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Old 01-16-2013, 02:19 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

I would have to say that for smallies, the size of the fly would determine what rod I would use. I like articulated streamer patterns and large, wind-resistant poppers, so an 8wt is usually my go-to rod.
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Old 01-16-2013, 02:39 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

An 8wt. isn't to much rod. Rods will actually do a lot wider range in the size flies and the size fish than people seem to think. I use a 5 most of the time, but I also use an 8. I have even used a 10.

An 8 will throw bigger flies easier, especially if there is a lot of wind. It's more of a personal choice than what they will do. Unless you are planning to toss big Dahlbergs a long way in the wind all of the time, any of them will work.
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Old 01-16-2013, 02:58 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

If you want to throw big poppers for them and there is a lot of vegetation, an 8wt is a good option.

Generally speaking, at least for most of the smallie fishing I do, I prefer a 6wt. I almost only fish rivers for them and throw mainly clousers and deer hair poppers with that. The fight is still fun with the 6wt - especially on the bigger ones - without being too much where the fun is minimal or too light where you are battling these things for 10 minutes.

It just seems to be the happy median in my smallie world
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:37 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

In my opinion an 8wt is the ideal smallie rod. I fish alot for smallies in the "non-Steelhead" season. I fish large rivers. Occasionally I fish Lake Michigan for smallies too. Both of these are open areas and the wind often is a factor.

The average size smallie is 15-16". A large one is 19-20". There is the chance of catching one in the 22" range. One other thing, a river smallie is a stronger fish than a lake smallie and they know how to use the current to their advantage.

I throw smaller poppers (8-10) and large streamers (4-6" long). A delicate presentation is not required, in fact at times a loud presentation is better. Often when throwing very Large streamers (6-10") with a 9wt for Pike or Musky you will get smallies. They can make a 9 wt work.

So, No a 8wt is not too big for smallies.
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Old 01-16-2013, 03:38 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

Another VA river fisher...You will never go wrong with an 8wt for smallies. My go to rod is a 6/7wt.
There are times when the wind blows down river while using big streamers, or poppers that I wish I had my 8wt with me, but for 95% of my smallie fishing the 6/7 does the job.
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Old 01-16-2013, 05:45 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

Thanks for the input everyone. I was playing with the fly rods at bass pro yesterday, which prompted this topic. I really like that 8 weights have a full wells and a fighting butt. I mostly fish small to medium rivers for smallmouth, but there are also big catfish, carp, and hybrid stripers around. I would like to get in to some of those big hybrids this season. I also fish for steelhead on occasion when I go up to Cleveland to see inlaws. I usually take the lighter tackle approach with gear fishing, but with fly fishing it seems opposite, like a heavier rod would be more versatile.
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Old 01-16-2013, 06:44 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

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Originally Posted by shotgunfly View Post
It may depend on the size of the fish smallies you're going after. I've only been fly fishing for 3 years so someone else might say other wise. I know that yes a heavier wt rod can properly cast bigger bass flies.

Around here (VA) I've been told that a 7wt is the bass rod to use, and a 6wt is the least they'd use. Given that logic you can use the 8wt and use it for larger stuff like carp.
With rare exception our Small Mouth don't get that large (hopefully your mileage will differ) so I just used a 3wt and feather surface flies. Usual hook was a 2x #6.

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Old 01-16-2013, 07:58 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

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Originally Posted by kingofamberley View Post
Thanks for the input everyone. I was playing with the fly rods at bass pro yesterday, which prompted this topic. I really like that 8 weights have a full wells and a fighting butt. I mostly fish small to medium rivers for smallmouth, but there are also big catfish, carp, and hybrid stripers around. I would like to get in to some of those big hybrids this season. I also fish for steelhead on occasion when I go up to Cleveland to see inlaws. I usually take the lighter tackle approach with gear fishing, but with fly fishing it seems opposite, like a heavier rod would be more versatile.
Sounds like a 8wt would be the ideal rod for you. I use a 8wt for about 95% of my fishing.
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Old 01-16-2013, 08:16 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

An 8wt would be a good starting point. I find my 6wt is limited in the size flies it will cast - especially if there's any wind to deal with. I'd say get the 8wt first and plan on adding a 6wt later.
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Old 01-16-2013, 09:39 PM
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Default Re: Is an 8 wt too much rod for smallmouth?

While most of my bass fishing is for largemouth I throw a 7 weight 99% of the time and its plenty so out of a 6 weight and a 8 weight id pick the 6, as long as youre not throwing anything to gaudy youll enjoy the six more
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