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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Iowa, southern edge of Driftless Area
    Posts
    749

    Default Help me pick a free rod

    Well not really free but I have a $700 store credit to use in the next 3 months. I am set with waders, boots, reels, vests, sling packs, waist packs and all sorts of other stuff I don't need so I am going to add a rod.

    I primarily fish spring creeks in the driftless area. 99% of the trout I catch are 16" or smaller. I occasionally fish medium sized rivers for smallmouth and would like to try carp. My warm water fishing is limited to a few trips per year.

    My current lineup is:
    St. Croix legend ultra 2wt. 7'6"
    Sage ZXL 3 wt. 8'6"
    St. Croix Imperial 4wt 7'6"
    Sage Z-Axis 4 wt. 9'
    Sage Z-Axis 6wt. 9'
    Sage RPL 6 wt. 9' (sits in the closet)

    So, what rod would you add?

    Thanks,
    Rich

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Buffalo/SRQ FL/Götebörg, Sweden
    Posts
    2,431
    Blog Entries
    4

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    Buy a tarpon rod and head down to Florida with Davo next spring, haha! Otherwise, I'm of no use, my gear-fu is not strong.
    - A.J.

    Working out a way to convince my university to allow me to hold my TA office hours on the nearby creek...

  3. #3

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    What brands do you have to choose from?

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Location
    Broomfield, Co
    Posts
    3,187
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    My $.02 worth,

    I would keep that Imperial as a back up and get a Sage TXL 7'10 in 3 or 4wt, probably 3wt based on your line up. Just be careful becasue Ive found the Sage TXL really love the Sage DT line and other lines just dont work that well on it IMHO.

    I have the TXL in both 3 and 4 wt and love it (older 3 piece version) and I fish alot of backcountry small creeks and rivers.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Southeast Pennsylvania
    Posts
    2,760

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    Hmmmmm..... Why not be the first kid on the block with a Sage One? You already have a 4wt, so a 9' 5wt sounds good.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    On a trout stream/Suburban Pittsburgh
    Posts
    3,358
    Blog Entries
    1

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    Hmmm, decisions, decisions. That's a pretty nice quiver you have for the Driftless spring creeks. I am not by any means an expert for fishing there, but I have made the trip 3 times in the past year and plan to continue to make at least one trip every year. You're blessed to have such a fisherie!

    I think your 690 Z Axis will take care of pretty much any warm water fishing you want to get into. Since there is no 5 wt in the lineup you could opt to pick up a 590 which in that case the ONE or another Z if you really like those would be a great addition. I would argue that your 690 can pull streamer duty when fishing the larger waters up there, but this is definately a rod that you don't have. Having said that, would you have to also purchase a reel or spool to line up a 5wt?

    My rod of preference for fishing most of those medium sized streams is either 486 XP or 486 BIIX. If I'm fishing some of the larger water there I will either throw a 590 if Windy or 490 if nymphing. I noticed that other than your ZXL (great rod btw), your 4wts are shorter than 8ft. Maybe consider an 8ft or 8'6 4wt? May as well consider another ZXL, One, or give a Winston a look. BIIIx, WT or LT perhaps? The TXL is another great suggestion, they are worth a look also.

    My best bud is who I go there to fish with, I hope he chimes in, he's got plenty more experience fishing there than I do.

    That's a helluva good chunk of change to get a rod with, you can more or less get whatever you want! Good luck in your search and let us know what you end up with.
    Last edited by jaybo41; 08-29-2011 at 11:18 AM.
    ~*~Leave only your footprints~*~

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Iowa, southern edge of Driftless Area
    Posts
    749

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    Thanks for the suggestions. The shop carries Sage, Winston, St. Croix and Hardy. I do have a spare reel for a 5wt.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Location
    Northern California
    Posts
    3,848
    Blog Entries
    4

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    Fishiowa,
    Here is your homework assignment. Go to your local fly shop and have your own 5 weight shootout.

    Test the following in the 9 foot 5 weight configuration:
    Sage One
    Sage ZXL
    Winston B3X
    St. Croix whatever its premium rod is
    Hardy Zenith

    Then report to us your findings.

    Dennis

  9. #9

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    Not as much fun as adding some new gear, but you seem to have a great line-up of rods so you could donate it to Project Healing Waters or some similar organization. They need gear and do some great work.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Location
    Iowa, southern edge of Driftless Area
    Posts
    749

    Default Re: Help me pick a free rod

    Dennis,
    The dog ate my homework. Unfortunately, I don't have a local fly shop. The closest is 2+ hours away and only carries one of these brands (sage). I have cast most of their offerings but not the ONE.

    It looks like 9' 5 wt. is starting to emerge as the favorite.

    Healing waters looks like a great organization.

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