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Andrew Pilgrim

My Wife is a Tart….

If like me you are fortunate to have a fishing mad partner it can throw up some strange problems….. Let me explain.

I, like many, am a bit of a tackle collector. Not the vintage museum exhibit type, more along the lines of slowly accumulating rods and reels and never parting with any. Now for you young whipper snappers having half a dozen rods in your armoury is a good thing, light and heavy float, tip rod, heavy feeder, a pole and maybe a whip, Sorted!. But my first fishing trip was 57 years ago next month and I still have, and use, my late fathers Speedia centerpin I used on that day, and the cane rod it was attached to and I dare say there are a couple of floats somewhere in my collection dating back to the 60s. On a recent “sort out” of my workshop I counted 27  assorted rods, Sea, Fly and Course, which should be enough for even the most dedicated piscatorial tackle hoarder… or maybe not!

My current wife (no not the one mentioned in a previous Blog) got into fishing 7 years ago. When we met she was one of the “I can’t see the point of catching a fish if you aren’t going to eat it” brigade. Obviously she needed educating and a few trips later she was hooked. Now if you have ever done it you will know teaching a complete novice how to fish can be hard work, yet immensely rewarding. Over the years I have taught my brother and my son and various friends and family members the basics of our noble pastime and enjoyed every minute. The wife, who I shall henceforth refer to as Sheena for, as she has just been pointed out to me, that is her name.  Anyhow Sheena quickly reached the stage where she no longer wanted to sit next to me and share my gear, she wanted her own set up, so on my next trip to the local tackle shop I very thoughtfully purchased her a nice beginners 11ft float rod. When I got home I proudly presented her with the rod and she smiled sweetly as she eagerly unpacked it and set it up, as she stood there holding the gift I had bought her her face changed and the smile slowly faded, she looked at the rod, looked at me, then back at the rod. She gave it a little wriggle and then politely informed me that as much as she appreciated the gift of a fishing rod maybe I could have given a little more thought as to the quality of the product and questioned as to whether my love for her should be measured by the amount spent on the gift (£39.99). Sheena actually used considerably fewer words than this, three to be precise, the first two being “This is…” but I’m sure you get my drift .It had never occurred to me that she had become used to using my Shimano and Greys rods! Anyway, she promptly took my hand and had me drive her back to the tackle shop where the offending “piece of…” as she so sweetly described it to the owner was returned and after testing what seemed like every Rod in the shop she walked out with a brand new 12ft Drennan Acolyte rod and a Diawa Legalis reel.

Shortly a matching Acolyte tip rod & Shimano Reel was added and a Preston On Box complete with high back seat and all the attachments completed her set up.

So if you happen to see a tall blonde sat fishing with all the latest gear, please do mention to her how nice the Acolyte rods are, Sheena is very proud of them,

To be honest she has become a bit of a tackle Tart!

But I digress;  The point of this Blog was to write a little review of MY new rod.

Now, I haven’t bought one for years as I am very happy with my 20 year old Shimano Specimen Match rod and my Diawa Harrier Tip rod but I fancied a shorter tip rod for stalking Perch on my local River Colne around Colchester, something sensitive but capable of dealing with any large Chub that I may encounter, so I headed down the tackle shop and returned with?….. Yup you guessed.                 a Drennan Acolyte 9ft Ultra Tip rod. Once Sheena had stopped teasing me for trying to keep up with her I stocked up on bait from the wormery and headed off for a couple of hours on the river.          The recent rain had put some flow in the river and the “Duck weed” was on the move, most of it had settled in my favourite swims !!!

So to the rod…. Super light, thinner than my little finger at the butt end it’s like holding a fly rod. Build quality is absolutely top notch as you would expect, and the curve is soft and progressive but still retaining power in the mid-section should you encounter a ‘lump’. It’s called a 9ft feeder but I certainly wouldn’t fancy launching a 3oz cage feeder into the weir at Cromwell on the Trent but I’m guessing this rod would work well for lighter feeder fishing for skimmers where a stiffer rod may result in bumped fish.

 So how did it do for Perch? Brilliant!…. The lightness and soft tip meant flicking a worm out with a single SSG was an absolute joy and though no monsters on my 3 hour session It was very enjoyable to use when hooked up to a steady stream of fish up to 6oz and I am looking forward to getting a full bend on it in the near future.

 If you are in the market for a quality shorter tip rod you should check these out, in fact have a look at the whole Acolyte range, they really are superb. Just don’t let your fishing wife get hold of them!

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