Fly fishing is food for your soul - feed it with glass

I don't know about you, but my time on the water is precious - what with running Barbless Flies and family commitments I find it all too difficult to get any 'me time' on the water, especially at this time of year when we are at our busiest. This is why I want to have the best experience when I do find the time to get out.

During the recent D-Day commemorations, I saw the following quote, which struck a chord with me on a recent trip to the water:

Our local rivers are starting to get very overgrown at the minute - it must be all this recent wet weather - but it is creating perfect hiding places for our local wild trout population!

My rod of choice at this time of year (and all through the summer) is something Glass, a good friend describes them as being:

"Made from rolled soul"

If I want to have a couple of hours on the water I want to use something which gives me joy just to cast it - Glass rods really are the essence and soul of fly fishing for me.

If you have been a member of our email community for any length of time, you will be well aware of the high regard in which I hold Glass rods - especially when fishing in the summer, with its associated low water levels, flows and ultra-cautious fish.

Whilst at the British Fly Fair earlier this year, I struck up a conversation with one of the guys on the Orvis stand (James), which eventually saw me being the owner of one of their new Helios rods, the discussion eventually led to the subject of Glass rods - specifically their Superfine Glass range which they had on display.

After a quick look and waggle (as you do), in the hand it felt just like a regular carbon rod but had the action and associated presentation delicacy of Glass - something which I've not found in any other Glass rods which I own - something very difficult to achieve.

On further discussion with James, it transpires that it is one of the only rods still made in their rod shop in Vermont, USA.

I was intrigued by this rod, as it seemed to occupy that sweet spot of a rod which is easy to cast for anyone who is used to swinging some carbon, but has the feel and presentation of a high-end Glass rod!

It was a comment which James made towards the end of our discussion which really stuck in my mind:

"Orvis don't make Glass rods because they have to, they make them because they should!"

For me, that is the attitude and outlook I love to hear and one which we try to adhere to here at Barbless Flies - we do things because we should do them.

I do realise that as far as fly fishing goes, I am in a very privileged position - being a (very minor) part of the industry - I know that large manufacturers have rods available for demonstration purposes, so I chanced my arm and called James last month to see if there was any chance I could get hold of a Superfine Glass to have a play with on my local river Derwent this summer.

A couple of weeks later a rod-shaped parcel arrived which had Orvis emblazoned on the side - it was like Christmas morning all over again.

The rod hardly had a chance to touch the ground before it was in the back of the truck and all strung up - with my usual Cortland Sylk Double Taper fly line - on the banks of the Derwent.

Safe to say, it was as good as I was hoping it would be - I just love the way it casts, you can feel the rod loading, even on very short casts, making the timing easy and a delight to fish with. It was at this moment when the quote above came to mind - it was the day I realised why I go fishing, I'd just fed my soul!

Please Note: I didn't catch anything, the river was too high and coloured, so I cannot attest to its fish-playing feel. I did catch a few overhanging branches though which put up a bit of a struggle!

Don't tell Orvis, but I'm not sending this back to them until the summer is over!

To be 100% honest, there is one thing which I didn't like about the rod - it doesn't have a hook keeper ring, what is it with rod manufacturers not using them anymore?

I already knew that fibreglass was the perfect material to build fly rods from - especially if you are looking for one which gives you immense pleasure just when casting it. This Superfine Glass is perfectly suited for long lazy casting strokes, presenting dry flies like thistledown for any unsuspecting fish to intercept on a summer's evening rise.

Don't just take my word for it though, the guys over at Trident Fly Fishing in the USA have recorded a video review of the Superfine Glass, you can take a look here:

I spoke with James again last week in the hope of putting something together to show off the best of both Orvis and ourselves - to my delight, both he and the powers that be at Orvis agreed.

So, we have a really special deal available for you today (and until midnight tomorrow - 28th June).


Use any of the buttons or links below to buy a Superfine Glass rod through Orvis's website, enter the code BARBLESSFLIES at the checkout, and you will also receive a special "Delicate Presentation Pack" which we have specifically selected to compliment your new rod. 

Our Delicate Presentation Pack includes:

  • A Luke Bannister Ultralight Silk Furled Leader - worth £9.00
  • A spool of Orvis Superstrong Plus 6X tippet - ideal for those smaller flies and delicate presentations - worth £6.25
  • A tin of our Rubber Duck floatant gel - worth £5.99
  • 24 of our Artisan Olive Imitations, specifically selected for matching the full hatch lifecycle in the summer months (sizes 14 to 18) - worth £46.80 - see below; and
  • A pin-on fly patch to handily store all your flies - worth £8.99
  • A total value of £77.03

Remember, these rods are perfectly set up for fishing with light tippets and small flies. The design of the rods taper protects really delicate tippets, it's easy to land bigger fish on incredibly light tippet!

I believe these Superfine Glass rods are the very best you can buy on the market today, as such, they are not at the cheaper end of the scale! They cost £579 and are available in the perfect weights for our rivers here in the UK, 2wt to 4wt and above.

*** These rods are in high demand, so you may need to be quick as I do know they are in short supply within the UK ***

Please Note: If you have any difficulty when ordering your Glass rod, please contact Orvis directly (Email: or Tel: 0333 400 4188) and they will be able to help you out - they're good like that!

The full Orvis Superfine Glass range of fly rods can be found by clicking the button below:

Whether you’re fishing small streams for wild browns, throwing big dries for stocked rainbows, or chasing stillwater monsters at your local - the Orvis Superfine Glass will feed your soul.

Tight lines, and remember to feed your soul every so often this summer!