Rod Build: C. Barclay Custom Muir

When I designed the MUIR 7 foot 3 weight 5 piece, I wanted to create something that we could share.  Something that would make people happy, perhaps even more than our Beaver Meadow small stream rod.  

In describing the MUIR vision rod, this is what I wrote. 

Imagine you are in a time machine and that time machine stops its light speed flight and the door opens.  It opens to a valley surrounded by beautiful mountains, and a river coming right out of the rocks that frame your vision.  Its the late 1800s and you are walking around Yosemite Valley in California and you come upon a man sitting on the side of the river.  Just sitting...  and looking.  

You approach him in your trucker cap with flat flap and sling back, or your fedora and fly fishing vest and you ask him, "what the hell are you doing?"  he answers... " just listening.  I found this new fern I had never seen by the river... so I decided to sit down beside it and make its acquaintance.  I wanted to see what it sees every day."  

You just met John Muir, and he had a vision.  His vision was to encourage all people to go to the mountain tops.  For only at the mountain tops could you understand and recharge, and experience natures grace.  He believed that in that vision you would experience something you never realized you could experience.  

...  This fly rod is far from anything as powerful as what John Muir is, and stands for.  It is however one of those fly rods that helps you experience fly fishing, like it is your mission, or even your religion.  5 pieces, easy to pack not on your back pack, but in it.  

We hope that if John Muir ran into you with this rod, and you pulled it out of your sac...  he would look at you, smile, and know that you "get it."  


John Muir was the founder of the Sierra Club and also the visionary for the National Parks.  In a way, he is our hero. 

So recently when we saw a post from C. Barclay Rods showing us how different our blank could look when a different style is embraced, it turns out we were the one that was most happy.  

We released the MUIR in rod form and also blank form, with hopes that we would build relationships with some custom builders.  Rod Builders that we felt were cut from the same cloth.  Chris is one of those builders.  

There are a couple things that make C. Barclay a different style.  One is his grips.  They are simple and also elegant.  I like simple in design, and I never would have put a grip like this on a MUIR, but now that I see it, I love it. 

He hand signs each rod as most rod builders do, and adds a serial number.  In this case it looks like the MUIR was number 121 in 2016. 

Elegant Silk Wraps and fine thread accents make his work timeless. 

Here is what Chris had to say about our Muir Blank. 

Here is a rod I've been working on for a while. It's a JP Ross MUIR 7' 3wt 5 pieces and makes for a sweet pack rod. Packs down around 18" and handles a 3 & 4wt line. The action reminds me of the old black Scott 7' 3wt 5 piece rods made several years back.


Check him out here.


Thanks Chris for building this rod in your style, you are an inspiration to other rod builders like me.  


JP Ross