One of the things that cropped up when discussing the coming season with my friends was the subject of Mullet. These elusive fish have been on our ‘to catch’ list for some time but we have never seriously targeted them. We have decided to remedy this and make a concerted effort to add them to our ‘caught’ list.
In order to make a serious play for the grey ghosts, you need the right tackle, from the rod to the fly, and with this in mind I began to look around for the tools to do the job, but it soon became apparent that as far as the right rod went this would prove to be more difficult than you might imagine. Due to their legendary fighting qualities and soft mouths, Mullet require the right balance of power and cushioning during the fight and therefore a six weight rod and line is recommended by those who are experienced in putting these saltwater torpedo’s on the bank…
So as I said the search for the right rod proved fruitless because of one vital factor, and that is the ability of the rod’s fixtures and fittings to withstand the corrosive nature of saltwater.
Saltwater proof six weight fly rods are as rare as hens teeth, in this country at any rate, and what few samples were available just did not float my boat, I’m getting very fussy in my middle age !
After many hours of searching and deliberating it became apparent that the only solution would be a custom build, which would most likely be quite expensive, unless I built it myself. Luckily I have built rods before and am now quite familiar with the process and techniques required to achieve a good finish on the rod so it was just a matter of sourcing and choosing the right blank along with the fixtures and fittings.
I won’t go into the actual build itself but it takes time and patience and the right tools and some skill, but if you are prepared to go down that route then it can be very satisfying to build a rod to your own specifications and then to catch fish on it.
The Blank I chose is made by American company MHX, and is a fairly fast actioned model. Next was the reel seat and this is an anodised seat with a carbon effect insert from the ALPS stable. Stripping rings and tip ring are Fuji Titanium models and the wire guides are Seymo titanium coated. Whippings are Pac Bay midnight black with metallic silver accents on the joint wraps. The handle and fighting butt were custom made for me and feature dura cork ends.
I am very pleased with the overall effect, quite understated but at the same time pleasing to the eye.
This rod will be my saltwater all rounder from now on, because not only is it ideal for the Mullet, it’s also better suited to the size of Bass and other species we get round here, an 8wt is actually a little over gunned most of the time so a 6wt should give better sport and more fun !