Banana Rods | Cross 11ft 3.25lb


RRP: from £399 |

When it comes to that special touch, the guys at Banana Rods in France know exactly what it takes to create an absolute work of art. Every little detail has been well thought out and executed exceptionally well, while maintaining a rod which is more than fit for purpose. The build quality and materials used are second-to-none, and offer many options for creating your own rod with a few added touches. For example, being able to choose from a wide selection of reel seats, including the awe-inspiring Alps seats, and whole host of quality ringing options, such as the very popular Fuji K Series. There are also a few handle options to choose from, as well as your preferred whipping colour and your own personalised inscription on the rods. It’s plain to see how much work has gone into the building of each individual rod. All the rods in the range are handmade in France and boast a 10-year guarantee, which gives added peace of mind.

It is now well over 7 months since I first started fishing with a pair of Cross 11ft 3.25lb rods, and I’ve used them virtually exclusively on my local syndicate water The rods have been set up purposefully to tackle this water, which is very weedy and snaggy. When you do finally hook something in this lake, you don’t want to lose it because you are under-gunned, so with that in mind, I use 20lb line because most of the fishing is relatively short-range. This fishing is real hit-and-hold stuff, and you need the compromise between power and balance to avoid hookpulls. You can feel that this rod has enough backbone and power to stay in control of large fish lunging under the rod tip, and it’s not the slightest bit overbearing or poky. What really does surprise me, however, is just how much this power really comes into its own on the casting front, and the rod can punt a lead a fair distance. I was managing to hit ranges of 100 yards+, even with 20lb main line, which is some going.

I opted for the Easy Power handle, which is likened to that of a golf club, and I found it extremely comfortable to hold while offering great grip. I went for the bright red handle option to be different, and judging from how many comments I get about them on the bank, others like them too. If you go to the Banana Rods site, you will see that there’s a vast range of different build options, everything from reel seats to rings, right through to whippings, handle options, and a wide choice of different blanks. I really do rate these rods, and can’t recommend the finish or the quality too highly, I promise you will be tempted to spend your hard-earned cash once you see them.