fish a med size tail water in the N.E., that requires 7x and size 28 to 32 midge. My smallest rod is 4 wt. HLS II adams Orvis. I think I am a little over gunned for that small fly, most guys there are on sage 00 or 1 wt. I was thinking of getting a 1 or 2 wt for this river or will it not make that much difference in your opinion. $$ is a factor, times are tough and rod prices are way up there. I have sage,orvis (2) T&T and reddington rods in 4-10 wts and have been FF for a long time but not needed to buy a rod since the early 90's. I am thinking (and reading) that some of these less expensive companies are pretty close to the big names in function , maybe not in looks IE Elkhorn, Reddington and TFO. The Reddington I got as a backup to my Sage 6 wt. and I was very impressed with it for the $$, I got it back when the first came on the stage. I would love a Sage 1 wt but $650 seems like we are getting a little out of control. Bring me up to date with what is going on with the new technology and the rod jungle?
I have the TFO 5' Finesse Half Weight, which is really a 1wt in my opinion ($160).
The other really light rod I have is a St Croix 6' Imperial 2wt ($170). This rod is also really a 1wt, according to my measurements.
Both rods are good out to 30-35 feet. I can cast them farther, but that's not what they're for.
Of the two, I like the Imperial better. Part of that is that I'm not a fan of slip-ring reel holders like the TFO has.
The TFO is lighter (1.3 oz. vs 1.8 oz.).
Both rods will handle much bigger fish than you'd think.
For a little heavier rod, I have a St Croix 7' 6" Legend Ultra 2 wt. I like this rod when the really small ones are just a little too small.
St Croix has great warranty service. I've not used TFO's warranty yet.
Unless you are fishing in very tight quarters, I'd advise against going with a rod under 7 - 7 1/2 feet. When on moving water, accurate presentation is key. It really gets tougher to do as your reach lessens as a result of fishing a shorter rod.
I've been fishing a 1 wt for the better part of the past 15 years, and to be honest, I've never felt under gunned.
The river I will be using it for is like the Farmington but smaller, the Swift in Ware MA. It is about 30 yrs wide and knee to waist deep tail water. The only show in town in july aug w/o doing some driving for me. I do fish the Farmington 1-2 a yr. I will check out those rods , I found a shop open today that carries them . I read an earlier post and went to the 2 wt ohio shoot out site, they awaded Mystic rod the title , ever use one ?
They couldn't be from MA if the named the company after our Mystic
I like the Cabelas 3-forks, 3-weight. It casts excellent and has a very moderate action that is relaxing to use on trout streams around here. I honestly can't see how a more expensive rod would make my experience any more enjoyable for light rod applications --
Last weekend I swung soft hackles on the Jackson River and caught quite a few trout with it -- very good rod and can't beat the price.
That said, a lot of people won't use a rod that costs $30 on sale. I'm not one of those people.
There are a lot of options out there for ULFF. My favorite rod is an Echo Carbon 732. But that costs $130-150. I also like the Redington CT 762, 763, and 803.
But pound for pound, the Cabela's Three Forks 763 is the best UL rod IMO. It's on sale for $40 right now.
Never fished an Orvis or Sage UL but I have cast them. They are nicer but not 15x nicer than my $40 rod.
I personally believe the TFO rods are "under" rated. Meaning, the rods are too fast for their specified weight. The 1wt I cast was more like a 3wt, as was the so called 0.5 wt.
If you are fishing a "medium" tailwater (not sure what medium means, 100cfs? Or 1000cfs? Certainly the tailwater I fished Sat would not be considered medium at the 10cfs) you may want a longer rod. 8' would be a good length. Or if you want really long, Echo makes a 10' 3wt I believe.
I am getting a lot of great feedback and info. from this forum ! As I said, I have not been in the market for a new rod since the early 90's and the market and technology has left me behind! This particular river runs as low as 50 and avg. about 127. I think I am going to go with a 2 wt. , a 1 wt is getting specialized , the mid cost rods I have looked at are Mystic. 273-2,Elkhorn Traveler II and St. Croix Legend ( these are $300 to $375 range). On the lower cost end Reddington (I have a old 6 wt. and think it is unreal for 100 bucks) and I want to look at Echo. I thought the TFO was on the heavy side and the "made in So. Korea" sticker turns me off even thou everything I plug into the wall in my house probably has one. The problem with going to shops and the net to check out rods is I see all kinds of other things I want to burn a whole in my wallet with.