The Winston Boron Plus 5wt 9’0″ showed up at the fly shop a 2-3 months ago…..
It all started when my Winston rep arrived for his yearly visit to fly shop to introduce the new Winston lineup to the staff. New for 2016, the Winston Boron Plus Fly Rod. The rod features included larger stripping and snake guides, a faster/light taper to the blank, and last new winston green full anodized aluminum reel seat. As a angler loyal to Winston for most of my fishing career, my rods range from the delicate 3wt fly rods for dry fly fishing to the harder working Boron IIISX fly rods for the saltwater. My last Winston rod purchased was their new microspey 4wt boron III MS fly rod. Probably the best rod I have in the arsenal right now and I use it a ton. If you are looking for a lighter trout spey. Booya!
When this rod arrived to the fly shop, I thought it was a demo rod as reps will sometimes send demos to fly shops and then we forward it along to the next shop so the territory is able to test the rod on the water or in the back of the shop. However, this rod was different. The first thing I noticed was my name inscribed just above the Winston name. Winston believes in craftsmanship and one of these finer qualities is getting your name inscribed into the rod. All my Winston’s have my name inscribed just above the model and weight of the fly rod. I would always recommend this on any Winston rod you purchase. This stick was beautiful, winston green all the way down to the reel seat.
Unfortunately, it took almost a month to get this rod on the water. I have been swinging streamers and wet flies for the past couple of months and truly really haven’t thrown a single handed rod unless I was guiding or instructing. Rigging up this rod with both a sinking tip fly line and nymph line, I was ready to hit my local spring creek trout fishery. The sinking line was a RIO streamer tip WF5/S6. A 10ft sink tip line that is fast sinking and gets flies down on the rocks. I have fished this line for 5+ years and find it is perfect for my local streams that are smaller in width no deeper than 4-5 ft in the holes. My nymph line was a New for 2016 line called the RIO Single Spey Line. A great nymph or wet fly line that has a larger/thicker body in the rear and a great presentation taper near the leader.
Fishing all day with this rod with both particular fly lines, here are my thoughts. First, the rod is extremely light and powerful. It was fishing coneheads, articulated 3-4″, and fish skull streamer flies with ease. A 5wt don’t forget! Not saying that I was casting over 50ft or so, but the accuracy and power was everything I imagined it would be with this particular fly rod. Nymphing the holes, I found that it even had the presentation skills while having the ability to feel the action of the fly rod for such a powerful rod. From just a setup with a small New Zealand strike indicator with no split shot to the thingmabobber with a couple split shot before the point. Equally as pleasant to cast and the rod still have the lovely Winston feel. You could truly feel the line load the rod perfectly.
As with most rods from Sage, Scott, Orvis, and Winston, when you reach the top end, you truly get the best of the best from each manufacturer. However there are many subtle differences between these manufacturers when producing fly rods and their craftmanship. To keep it simple, I will note only the new toy from Winston. Winston incorporates a more progressive taper, meaning power in the butt section, feel in the tip “Winston Feel”. Hard to describe until you get a rod in your hands. Secondly, craftsmanship is noticeable up and down the rod. From the faster guides to the new reel seat matching the blank, the components are made to withstand the most harsh conditions, while having the ultimate classic look. The Boron allows for a deep reserve power in the butt section, which on this 5wt, you could feel the heavy streamer and sink tip cast with ease. Last, the Boron Plus is light in the hand compared to its predecessor the Boron III SX. I was totally stoked to get my hands on this rod, fish it, and ultimately have my own. Thanks Winston!!!