Helios™ 4-weight 9' Fly Rod—Tip Flex

Grab this fast action 4 Wt. fly rod when you need a little more power. Made in USA.


2 3/8 oz. 9', 4-Piece, Tip Flex fly rod for 4-wt. line.

We set out on an adventure to make the world's lightest fly fishing rod. Along the way, we also made the world's best.

When the rivers open up and longer casts with large mends become the order of the day, the 9-foot rod comes into its own as the rod of choice. Combined with a 4-weight line you have one of the great combinations of function and sensitivity. The Helios 904-4 Tip Flex is a fast action 4 wt. that combines extraordinary lightweight and sensitivity with remarkable power to offer the angler perhaps one of the best large stream rods ever offered. There is nothing on the market today that can compare to Helios graphite technology and the proof is in the casting. Try one now. You'll regret not trying one sooner. Made in USA.

Rod outfit includes:

  • ZG Helios™ 904-4 Tip Flex 9.5 Fly Rod
  • Mirage II Reel - Gold
  • Hydros Trout Fly Line WF4 - Yellow
  • 125 yards of 20lb Dacron backing
  • Carbon fiber rod tube and cloth rod sack

Learn more about personalizing this fly rod.
Allow 3 extra days for delivery.


Overall: 4.9/5 starsShow Rating Distribution 4.9 / 5 based on 11 reviews

5 stars 5-star:
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11 of 11 reviewers would recommend this product to a friend.

  • 5/5 stars 5/5

    Perfect for the Rocky Mountains - 3/12/2012
    Featured, Expert

    For years, a 9-foot 5-weight has been the 'go-to' rod for fly fishing the Rocky Mountains. For me, the Helios 9-foot 4-weight is my new rod of choice. It's super light, perfectly accurate when presenting a dry fly, and extremely powerful when switching to a nymph or streamer. In my opinion, Orvis has once again raised the bar with this fly rod! - Scott Graham Professional Guide, North Park Anglers, Walden, Colorado

  • 4/5 stars 4/5

    High Expectations - 5/26/2010
    By: from Southern Applachians

    The use of this rod (9 ft, 4 wt, tip flex) is being sandwiched between two similar "premium" rods--a 4 wt, 8 ft and a 5 wt, 81/2 ft.--each from different companies which are touted as "all around trout rods". They seem to be a little more predictable with short to medium range use. I am still experimenting with different types of lines to find a good compromise among multiple issues: tip loading "in close", reduced line diameter (ideally would like to use 3 wt. line for "increased stealth"), use of Floating Braided 5 X 9 ft. Leader and frequent use of #14 and #16 dropper nymphs. This reflects the type of approach required for trout in "small streams in the southern Applachians". This may seem like a lot to ask but it is hoped that this rod will "do in all" in addition to medium and long length dry fly approaches. I would like your recommendation(s) for a good compromise in a fly line for this rod.

  • 5/5 stars 5/5

    The SOHO Slayer - 6/3/2009
    By: from The Mountains, NC
    Top 250 Contributor

    We are fortunate in the south to have some great tailwaters that hold good numbers of large trout. This rod is perfect for any situation a good tailwater river provides. Its so light you can cast it all day and switch from fishing super small midge hatches under a strike indicator to stripping streamers when the TVA desides to release water with out warning and everything in between. This rod is lighter the most 2-3 wt. rods and can through a long line like a 5-6 wt. Paired up with the Wonderline Gen3 easy mend long belly line you can dead drift and mend a rediculously long drift. I can't wait to hook into a 22+ incher on size 22 black fly on 7x tippet it should be fun.

  • 5/5 stars 5/5

    I did'nt know rods could be that good - 3/12/2009
    By: from Oslo. Norway

    Winter in Norway means no fishing. The lakes and rivers gets a well deserved break, they rest quietly beneath a thick layer of life-quenching ice. For me this is the time to work on my casting skills and to remeniss about last seasons highlights . The joy of spring seems far off. The Helios has been my friend in this cold time. Its smooth casting stroke warms my hands and whispers promises of summer and warmth in my ears. I realize that now I’m the student and the Helios is my teacher. The lightness of the rod increases the feel of the line and tells me when to accelerate my stroke and when to stop. Is that a smile on my frozen face? I can’t remember casting ever being so easy. Tight loops flying through the icy air, defying winter, showing me images of wild brown trout sipping mayflies in a clear mountain stream. Winter fades and all I can think about is reaching an old friend on the other side of the stream. It’s a long cast, maybe too long? Not this time. Loading the Helios and accessing the majestic power in the bottom of the rod is easy. As my fly drifts perfectly towards the rising trout, I realize that this summer will be different. This time I got the edge. …..

  • 5/5 stars 5/5

    Helios Contest - 3/12/2009
    By: from Westminster, MD

    My husband is an active fly fisherman who travels the world with his Helios fly rods. I hardly ever get to go fishing with him as we have two young children but I love fishing for trout and bass from our kayaks in the mountains of Western Maryland. Last year we got a babysitter for the weekend so we could go on an overnight kayak trip down the C&O Canal and fish. Once we got there and got started I noticed I had no fishing rod. Forced to sneak one of my husbands prized rods I paddled ahead before he noticed. Never having fly fished I was worried but quickly got the hang of it. I was shocked at how easy it was to cast long distances without landing in the trees overhanging the water. It was effortless to cast and allowed me the luxury of enjoying the true fun of fishing as I had never actually caught any fish. Several hours later I had caught several fish and my husband had caught up with me. To my astonishment I had outfished him, he joked that I could not have caught all of the fish myself that I must have got them from the Fish Fairy. Well the Fish Fairy is the Helios rod I aquired that weekend as she has allowed me to outfish him every time we have gone fishing together since. But the best of all was the rainbow trout that I caught that day. When we got back to base camp my husband could not believe it and took me to the local tackle shop so they could see it. It was a state record rainbow trout that is not usually found in that area best of all my picture with my fish and rod is featured at the local tackle shop my husband and his friends use. So thank you Helios your quality products allowed me a novice to fish with the easy and skill of a pro with little effort and I will always be able to say I outfished my husband. Next on my list has been teaching our seven year old to fly fish, she just got her first rod for her birthday and already has one a trophy for first place at a local tournament. The judges were amazed that a seven year old could fly fish by herself. Attached is a picture of my daughter and husband with the first fish my daughter caught fly fishing. Believe it or not she wants to fish when she grows up. So this rod has transformed our family and passed the love of fishing to the next generation and for that I am grateful!

  • 5/5 stars 5/5

    Helios Contest - 3/11/2009
    By: from Maine

    Until it shimmers before your eyes after a gentle rain, nothing prepares you for the verdant green of Ireland’s fields, and no words can fully describe the quantum leap in performance represented by the Helios Fly Rod, as I discovered on my first western fishing trip. You need to fish it. The week began inauspiciously as I searched the Salt Lake airport for my TL rod missing from the baggage carousel. Though I soon spied it in the “odd sized” section of the claims area, I rarely used it thanks to the kindness of my host who lent me a Helios four weight for the week. Day one drifting the Salt River in Wyoming, I forgot the brace I wear when doing anything requiring repetitive movement. Without it, the combination of casting and rowing would normally have left me lame for weeks, but with the Helios not one of the thousands of casts and false casts I made that day, or while wading the creeks in Wyoming and Idaho over the next several days, caused even a twinge of elbow pain. It’s not the lighter weight alone that makes this rod such a pleasure, but the responsiveness is unmatched. When a cutthroat would bury himself in the weeds, I’d wait a few minutes, line tight, until it ran again, the rod’s sensitivity such that I instantly felt the run. I’d wager that on each hundred strikes I landed eight-five fish—and I don’t have the reflexes I once had. In fact, I caught more fish in less time than at any other juncture in my more than fifty years of angling. Landing my first cutthroat, bringing dozens of beautiful browns, rainbows and brookies to the net were great delights marvelously enhanced by fishing with the best rod I have ever held.

  • 5/5 stars 5/5


  • 5/5 stars 5/5

    Zero-Gravity! - 2/20/2009

    The name of this rod says it all! After fishing an entire season with my ZG-Helios, "I was impressed with the ability of this rod to cast such long distances with incredible accuracy and finesse". From the summer's late evening flat-water delicate presentations too forcing a double-haul into an autumn canyon wind. It is a versatile rod with the perfect balance of sensitivity and power. This rod has undoubtedly lived up to it's namesake. Heres to the Zero-Gravity and too the ultimate fishing experience! ~Yooper Mike

  • 5/5 stars 5/5

    Helios Heaven - 2/19/2009

    Ice-off, finally! I have been waiting since Christmas for this opportunity to test drive my new 4 weight Helios. Its the end of March and I'm at Beauvais Lake in southern Alberta. My eyes are glued to the shore line as I plough through the snow. I tie on my favorite sparkle leech and start working my way down the south shore. It didn't take long for the line to tighten. My reel started to scream and my new helios introduced itself to a sizable brown. What a battle. I had all the control I needed. After a 5 minute tug of war, my wife netted the 22 inch beauty. We both laughed. What a way to break in my 4 weight helios. I couldn't believe it.

  • 5/5 stars 5/5

    Big West Canada Brown - 2/17/2009
    By: from West Canada Creek, NY

    GULP! I heard and saw the sound at the simultaneously. The white flash of mouth accompanied the splash as I felt the line go tight in my hand. The pressure mounts as I give up the extra line. Steady pressure, the fish is on the bottom not moving. I was at my favorite hole on the West Canada and was preparing to call it a day. I cast the Helios, thinking about the nice 15" landing a few weeks before. Daydreaming watching the big foam ant drift down the soft riffles, the strike jarred me back to reality. The pressure was steady; strong. The Helios bent over, the CFO drag occasionally zipping out more. We played each other; reel in, drag out. I didn't exactly know what my new friend looked like, but the longer our relationship lasted, the better I liked my prospects. After many minutes of dispute, back and forth, my new friend finally came into sight. Holy cow I muttered, the shakes starting to set in. Carefully, I worked us closer to the bank, corralling my friend between the net and shore. As I knelt down working the ant loose and admiring my new friend, the shakes came in waves. Holy Cow, I chanted to myself. After snapping pictures of our fortituious meeting, I headed my 20" friend back towards his neighborhood, with many words of thanks for the pleasure of meeting.


ZG Helios from Orvis: The World's Lightest Fly Rod Awaits Your Best Cast

Features of the Freshwater Helios Fly Rod

  • greatest feel of action for more accurate and longer casts
  • superior sensitivity and responsiveness
  • the strongest fly rod on the market
  • loads quickly, crisply, but nimbly
  • supremely-balanced feel
  • unmatched fish-fighting power
  • better tracking for dry flies and nymphing
  • smoother transition of power
  • reduced casting fatigue
  • exclusive first-ever thermoplastic, thermoset resins from tip to butt
  • Precision Power Taper™
  • woven graphite & gold-anodized aluminum reel seat
  • recoil guides
  • titanium frame stripping guide with NanoLite® ceramic insert
  • translucent-olive finish
  • highest grade cork handle
  • woven-graphite rod tube
  • made in Manchester, Vermont


ZG Helios from Orvis: The World's Lightest Fly Rod Awaits Your Best Cast

Tom Rosenbauer with a Helios Fly RodBy Tom Rosenbauer

Two years ago, we set out to make the lightest fly rod in the industry. Part of the problem was that graphite fiber technology, at least the fiber that can be used in a premium fly rod, just has not changed much in the past few years.

But we have a number of new rod designers in our rod shop, young guys who look at things differently than older, more traditional designers. They knew that all the action in composite design is not in fiber technology but in the prepreg and scrim technology—in other words, the stuff that holds the graphite fibers together and the material that gives a finished rod hoop strength, or resistance to crushing. If you can lessen the amount of graphite fiber you need by using improved resin systems, and if you can use a lighter scrim and less of it, you can design a fly rod with less weight.

And this is exactly what they did. Now scrim is pretty un-sexy stuff. All it does is to keep the hollow graphite tube used to construct a rod from collapsing under the pressure of a long cast or a big fish. Unidirectional graphite fiber can’t do that by itself. In ordinary graphite fly rods the scrim is made from fiberglass, which is heavier, less expensive, and not as stiff as graphite. In Zero Gravity fly rods, the fiberglass scrim was replaced by graphite scrim with an epoxy binder, which allowed us to use less material and thus make a much lighter rod.

New Technology from the Space Satellite Industry

Building upon our Zero Gravity’s exclusive thermoplastic resin technology, which is stronger and lighter than the epoxy resins used to make traditional fly rods, the designers found an exciting new scrim in the space satellite industry. This unidirectional graphite scrim with a thermoplastic binder gives us the same strength in our rods, but uses much less material. We reduced the weight on our new Heliosblanks by 25% less than our already lightweight Zero Gravity blanks. Then the rod team designed, from scratch, new reel seats that would keep the 25% weight reduction throughout the entire rod.

The New Zero Gravity and Helios Construction

So, they came up with the lightest rod we’ve ever designed. I was pretty excited. Lighter rods are more fun and less tiring, but could this really make someone cast better or put a fly someplace they never could before?

New Design Coupled with New Technology

Then I got a chance to cast one of these rods. “Whoa,” I thought. “This is an amazingly light rod and it wiggles nice, but this thing feels really different.” And it wasn’t just the weight. When I asked Andy Stone and Frank Hoard, the new designers, and Jim Logan, VP and head engineer in our rod shop, I found out why. The new material had given them the opportunity to take advantage of a new taper, a steeper and faster taper that was not stiffer, just more responsive and powerful.

Accuracy and Control for Freshwater Casting

So these Helios rods were fun on the casting pond. What would they feel like in real fishing conditions? I took a 4-weight to the Delaware River for trout fishing and tried it over some of the snottiest brown trout I’ve ever tangled with. That rod would put the fly just where I wanted it to go, almost like ESP. I took a 9-foot, 5-weight to Idaho’s South Fork, and the most amazing aspect of the rod’s performance was that I could switch from pounding the banks with size 8 Chernobyl Ants and then switch to tossing PMDs over finicky cutthroats on 6X with the same rod—and it still maintained the same control and accuracy in both cases.

Power for Casting Large Flies for Saltwater

Then I took a 10-weight striper fishing for big June fish on Cape Cod. It handled big stripers and big poppers in the wind like nothing I’d ever used, and after 10 hours of casting, my arm was not the slightest bit tired. The 10-weight then came along with me to Rhode Island in search of small bluefin tuna in August. The bluefins were not around, but the rod helped me make some quick, precise long casts into the wind for some nice bonito that were blowing up the surface but only gave you a few seconds to make a presentation before they steamed away.

Our testers have had the rods on trout all over the world, tarpon, snook, bonefish, redfish, and many other species. The universal reaction is that for hardcore anglers who fish on the edge and demand the most out of their equipment, Helios sets the standard for the next generation of graphite fly rods. Personally, I think they’ll make plain old backyard trout fishing a lot more fun as well.

Buy it now

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  • ZG Helios™ 904-4 Tip Flex 9.5 Fly Rod (Not Available) $795.00 Sale: $634.00
  • Outfit - includes Mirage II reel, Hydros Trout line (Not Available) $1,225.00
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