The Temple Fork
BVK 7 weight offers BIG performance at a small price
Total Score: 8.5 - GREAT
Any fly angler around is
undoubtedly very familiar with Temple Fork Outfitters. While they have not been
a major player in the fly rod industry as long as some other companies, their
success and impact has been undeniable. Temple Fork prides themselves on making
quality, high performance rods at a very affordable price. This strategy has
helped them achieve explosive success, and a lineup that continues to grown. In
this review, we pick apart the 9 foot 7 weight offering from their relatively
new BVK series. What does BVK stand for you ask? Bernard Victor Kreh, more
commonly known as the legendary “Lefty” Kreh, was heavily involved in the design
and release of these rods. Will legendary design and input equal legendary
Fork BVK 9 foot 7 weight specifications
Graphite blank, new
“tactical series” stripping guides, chromium impregnated stainless snake
guides, flor grade cork, braided graphite reel seat with anodized up locking
features a glossy forest green blank with gold lettering
The BVK rods all
share a similar look of simplistic beauty. While I tend to like some of my
reels a bit more “blingy”, I always prefer rods to be more understated. Perhaps
this is due to the fact that I grew up fly fishing with the old school G. Loomis
rods that featured the (awesome) plain, sanded blanks. At any rate, the BVK
rods should prove plenty attractive for most anglers. The blank is a glossy
forest green color with matching wraps. Lettering is done in gold, while
alignment dots on the ferrules help you assemble the rod correctly the first
time. Reel seats are green braided graphite with anodized up locking rings, and
a small fighting butt finishes off the look.
and reel seat are a clean, attractive design.
The previous recoil
stripping guides have been swapped out in favor of new “tactical series”
stripping guides that have a minimalist appearance. In hand, the rod has a very
nice, lightweight feel to it. At an advertised 3.1 ounces, this rod has an
extraordinarily light weight on paper, but just doesn't feel quite that
light in hand. The cork grip is the right size, but it's quality seems just
fair. More on a few of these points later!
dots on all the ferrules help you joint pieces together correctly.
Real World Test:
Recently, I actually had to borrow a friend's 9 foot 8 weight BVK for about a
month and had a nice experience with it catching some nice Snook. Unfortunately
for several reasons, I was not able to put this 7 weight test rod through it's
paces in salt water, so I instead settled on test casting and messing with small
Largemouth Bass in local ponds.
The BVK 7 weight rod is
very pleasant to cast with several line types. My casting tests and fishing
were done with the Airflo Ridge WF7F Bonefish line, as well as 250-350 grain
sinking lines. The light feel and fast action of the BVK all combine to make
for a satisfying casting tool. For my style, the action of the blank fits me
perfectly for a multitude of situations. It truly is a solid fast action, with
lots of reserve power, but a lighter tip that allows confident casting at all
distances. In super tight out to about 20 feet it does feel slightly stiff,
however it remains accurate and retains some feel. Getting out into more
realistic fishing ranges in the 30-60 foot realm is really the sweet spot for
the BVK. The blank loads nicely, and casting is effortless. A modest stroke
and haul is all it takes....the rod does all the work for you. At mid range
this rod is definitely one of the best around.
This is a
sweet rod to cast at all distances, but especially mid range.
Only when you start
pushing out into the 75 foot range and beyond does the rod require you to work a
bit, but I have to say that I never really felt the rod start to shut down until
almost all of the fly line was off the reel. I am not a strong distance caster
by any means, but carrying lots of line and shooting out to a max of about 110'
was surprisingly consistent for me. There are not too many rods out there that
feel decent to me in close, yet still have the spirit to power out long shots
like this rod. Sinking lines were also easily handled by the BVK. While I
tossed lines in the 250-350 grain range for comparison purposes, as I assumed
the 250 and 300 grain lines were handled easiest. The 350 was getting to be a
bit much, but with a water haul of mid range distance the rod actually had
enough gusto to shoot the heavy line a respectable distance.