NFR Orvis H2 Report

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by FlyFshn'Fool, Nov 13, 2012.

  1. I have to start this tread by stating that I have always been one of the largest non-supporters of Orvis, for as long as I can remember. Why? I couldn't really tell you. I can say that none of their rods ever did anything for me. The whole "Orvis" lifestyle that they seem to push on people rubbed me the wrong way. The Orvis specialty stores never appealed to me, etc., etc. Me and Orvis anything were not going to happen, period!

    Today I had the opportunity to cast both the 9ft, 5wt. and 9ft, 9wt. Helios 2 or H2.....

    What do I have to say about the H2? The H2 is one DAMN FINE rod!

    Cosmetically, this is a very, very attractive rod! The "Midnight Blue" color to the blank is gorgeous and when the sun hits it, it is beautiful! The stripping guides are solid, the proper size (nice and large on the larger rod weights to help shoot line) and very clean. The rest of the rods guides are recoil guides which I really like and the reel seats are very nice (buckeye burl on the lower weights and carbon fiber, if I remember correctly on the larger weights). All of the guides were wrapped straight, clean and neatly. And I know it doesn't matter or shouldn't matter, but the carbon fiber rod tube is bad azz (great graphics on it). Overall, I put this rod at a 9 or 10 out of a 10.

    When it comes to casting, this may very well be the best casting, best feeling rod I have ever thrown and I have thrown a ton of 'em. Both the 5 weight and the 9 weight were tip flex models and lined with true 5 and 9 weight, weight forward floating fly lines.

    The 5 weight was a bit difficult to load under 25-30 feet, but again it was the tip flex model. Once beyond that point, there was plenty of "feel" when the rod loaded. When it came to line speed, this rod had it. Casts between 40-60 feet were not a problem and casting the entire fly line has never been easier. Was the rod fast? Yes, but now where near as fast as say an NRX and not nearly as stiff as an Xi3.

    The 9 weight was a cannon, with "feel". Believe it or not, there was no issue loading this rod at 25-30 feet. So a Bonefish or 'Poon sneaking in on you will not be a problem. When it came to 40-60 feet, it got there easily with one double haul. Casting the entire line again has never been easier! The more line that was carried, the more "feel" there was and the deeper the rod flexed. Again, this is a fast action rod, however it is not extra fast nor is it stiff. I think it is the perfect blend of fast and flexible.

    When it comes to accuracy, it was rediculous. I picked random and various targets from 25-80 feet and every time the rod cast exactly where I was looking. Find a target, manage the line and make the cast, it really was that simple!

    So how do I feel about these H2 rods? Lets just say I am waiting to see what other models they release in January, but as of right now, I am looking at dumping all of my GLX and NRX rods for these new H2 rods! This is coming from a VERY anti-Orvis person!

    Incredible is all I can say about these rods and you owe it to yourself to try them.
    Nooksack Mac likes this.
  2. I'll send you a H2 sticker if you PM me your address...
  3. If I could afford one I would already have a 696 salt model. I like that most people on the west coast do not like orvis, makes the used rods I buy that much cheaper. good write-up sounds like it is a fast progressive taper rod. just what I'm looking for and by the way - I thought I wanted GLX CLASSIC ROD then I had the chance to try one on the water. did not like it at all, the light tip made it almost worthless at short range, it could pound 60 to 90 feet of fly line out with ease and when I find fishing where it is only 60 to 90 ft. casts then I might get one - but I wont be holding my breath.
  4. We are expecting the rods in the shop any day now and will post on the board when they arrive.

  5. Just picked up the mid flex 5 wt H2, this rod is truly amazing.
  6. I cast the original Helios a few years ago and raved about it on this forum. Good to hear they're still making just as good, or better. Alas, I couldn't make myself pay that much for a fly rod, even though it was the best casting rod I've tried. Still want one though...
  7. Seek those who get discounts...

  8. i agree with david, if i didnt get a discount on the H2, i wouldnt have purchased it.
  9. The 5wt H2's are in the shop.

  10. Really awesome rod, pretty cool that the reel seats are each unique to the rod. Leland, by any chance do you know when the gun metal mirage reels will be coming out? I've heard end of December.....?
    miyawaki likes this.
  11. I haven't heard. I'm partial to the gold, myself.

  12. I heard from orvis that the gun metal color is replacing the gold color, i hope that doesnt happen. i like the gold color as well.
  13. The mirage in the gun metal color will be available on 1/11/2013.
    miyawaki likes this.
  14. So an update.....

    Today I brought along my G. Loomis StreamDance GLX to cast side by side with the new Helios 2 (same exact reel, same line, swapped the reel from one rod to the next). The end result, the Helios 2 is still a GREAT rod. I just do not know if it is GREAT enough to warrant a sell off of GLX's to replace them with the H2!

    A quick comparison.....

    The StreamDance GLX loaded just a tad deeper into the blank and required a touch slower stroke. For me, the StreamDance had a bit more feel to it and I was able to cast both rods the same distance (into the backing). Overall weight, the StreamDance may be a touch heavier, but not by much and most will probably not notice the difference. The H2 threw a bit tighter loop and a bit straighter with a bit more accuracy, however this can probably be attributed to the higher line speed that the H2 produced.

    In the end, both phenomenal rods. It amazes me how well that StreamDance GLX casts and fishes, even when compared to today's newer technology! So, am I convinced enough to make a complete switch or even pick up one or two H2's? It remains to be seen, but I am not in any hurry!

  15. The SD GLX in 10' 5 wt. may be one of my all time favorite stillwater and light salt rods, I'll never give up that rod unless the H2 blows me away and I can pick it up for $300.

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