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Being in the Scottish salmon fishing industry and fly fishing for salmon on almost a weekly basis we are lucky enough to be asked to test rods, lines and reels by various tackle manufacturers on a regular basis. The Maxcatch Company made contact with us earlier this year and asked us to test some of their salmon fly fishing products on Scottish rivers. They were kind enough send us a complementary fly rod, reel and line. We asked for the fourteen-foot V- Spey rod, coupled with the Sprint reel and Spey line. Many of the larger tackle companies fall short with their customer service but the service from Maxcatch could only be described as being excellent. Within days of confirming our order our tackle arrived in Scotland from China.
We were immediately struck by what a good quality rod tube the fly rod came with. The finish on the fly rod was also excellent. The Sprint reel had a robust drag system and was very aesthetically pleasing on the eye. It was also light which was an added bonus.
So where in Scotland would be the best place to try the new salmon rod, reel and line? It had to be one of the most famous salmon rivers in the world, and the home of salmon fishing, the magnificent River Spey. We were fishing on the exclusive Delagyle Beat and there was a stiff upstream wind which was quite gusty in nature. Conditions were far from easy. Whilst building up the rod I could feel that it was very light but also very strong with a good all through action. The rod combined with the reel and line felt like a very well-balanced package.
Some parts of the river at Delagyle are quite wide and so require a long Spey cast and this can often be difficult especially if you have an upstream wind. I did have some concerns before starting fishing whether the rod and line combination would be able to cast a long line into a strong wind being so light. Those concerns were gone after the first cast. With the rod, line and reel being so well balanced it could easily punch out a long line into the wind. Both using the single as well as the double Spey technique casting was effortless. Fishing with the rod was a true pleasure and not tiring in the slightest which can often be the case when fly fishing and trying to cast a long line. The rod could cast big heavy tube flies comfortably but was also light and nimble enough to present the fly delicately if required. Very few modern fly rods share both these qualities. Unfortunately, it was a day where the salmon were not playing ball but to be honest that did not matter as the rod, reel and line were such a joy to use.
The beat ghillie of ten years David, who is a very experienced fly fisher was also very impressed by the fly rod and asked me to leave it with him so that he could use it over the upcoming weeks. After a lot of arm twisting I reluctantly agreed. I received a phone call from David the following week. He had landed two lovely fish in an evening on the rod. One of the fish weighed seventeen pounds. David said that the rod and reel performed terrifically well and the drag system on the reel was so smooth that it made him feel very confident whilst playing the fish. I am looking forward to getting my hands back on the rod in the near future, so I can experience the same fun David has had.
Maxcatch has designed a truly fabulous fly rod in the V- Spey. It is finished well, pleasing on the eye and has an abundance of power. When you couple this with the Sprint reel you have a salmon fly fishing package that will cope with almost any situation. The V-Spey is truly a salmon fly rod with a difference!
Sandy Datta with his wife Samantha is Managing Directors of Salmon Fishing Holidays Scotland https://salmonfishingholidaysscotland.com/ . Salmon Fishing Holidays Scotland design luxury bespoke salmon fishing holidays in Scotland.
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