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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 09-22-2013, 04:51 PM
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Default Re: Loomis NRX Steelhead & Salmon Rods

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Originally Posted by sweetandsalt View Post
Many elite rod making companies started with or include bamboo rods in their offering. Those who do and even many who don't have adopted a bamboo aesthetic in their carbon fiber rods; nickel silver winding checks and reel seat hardware, figured hardwood spacers, thread wraps tastefully tipped in contrasting color, classic shaped cork grips...and this appeals to many fly fishers particularly those of us who may have started with cane. This includes me.

But G.Loomis started as a graphite rod innovator and, as it continues to be a leader in materials and tapers; embraces plastic. OK, IMX was a good looking rod but when revolutionary GLX was introduced they went full-on "Form Follows Function". Flat gray sanded blank, the first ever woven carbon seat spacer, unadorned black anodized aluminum reel seats with black thread wraps and single foot black guides. "Ugly" proclaimed some. Unequaled casting/fishing fly rod realized others. Beauty is as beauty does and GLX turned the fly rod industry upside-down. NRX harkens back to that aesthetic attitude and I applaud its honesty. Yes, I added a long-in-the-tooth StreamDance GLX (8 1/2'/#4) this year...still a standout rod. But I expect its experiment with "conventional" good looks to go by the wayside as newer models advance the Loomis tradition of advanced carbon composite high performance fly rods.

Spoken poetically. I'm left scratching my head and feeling more unintelligent than ever!

Fish on!
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Old 09-22-2013, 04:56 PM
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Default Re: Loomis NRX Steelhead & Salmon Rods

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Originally Posted by burk48237 View Post
I've heard good things, but if I can make a suggestion, wether it is NRX or another fine rod make the switch to two hand if your going to lay down big bucks for a Steelhead/Salmon rod. Unless you're stripping streamers I can't think of any Steelhead/Salmon presentation where a two hander (switch or spey) isn't superior. Longer rod equals more shock absorber, longer more effortless casts, better line control and drift management, and it is literally easier on your body.

I made the switch a few years ago after a serious bout with tendonitis from fighting spring steelhead, and I've never looked back. I've used two handers on MI Kings, AK Silvers, Sockeyes, and Bows, and GL Steelhead, for a natural presentation they just work better. And you don't need to make it complicated just get a good integrated Skagit line like a Beulah or the New Cortland and have at it.
I like casting single handed rods. Every chance I get to cast a single handed rod helps me improve my casting for any and all situations that arise when fly fishing for any species I target. When I feel I'm where I want to be casting wise, maybe I'll do it. But for he now, as long as my elbow and shoulders keep going strong, I'm sticking with single handed rods. I just plain like to double haul and cast single handed rods.
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Old 09-23-2013, 09:23 AM
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Default Re: Loomis NRX Steelhead & Salmon Rods

This tread has started to meander about which is fine with me because interesting points are being raised. I am with Chi, I prefer single handed fly rods as long as they are appropriate. My wife enjoys Spey casting and my West Coast fishing partner is an inveterate two handed steelheader. It is truly impressive what a skilled or even merely capable two handed caster can do with easy distance which makes sense swimming a fly across a broad salmon of steelhead river. That style of fishing is not that effective in the Great Lakes tributaries I have fished; I wish it were as the high stick, dead drift, nymphing with egg pattern technique commonly employed is my least favorite and most mind and arm fatiguing, blind fishing method imaginable. This style, hefting a 10'/#7 rod, more than the crowds and bitter, dark mornings is what led me to forego this 1990's, post-Halloween tradition. Having said this, I have to find that old 10 footer as socio-political influences have requested our presence up on Lake Ontario early in November. Brrrr, boy would I rather be bonefishing!

Back in the 1980's I enjoyed the wonderful opportunity to fish in Scotland for a fortnight. English friends took my to a beat on a favorite river of theirs that was full of stale salmon clearly visible in a holding pool. These colored-up fish had zero interest in eating anything much less a fly. My friends were outfitted in their typical 15 foot rods; I with my typical 9'/#8. But you can reach across this stream with such a rod, why fish such a thing here? Because, well, its the way it's done! Now, I embrace tradition, I learned a lot about Whiskey over there and I had acquired a 14' rod for this trip which I did fish a handful of times Speyside, now it languishes in my collection along with the gigunda CFO VI and DT11F line as used back then. On many a Scottish salmon river, much like the majority of salmon rivers in New Brunswick and the Gaspe, a single handed 9 to 9 1/2'/#8 is a delightful rod to fish. Plus it can used to fish dry flies with which the big two handers are ill suited for.

Just to further stir this tread; no way is a great 8-weight salmon/western steelhead rod suitable for or transposable with a spot-on 8-weight bonefish rod. Two entirely different entities.
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Last edited by sweetandsalt; 09-23-2013 at 09:48 AM.
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Old 09-23-2013, 11:22 PM
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Default Re: Loomis NRX Steelhead & Salmon Rods

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Originally Posted by sweetandsalt View Post
This tread has started to meander about which is fine with me because interesting points are being raised. I am with Chi, I prefer single handed fly rods as long as they are appropriate. My wife enjoys Spey casting and my West Coast fishing partner is an inveterate two handed steelheader. It is truly impressive what a skilled or even merely capable two handed caster can do with easy distance which makes sense swimming a fly across a broad salmon of steelhead river. That style of fishing is not that effective in the Great Lakes tributaries I have fished; I wish it were as the high stick, dead drift, nymphing with egg pattern technique commonly employed is my least favorite and most mind and arm fatiguing, blind fishing method imaginable. This style, hefting a 10'/#7 rod, more than the crowds and bitter, dark mornings is what led me to forego this 1990's, post-Halloween tradition. Having said this, I have to find that old 10 footer as socio-political influences have requested our presence up on Lake Ontario early in November. Brrrr, boy would I rather be bonefishing!

Back in the 1980's I enjoyed the wonderful opportunity to fish in Scotland for a fortnight. English friends took my to a beat on a favorite river of theirs that was full of stale salmon clearly visible in a holding pool. These colored-up fish had zero interest in eating anything much less a fly. My friends were outfitted in their typical 15 foot rods; I with my typical 9'/#8. But you can reach across this stream with such a rod, why fish such a thing here? Because, well, its the way it's done! Now, I embrace tradition, I learned a lot about Whiskey over there and I had acquired a 14' rod for this trip which I did fish a handful of times Speyside, now it languishes in my collection along with the gigunda CFO VI and DT11F line as used back then. On many a Scottish salmon river, much like the majority of salmon rivers in New Brunswick and the Gaspe, a single handed 9 to 9 1/2'/#8 is a delightful rod to fish. Plus it can used to fish dry flies with which the big two handers are ill suited for.

Just to further stir this tread; no way is a great 8-weight salmon/western steelhead rod suitable for or transposable with a spot-on 8-weight bonefish rod. Two entirely different entities.
I agree on the bonefish rod, especially in the great lakes where the ability to protect a 4x tippet is a rod requirement. The best single hander I EVER fished for Steelhead was the old Winston BL5 10-7.

I've gone to indicator fishing with two handers in situations where dead drifting or chuck and ducking is normally done with a lot of success. I've found a couple of things, 1) I foul hook far less fish especially with Kings, 2) I'm less tiered at the end of the day. Chuck and duck use to kill me.

As far as dries, I would disagree, nothing will control a mend on a drift or a skating presentation better than a long rod. I'm convinced that the only Steelhead Salmon presentation where a single hander is superior is stripping streamers. But any presentation that requires mending, roll casting, or continuous presentations down the same lane it's hard to beat a two hander. I've run 11 1/2 foot 7 weights on just about every small stream in the great lakes with the exception of the Indiana creeks with no issues of too much length and far superior fishability.

If a single hander is your thing and something you enjoy, cool. But as a rep in the territory I couldn't give away a high end single handed steelhead rod in the last couple of years. And as a tool they are inferior, I say that from about 20 plus years of experience fishing them before I changed over 7 years ago.
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Old 09-24-2013, 09:02 AM
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Default Re: Loomis NRX Steelhead & Salmon Rods

Is Cortland marketing an 11'6"/#7 two handed rod or are you using a rod from one of your other product lines? I'll be open minded about this.
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Old 09-25-2013, 08:50 PM
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Default Re: Loomis NRX Steelhead & Salmon Rods

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Originally Posted by sweetandsalt View Post
Is Cortland marketing an 11'6"/#7 two handed rod or are you using a rod from one of your other product lines? I'll be open minded about this.
Cortland under the Diamondback brand builds a fine value switch rod (the swinger). I've been fishing them this fall and like them a lot but they aren't even in the catalog as they've made a decision to concentrate on marketing Fly Lines.. I'm no longer representing Hardy but the Marksman 11 1/2 7 was a fine rod. I still own a Hardy Swift 11 1/2 7 which is my main Steelhead rod. The other brands I'd look at would be the T & T, Beulah, Sage One, Scott and in price point rods I've heard a lot about the TFO Meiser series, Reddingtons, and the Echo stuff. I'm not trying to hawk any particular brand, My only regret with Hardy was that they never produced a 11 1/2 in the Zenith, and any thing longer than 12" is pushing it on the GL tribs.

But I will say this much on lines especially in the beginning, go with an integrated Skaget line like the Beulah Tonic or the New Cortland Compact Switch. Keep it simple, if you need to sink the head just add 4-6' of T-14, all this head-running line, cheaters, intermediate cheaters, is just too complicated and you don't need that stuff to make good presentations on the Great Lakes tribs.
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Old 09-26-2013, 10:57 PM
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Default Re: Loomis NRX Steelhead & Salmon Rods

Picked up a nice new Hatch Fanatic 7+ Mid-Arbor to go along with it in Black with silver accents. I should be able to get plenty of 30 lb. Dacron on it with a SA Steelhead Taper WF9.

Pretty pumped for the pairing. It's a definite change of pace for me, as I fish exclusively Abels on my big game reels, and they've never let me down. But I'm excited to try a different reel company as well as this new NRX. I'll post a report after I get her wet.

Cheers,
Mike.
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