Techy Thursdays - Andrew Harding reviews the Airflo Bandit fly line

To say I’m pretty hard on fly-lines is a bit of an understatement, standing on ‘em, shooting ‘em through the guides with a mandatory coating of abrasive pumice grit, ripping the lines out of streamside vegetation with such force I tend to leave a trail of destruction in my path… even using the fly line as a ferry lead, to shoot a raft across a lake channel are all in the realms of everyday use for me, typically going through at least two lines in a season, until I tried the Airflo Bandit Camo tip.

This thing is awesome, the variegated colour front taper, when in the air is incredibly visual due to the moving colour sections creating a visual symphony of vibration , but when dropped on the water, it blends beautifully, like a long piece of tussock floating at whim on a river’s quest for the sea… Did I mention I love this variegated colour!! It looks super cool on video as well. The Bandit Camo punches true to line weight for me, loads great and short distance but with the ability to fire a long cast to a rising fish at 25m with the grace and ease of a scantily-clad synchronised swimmer.

Its subtle ridges create a reassuring hiss through the guides, eliminating any friction, and boy does thing shoot, but it’s the durability that wins me over, one whole season on the same line is a record for me. NO cracking what-so-ever, unlike my existing crack-whore” lines and it remains almost as slick as the day she was taken from the box, In fact, I’m confident I can squeeze yet another season of central North Island sand-grabbing with this line.

And she’s a perfect floater too… and I’m not referring to what my kids tend to leave in the toilet bowl from time to time… Roily whitewater is no match, it’s doesn’t seem to succumb to the “sucky-under” boils encountered on Wellington backcountry streams, that often render a lesser line dead-in-the-water and that big brown bolting for the bank. If there is only one criticism, it would be that I feel sorry for Airflo they won’t be gaining more revenue from me this coming season when I have a line that has lasted so well… Oh well.

And did I get this line free? NOPE, I paid for it, and would do so again in a heartbeat!

Andrew Harding