Since their introduction a little over nine months ago, Avid’s Traction Carp rods have become the benchmark by which all sub-£100 models are judged.
Built from Reactive carbon fibre wrapped in a matt-finished 3K weave, each 12ft blank offers a unique take on the traditional parabolic action beloved of carpers. A slow build-up of power cushions the runs and lunges of hard-fighting fish, offering greater control when it really matters.
It’s just the sort of action needed for a modern day big-carp rod that multi-tasks.
The original Traction models carried test curves of 3lb, 3.25lb and 3.5lb, covering everything from solid PVA bag and stick work to middle to long-range Method feeder and straight lead work.
I more than proved the point when live testing a pair of the 3lb models last November at a cold and rather uninviting-looking Boddington Reservoir where a whack of 90-plus yards with a 3oz pellet-laden Method feeder was needed to reach its denizens.
You might think that most of the general heavy-duty casting work would be taken care of by the 3lb, 3.25lb and 3.5lb models. Avid’s development team could indeed have been forgiven for lying back on their super-comfy Benchmark bedchairs and feeling a bit smug.
But not a bit of it – enter the new 2.25lb and 2.75lb test curve blanks. Both rods boast the same Reactive carbon and 3K weave as the originals, but they have a slightly softer parabolic action suiting them to smaller waters, more modest casting distances and surface and zig rig tactics.
To test these attributes, what was needed was a medium-sized lake with a healthy stock of big, snippy fish that could be tempted on a wide range of tactics.
Northamptonshire’s day-ticket Willowbrook Lake, jam-packed with handsome fish to almost 30lb, fits the bill. It’s a superb daylight venue, especially if you’re after wetting the unhooking mat without waiting all day for a run.
First up was the new Traction 2.75lb rod, rigged with a 1.5oz inline Avid lead and solid PVA bag full of micro pellets.
The blank took little persuasion to launch its payload to the centre of the lake, close to a man-made floating island. It could easily have been burdened with a heavier lead and tasked with a far longer cast.
The slightly softer 2.25lb model was kitted out with a zig rig and 2oz lead, cast close to one of the numerous lily beds. It handled the weight easily enough, but it’s definitely not a rod with lots of clout. For all zig, surface and margin work, though, it’s ideal.
I didn’t have to wait long for the alarm to sound, as what felt like a decent fish ploughed straight through two weedbeds before I even had a chance to pick up the rod and tighten down the clutch.
Summer carp in shallow water can be tricky enough to cope with on their own, without having half a hundredweight of weed festooned along the line like so much washing. With the 2.75lb blank, it seemed all would be lost.
But deep in the belly of the blank was a core of steely strength with enough pulling power to drag the beast from its lair. The fish, having gone underneath the weed and out the other side, was still snarky about being hooked, but eventually both carp and weed came safely over the net cord.
What more can you say, other than that these rods are fabulous? I also managed two on zig rigs on the lighter model, and would happily add both to my holdall.
Two more sure-fire winners from the Avid stable. The addition of lighter 2.25lb and 2.75lb test curve rods further enhances the comprehensive Traction Carp range. Ideal for smaller waters, but still more than capable of handling very big fish, the heavier rod is perfect for small bags, Method feeders and zigs.
Its lighter compatriot would make an awesome shallow water zig, surface and margin tool.