Re: General tackle questions
There is also the fact that fly casting from a sitting position (from a canoe or float tube) can dictate the length of the rod. From a sitting position, I prefer a longer rod. Most of my fly fishing is on lakes from a canoe where standing up is out of the question and I have no need to watch out for trees. Yes....mending the line is not necessary when lake fishing but the longer rod does allow me to keep the line higher off the water. The longer rod also allows me to use longer leaders that are necessary for calm water situations.
I use a 7 weight rod that is 9 feet long and I usually fish with size 20 to size 12 dry flies. My leaders are from 9 to 14 feet long. However, with smaller flies (22 to 26) in very calm situations, I do use 15 to 18 foot long leaders and the flies fall on the water very delicately.
I don't like to make many false casts. Usually 1 false cast is enough for me to have enough fly line above the water to get decent casting distance. A shorter rod would force me to add 1 or 2 extra false casts to get the same distance.