First Look - The Hardy Shadow Fly Rod!

Our first look at the new Hardy Shadow Fly Rod!
The entry level of the Hardy range of fly rods over the last few years has been very impressive, offering amazing value for money complete with the prestigious Hardy badge - aspired to by millions of anglers worldwide! The long awaited replacement for the much loved and recently delisted Hardy Uniqua and Demon models is finally on our radar - but they have been replaced with just one range, the new Hardy Shadow! The Shadow looks like it boasts all the best features of both rods, so we just had to take a look!
A proper Hardy rod bag - we like!
Built on a high performance, fast recovering blank with an easy casting middle to tip action the Hardy Shadow seems to have been designed with a specification that reflects its intended use, the Hardy Shadow Fly Rod is unmistakably a Hardy but it is not a rod built for expert casters or the super rich - this is definitely a rod for everyone!
The 9' #5 Shadow has a good quality Half Wells Handle
Every rod in the Hardy Shadow range has an individually refined action that reflects its intended use. So for rivers, or lochs and anything in between the Shadow delivers an authentic Hardy fishing experience to anglers anywhere and everywhere.
A translucent olive blank with dark grey whippings - nice!
The rod from the Hardy Shadow range we tried out was a 9' #5 - the most popular size worldwide (although not in the UK where the 10' #7 still reigns supreme) and always a good rod to review if you want to get a feel for the whole range. On opening the black cordura tube (same type as the Uniqua came in we noticed) we were pleased to see a 'proper' Hardy rod bag - no corners cut here then.
The reel seat has a top end feel to it!
The 4 sections are finished in a smart translucent green and the top quality Fuji ringset is whipped in a dark grey silk, finished to the usual flawless Hardy standard. Discreet line up dots on the sections are a nice touch too. The handle on this model is a very decent reversed half wells affair, super smooth and with little filler and the reel seat is a smart grey anodised uplocker with a nice gloss finished burlwood spacer and twin locking rings. Models with a full wells handle will have a full anodised reel seat.
We reckon this will be a top seller!
On the first few casts of the rod it became very apparent that this was a very easy rod to cast, and the WF5 Rio Gold we had on it was soon zinging away to very respectful distances. Although not a particularly fast rod, it is certainly no slouch and as such would be up for any test the UK angler is likely to throw at it - or with it. We would be very happy to use this rod from the bank of any small to medium sized stillwater, for medium to large rivers and it would make a great tool for float tubing too. With prices starting at just £259 and coming in all of the most popular sizes from 8ft #4 to 10ft #8, Hardy are sure to be onto a winner with the Shadow!
The Hardy Shadow - Click to Enlarge
The Hardy Shadow Fly Rod Features:
  • Middle to Tip actioned, fast recovery blanks
  • Compact 4 section design
  • Light line models feature a reverse half wells handle with Burl wood spacer and anodised twin locking reel seat
  • Larger models feature a full wells handle with anodised aluminium fitting with twin up locking function
  • Lined butt guides and hard chrome single leg snake intermediates
  • Translucent olive green blank finish, with silver highlights
  • Section line up marks
  • Full ‘AAA’ grade cork handle
  • Supplied in a Hardy cloth rod bag and Hardy cloth covered rod tube

You can be one of the first in the UK to own one of these stunning rods by pre-ordering yours from Glasgow Angling Centre for delivery in June 2014. Ask instore or CLICK HERE to order yours now!