The first thing that hits you about the Essox rod is the extra long fighting butt. It seems ridiculously large at first and you want to automatically dismiss it as overkill. This kind of butt would be something you would expect to see on a two handed rod, but when you get that lucky chance to put it to good use your awfully glad you have it.
It acts as leverage against your arm when chucking sinktips with large flies as well as giving you the best bracing for when a toothy fish wants to fight you from under the boat or dart back to that log jam where it ambushed from.
With the fighting butt so long it gives you free and clear space to strip line easily. As well as maintain a natural resting position in your hands and allows you to keep your rod tip in the water at all times.
Ready for action with a strip set and a short lift of the rod while pivoting off the butt makes setting the hook a natural reaction to a lightning take.
The grip is ultra slim and is built perfectly for folks with smaller hands.
The butt and grip work exceptionally well together to allow for effortlessly figure eights or counter clockwise circles without wearing out your wrists. Also the positioning of the grip and butt make for excellent shallow away to deep by the boat presentation of your fly when circling which sometimes is the ticket to garnering a eat.
weather you are tossing 4″ or 14″ flies the Essox has no difficulty in keeping up. These rods have serious back bone for hucking flies and for lifting leviathans.
I’ve enjoyed fishing both the 300-400 grain (10wt) as well as the 400-500 (12) grain ESSOX rod for days and hours.
Being a women I’m not into the warrior like finding ways to make it painful to fish. I always thought 10 and 12wt rods were over the top for pike and musky, but when casting TFO’s ESSOX rods they don’t feel as heavy as they really are which is a big reason why I enjoy them so much. They feel more like a 7 and 9wt in my hands – even when casting 30ft sinktip lines.
This rod was built to cast a fly with little fly line hanging out of the tip so recasting after stripping in your fly to 1ft of the tip is an quick flick to get you back into casting distance.
With that being said, and finally getting into bigger fish I can honestly say the dark side of 12wt is a smart way to go with regards to big fish to be had. These fish don’t run you into your backing like a tarpon will but they sure do put a good hard bend in your rod, so you better make sure the rod is up to the task. The Essox is my number one choice rod for chasing toothing critters. Check them out at: http://www.tforods.com/fly-fishing/rods/esox.html#.Vuwh1xgZxjs