June 16, 2020
The Mission is Orvis’s new premium, U.S.-made two-handed rod series. They come in sizes from an 11'4" 3-weight up to a 15' 10-weight for everything from trout and river smallmouths to steelhead and big Chinook salmon.
With the Mission, Orvis rod designers set out to make a two-handed rod that is more intuitive, and easier to cast. Orvis put nearly three years of research and development into the series, first with prototypes in the lab, then an internal group of elite casters, and finally with a much larger group of field testers and professional guides. They started with some construction improvements borrowed from the Helios 3 series, building greater hoop strength with less material, and ended up with a rod that is not only more durable, but has better tracking and less vibration than previous Orvis two-handed rods.
Our tester used the lightest in the series with a 240-grain Spey Lite Skagit Head and a range of Third Coast Textured Spey tips on small to medium freestone trout rivers, swinging a range of flies from smallish Sulphur Soft Hackles and Sparkle Minnows to large tandem streamers like the Drunk & Disorderly. He also used the rod with and without an indicator to dead-drift mobile flies like Pat’s Rubber Legs and Beadhead Woolly Buggers and to drift/swing flies through obvious slots, seams, and other feeding lanes in places where a single-handed rod wouldn’t cut it.