Gear Review: Review of the Predator Fly Rod from Redington
Over the course of the last several years working in the Fly fishing industry as both a guide and shop owner I have had the opportunity to cast, fish and otherwise play around with just about every type of fly rod. I hadn’t realized until just recently that because I could, I was almost always finding myself playing at the highest end of the rod price points. I didn’t choose to live this extravagant fly fishing lifestyle, I just happened. It really came to a head with my saltwater/streamer rods, because if I was going to own a fast action rod it must be expensive? Living in Colorado these weren’t my everyday fishing sticks but a few times of year or so rods that spent a majority of time in my garage. I’ve owned just about every new fast action rod that would hit the market, all in a price range that wasn’t for the type of angler who couldn’t see the necessity in paying the high cost for that type of rod. So recently I purchased the Redington predator 9ft 7wt. 4 piece rod with the idea of giving it a try. At $299.00 I didn’t really give much of a shot against my $825.00 Orvis Helios 2 7 wt. Boy was I impressed with this piece of equipment. Loaded up a new Redington rise large arbor reel with a Rio Power Fly streamer line and we hit the Colorado river for a float trip, the perfect venue for a road test. I don’t mess around when it comes to my streamer fishing, a #2 Double Bunny followed by a #6 Sculpzilla is not for the weak of arm rig. The predator was a great rod especially for the price and performed well above my expectations. The first thing I did the next morning was ordered a selection of predators for the shop as part of our saltwater rod selection. I feel very confident in that at $299.00 I would highly recommend the predator to anyone looking for that entry level fast action rod. I am putting this rod in my personal arsenal of saltwater rods for my upcoming trip to Belize. It’s great to know that there is a rod out there that won’t break the bank.
The guides are stout and stripping guides have ceramic inserts. The Wells grip is 6 7/8″ long, 11 3/4″ with reel seat and fighting butt. It is 1″ at its center swell and 1 1/16″ at the front swell. The reel seat is 5/8″ in diameter, sturdy and functions very nicely. The blank is reinforced with carbon fiber in the butt and at the ferrule stations.
The blank is dark blue as is the whipping except for one bright red wrap and silver tip at the cork check. The carbon fiber reinforcement is intentionally visible. Snake guides are chrome and stripper guides are gunmetal with black inserts. The reel seat is satin silver. The cork is very nice and the fighting butt is capped with rubber. Redington’s branding is very prominent in red on the blank and with the water drop logo on the reel seat.