Switch rods have been gaining a lot of popularity of the past 5yrs or so. A versatile rod that can be used in 2handed spey casting, single handed spey casting, tradition over head, and nyphing when you need long mends or reaches. A swiss army knife of the fly world, a rod that can do anything you need it to. I have fished the Classic-Series Beulah switch rods for a few years and have really enjoyed them. So this past summer at the IFTD show (REVIEW PART #1 & REVIEW PART #2), I was excited to visit with Beulah to get a look at their full line of rods. From the moment I picked up the Platinum Switch rod… I was blown away with the 5wt, 6wt, and 8wt, and the lightweight yet responsive and deep flex of the rods
So I made some calls and was able to get the 10’4″ 6wt for 2 days for some Great Lakes Steelhead. The rod was paired with Beulah’s Tonic Skagit head (CLICK HERE FOR SPECS).
When you talk about a steelhead switch rod that can be used both for swinging flies and indicator fishing, most people think of a 11′ rod. Personally, at 11′ “switching” to single hand applications is not something I think of of as easy. At 10’4″ in the 6wt, the Platinum switch fishes like a 10′ single hand with an stout 3.25″ bottom grip that you’ll never notice. And then moving to 2handed applications, it feels like any spey rod… just downsized.
(Here is a great article on nymphing with switch rods CLICK HERE)
I mentioned the the bottom grip. A shorten adaptation from the 2handers, it’s shaped perfectly to fit the grip of your hand and the foregrip has a great shape as well. With some durable accents in high friction areas, I actually had someone one the stream ask if my grip was a custom job.
The fit and finish on this rod are top notch. The grey blank with silver accents are perfect match. Beyond the nice looks the technology of the blank are what makes this rod shine. “Beulah’s Platinum series does not start and end with just a carbon scrim process, we also employ a controlled 28% (lower than past generations) resin count, and extremely high blank rolling pressure to achieve unparalleled consistency and feel from blank to blank. Fine tuning and timing our Platinum rods is essential and achieved through modulus blending and boron stringers to define overall flex characteristics, recovery and tracking ability.” In real world terms… super lightweight / responsive/ and reactive flex. On the water it means a true “switch” rod… light enough for single handing, but strong enough and the correct flex for spey casting.
There is also a full line of Platinum single hand rod (the 5wt is awesome) a wide with a range of salt and freshwater rods. Check beulahflyrods.com for all the info