Modern life is full of rites of passage: first date, getting your driver’s license, graduation from high school, maybe college, and later, a first pay check, the one where you find out that gross pay and take-home pay are two radically different numbers.
If you love fly fishing, add to that list buying your first fly rod and – on the down side – experiencing your first broken section.
I feel at least somewhat lucky that my first broken rod just happened after years of fishing. True, my son lost his tip top way back when in Juneau, Alaska, which tried to teach me the lesson I still don’t follow: pack a spare tip top.
But losing a tip top, the very top ring on your rod, and breaking your rod all together are two different miseries.
Most premium companies will repair your rod no questions asked for a processing fee, one of the reasons big-name rods cost so much. You’re actually paying for that replacement rod as part of the cost. And, it turns out, that can actually be a lot of rods during the season. Field and Stream reported one manufacturer saw 500 returned rods per week!
So, how do you protect your rod against getting broken? Here are a few tips:
— Don’t pack your rod in your car unless it’s broken down and away from the door. That’s how I messed up, by keeping my rod strung and whole.
— Don’t pull that carp out of the river horizontally, putting all the pressure on the tip top. Instead point the tip of the rod at the fish and reel it in.
— Use your rod tube when driving to your destination. It’s made to protect your expensive purchase.
— Don’t put your rod on your truck or car’s roof. You might forget it’s there after a long day of fishing and – scrunch, it’s under the tires before you know what happened.
— Always carry a spare.
Now I’ll see how long it takes Sage to get me my replacement.
See you on the river, Jim Burns