The following is a Redington Behemoth review. Behemoth was the second reel I ever bought. The first reel was part of a cheap combo kit that served me well. After a year of wearing out that 8′ 6″ 5 weight rod and reel, I decided an upgrade was in order.
The man working the register at the fly shop was the one who set me up with it. The price was in my range, and he mentioned the reel’s strong drag and said that the 5/6 was the right size to use on the fish I planned on chasing.
After the first time out, I was hooked on this reel. Sure, some others are nicer, but for the price, the Behemoth might be the best reel you can get. An angler of any experience level would enjoy using it. And if that doesn’t convince you, then below I’m going to go more into detail.
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What’s in the Box?
Below, I’m going to give a quick overview of what’s in the box. I’ll give a quick rundown of what the reel features and how it’ll benefit you when you’re out on the water.
Using a carbon fiber drag system, Redington set out to make the strongest drag in its class. They succeeded. The knob for the drag is located on the side, and you can easily cinch it down to ensure a fish won’t run too far from you.
The Redington Behemoth fly reel comes with a nice, protective reel pouch that you should use whenever transporting the reel. It’s nicely sewn and has just enough protection to save the reel from serious damage should it be dropped or squished between heavy items in the back of your boat.
The spool on this reel is very deep, so be prepared to put some backing on it. This is great when you get up to larger sizes and are worried about a saltwater fish spooling you. This is not so important when chasing trout or bass.
Who cares about these nowadays, anyway? It seems like a waste of paper to me, but it’s in the product box when you order it. There’s a lot more info about the reel found online, so these little booklets seem to just be a throwback to pre-internet days of buying fly fishing gear.
Redington Behemoth Review Features and Specs
Below, I’m going to go into more detail about all the different features that you can find on a Redington Behemoth reel. For the price, you might be surprised at just how many great features this reel has.
Think about what you’re looking for in a reel and then check out the list I compiled below. You can see which aspects will work best for you and your style of fishing.
I’ll preface this by saying that I’ve used this reel heavily for the last several years. I’ve had no issues with it, and it continues to perform again and again. The reel has fallen in the water, sand, mud and everything between, and it keeps on kicking.
Now, the very first time I took this reel out to the river, it fell off the tailgate of my truck and the handle used to spring the reel completely sheared off. It was still fishable, but if I’d had to put a fish on the reel, I would’ve been up a creek. So, avoid my mistakes and don’t drop this reel handle-first in a paved parking lot.
The reel itself is relatively lightweight. When you take it off, you’ll actually be surprised at how light it feels in your hand compared to what the whole piece of equipment weighs.
The heaviest part of the reel is the drag. This is what Redington was attempting to do by making the drag so strong. The heavy reel is great for spey casters and salmon fishing, though. I haven’t had any issues with the heaviness of my 5/6 weight.
The Behemoth comes in several different sizes.
This gives you a great selection to choose from, whether you want something lightweight for trout, something a little heavier for bass or small saltwater fish, or something heavy for larger fish or for using a spey rod.
Since the drag on the Behemoth was made to be strong, they don’t make smaller sizes. So, all of those small glass-rod anglers who chase small trout will need to choose something different. If you’re looking to chase fish that can pull drag, then this is the reel.
Featuring a carbon fiber drag system, the Behemoth was made to fight big fish. So, if you’re looking to go after fish that will zip drag off a normal reel, then the Behemoth is the one for you.
The drag system is pretty bulky and strong, so it will add some weight to your reel. If that doesn’t bother you, then I recommend using it. If you want something lightweight, then you should probably look elsewhere.
It has a smaller arbor, making it great for putting on a lot of line. Expect to use backing when first stringing up this reel. This will make it more efficient when you’re chasing big fish that might spool you.
Also, by putting the backing on, you’ll make it easier and quicker to reel in your fly line. That way, you can have the confidence of extra line as well as an easier and quicker-turning reel to get those fish in quicker.
While the arbor can hold a ton of line, it has a retrieve rate of around 9” per turn, which is pretty average in this reel class.
Redington has a lifetime warranty on all of the products they make. Their reels are no different. The original owner’s warranty covers repair or replacement for any manufacturer defect.
The warranty does not cover direct, indirect, consequential, incidental, or any other type of damage resulting from the use of a Redington product. You can, however, easily request new pieces or products if broken, for a fee.
This reel is un-machinable and die-cast. This gives you a strong reel that will provide unmatched durability while fishing. It’s heavy due to the drag system, but the reel itself is surprisingly light.
I’ve used this reel during days when temperatures got to the single digits and on days when the temperature was 100+ degrees. It’s able to power through all of it and keep on chugging. I haven’t had an issue yet with durability.
On top of being very practical, this reel is also aesthetically pleasing. It comes in six different colors, allowing you to completely customize the color scheme you would like to have on your setup.
On top of it all, the design looks great as well. The metal material shooting down from the arbor to the frame makes it look like the sun and its rays shooting out from the horizon. If looks are important for your gear, then check out the Behemoth.
Thanks to all of the different sizes that Redington uses when making this reel, you can fish for just about any species you’d like. The smallest is a 4/5, so brook trout or pan fishing might be a little overkill, but it’s possible to fish and have success with it.
This reel is made to go after fish that could potentially peel drag off your reel. So, chasing smallmouth, largemouth, and big trout is mostly what I use this reel for, and it works great. The drag has helped me land some very large fish.
The larger models are great for chasing bigger freshwater species such as muskie, pike, or running salmon. These bigger models can also be utilized for catching large and hard-fighting saltwater fish, such as tarpon, bonefish, redfish, or whatever you feel like catching.
The Behemoth doesn’t have a great sound the way a click and pawl does. It has a nice little zip that of course will sound great to any angler, but if you’re looking for a louder noise, then you should look elsewhere.
Personally, I like the smaller zip this reel has. I don’t need anybody else knowing I’ve got a fish on taking drag. I can hear the quiet zip of this reel, and that’s good enough for me.
Something that I’ve found unique to Redington is its soft, molded ergonomic handle. It’s not something that I find it necessary to have on a reel. In fact, it may not do anything at all.
However, I really like the way it feels. It fits nicely in between my fingers and makes me feel like I have a better grip on the reel. Again, it may not actually do anything, but it has a very satisfying feel to it.
On top of being able to hold your fly line, the Behemoth will hold a lot of backing as well. This is perfect for when you’re out chasing big fish and you’re afraid you might get spooled.
It can hold 200 yards of 20-pound backing. If you wind up getting spooled with that much line on your reel, then that fish just wasn’t yours to land that day. Also, the fact that the arbor is seated in a V pattern will allow you to hold more backing than normal and will also allow the backing to settle in better on your reel.
This is something unique to the Behemoth. The drag knob on this thing is huge. This comes in handy when you need to quickly tighten down the drag. You can easily find the knob on the side of the reel.
Also, the fact that it’s so big means that your drag isn’t either super tight or super loose. You can keep it on light, medium light, or whatever you see fit. You can easily slide the drag up to medium strength when fighting a fish.
Redington Behemoth Review: My Personal Thoughts
- Pros: Strong drag, great price, range of sizes
- Cons: Weight, the drag system unsealed
Overall, I’m very happy with this purchase. Other than that first incident when the handle sheared off, there have been zero issues with this reel.
If you do wind up with this reel falling in the sand or the mud, then ensure you give it a good rinse in the river and again when you get home. The drag system is unsealed, and that extra material could mess up an otherwise great system.
The price is also wonderful. It’s such a great reel for under $150. Any angler at any level of expertise would be happy to use this reel. The weight could be a small issue, but it has yet to bother me on day or weekend trips.
I’ve mostly used my 5/6 reel for chasing trout and bass. So far, I haven’t had any issues with it and it has been a great in-between reel. Throwing large bass bugs hasn’t been an issue, and I also haven’t had any issues with throwing tiny nymphs to trout.
This is a wonderful reel that just about any fly angler would be happy to own. I bought it as an upgrade from my cheaper combo setup and have loved it ever since. I’ve borrowed other rods and reels from friends before, but I almost always prefer the Behemoth.
The drag system is wonderful and has saved my bacon many times when I’ve hooked into a larger fish. If you’re looking to go after big fish and want to utilize the drag system, then I can’t recommend this reel enough.
So, if the above information sounds good to you, then you should hop onto Amazon and check out the Behemoth. It’s a great reel, and you won’t be sorry that you purchased it. Check it out!