I’m going to go straight into it, best and funnest rod I’ve ever cast! Usually spey rods these days are geared up for the ever increasing popularity of shooting heads, not a bad thing by any means, but throw in some marketing regarding their versatility with all lines, then there’s usually a wolf at the door. The Epic was truly progressive / responsive. This rod threw effortless tight loops, and accurately placed casts, even at 130 ft. thanks to the quick tip recovery! Even lazy casts, dead straight!
A 12 weight rod should do a few things well. It needs to cast a 12 weight line. It needs to cast the size flies you would expect of a 12 weight - billfish flies, aerodynamic dogs like big crab flies, and oversized poppers and gurglers that generally look like seagulls ploughing into a stiff breeze. And it needs to pull hard on big fish. The Boca Grande does this very, very well.
Being somewhat of a fan of the Epic fibreglass range for the past couple of years and having enjoyed the soulful experience they offer fly fishers I have to confess I wondered “why on earth is Carl of Epic bothering with Carbon”? Hell that is such a well catered and competitive market - right?
For the past forty years, like most of us, I've been in love with stiff fly rods. They kept getting stiffer and faster, and they couldn't get fast enough for me. Recently, the top end rod makers have been offering softer, gentler, more 'fishable' actions. Maybe its because al lot of us are getting older and our pace is slowing a bit, but a lot of young anglers have been taking the slow lane as well. One reason is, simply, that the stiff rods are too hard to bend. They lack the cushioning feel of the classic medium action and demand a fine tuned sense of timing and a sophisticated stroke. The Epic 690-C, and it's little sister, the 590-C, have been a revelation to me.
Andrea and I have been beating around on the 590C (Andrea) and 690C (myself) for slightly over a year now. First impressions; mmmm black, I love the image of the raw carbon in lightly sanded state. At this point of the inspection phase I realized they are crazy light for a 5 and 6 line. Who doesn't love a light rod?
Well, I've been fishing this rods for 2.5 weeks since completing the build of my 686 (Green). Not only is the rod F&CKING EPIC, but it casts tight loops, very accurate caster, has a great feel and response, and the rod has a great backbone when needed
Epic fiberglass fly rods are unique in that they are they are the only production rod in the world to be constructed using a fully unidirectional S-2 Glass fibre material. Even today, most fiberglass fly rods are constructed using older E-Glass material - And of course that old school glass feeling is a very real part of the affection many anglers have for 'glass'