Re: Drag style for 5wt
Agreed, know the limitations of your tackle and of your own skill development. Us "old timers" that grew up with spring and pawl reels which feature a "check" rather than a "drag" learned to use our fingers as a drag. Many a big Atlantic salmon has been brought to net with larger versions of such reels...and still are by traditionalists. I have convinced myself via experimentation on a wide variety of trout streams east and west that a "drag" built into the reel is a good idea. It protects the trout regardless of ones expertise in handling your tackle. A fly fisher that can bring an adult wild trout to hand quickly with a traditional spring and pawl reel can do so, using all his techniques aided by a reel with fine-tunable quality drag, even MORE quickly. As a primarily dry fly fisher who frequents larger streams, though I love 6-weights, I prefer 5-weight rods primarily because 5X and smaller tippets are handled better with the slightly lighter line weight. This is why I have frequently recommend reels like Hardy U DD and Nautilus FWX for river (not small stream necessarily) trout fishing.