I'm a newbie and inherited a Hardy Angel 4/5 from my family. I look forward to some trout fishing up here in the Northeast and hope I can get some advice on a good match (size, weight, manufacturer, etc.) for this reel. Also, if anyone is using a Angel 4/5 I would be interested in what rod you use and how you like it.
Welcome to the site,lot's of great folks on here with lot's of great advise.
Your reel is designed for a 4 or 5 weight line,so a 4 or five weight rod is in order. What type of water you intend to fish?ie,small streams,lakes,large river's,ponds,a little of all?
If you are a beginner,I would recomend a 5 wt. rod,in the 8.5-9' range.It's a great all around size for most fishing applications,and friendly for learning a decent casting stroke.
There are many great rod company's out there,and what to recomend greatly depends on your budget.Steer clear of the Wal-mart stuff ie,dragon fly,ect..
Scott puts out great rod's at a fair price as does Fenwick as well as many other's.
You have a quality reel there,and should match up well with any half decent rod you choose to put it on.
You have a great reel. Select the rod that is going to be used the most, ie, for trout, bass or other fish. Are you going to fish on rivers, streams or lakes or a combo of these. I would line the reel with a 4wt. double taper and go for a 4/5 wt rod. Not knowing your finances, if you can afford a good rod go for a Scott, Redington or Orvis. If there is a fly shop near you ask their advice and you can probably try several rods out. Now if you have never fly casted before and you're all outfitted, then start practicing casting. Practice, practice, practice and more practice. Moreover don't let the neighbors pull your chain. There are some good books on the "stuff" you will need as well as info on lines, backing etc. You'll get some great advice on this forum. Good luck. Frank
troutbum, As an aside, I've fished N.S. and also have had a rod made by a Shawn Pineo of New Scotland rods. For the life of me I can't seem to get in touch with Shawn. I'm wondering if you have any info on his whereabouts? After I had the rod, which by the way is magnificent I ordered another one and then lost touch with him. I know he is in the service and was going back and forth to Kosovo. Hope nothing has happened to him. If you could find out anything please let me know. Thanks. Frank
Hi, I'm the Hardy/ Cortland Rep from MI. You have one of the finest reels ever produced IMHO. Hang on to it, Ebay pries for used Hardys are only going to go crazier. As far as my recommendations, while the Angel is an incredible rod it is very fast, and the standard version (they offer a competition version) is faster then a Sage TCR! They are not beginners rods, they are pricey (1150$) and special order only. You will not ind a better finished or appointed graphite rod. My recommendation would be a 9' 5 weight Hardy Marksman, it is an excellent casting rod, handles well at all distances, and is a bit more forgiving. The other alternatives would be Sage Z axis or a Winston B IIx both excellent rods. They all retail in the 595 to 750 range (I believe the Hardy is the lowest priced). While I think their are some excellent price point rods on the market like Cortland Big Sky, TFO, Diamondback Flawless, Sage Fli, a reel like that deserves a fine casting tool to go with it. You may not appreciate the differences immediately but as you grow into the sport you will. It is a bit like buying an Armani suit and then going to KMart for the tie.
I'm leaning towards the Hardy Angel and the Hardy Marksman. My only concern with the Angel is that it's "fast action" is going to be difficult for me to handle being new to fly fishing. The "medium action" Marksman is suppose to be "more forgiving". How "difficult" is learning the sport on a "fast action" rod and will I be wishing for the Angel a year from now?
I'm sure I'm not the first to be in this position. What do you think?
Thanks to all of the members that responded to my post. This is a great forum and has been very helpful in my "pursuit of fly fishing".
I personally prefer the Marksman. The only advantage I'e noticed with the Angel is long presentations are easier on windy days. Fast rods are great for casting in parking lots, but I much prefer a rod I can feel when I cast especially in most dry fly presentations. IMHO unless your an FFF casting instructor, (and I never knew one who could catch fish) your better off handling a rod you can control. And for the record I'm no expert caster but with a Cortland Precision Dyna Tip I can get all the fly line off my reel with my 9' five weight Marksman. It is one of the finest trout rods I've ever fished, and I've fished everything from size 22 to size eight hoppers with a bead head dropper with it.
Some fisherman prefer faster rods and for certain applications, throwing big streamers or Saltwater fishing they definitely provide an advantage. But in most trout fishing, (indicators / dry fly) a more moderate action will mean more control and accuracy and the ability to mend line and protect leaders which are critical assets.
in the last few years I've helped several of my friends get into the sport. Almost without fail, they've ended up progressing through a range of preferences for the action on a rod before settling into the action they prefer. So my suggestion would be to get a decent rod with a medium fast action (right in the middle of actions and stiffness) that will function as a good back up rod later. That way once you settle into a preferred action you have a decent back up/loaner (for helping others into the sport) and can go high end with a rod you know you'll love in the long term.
My personal opinion is stay away from medium or slow action - most people other than complete dry fly purists seem to prefer a bit quicker rod, if not necessarily stiffer. IMHO, good starters are Winston Ascents or Vapors, Diamondback Americanas, or St. Croix Avids. I dislike the lower end Sages and all Orvis rods, which is too bad since Orvis contributes quite a bit to fishery conservation.
But the best advice probably is to go to a local shop and try a bunch on the lawn and pick the one that feels best to you. Everyone has their own preference on rod action.