Expert Review: Temple Fork Outfitters Axiom 2-X Fly Rod

This review is my honest opinion of the fly rod, which I purchased with my own money in February of 2021.

The Temple Fork Outfitters Axiom 2-X Fly Rod.

All photos courtesy of Danny Salinas

Published on

About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the fly rod, which I purchased with my own money in February of 2021.

My take

For intermediate to advanced anglers looking for a light ultra-fast action rod to throw big flies or looking to cut through the wind with ease, this is the rod.

About this rod

  • Model: Temple Fork Outfitters Axiom II-X 890-4
  • Rod Length: 9’0”
  • Rod Weight: 8wt
  • Rod Pieces: 4 piece
  • Rod Material: Graphite - Kevlar/Carbon Fiber

About me

  • Preferred fishing style(s): Specifically for streamers and saltwater fishing, but I use all types of fishing styles
  • Experience: 10+ years of fishing experience

Test conditions

  • When I bought this: February 2021
  • Reel Paired with Rod: Redington Grande
  • Line Paired Rod: Rio Warm Redfish WF8F
  • Days tested: 15 days
  • Waters I’ve used it on: Mainly chasing redfish on the saltwater flats in Texas, but also a few times on the river for bass
  • Species targeted with rod: Redfish and bass

How it performs

Casting Ease
3/5
Durability
5/5
Performance
5/5
Quality
4/5
Versatility
3/5

What I was looking for

I was looking to upgrade my old Fenwick Aetos 8 wt which didn’t get along very well with the salt and had corroded. I was looking for a saltwater-specific rod that I could use for chasing redfish here on the flats in Texas.

Why I chose this gear

I ended up settling on the TFO Axiom II-X after seeing it at a local fishing show where I lived and after getting the opportunity to cast it. The price point was attractive, it was made for saltwater fishing, and it wasn’t overly heavy. The other rod I had considered purchasing was the Redington Predator.

View of a boat and a fly rod in a body of water.

What I love about it

  • Quality: The quality of this oversea made rod is great, the guides are well wrapped, and the quality of the cork should last for years to come. The rod still looks new after 15+ days out on the water.
  • Versatility: This rod is made for one thing; creating a lot of line speed and throwing big flies. I can fish this on rivers with big bass flies, or use it for cutting through the 20 mph winds like the ones we have on the Texas coast.
  • Use Case: If I am throwing big flies or fishing bigger waters including rivers and saltwater flats, this rod I choose.
  • Action:
    • Power: This has plenty of power to create a lot of line speed when casting, but also has plenty of backbone for fishing big fish.
    • Line speed: Speed, speed, speed. For those excellent casters, this will provide all the speed needed.
    • Ideal casting distance: This rod can handle casts from 40 ft to 80 ft with ease.
  • Weight: The rod I have is an 8wt one which I paired with a Rio Warm Redfish WF8F. It can handle an overweight line though, so pick a line specific to what I am targeting whether that’s a bass or any of the saltwater tapers.
  • Literal Weight: This rod comes in at 3.5 oz, which allows me to cast all day without having a dead shoulder by the end of the day.
  • Length: This rod only comes in a 4-piece 9-ft length, which is the industry standard for most rods nowadays. If I am looking for a niche size I will have to look elsewhere.
  • Grip: The 8wt model comes with a comfortable full wells grip and a fighting butt.
  • Build: The TFO Axiom II-X rods are built in Korea as are all TFO rods.
  • Aesthetics: This rod is for anglers who like blue. It features a beautiful bright blue blank that sticks out.
  • Warranty: Temple Fork Outfitters includes a no fault lifetime warranty for all its rods.

Issues I’ve encountered

  • Versatility: Versatility is limited as this is a purpose built rod made to chunk big flies and to maximize accuracy at distance.
  • Action:
    • Ease of casting: This rod is not made for beginners. There is an ultra fast action that takes a little bit of getting used to when you first start casting it. While I’ve been fly fishing for several years, I’m fairly new to the world of saltwater fly fishing and there was a little bit of a learning curve before I could get the most out of this rod.
    • Accuracy: This may not be the most accurate rod ever but it still will get me pretty close every time.
    • Delicacy of presentation: For those looking for a delicate presentation rod this may not be right, as this rod is a “stiff” ultra fast rod made to produce line speed.

Favorite moment with this gear

This rod has been with me down on the Texas coast several times over the last 18 months of owning it. While no particular moment stands out, it's always a joy when I see a tailing red and know I can place fly within a fighting chance of getting a bite.

Value for the money vs. other options

I’ve been happy with this rod even though it took a little bit longer to get used to the ultra-fast action. For intermediate or advanced anglers, I would highly recommend this rod for saltwater adventures. If less advanced, I think the recently released TFO Mangrove Coast is a much more forgiving option with a cheaper price point.

Final verdict

For those who are intermediate to advanced anglers looking to maximize distance while maintaining accuracy, this purpose-built rod with its beautiful bright blue blank is ideal. This rod can help cut through the wind on the coast, or throw that big streamer on the lake or river with equal ease.

Selling Temple Fork Outfitters on Curated.com
Temple Fork Outfitters Axiom II-X Fly Rod
$429.95
Fly Fishing Expert Danny Salinas
5.0
Danny Salinas
Fly Fishing Expert
Danny here! How can I help?
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Written By
I spent 10 years chasing the music dream playing bass for Cody Johnson, Josh Ward, Clayton Gardner and others, but most recently my career has been focused on the information technology realm as an auditor and consultant. While I do not travel nearly as much as I did when I was a musician, I do stil...

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