Last week I got an email offering the Dragontail Mizuchi zx340 zoom rod for $100. I bit. It arrived today.

I took it to the Blackberry River at Beckley Furnace in North Canaan, Conn. This is a medium-sized stream at this point, with a lot of pockets and weirdness from a) limestone formations and b) relics of the iron industry. It's primarily a put and take trib of the Housatonic; occasionally some wild fish show up, and smallmouth, and suckers, and bluegills, and alligators...

It's a good place to go if you want to test out a new rod. Barring unusually bad luck, something will bite your fly.

The rod goes from 240 cm (8 ft) to 290 cm (9 1/2 ft) to 340 cm (11 ft). Since I have fished the stream with fly rods ranging from 5 1/2 ft to 10 ft, this is right in the wheelhouse.

I attached a Bushi 9 foot line, about two feet of 3x nylon, and a panfish popper. To the hook of the popper I attached about three feet of 4x nylon and a size 12 Bread and Butter nymph that's quite heavy.

This was a bit more line than the rod could handle at 8 feet, so I fished at the 9 1/2 and 11 ft positions.

At one point I noticed the tip was bending a lot and I thought, this is a very noodly rod. Then I thought this line must be too heavy.

Then I noticed the ice on the line. Eureka. When I de-iced the rod performed just fine.

I fiddled around with different rigs but the bottom line was I nymphed up eight or nine rainbows in the 12-16 inch range without any difficulty other than those I created for myself.

The rod comes with a tube and a sock. The cork grip is long so you can choke up if needed. It also comes with a plug and a universal cap, which is a nice touch.

It's not a particularly fast rod. It's not especially slow either. I like it.

Weather permitting, I will test it out on a little blue line in the next few days. But I can tell already it's going to be a good rod for the purpose.

Here's the link -- not at the sale price, incidentally.

Mizuchi zx340 Zoom Tenkara Rod | DRAGONtail Tenkara