Epic 686 FastGlass vs Orvis 686 Superfine Glass

The Texas Angler

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Hey friends, I have narrowed down my next fly rod to either an Epic 686 FastGlass or an Orvis 686 Superfine Glass. I fish primarily the Texas Hill Country for bass, panfish, Rio Grande cichlids, carp, and gar with the occasional catfish or freshwater drum when the opportunity arises. I also fish our local tailwater for trout as well as Colorado, New Mexico, Tennessee and others for trout when traveling for work or with my wife.

I both wade fish and kayak fish and am wanting a glass rod for its feel, its versatility and its durability. I would fish this rod with an Orvis Battenkill Disc III reel paired with a SA Amplitude Grand Slam line primarily, a SA Amplitude Smooth Infinity when trout fishing, and a SA Sonar Titan Triple Density I/2/3 full sink line when fishing streamers in deeper pools.

What I'm looking for in this rod is something that as a 6wt can turn over size 4-6 streamers or poppers while also having the ability to dry fly to unsuspecting trout when the hatch is on. But, I also want the rod to still be fun when the panfish bite which is why I'm so interested in glass for my new 6wt. I also like the thought of having a very durable glass rod in my kayak for the times when a carp or large bass dives under my boat thus bending the rod in half.

6wt glass rods appear to be very versatile tools that can give me what I'm after, so I'm now trying to decide which to get. I've looked at virtually every brand out there and the Epic and the Orvis are what I keep coming back to. I already have the Orvis reel, so I'm sure the Orvis SF rod would pair nicely with it, plus it's more reasonably priced and has excellent reviews, but so does the Epic which just looks like a cool rod. But is the Epic worth twice the price for what I'm after, especially if it's going to be used in a kayak where things tend to get a little more wear than when simply wade fishing? I'd love to know your thoughts.

Have an awesome day!
 

WNCtroutstalker

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Only you can decide about the cost and breakage risk of using in a kayak, but FWIW although it's been many years now I've cast both (actually owned an Epic 686). Loved the Epic, did not care for the Orvis. But YMMV.
 

skunkedalot

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People who fish Orvis glass indicate that the Orvis 866 is a GREAT rod. The fibreglass flyrodder website has many many rviews and opinions but in general- the consensus is that it is a great rod. For what its worth- I fish glass from a yak and have no issues..
 

WNCtroutstalker

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May I ask what you did not like about the Orvis?
As I said, it's been years since I cast it and it was only briefly. But my recollection is that it swung heavy (even for glass) and had a sloppy, slow-recovering tip (again, even for glass).

People who fish Orvis glass indicate that the Orvis 866 is a GREAT rod. The fibreglass flyrodder website has many many rviews and opinions but in general- the consensus is that it is a great rod.
While I haven't looked at reviews of the rod lately, I would agree with the above. I'm sure my view is the minority one.
 

hatidua

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After casting an Epic 686 I was convinced that was my next rod...and then I cast an ECHO B.A.G. Quickshot 8' 6wt. I bought the ECHO. And then I bought the ECHO 7wt, and then the 8wt.

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WNCtroutstalker

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ECHO B.A.G. Quickshot 8' 6wt.
I haven't cast the BAG QS, but just from what I've read about it that was the rod that sprang to mind when I read about the OP's intended use, and to me at least easier to be rough on a sub-$300 rod that one that costs at least 50% and perhaps upwards of 100% more. But sounds like the OP has done his research and narrowed it to the Epic and Orvis, which is of course fine.
 
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