The Redington Crux proved to be a versatile fly rod with good casting power and decent accuracy. At less than half the price of some of the other rods in the class, the Crux offers an exceptional blend of performance and value. The Crux efficiently handles a variety of fly patterns and styles, and can be used effectively on everything from stillwater to rushing rivers. The Crux doesn’t dominate any performance category, but stayed near the top it all of them, proving itself to be a high performance rod at a modest price.
The Redington Crux ranked up in the top tiers of each performance category, with high marks from all our testers in distance, and fish-fighting performance, and very good scores in accuracy and handling. In short, my team and I found it a wonderfully versatile trout rod. That, combined with its modest price — a result of being manufactured overseas — make it the best value, and well worth a look from anyone in the market for a new do-it-all trout rod.
Weight, balance & general feel
The Crux is a bit heavier than others in this class, but a good balance and stiff mid-section give it a relatively low swing-weight. The result is a rod that is easy to cast without unduly fatiguing the caster over time. The grip is nicely shaped to fit a variety of hand sizes — my team all found it a comfortable fit in hand.
The Redington Crux exhibited good power in casting, giving it the ability to reach good distances without extreme effort. The mid-section power of the rod makes it easy to reach that 70-80 foot range for most mediocre casters. The rod noodled a bit with the heaviest flies — big streamers and heavily weighted nymph rigs could tangle up journeymen casters, and novices frequently struggled to throw long casts with big flies — but for most users, the Crux was a powerful casting rod, with enough distance potential to meet the needs of most anglers.
The Crux offers better casting accuracy than some of the other rods in this class, and at least on par with the rest. The Orvis scored well above the Crux — and every other rod we’ve ever tested — and the Winston Nimbus nudged out the Crux in pure casting accuracy, but the Crux was right there with the leaders. There’s a bit of flexibility in the rod’s tip to allow delicate presentations close-in as well as out in the mid- to far-range (40 to 70 feet).
With a fish on the line, the Crux held big fish securely, but with enough ‘give’ to let the chargers run and play enough to tire out without breaking off. When fighting fish, it was easy to keep their heads up and out of the fast water, thanks to the rod’s moderately stiff spine and solid butt.
In terms of feeling the fish during a take, a few testers missed the occasional hook-sets when they failed to feel a tentative strike on a small nymph. But generally, the rod was responsive with a fly in the water, providing decent feedback as to what was happening with the fly. The Crux also proved adept at handling long mends and line adjustments, thanks to that strong midsection.
The Crux scored well when fishing medium to large dry flies, like those I use most often when fishing the Yakima and Clearwater Rivers. Chucking big foam hoppers and stoneflies fell right into the Crux’s wheelhouse. But the rod also handled smaller dries when necessary — I caught plenty of finicky rainbows slurping small PMDs on small creeks.