 7/8wt. rod with a couple of lines to test it out.  I began with a Scientific Angler Scandi Extreme head (560 grain) and then moved up to a 600 and then down to 520 grain head.  The rod handled all three lines without a problem.  The 520 felt the best to me and the 37' head was a good fit for the 14' rod.  Next I switched to a few Skagit Extreme heads and the rod really came to life.  I started with a 560 grain and again moved up one size and then down to dial in the action.  I found the 560 and 600 felt the best.  The 520 was a bit light and the I couldn't get the rod to fully load with it.  The rod action is a medium to medium/fast.


The "Euro" spey loads about seven to nine feet from the lower grip and has plenty of power in the butt section to shoot line.  The extra foot of length over the standard spey is a nice addition.  It allows for greater line control and makes longer casts with less effort.  Overall, as with the standard spey from A.R., I am impressed with the new "Euro" style blank.  The blanks run $59.95 and the fully built spey rods cost a mere $139.95.  The standard spey blanks sell for $39.95 and the fully built rods for $89.95.  For the price these rods are a great deal.  If you are looking to give spey casting a try without incurring a large start-up cost, then A.R.'s spey rods are a great way to go.  Both the standard and "Euro" models cast very nice and the mahogany/brown finish looks fantastic. 

In Sum

For the price its hard to beat A.R.'s spey rods and blanks!  The blanks are well built and come in a wide range of line weights and lengths.  The finish looks great and matched with the right line will throw a loop with the best of them.  The standard style spey blank, in my opinion,  is best suited for Skagit casting.  The new "Euro" spey blank will work for both Skagit and lighter Scandi heads.  Personally, for a Scandinavian style rod I would like to see a slightly faster taper, but it is difficult to go wrong with the rod for the price.

Disclosure- Angler's Roost provided the blank free of charge for me to review. I was not compensated in any other way for this blog post.


Time for a Giveaway! The winner gets a fully built 14' 7/8wt. Euro-style spey rod shipped to your door.



How to enter:

There are two ways to enter.  You do not have to join Facebook to enter.  All you have to do is leave a comment after the post.  If you want a second chance to enter, then you can follow my blog on Facebook and then post "following you on FB" in a second comment after the blog post.

1. Leave a comment on this post about what appeals to you about fishing with a spey rodNote: be sure and include your name and email so I can contact the winner.

2. Become a friend of The Rod Builder's Review on Facebook, then post "Following you on FB" in a comment after this blog post. 


I’ll draw the winner with Random.org on December 4. 
A big thanks to The Angler's Roost for sponsoring this review and giveaway!

Fly Fishing and Fly Tying Review 


Fly Fishing Reviews, Fly Tying Review, Rod Building Reviews, Fly rod Reviews

98 comments:

  1. The chance at a free blank appeals to me! Another great review, Matt.

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  2. Matt, thanks for your informative review. As always it is very complete and well done. I had the opportunity to fish my 11.5' 6/7wt "trout" spey/skagit rod early this month on the Madison River in YNP. We were fishing for run-up browns and bows. Had a great time swinging soft hackles and streamers for these bigger fish. Even caught a couple of nice ones. I am interested in building a 14' or even a 16' spey rod with a medium to full flex action. These AR rods/blanks might be just the ticket. Again, thanks for the review. Keep up the good work.

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  3. Sorry, if a prerequisite is to join facebook, I'm out. I don't do facebook, so that's a drag that that is required.

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  4. Hi Cruncher,
    Thanks for the comment. You do not have to join facebook to enter to win the rod. If you leave a comment, then you will be entered. If you follow my blog on facebook, then you can enter a second time.

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  5. I find the art of waving the rod through the mechanics of casting to be almost magic, much like a magician waving a wand over a hat. The sight of a well defined rooster tail of water buzzing off the water's surface is hard to beat as well.
    Finally, the payoff of a well executed cast that is both smooth and methodical is witnessing the line almost coming to life and practically casting itself to the target.

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  6. Matt, thanks for the review I have been wanting to learn Spey casting and here in the Sacramento Area we have the Jeff Putnam Fly fishing school and Jeff specializes in teaching Spey Casting. Even my favorite guide up in Mount Shasta recommends Jeff. If I were to win this rod I'd take lessons from Jeff and would use for strippers and surf fishing in the California Delta and on the Coast. As well as for steelhead!

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  7. Spey casting has appealed to me for years, but it was only relatively recently that I broke down and tried out a friend's rod on the Madison. One of the biggest draws for me was just learning something new. While it is frustrating to be a total beginner once again, spey casting drew me in like few other things have. The ability to throw big flies a long way is pretty nice too!

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  8. Thanks for the informative review I've wondered about the Anglers Roost Blanks. I have also been planning on taking Spey Casting lessons from Jeff Putman here in the Sacramento area Since I'd like to begin using Switch and Spey rods for surf fishing on the CA. Coast in the American and other Rivers for Steelhead and Stripers.

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  9. BTW, that is quite a deal for a built spey rod. I'd love to give it a go...let's see what fate brings

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  10. Great review! As the President of the Adaptive Fly Fishing Institute, I spend a lot of time testing and even doing R&D work with all types of fishing gear, and I've developed both a professional and personal fondness for switch and spey style fishing in the past year. The two-handed casting significantly reduces felt impact and fatigue when compared to single-handed fly casting, especially in heavier weights. The longer rods provide a whole new dimension of adaptive line mending and fish "wrasslin'" techniques for people with all sorts of disabilities/injuries! And the basic casts are very easy to teach.

    I'm already following you on Facebook.

    This Euro-style spey rod sounds like a very versatile two-hander. That's really the "holy grail" for therapeutic adaptive fly fishing practitioners. The wider array of uses we can get out of a single equipment purchase, the better! It's a pretty equipment-intensive endeavor.

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  11. Thanks for the Review and the Chance to win this great "Euro-Style" spray rod Matt.
    N2fishing2@hotmail.com

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  12. Nice to get a free blank.. Not many things nowadays that come for free!

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  13. Hey Matt... Following you on FB.
    larry@flyfishingcrazy.com

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  14. Angler Ace

    "Following you on FB"

    N2fishing2@hotmail.com

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  15. It is great to hear about other spey rods, especially something that is compariable to the more expensive spey rods that the average working person can afford as a starter. Keep up the good work.

    Rocky Maley
    maleyqh@ortelco.net
    www.steelheadjunkies.com

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  16. garyw1948 at sbcglobal.netNovember 27, 2010 at 9:44 AM

    I have been trying to learn how to spey cast and spey fish for some time. I find it magical to fish this way. I recently caught my first steelhead on the swing, and am looking for the next one !

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  17. ‎"Following you on FB"....... rkrhyme@twcny.rr.com...I've just started spey fishing last year and now it's the only to fish for steelies

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  18. Sorry I ended up posting twice all ready but since you said on FB...

    Following you on FB

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  19. following up on FB,
    What appeals to me is the 'euro' type may be easier than the softer rods to use. I have a medium rod and can use it, but not easily.

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  20. For the price those blanks are the best money for the price

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  21. Спасибо, интересная статья, интересная "палочка"

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  22. Well Matt ... another good thing you do and I'm also "following you on FB"

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  23. Great review and very informative. I just get more and more interested in "spey" casting every time I watch a show or video. It just seems so ...magical I guess...they make it seem so effortless to really reach out there with the line and fly.Would I like a spey rod...heck yeah!

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  24. Oh...btw, have been following you on FB....

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  25. Great review! Sounds like afunblank to fish!

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  26. Thanks for the great review Matt. Following you on facebook. Looking forward to your posts.

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  27. As an earlier customer of ARE (rod building parts and reels) I hope I have a fair chance of winning ;-))

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  28. Another fantastic review Matt. A big fan of all you do! Keep up the great work.

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  29. I have often wondered about the quality of AR's rods and am glad you took the time to give us all the lowdown on these rods, It makes it worth it to take a second look at their rods. Thanks for the legwork!

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  30. "following you on FB"
    Looks like a nice rod, i like swinging big ugly with the double hander.
    brown.g.andy@gmail.com
    Andy

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  31. Hi Matt,

    I never had the opportunity to fish with a spey rod. I own several regional fly fishing sites and USAOnTheFly.com and would love the op to fish on the fly with this rod and write a review. We are following each other on face book.

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  32. sweet looking rod I would love to own one

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  33. Holding a spey rod is like holding history...the old greenbriers reach back to the masters.
    Today we can reach back to then as we cast out to the middle of tomorrow.

    Harry

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  34. I really like the elegence of a 2-handed cast and the ability to cover large water. Love the reviews you are doing Matt. keep up the great work. also following you on facebook

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  35. Looks like a great product, thanks for the info and the chance to win one. I love the traditon of fly fishing and have been toying with the idea of getting into spey fishing. I've taken a casting class and loved that. I don't know what it means to "follow you on Facebook", but you are a friend and I've selected "Attending" your rod review event. Is that all I need to do?

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  36. HI Matt,

    Great blog and reviews.

    I have been using spey rods for approx. 12 years. In 2010 I fishing a spey rod exclusively.

    My fishing partner and I give free casting lessons on weekends here in CT.

    Regards,
    Fred Krow

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  37. Very nice review! I am impressed that a rod like that is available for such a reasonable price. I have a shorter 8 weight I throw now, but I'd love to have a chance to try this.

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  38. That is an excellent review. I am impressed that a rod like that is available for such a reasonable price. I throw a shorter 8 weight right now, but I'd love a chance to try this out!

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  39. I'm new to all of this, never owned a spey rod or new what one was til now. Would love to see what it's like to catch a nice bass with one. Will also be following on FB

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  40. Auuugghh, been trying to enter for the last ten minutes.
    I'm new to this, never heard of spey rods until now and am interested to see what a nice bass would be like caught with one.

    Bill

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  41. I have three friends who Spey fish and I want to learn but, I want to learn with my own rod, this would be a great incentive to be more aggressive with my getting started.
    Good Luck to all who enter.

    Teresa "TBird"

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  42. Very cool ~ Ever since I attended a Speyclave with Mike Kinney demonstrating I've been itching to get my game on with a Spey Rod. The steelies are waiting for me....
    Rebecca

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  43. And I follow you on Facebook (thankfully or I might of missed this)

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  44. Nice looking new spey, a great addition to your lineup. For me casting a spey is much easier on my shoulder, nowadays a single hander just wears me out.

    bc_angler@hotmail.com

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  45. Great looking new rod! I love the colour.

    Personally I love fishing the spey because alot of the rivers I fish have little to no room for a back cast.

    Mary

    poochieralphy@hotmail.com

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  46. I am new to fly rod and love the cast.Would like to try spey

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  47. Great review. Love the idea of a 14' 7/8 weight!

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  48. Also, I'm following you on Facebook!

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  49. I have never tried a spey, but I think it would be nice to have one and take a steelhead trip!!!
    flglov0@hotmail.com

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  50. Interesting review. I've borrowed two-handed rods a few times, but haven't taken the plunge yet.

    Thanks.

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  51. It looks like AR has managed to produce another cheap yet decent fly rod blank. I recently built up a 11' 2/3 wt as a polish nymph rod and I am happy with the rod. A spey rod would sure make casting big streamers all day a hell of a lot easier.

    Email: lee.poosack@gmail.com

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  52. Interesting. I have a 13'6" Diamond-back that seems to get the job done.

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  53. following you on FB as well

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  54. Great review man, plus Im always down for a giveaway. Will keep an eye out for more of your reviews on facebook.

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  55. Email:speytyer@aol.com

    I enjoy the art of the cast, it can take you places a regular rod can not and you have the ability to gracefully cover the extra water. Besides it look cool as hell and works like magic.

    Scott Antonetti

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  56. speytyer@aol.com
    Scott Antonetti

    The best thing about spey casting and fishing is the grace and flow of the fishing, it look cool as hell and you can cover a ton of water normally unattainable with a regular rod.
    The rod look great and thank you for having the give away!

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  57. My enthusiasm far exceeds my fly casting ability. Your rods are beautiful. As are the fishes that they bring in. Cheers. VK

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  58. The chance at a free blank appeals to me too!
    Congratulations for your work!
    Jose Maria Lozano
    gallegolozano@gmail.com

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  59. I would absolutely love to be the proud owner of a new spey rod. The majority of my fly fishing is for largemouth and smallmouth bass, and a heavier, longer rod would benefit me greatly. Especially when casting large popping bugs at those largemouths up in the lilypads.

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  60. Been following you on Facebook for a while now.
    "Bigfish Ingshop"

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  61. Received a PM from FB about your rods & the give away. Honestly, I love your blog & product review, but I have never "fly fished", always bass. I find fly fishing intriguing...think it's an art! Would love to have a chance to learn! Thank u for doing this great giveaway!

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  62. I like fishing with a Spey rod because it allows me to fish in areas that would otherwise be inaccessible to me if I stuck strictly to single-handed overhand casting methods. Throwing a 5" fly 70' with a roll cast when standing at the base of a cliff is a pretty good feeling.

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  63. Great review! Hoping I can add this rod to my collection (and also add another review on funcfish.com!)

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  64. It was a great read to see how you went through the progression on line weights to really dial in the right feel for the rod. I think this is a great part of the journey in learning to spey cast. It doesn't matter if you use Skagit, Scandis, Mid-Bellies or Long belly lines each is unique to the style, rod, and the person. I use spey rods for trout and steelhead. Every year I find it harder and harder to pick up the single handed rods.

    Cheers, Ty
    troutbum_19@yahoo.com

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  65. William ( Mr Proper )November 29, 2010 at 10:43 PM

    Great review Matt
    But I don't know how to speycast.
    ( at the moment )

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  66. Of course I would like to win a speyrod ;-))
    /Sor

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  67. A chance at anything is all good by this hard core fishead !!! Informative review, look forward to more...

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  68. Nice review Matt!

    Matt@streamersflyshop

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  69. Hi Matt,

    I live in Chile and down here, spey rods are just been introduce (loop army). I´ve been a single hand rod caster all my life and always though that those long spey rods will never fit my fishing style. Guest wat, yesterday i was fishing the Huemules river near Balmaceda, Chile for King salmon on a very windy rainy freezing day (80 Km/Hr wind gusts)dropping big flys against it, a day when all the elements are telling you "go home", when mother nature don´t wants you fishing, momments like this can be revealing and i though to myself:
    "Maybe is´s my time to evolve to one of those rods".......
    This is one of those fishing momments that get you out of the box.

    Anyway, great review.

    Andrés Montesinos
    (facebook friend)

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  70. Looks great, would love to win it and start learning Spey casting!

    Good blog!

    Ulf

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  71. Awesome review Matt, love chucking my spey rods, and more recently have been looking at getting a trout system to go with my my two steelhead setups. Cheers from the Skeena.

    billish@shaw.ca

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  72. I've been fly fishing a long time and never really got into the whole spey thing. The casting looks beautiful, that's for sure. Recently I had the chance to cast a spey rod at the salmon river in NY. What a wonderful feeling. Now it's almost all I can think about. I recently had a child, and don't have the cash to just spend willy nilly. Help a brother out. =) Chris@creekaddict.com

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  73. Thanks for the chance! Spey casting appeals to me because 1, its a challenge above and beyond single handed casting, 2, its beautiful, and 3, there is absolutely nothing better than swinging through a steelhead run. Thanks again. Andrew Adipose Boatworks. (we are following you on facebook)

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  74. I love the look and feel of spey casting. I've done it a few times but need to add a spey rod to my collection!

    Following you on FB

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  75. Speycasting! Never did it double handed.... :-(

    Chao

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  76. Very cool site! Will definitely continue to Follow you on FB!

    Cannot wait for more reviews on the big sticks!

    David
    info@atlanticsalmonguides.com

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  77. Matt, as always great informative review. Casting Spey has a different rhythm than my normal casting. When i find myself in a rut or just need a change in action I switch to my Spey Rod
    thanks again,

    Keithmmason@yahoo.com

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  78. Hey Matt,

    Thanks for the review, very informative. As someone who may be relocating to the Seattle area I have been feeling the need to learn this style of fly fishing. Having these types of reviews helps someone like me to better understand.

    Best,
    Joe
    joe@flyrecipes.com

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  79. Second chance... Already been following you my man!

    Best,
    Joe
    joe@flyrecieps.com

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  80. What appeals? Spey anglers get all the women ... I want in.

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  81. What appeals? The double entendre of having a really, really long rod.

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  82. Following you on FaceBook. Thanks!

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  83. Great looking blank! I've enjoyed learning on my old Sage brownie but it's a 9 weight, would love a little lighter one!

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  84. Nice review Matt. Looking forward to fish with this rod, hahahaha.
    Keep up the good work.

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  85. Great review. Love the idea of spey fishing for the extra water I could cover. Would be great on some of our larger rivers here in michigan......yonks311@hotmail.com

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  86. Aileen.ellis@rocketmail.comDecember 1, 2010 at 7:57 AM

    following you on facebook, too!

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  87. Following you on facebook as well!

    yonks311@hotmail.com

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  88. This really solved my problem, thank you!

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  89. Great review Matt - would really like to own a spey rod

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  90. Spey casting is really starting to catch on here on the Bow River. Thanks for the review Matt.

    Dick Seymour

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  91. Following you on fb, thanks for the review

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