― richard fieldhouse ― THE OFFICIAL FLY PUNK ROD F ollowing on from the rod building article we did in the last issue where we profiled Renato Vitalini, I thought it was about time that I added to the burgeoning collection of rods I own and asked Renato if he would do me a special Fly Punk build. I’ve always wanted to have something special, and 22 | 23 decided that what I was missing was a 9’ 2 wt rod – I follow the long lightweight rod cult. After Renato agreed to build me a rod it then came down to the design – Renato asked what I wanted – I just said – “Do something that would upset the traditionalist”. What a master Renato is, what he came up with is the finest fishing tool I have ever seen, never mind owned. A verde ithaca green 9 foot 2 weight rod with an epic handle design and a reel to match.
Here’s the build photos of the rod: Renato mentioned that he and his family would be making a trip to the UK for a short holiday, I thought it was only right that I take him out for a day on one of our chalk-streams, to test out the rod and have a laugh with what seemed to be one of the nicest guys in fly fishing. How true that was. I checked out the location of Renato’s stay and found it was close to a river I had wanted to get to know better for a few years, The Wylye. I booked us in for the day at Langford Lakes (https:// www.wiltshirewildlife.org/langfordlakes) here we could fish a 1 mile stretch of the Wylye all to ourselves, chasing wild brown trout and grayling. We were not disappointed either. Within a few casts Renato had the measure of the place, accurately casting to fish and catching his first sight of wild UK brown trout. Renato had kindly brought along some aptly named beers for refreshment during the day: Suffice to say we had a stunning days fishing along with using some top class rods. My 9’ 2wt is now my go to rod of choice and it even handled some rather large rainbows on a later trip to Slovenia (also included in this magazine). Renato – you are a top guy. www.fly-punk.com