The design of the $375 Nine Stag fly fishing rod made by Deerfield Rod Company was influenced by designs made by hotelier and inventor Charles Ritz. The rod performs well if the fisherman’s cadence is slowed somewhat and accommodates different line weights.
Although he made his mark — and his fortune — building a hotel empire, Charles Ritz was just as well regarded in angling circles for creating exquisite fly rods. In the man who curled magnum-size champagne bottles to exercise his casting arm built the first two-piece split-cane rod to feature a tip section longer than the butt — the so-called staggered-ferrule design. The rod possessed the suppleness of progressive action (of which Ritz was a fierce advocate), but also had enough power to cast a range of lines — not unlike the powerhouse rods currently on the market.
Not everyone enjoys the ultra-quick, chop-chop casting cadence that lightning-fast tips and unyielding butts have lent to modern rods, however. Dave Sylvester, iconoclast rod designer and owner of Deerfield Rod Company, is certainly not a fan. Sylvester likes to feel a rod working all the way into the butt, that sensation we still call progressive action.” He’s infatuated with that living, sensuous feeling of control — and with solving the problem of disappointing line launch that often accompanies it. [Read more…]