Regular readers will know that I love a budget pole. As I have written many times over the last few months, the quality of the poles that you can now pick up for under a grand is better than it has ever been. However, the pole that I have tested this month is truly exceptional.
With an RRP of just £499, the Colmic Proto Carp is not only very affordable but, given its performance at its full length of 13 metres, it offers exceptional value for money too.
It is interesting to see the philosophy that Colmic has adopted when it comes to the package and I think that it will prove a big hit among UK anglers, largely because it is so different from anything else that’s on offer. In a nutshell, it has stripped what is an awesome pole back to its bare bones, which is why such a high-performance product is available at such a modest price.
All you get for your money is the 13m pole and two top kits. That’s it. Extra top kits, cupping kits and spare sections are, of course, available (prices below), but Colmic has only supplied the main items that it knows every consumer will use.
So, what about its performance? I started by elasticating the two supplied top kits, which I was very reassuringly told can be used with any elastic, however strong it may be!
I threaded them up with Colmic’s hollow elastic, one boasting the lightest 4-6 grade that the pole is supplied with and another the slightly heavier 8-10. I saw no point in fishing any shorter than the 13 metres at which the pole is supplied and at that length it performs brilliantly. The finish makes it a joy to ship in and out and at 13 metres it is as good as many that command two or even three times the price tag. It is stiff, responsive and, because it is only designed to be fished at 13 metres, surprisingly slim too.
As anyone who has fished Barston Lakes lately will tell you, the venue’s F1 stocks are now absolutely huge! Fish to 4lb are commonplace and, with the lake being so shallow, when hooked they simply swim straight out into the lake, making it a real tug-of-war until you can turn their heads.
As expected, the pole performed brilliantly with all the strength tests that I could throw at it and I soon had a glistening netful of F1s and bream staring back at me. I don’t know how the UK market will respond to a pole that is ‘only’ available at 13 metres but there are a lot of anglers who don’t fish any further out than that, especially among the older population. I think it is a great idea, though, and feel sure that it will hit a real niche in the market.
If you are an angler who doesn’t fish further than 13 metres, this pole is definitely worth a look before you part with your cash.
COLMIC PROTO CARP
Package: 13m pole, two tube holdall, two spare power kits, half butt extension.
Spares: Power kit: £51.90;
Side Puller Kit: £35.90