The opening day of our bonefishing season at Andros South Season is less than ten days away (ahem, but who’s counting, right?). That means our team is in the process of gearing up for those long walks on the flats, and we hope many of you are too.
With that in mind, today we’re coming at you with our thoughts on what we think is one of the most innovative fly fishing products for the wading angler that we’ve seen in a long time; Fishpond’s Quikshot Rod Holder. We think its a game changer for our style of fishing on South Andros, so today we felt it was our duty to tell you why.
We tend to do a lot of wading for bonefish on South Andros. In fact, one of the most alluring attributes of our fishery is that the majority of the time, bonefish can be targeted successfully from both a skiff and/or on foot depending on the angler’s preference. That being said, we find most anglers prefer to fish on foot as much as possible.
Fishing on foot does have its disadvantages, however, not the least of which is the inability to carry multiple rods. This typically forces the angler to choose which species he/she will target the moment they leave the boat (which is most often bonefish in our neck of the woods), leaving them unprepared or undergunned for the possible encounter of other species (barracuda, sharks, permit, tarpon, etc.). Fishpond’s Quikshot Rod Holder solves this problem completely.
As a sold-separately piece of gear, the Quikshot is designed to attach to multiple Fishpond packs (including a backpack, sling, and lumbar pack) and house a fully rigged fly rod at your side. Not just that, its also designed in such that the rod can be removed extremely quickly, giving you time to switch sticks when the need arises.
How It Works
Use of the Quikshot is extremely simple. To house a rigged rod, the fighting butt of the rod is slid into a plastic coated webbing strap to support the weight of the rod. From there, the cork handle of the rod nests snugly into the molded holster, and a super simple bungee/latch system Fishpond calls their ‘Fidlock’ stretches over the handle of the rod to keep it in place. For use on their backpack, a magnetic closure is included with the Quikshot to lightly secure the blank of the rod to the top of the pack to keep the rod tip pointed up at all times (see photo above).
When it comes time to change rods, removing it is even easier. First, use your right hand to pull the bungee tab to release the Fidlock (see photo below). This frees up the handle of the rod, while the butt section strap and magnetic closure around the blank of the rod keeps the rod in place.
Next, the rod is easily pulled free by simply yanking away from the pack to break the magnetic closure holding the blank of the rod and up to slide the butt section out of the webbing loop.
And that’s all there is to it! You don’t have to be delicate in the slightest, the rod comes out super quick with a little practice, and you’re ready to make a shot in seconds!
How Well It Works
In a nut-shell, we found the Quikshot to work extremely well (we wouldn’t be telling you about it if we didn’t). One of our favorite things about the system is just how effortlessly the Fidlock is to operate. A simple flick releases the latch completely when intended, yet somehow stays fastened even when your rod is bounced around, bumped by trees, etc.
We had great success carrying a spare rod rigged for toothy critters like barracuda and sharks while targeting bonefish on South Andros in which we were able to change rods in plenty of time, and even had success carrying spare rods rigged for permit and tarpon, which, is a heartbreaking story for another time (although the Quikshot preformed flawlessly).
It is worth noting however that in stiff winds (such as 20 mph and greater), we did experience the light magnetic closure to release on its own a few times (typically when faced perpendicular to the wind). At first, we thought this was a shortcoming, but later found this to be an important feature when our rod tip found a few low hanging branches on the trail into the flat. The rod caught the sticks, the magnetic closure opened, and our rod stayed intact. For that, we’d gladly welcome the closure occasionally coming loose during a blustery day.
Also, the Quikshot is designed to be removable which is great for travel. However, when not in use we found it to have a tendency to come free from the pack during transport. Luckily, the good folks at Fishpond were way ahead of us by suggesting a super simple ‘semi-permanent’ fix using a zip-tie which you can see in the video below.
As we mentioned briefly before, it should be noted that the Quikshot is only compatible with Fishpond’s latest packs; namely their Thunderhead Submersible series Backpack (shown in this post), Sling Pack (not recommend for right handed casters) , and Lumbar Pack, along with their Cutbank Gear Bag and Windriver Roll-top Backpack as well. In other words, don’t expect to pick one up and throw it on just any old flats pack. That being said, we’re big fans of their latest packs so we don’t see that as a downside in the slightest.
We really dig the Quikshot Rod Holder. We think its a great solution for those interested in carrying multiple rods while fishing on foot. Whether you’re stalking the flats or hiking side channels for trout (mouse/sculpin punch anyone?), its the slickest system we’ve used for multiple sticks, and we think you’ll agree.
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