A Review Of The 2021 Airflo TRC Fly Line

I last reviewed the Airflo TRC (Tongariro Roll Cast) line around two years ago, the upshot was, for someone who predominantly roll casts on the Tongariro River, it was an absolute gamechanger, however it did have a couple of areas requiring some delicate tweaking which have been addressed in the updated version. Manic and Airflo have gone back to the drawing board to make a proven concept even better. 

Superflo TRC Fly Line from Airflo

Roll casting has a myriad of benefits when fishing long leaders and heavy flies on the Tongariro, here’s my main three reasons why you need to have a good roll cast in  your fly fishing kit:

  1. The reality is you can fish that water others cannot. Right up against tree-lined margins and cliffs, where a conventional overhead cast isn’t possible. 
  2. A roll cast keep the flies well away from your body! Getting a glo-bug in the face is not a fun experience, so a roll cast really shines in this regard, especially in gusty winds.
  3. A well-timed roll cast allows you to drop your flies right next to your indicator, not straighten out, this results in a VERY rapid descent into the strike zone on the river bottom, giving you several metres more drift per cast, which is often the difference between a hook-up or not.


I had the opportunity to put the updated Airflo Superflo TRC line through its paces on a trip last week. I had no knowledge of the changes made in this new version, so could give a good account of my thoughts prior to finding out what had actually changed by comparing to the old Airflo TRC roll cast line I had used the previous three days.

Andrew Harding Fly Fishing The Tongariro River

Firstly the old TRC line was an absolute canon to cast! In the right conditions, almost an entire fly line could whistle through the guides with a full 15ft leader and heavy nymph setup, this on a lightish 906-4 Scott, NZ Special fly rod.  However, mending was not the old TRC’s strong point, the seemingly whispy running line lacking a bit of oomph to stack mend in fast water.


In stark contrast, the new TRC line is an absolute WEAPON for mending, I was sure the running line had a larger diameter and mass, but Rene assures me this is not the case, it’s actually thinner!? But as the result of a slightly longer belly (read: GOOD for roll casting!) and significant changes in the coatings and buoyancy characteristics this allows for less friction on the water. It is a hugely significant change. I mean REALLY noticeable! The changes make the new TRC line a much more user-friendly tool, and I think it will find favour from beginners right through to seasoned pros.

I have always been a believer that mending control, and not moving the indicator through the drift, once in position, is one of the biggest factors for success on the Tongariro, and still stand by that claim. You can see in the video I cut from a few days ago this mending behaviour, this very fast run (although it doesn’t look it from the air) is very tricky to fish correctly. The fish lie mid-stream in the slower water seam, not the faster inner seam, so you have to cast across the fast water to reach this lie. This means repeated stack-mending or side-mending across the faster current without moving that indicator is paramount. The new TRC line absolutely shines in this situation as you can see.

So with this improved mending behaviour, it comes as no surprise that the new TRC line is equally at home roll casting OR conventional overhead casting! It really excels at both, and if you fish a 6, 7 or even 8 weight rod on the Tongariro, you will be pretty bloody impressed with this new version. Other nice little touches are the laser inked fly line identifier of “TRC2 WF 6-8” on the tip loop, the old line had varying inaccurate identifiers from a standardised manufacturing stamp unfortunately.


A good “floater” is often a term you associate with a little surprise a previous visitor has left in the bowl of a public toilet, but not this time, oh my, has this line got buoyancy to burn! It is an exceptional floater! The old line was good, but had a tendency to get sucked under in swirly currents once it had done a few days on the water, the updated TRC line suffering none of these shortcomings, we could confidently point it where we wanted it to go in the swirliest of heads with minimal “sucky-under” at all. This brings me to one of the other facets I loved the most, the colour....


I have always liked blue lines, in the trout’s realm - looking up, what do they see? Hues of blue and light grey, so the tip and belly of the new line are suitably blended to be surprisingly stealthy in “Heron Blue”. With no indicator, I was easily able to target shallow lying fish from the side in the Silly Pool, early morning before the masses waded in past the fish, to flog the water to a foam waist deep!

Roll Casting The Tongariro River

Sight fishing is not a situation this line was designed for, but the subtle blue colour ensued hook up’s came with regularity, assuming I got the delivery on point. This line does not give a subtle presentation as you may have guessed. The running line in bright orange giving a stark contrast for tracking drifts and the change-over colour point seemed to be about bang-on for a lift and cast, loading the rod optimally for my style of roll cast, and no doubt many others.


I have been a huge fan of Airflo lines over the past ten years, and the new updated TRC line does not disappoint one bit, and I know with certainty it will outlast similar lines by a long shot, gone are the days of having to replace a fly line every season due to cracking. These things are utterly durable and sensational bang-for-buck in my opinion and I can whole-heartedly say I think the new TRC line is simply the best Tongariro, method-specific line you can get today.

The team at The Creek Tackle House in Turangi have a demo TRC line spooled up and ready to go, so if you're curious and want to check it out on the water just tell them Manic sent ya.

Brown Trout Success On The Tongariro River