Just before Christmas I was privileged to visit Browning’s German HQ and give their four new Hyper Carp Method rods a waggle.
Right away I felt these would be perfect for commercial fisheries back home, although at the time Browning seemed uncertain whether they would be available in the UK. However, I banged on and on to the company to release them, and to send me a couple of samples in for a live test. These the makers eventually did, so now I can deliver my verdict.
Now, Browning’s Sphere feeder rods are among the best money can buy, and these Hyper Carp Method rods are not a poor man’s version of these. They have an altogether different feel and action. There’s enough flexibility in the blank to pan large skimmers and bream without fear of hook pulls – the cushioning effect kicks in high up on the second section. This gives the mid-section a good deal more backbone, which you’ll really appreciate when the rods are being stressed to the limit.
All this and more I was to discover at Clattercote Reservoir, whose resident carp were wide awake and raring to go. My chosen rod from the Hyper Carp Method range was the 12ft version, which I reckon to be the pick of the bunch. With an 80g maximum casting weight, it has the length and three-piece build specification to launch a flatbed Method feeder a very long way. In my hands, however, it felt most at home with feeders up to around 40g.
The guides (including those on the quivertip) have sufficient inner diameter to allow the safe passage of 10lb shockleaders, which you need on most feeder venues requiring a mega-chuck.
Well, I hear you say, there are already dozens of long cast feeder rods on the market. What makes these from Browning so special?
For a start, the Hyper Carp Method will cope with all sizes of carp with some style, yet has enough flexibility to stay in touch with bream and skimmers right up to the net. Distances of 80-100 yards can be reached without you needing to be a tournament caster! And the price is remarkably reasonable for what you get.
The live test, I’m relieved to say, proved that the Hyper Carp Method rods are every bit as good as I’d hoped, and then some.
Once I got used to the blank’s fast taper action I was hitting the reel clip with a loaded 30g feeder at around 80 yards every time from a seated position, while standing up and giving it a proper whack I was getting past 90 yards. That was using a 4000 sized reel without a shockleader. I was left wondering how much further I could push its muscular cousin – the 12ft Hyper Carp Method Distance rod, with its £149 price tag – if it were fitted with a big reel and a shocker! This beast will chuck a 100g feeder with ease.
Back to the rod on test, and its fish-playing action proved remarkable. Even when subjected to huge pressure from proper lumps it showed no signs of locking up. After a few bream had put in an appearance not a single fish of either species was lost – which, as any Clattercote regular will tell you, is impressive.
The Hyper Carp Method is the best rod of its kind and at its price that I have ever handled.
Okay, the multi-banded Euro colours of the quivertips may not be to everyone’s liking. But I’ll tell you this – you certainly can’t miss them which, to be fair, is the general idea.
This was one of the best live test days I have ever had, made even better by the presence of Mark Eves and Phil Ringer, who are highly entertaining, class angling acts.
Price: £139 (but shop around and you’ll find it cheaper)