Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Gear Review: Redington Crosswater Y Fly Rod

Several weeks back, the folks at Redington sent me a Crosswater Y fly rod to review–or rather, they sent it for my 12-year-old daughter to review.

Unfortunately, it's been so frigid here in eastern Idaho this winter that finding a good day to get out on the water has been a bit of a challenge. Nevertheless, last Saturday, we braved the chill and ventured off into the 18-degree fog for a bit of fishing with the Redington rod.

Here's Delaney's review:

"The moment the Redington Crosswater Y arrived at my door I couldn't wait to try it. Unfortunately the weather was not permitting.

Finally, we just couldn't wait for Mother Nature to cooperate–last week, we drove to the Warm River, which is just outside of Ashton, Idaho. I was so excited. I could not wait to catch some fish!

When we got to the river, the temperature had dropped well below freezing, so we had little hope in actually catching any fish. After my had set up the fly rod, I happily tromped through the snow in my new wading boots and neoprene waders to the water. I hopped in and started casting.

I loved how it felt to cast the Crosswater Y. It was smooth and light, like holding an extra large drinking straw. It was so easy! By the end of the day I had successfully caught two sticks! They were very pretty.

I had a great day and did not have that sore feeling in my right arm like I do when I use one of my Dad’s rods. I would definitely recommend this rod to other youth. It really is great!"

Naturally, I, too, had to give the rod a whirl, and Delaney is right. The rod, engineered for the beginning young angler, is light, yet surprisingly fast and forgiving. Since we were fishing deep, Delaney was drifting a double-nymph rig under an indicator in water about three feet deep, so she had to mend keep the drift as natural as she could. The rod's eight-and-a-half-foot length proved much easier for Delaney to handle than a standard nine-footer, and she pulled off a few flawless mends with relative ease. 

Casting such an unwieldy fly rig can sometimes be difficult for young fly fishers, but Delaney adeptly pulled line off the Redington reel (the outfit comes complete with the 5-weight rod, a Redington large-arbor reel loaded with RIO Mainstream line, backing, and a length of tapered leader) and was fishing just seconds after she stepped into the frigid water of "Warm" River. Unfortunately, she didn't hook up during her time on the water, but, like any kid, she was just happy to be outside and fishing.

But, while Delaney was warming up at the campfire, my wife, Liza, gave the rod a try, and she did manage to catch a nice rainbow on the same double-nymph rig. Liza, also a novice fly fisher, remarked on how smooth the rod was to cast, and that it was light and easy to maneuver. I would venture to say that the Crosswater Y is not only an appropriate rod for young beginners, but also a good option for women new to fly fishing who might struggle with gear designed for specific conditions, but who can improve their skills with some equipment that is a bit more forgiving in general fly fishing conditions.

The Redington Crosswater Youth Series outfit retails at $139.95, a very fair price for a quality graphite rod, a sturdy reel and a good RIO fly line. I'd recommend it for young beginners and, as my wife proved,  women who are taking up the sport and could use some quality equipment at a good price.


  1. Good review. Sounds like everyone enjoyed their time out on the water even though it is freezing and tough most days here. The Warm River holds a lot of memories for me.

  2. Nice family tag-team review. Sounds like a good product at a fair price.

  3. I've always been impressed with the product that Redington offers. Delaney did a bang up job on her review.

  4. I've become more impressed of late--I have 4 wt. Crosswater that I really enjoy, and I have it because it's affordable. That said, I had some experiences with Redington rods that disappointed me when I used them to chase salmon in southeast Alaska about five years ago. From what I've seen, the product has improved greatly, and I'm happy to recommend this one, both for price and performance.