Fikkes Fly Hiker Review
Material: Carbon Fiber
MSRP: $600 with 4wt and 6wt rods, aluminum version coming out soon at a reduced price point.
For those folks out there that love nothing more than to hike deep into the wilds to find the secret stash stream filled with overstuffed trout, this my friends, is a dream come true.
Fikkes (a combination of "fish" and "hike") is the result of Jake Carse's desire to be able to pull double (and now triple) duty with his trekking pole. Filling this need Jake has fashioned an outstandingly durable trekking pole that holds within it's shaft two sections of fly rod which when fastened to the end of the trekking pole it becomes an 8' fly rod that is amazingly responsive. Accessing the backcountry stashes is always an adventure, but by bringing the Fikkes with me I was able to ensure better footing and safer travel as well as not having to worry about damaging a 3 or 4 piece rod in the process. The main hiking staff section is NOT utilized for the actual fishing rod, so you don't have to worry about damaging the structural integrity of the rod should you bash up the trekking pole. For anyone that has tried to access the sweet spots with a collapsible rod attached to your pack, or while carrying it, you know all too well that all you really accomplish is reaching your profanity quotient for the year in one fell swoop.
The system is fairly simple comprised of a main carbon hiking staff that utilizes Black Diamond FlickLocks to allow adjustability of the length of the insert as well as hold the final two pieces of the rod. When fully assembled you have a 3 piece 8' carbon rod that at first glance you might think was designed for slamming bill fish in the Gulf of Mexico, but once you get your first cast you will be amazed at the responsiveness of the rod.
The simplicity of the design and the amazing nimbleness of the rod make this a great product that crosses the board for both practical usefulness and top notch design. And after spending quite a few miles using the trekking pole and more than a few casts with the rod I can say that I think this is a product that we should soon see all over the place.
Earlier I mentioned that this Fikkes is pulling double and even triple duty and what I meant is that through more ingenuity Jake has adapted his Fikkes system to integrate a rifle rest so it can also act as a monopod and there is even a threaded end cap for those wanting to screw on a camera for greater stability during distance wildlife pictures or for stability for that long shot by utilizing their new rifle rest. Another great new product is the Spin Casting version of this rod for those that are less civilized...easy there, I was just kidding...but not really.