New Airflo Bandit Fly Fishing Line | Review by Andrew Harding

What Makes the new Airflo Bandit Ridge 2.0 Fly Fishing Line So Special?

Looking back through my images on a New Zealand typical angling season, there is one glaringly obvious consistency in my photos… the fly line! Having been a huge fan of the Airflo Bandit Camo lines for the past 5+ years, I can’t speak highly enough about their longevity, outlasting ANYTHING else out there by a country-mile, primarily this was the number one drawcard for me personally. That camo tip really stands out in photos!

Bandit Fly Line

I begrudgingly distained any other offerings of the latest and greatest lines in my stubborn thirst for pure consistency in longevity, was it the slickest? No. Was it the best floater? No. It is just a solid performer, lasting season after season when traditionally I would go through a single line every year. Although fairly dated now in terms of line technology, I still use them in both 5 and 6 weight formats due to that amazing “camo” colour configuration. It’s remarkable how this variegated tip section allows you to get soooo close to finicky browns. Cue mid-2023 and we have this amazing line BACK in its original “camo” colour formulation married to Airflo’s latest Ridge 2.0 technology and Superflo coatings. They took what I think was the best…and made it absolutely bloody SUPERB!

A year ago I tested one of the first Ridge 2.0 lines to come into the country, a WF5F Ridge 2.0 Presentation Taper. I took that single line into the Tararua Ranges, north of Wellington on a two-day backcountry mission, thereby forcing myself to use the line and learn all it’s traits. I was super impressed despite not being a “presentation-taper” kind of angler!

Bandit Fly Line

The new Bandit Camo SuperFlo Ridge 2.0 line has all the hallmarks to be the best NZ backcountry, and “all-rounder” flyline Airflo has ever produced, the shoot-ability, taper configuration, and line colour are on-point! And the best part? This thing is slicker than a Manic Marketing manager in a black mesh singlet! Helped no doubt by the Ridge 2.0 technology. This technology allowing for greater line flexibility, a more supple feel in-hand, and less friction through the guides of your fly rod through more rounded, less-harsh ridges compared to the original Ridge technology. I did also notice a really nice colour break on the haul zone which is a nice touch for beginner casters and as with previous models, a laser printed fly line ID is etched into the tip for easy fly line identification and negating the need for those silly paper stickers emblazoned all over your beautiful spools!

The Ridge 2.0 is not at all noisy as some have come to expect from a ridged fly line. The benefits of the ridges are two-fold. Helping to keep the line free from dirt and contaminants, and to lessen the surface friction for superior shooting, plus this thing is hellishly ACCURATE! The Ridge 2.0 lines have a less aggressive ridge profile hence the far quieter movement through the guides compared to the previous versions.

Bandit Fly Line

It’s refreshing to see Airflo have kept the original taper configurations from the original Bandit SuperDri series, why try and change something that is perfect??


One of the other nice surprises with the Ridge 2.0 lines is the way they fall on the water, beautiful concentric circles, no bunching, knotting or other nasty habits. This line is as comfortable throwing double tungsten nymph rigs into the Silly Pool on the Tongariro as I was doing last week, as it is firing a super tight and accurate loop to a free-rising Mataura Mayfly muncher.

As with the previous Ridge version 1, the 2.0 is totally PVC free resulting in a very supple and durable line that won’t crack under the harsh New Zealand sun.


About the author: Andrew Harding is a professional fishing trip enthusiast who spends a huge amount of time on the river. His hobbies are fishing and working occasionally. He's a bloody legend on the river and a pretty flash photographer too plus a Marketing Manager's dream. Check him out on FB here: