Introduced by Tri-Cast a couple of months ago, this twin-length Splash Waggler is the latest addition to its highly-acclaimed range of XRS rods.
First up, let’s talk about the choice of name. According to Tri-Cast it is due to the number of requests it had from anglers who fish the splasher waggler method.
I am not about to disagree with Tri-Cast, and there is nothing wrong with the tactic - indeed, there once was a time when it was nigh-on unbeatable.
But at all of the fisheries I visit these days, the ‘Splasher’ float has had its day.
Plus, if it’s a long distance job, and beyond normal pellet waggler range, the constant firing of balls of groundbait at a sight-marked float has been outlawed at most fisheries.
Leaving that issue aside, this beautifully-constructed, powerhouse of a rod has an awful lot more going for it than chucking around a big old lump of balsa with a bright orange mushroom stuck on the top of it.
Priced similarly to other rods in the top-end XRS range at £159.99, the ‘Splash’ was primarily designed as an updated version of the award-winning Tri-Cast XRS Pellet Waggler rod, and this, to all intents and purposes, is what it was built for.
It’s a super-responsive, thin-profiled, lightweight, very classy top of the range beefed-up pellet waggler rod, that has all the backbone you need to cast bigger floats, and plenty of grunt to cope with big carp.
The action of the blank is very interesting, and it works in two ways.
Designed to be completely through-actioned from butt to tip, it allows you to quickly pick up line readily and set the hook, while not being so stiff that you risk pulling the hook out on the strike.
Once a fish is hooked the second part of the rod’s action comes into play, giving you a cushioned effect that helps to control the fish, while at the same time providing just enough power and guile to get the fish into the net with the minimum of fuss.
To get a true picture and proper feel for this rod I used it at both the 10.6ft and 11.6ft lengths, at casting distances from 40m-75m, and with differing weights of floats. I much preferred the feel and balance of the rod at the longer 11.6ft length, and found the shorter 10.6ft version didn’t sit too well with a heavier float on it, and does nothing to help with either the line pick-up speed or the blank’s distance-casting abilities.
Without a shadow of doubt it is at its best at 11.6ft with floats of between 10g-30g.
Anything under this casting weight fails to compress the blank and will only result in embarrassment as your cast lands somewhere just past the end of your nose.
Distance-wise, the rod’s casting capacity is linked to the weight of the float being used. Unfortunately, in my opinion the cork handle is probably 3ins too short to be used for really long casts, and feels slightly unbalanced as the hand at the bottom of the short handle cannot generate enough speed when winding it up for a really big chuck.
Having said that, the rod is just so good that I would seriously consider having a separate longer handle made for it, one which I would use for distance casting on big waters.
During the live test on Florence Lake at Suffolk’s day-ticket Hinderclay Fishery, several very large and lively carp were hooked and landed in double quick time. The rod’s all-through action is every bit as good as I had hoped, and if you regularly fish a venue that has some proper kippers swimming around that need to be caught up in the water, then this is the rod for you.