Sunday, April 24

Trout Unlimited, still not just coffee and doughnuts; also Cabela's CGR review.

People are slobs.
I think we've exhausted the not just TU thing? No? Good. Because there was official TU coffee and doughnuts provided yesterday.

Well, munchkins, at least. Although I'm pro-munchkin, I'd have clubbed baby seals for a boston cream, dig?

Anyways. Monocacy Chapter sponsered their stream clean up yesterday, and the weather was rather uncooperative starting our day with torrential downpour... didn't stop multiple TU members from stepping up, along with a host of community service minded folks. We split up into sub groups, then were dispatched out by our fearless leader to various portions from rt512 down to, I think, Union Boulevard. Once the rain broke, it wasn't bad. I had one of the community services guys fall into place beside me, and we had a nice time walking, talking, and cleaning up.

George, if you should ever read this, I'm up to take you out for your intro to fly fishing, duder.

Pointless gear reviews!
So then, it ended up being a pretty nice day, with a fresh burst of rain to the stream to bring it up, only so it could fall back again. The rain broke, the sky was gently overcast and I bet fishin'' would've kicked ass.

So I went shopping, instead.

I'm being forced to visit FL in a few days, and my luggage won't accomodate my chosen lighter rod, and I needed a new one. Enter the Cabela's CGR, the Custom Glass Rod, a nice, and weird, thing to show up in a big box store. I like glass, I don't like Cabela's branded gear, but fuck it, sometimes you make your choices and pay your money.

But, is it really a custom rod if its off an assembly line like everyone else's?

Fancy rod tube
So, I needed a rod that I'd be able to beat on the bass pond in the old man's backyard, and be able to take the two blocks over to the beach for whatever the hell will swim by (because a guided trip is out of the question, I'm on my own to find something awesome).  Because I've never been happy with my heavier rods,  a 10wt and an 8wt, I figured I'd take this opportunity to augment my big end with a slower action glass rod, enter the biggest rod in their lineup, the 7'6" 7/8. The Hamburg store was nice enough to hold the last one, and upon arrival we went outside to the new rainless sky to throw a few loops.

So, Jim and I went outside to the now rainless sky and put this thing through its places. On first viewing, its a nice looking rod. Well, actually, we're not even there yet, because its a nice looking case. It is, unfortuantly, a rod-only tube, not with a mounted reel to it. However, its a pretty enough thing, that usual brown nylon cordora whatever that Cabela's standard rod tube is. However, the yellow stitching on it is nice, all fancy. It has the 50th Anniversary label, the letters C.G.R., and rod weight. The rod itself is a very attractive deep forest green, with kelly green wraps (I bet someone with a clue would tell you the style of thread used, its very distinctive). Silver trim wraps finish the appearance, with labeling.

Slip it in.
The rod is built, obviously, from fiberglass. The black glass tip over butt ferrules fit nicely, and leave some room for wear in use. Its a three piece, which is annoying for transport but most 'glass users swear by three piece rods being superior performers, YMMV.

The tag proclaims it to be built from Pacific Bay components, and the whole thing is labeled as Made in China (so not everything about it is "period correct" or whatever bullshit they're pushing, eh?). The guides are chrome, with a nicely sized tiptop, but I'm going to complain about the single stripping guide.

Who doesn't like strippers?
Frankly, its too small. I know, I know, its "period correct," but fuck that noise, I've grown used to oversized strippers, and I'm convinced little guides suck when its time to shoot line (more on that later). Its got a strangely sexy insert, though. Sort of a brassy gold, and looks awesome with the rest of the rod.

Hold me.
The grip and seat are another mixed review. The grip is, quite simply, the nicest I've ever held in terms of shape. Its just about perfection in a full wells, a little smaller than what I've prior experience with,  and fantastically aligned with my hand. The cork is, well, its cork. Its not exactly the finest I've touched, but who cares? After a week or two of fishing it always ends up losing the smooth, velvety feel regardless of what its called. Its finished with some of those brown coloured rings (burnt? burled? whatever) at the end of the grip, and the diminulative fighting butt. The seat itself is uplocking aluminum, fits both reels I jammed into it nicely, and features a single nut and ring. Again, two nuts would've been nice, but whatever. The ring is locked into alignment, which maybe you like. I don't, but I'm filled with hate, all things considered. The seat features a distinctive knurled pattern instead of a fancy inlay or the de riguer carbon pattern insert of modern rods. Its understated, and a good way to dress up an otherwise boring "saltwater" sort of rod.
Naked ferrules.

So, then, how's it feel? Nice. Its flexy, but no noodle. It flexes well into the butt, but its not as slow as some of the other 'glass rods I've used. The wiggle test felt good, definatly some backbone in that rod. I strung it up with a generic  Scientific Anglers 8WFF line and proceded to toss it in the Cabela's lot. Both myself and the employee who I let try it out were able to effortlessly lay out a good 40-50' of line and leader, but I have a wicked tailing loop with this rod. You definatly feel it load deep into that rod, though, its got the pleasurable feel of a fiberglass rod.

8 weight goodness, TFO Teeny and Cabela's CGR.
Barring the distance thing, shorter casts are awesome. It flips out 30' of line without a second thought, and it feels like an extension of your arm. Shooting mass amounts of line isn't normally my forte, and I'm positive that little stripper isn't doing me any favours, though. I've been unsure if it would perform better with more weight in the line, or less. I imagine that I might have less tails if I went lighter, I tried it with the aforementioned line, a Scientific Anglers GPX 8WFF, and even a SA GPX 5WFF (which it cast the front taper very well, but once you started feeding line it went to crap).

Overall, I can't wait to get into some fish with it. I'm not sure if I'm the user they had in mind being shore bound and wading, but I'd bet this would be a killer rod for a basser with a boat. It definatly looks great, and it feels good to me. No matter what, I'm not intending on taking it back. Both the Cabela's guy and I agreed that these rods won't last, and I'm convinced they'll end up being cult classics at the very least. No matter what, the price and role it fulfills are pretty much unique to it. If I wanted a shorter rod, I'd probably just buy an Eagle Claw Featherlight, but this'll have to do.

Now, we just have to bloody it, eh? (Oh, and did we ever...)

In other news, finally seeing some caddis. Shame I won't be around to enjoy this upcoming hatch.


Rescued from a spider's web, even.

1 comment:

  1. I've just downloaded iStripper, and now I enjoy having the best virtual strippers getting naked on my desktop.