In 2020 I’ve been branching out a bit, trying new to me rods and reels to see what else is out there. In my purchases, I’ve tried to concentrate on items under $200 which will reach a broader purchasing audience. For the review today, I’m going to walk you through the Fenwick HMG spinning rod. The one I bought is a 7’0 Medium Heavy. My original intention was to try it at the coast to fight bayside reds and specks but seeing as how the pandemic has halted most of that action, I settled for testing it on some local bass.
About the Fenwick HMG Spinning Rod
The Fenwick HMG Spinning Rod has features that Fenwick is known for when it comes to fishing. This rod has a carbon bound rod blank that is spiraled with carbon threads, offering unparalleled strength and precise action. The Fenwick HMG Spinning Rods’ spiraled carbon threading throughout that creates unparalleled strength, while providing superior responsiveness. This will deliver the lightest strike directly into the angler’s hand. The HMG Spinning Rod also includes tough Fuji titanium guides and a durable handle made from premium AAA cork, that even in wet conditions, you will never lose your grip. The Fenwick HMG Spinning Rod is lightweight, comfortable, and an excellent choice if you want power and performance. Backed by a limited lifetime warranty, the Fenwick HMG Spinning Rods deliver everything that anglers need to properly utilize their favorite finesse techniques.
The Good Stuff in the Fenwick HMG Spinning Rod
With some spinning rods, a Medium Heavy isn’t really much more than a Medium. With the Fenwick HMG, it’s a true MH. Even the weight rating shows it accurately as a 3/8 to 1 ounce. The backbone on the HMG is truly legitimate too. I fished in grass where the bass tend to bury up and had no trouble torqueing the fish up. How often can you do that with a spinning reel?
Usually with the beefiness in a Medium Heavy you don’t get sensitivity but again the Fenwick surprised me. At one point during testing I went full on finesse with a 1/16th ounce weight and a small four inch Roboworm. I could still feel the takes and even the weight ticking through the grass. I didn’t miss any hookups either.
The aesthetics of this rod are really nice. I appreciate the carved full AAA cork that has an ergonomically lathed finish, the matte blank mixed with graphic detailing, and the appearance of a much more expensive rod. It’s a stunner in a classic touch kind of way rather than a screaming neon color kind of way. The Fuji guides are better quality than a lot of sub $100 rods have and the hook keeper is a legit hookkeeper, not just a glorified staple.
A small feature but one I really like is the double retaining rings on the reel seat. I think we all might have had a ring get a little loose and a reel wobble too much or even fall off. The double ring seat is a really nice touch to ensure that it won’t happen.
Points of Improvement
I would love to see the backbone in the Medium Heavy put into a different taper so that I could get MH strength that could throw 1/8th ounce baits. It’s hard to throw finesse with the Medium Heavy, and it really wasn’t intended for it but I’d love to see it.
While I love a full cork handle, I know a lot of people prefer a split grip, especially on a spinning rod. Offering an additional grip style might bring new users to the line. I’d also like to see them move away from the plastic reel seat rings and go toward an aluminum option.
I have no idea why it took me this long to fish a Fenwick. I really appreciate the price point, the thought that went into the design and the rod performance is better than a lot of rods priced $50 more. I can’t wait to get this rod salty and put it to the test under the strain of a big redfish. At $99, I don’t know why more people aren’t already fishing the HMG from Fenwick.