I never before have owned an Orvis rod and my current arsenal is from Sage: a 11′ 3-wt. specialty ESN rod and a Sage 000-wt. for the Swift. I a while ago dumped my 5-wt. and 8-wt., since I found they were overkill for my waters and my style of fishing.
But, I over time wanted a fly rod that can throw dries and throw for distance, if needed. The latter I think is important for long and hard-to-reach nymphing runs at big rivers. My Sage 11′ can throw an indicator rig if needed, but no matter what leader I designed, the dry fly throwing was pretty meager. The rod wasn’t designed for that.
So, I bought a 9′ Helios 2 4-wt. with tip flex.
What’s cool about the H2 is that it is both powerful and soft. It’s hard to explain. The rod casts beautifully. It can throw a great distance but with accuracy. Long casts are effortless. Yet, when a fish is on, it has incredible give. I don’t know how Orvis did it, but this is a fly rod with broad capabilities. A generalist.
I’m very happy with it.
And, here is one of the first two fish landed with the H2. A 12″ and, later, a 15″ rainbow. The latter jumped a few yards high when it learned it was hooked. A real acrobat.