Charter skipper Dave Roberts casts his expert eye over a new uptiding rod
Penn Prevail II Uptide 303 70-300g
With uptide fishing taking up a large percentage of my charter business here in the Bristol Channel, I was keen to see how this new uptiding rod from the Penn stable performed.
Billed as a modern uptide rod, providing a combination of strength and performance, its wide casting weight range of 70-300g (21/2-10oz) certainly covers almost everything an inshore angler could ask for. I tested the rod on a fairly shallow sandbank in search of rays. The two-piece rod consists of a long tip and short butt. Coupled with a small Penn Fathom multiplier reel, the 100 per cent graphite blank was soon bending under the pressure of some good sized blonde rays. It’s soft tip action, coupled with a powerful butt section, soon showed us the reason for the wide weight casting range.
The innovative and tough Penn Dura guides are smartly whipped, which now seems a formality with new rods from the company. The 10 durable guides are of one-piece construction with no ceramic lining to crack or damage, which means that if you accidentally stand on one, you could bend it back into shape with a pair of pliers and carry on fishing.
Another new feature is the WINN-grip. Situated just above the screw-up graphite reel seat, it feels soft but gives a very comfortable hold if your hands are slippery or wet.
As we fished into the dusk, we found the white glazed tip helped with bite detection as the light faded. Though just a small feature, this glazing really stands out when fished alongside a rod with a black fore section.
At the end of our trial day, the Prevail II had landed several good sized fish without fault. Although recommended price of £134.99 seems a little high these days with many competitors launching such rods for less, I believe this is a quality product. Always shop around, you could be pleasantly surprised.
PENN PREVAIL II LE UPTIDE 303 70-300g (21/2-10oz)
LENGTH: 10ft (3.00m)
BLANK: 100 per cent graphite
REEL SEAT: Graphite screw winch
For more information or to locate your nearest stockist, visit: www.penn-fishing.co.uk