A tradition that doesn’t frown on innovation
Although the traditions of fly-fishing and its craftsmanship are well instituted, that doesn't mean the field (or more accurately, stream) turns down a good innovation when it sees one.
Aaron's signature mark, for example, is to use a wooden grip, whereas it's more common to make a rod’s handle out of cork for its lightness and water resistance. Although he "started doing it because I loved turning wood on the lathe" the result is a beautiful grip that presented three unexpected advantages.
"First, a wood grip is heavier," says Aaron, "and with modern light reels you almost need some more weight in the grip to balance out the weight of a bamboo rod. Second, they are ultra sensitive. Every single tick from the end of the rod transfers right to your hand with no cork to dampen it. Finally, they stay in mint condition. Use a cork grip for a season and it will look like you've drug it through the mud. Use a wood grip for a season and it will still look brand new. "