Re: Orvis Helios 2 9' 5wt tip flex
I have fished Helios (original) in #'s 5, 6 (in Montana) and 8, 9 (in the Bahamas). I disliked the 5, the 6 was good, the 8 was easily bettered by the 9 which was OK. I have not fished but have cast a bunch of H2's. I blind cast the two 5-weights switching off with a great casting friend and the tip-flex easily bettered the mid and was a significant improvement over original Helios. I agree with the reviewer; it is not a great leap ahead of the competition but is now a contender. The surprise was the 8-weight. The original version was no bonefish rod but this one is a powerhouse and smooth and easy to cast well on top of it. By far the best H2 I cast, though I look forward to trying the 8 1/2'/#4 which was not yet available at the time I sampled them.
I have postulated that the original tapers lacked sufficient low taper power reserves, OK in a #4 but not in an 8-weight. I thought Orvis should introduce a limited sub-category of Helios (Helios+ ?); kind of like Sage originally did with TCR, with heavily revised and beefed up tapers for anglers pursuing gamefish in more demanding environments...instead they brought in a new guy and re-did all the tapers. Good move, Orvis.