Fly Rods - Selecting the Right Rod
There are several factors in understanding how to choose the proper fishing rod for your use. Let's first review these factors.
What Do the Number Mean?
There are several numbers on the side of a fishing rod. One number is the length of the rod. Fly fishing rods are usually between 7 and 9 feet. Another number is the weight, which is the weight of fishing line the fly fishing rod is designed to cast. Often you will see: 867 or 907. This usually means an 8 foot 6 inch rod length for 7 Weight line. Some us the opposite: Sage 890 means 8 weight 9’0” rod length Different manufacturers use different nomenclature that confuse anglers as to the length and weight. If unsure, ask or call to ensure you get what you want.
Which Rod is Right for Me?
The length and weight of the proper fly fishing rod is determined by the type of fly fishing you will be doing. First determine the location you plan to fish in. If you are going to be fly fishing in a larger body of water, a large lake or even the ocean, you will want a longer rod. Remember fly fishing rods come in lengths generally between 7 and 9 feet. The longer the fly fishing rod the farther the cast. If you are going to be fly fishing in smaller ponds, or creek fishing where the tree canopy may be low, you will want a shorter fly fishing rod. The shorter fly fishing rod will not cast as far and will hopefully keep you out of the trees.
The weight of the fly line is determined by the types of fish you are trying to catch. Fly line weights vary from 1 to 13 and each fly fishing rod is made to cast a specific weight. The smaller the weight number the smaller the fish you will be trying to catch. Line weight between 4 and 7 is good for trout fishing, between 7 and 10 is good for bass, salmon and saltwater fly fishing. Large game fisherman will generally use between 10 and 13 line weight. Most smallmouth situations call for a 7 or 8 wt. It is not uncommon to apply a line one weight above the respective weight of the rod. This may give you a bit more punch. If you have a “stiff” seven weight and have trouble casting it, try an #8 weight line on it. It might do the trick.
Rod or Blank Action
The final point to consider when choosing a fly fishing rod is the action or flex of the rod. A slow action fly fishing rod is generally good for lighter, smaller fish and is used in smaller creeks and streams. The slow action will respond better to a lighter cast and will not cast as far as a fast action fly fishing rod. A slow action fly fishing rod is flexible the entire length of the fishing rod. The medium action fly fishing rod is flexible past the mid-point of the fishing rod. This fly fishing rod is good for many different types of situations and is a good fly fishing rod for beginners. A fast action fly fishing rod is flexible at the end of the fishing rod. It is good for quick accurate casts and is used by more experienced fisherman. The cast can go longer distances and the fast action fly fishing rod is better under windy conditions.
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