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Thread: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2012
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    Default Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    I'm sure the reviews should be taken with a grain of salt but it looks like the Sage One took a backseat to the previous Z-Axis. Reading the review it would seem like Sage went backwards in trying to create the rod that does everything well. It looks like the Z-Axis was really the all around "do everything rod." From the review it seems the One is pretty stiff and really only excels in the distance department.

    I actually enjoyed test casting this rod but have never tested a Z, wish I could. With the Z's popularilty and heavy use by guides around the country who are expert casters it seems Sage took a big risk in replacing the Z-Axis with a less well rounded rod. Anybody used both?

    Sage One Rod Review Sage One rod comparison Sage won fly rod

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    Strawberry shortcake banana split, Yellowstone's shootouts are full of ...well you get it. I have cast almost every rod in that shootout and far and away the best in my hands in the Helios. I think they ranked it like 7th. Is it the best...i think so without question but you may think otherwise. Never let anyone cast a rod for you and tell you what to buy. A rods merits are incredibly subjective and that shootout is nothing other than a fancy drawn out marketing scheme. Always beware of the salesman's motives.

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    Yep, I'll bet there is a user somewhere for each one of those rods that loves it dearly and more importantly hauls in fish routinely. There is a place called Red's Fly Shop I think in Oregon that did a similar test...but instead they had the customers cast the rods and score them, not the supposed experts. Sort of interesting.

  5. #4

    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    I actually find Anderson's "Shootouts" to be full of useful information and well elaborated opinions. A lot of work goes into them but recognize their limitations too. No fly line fine tuning is done; a baseline line is employed across the range of rods. This is not a criticism it is just the way such a test is kept "uniform". Also Anderson has a clear preference for a rod with a soft tip but ample lower taper reserve power, therefore his love for Zenith and Z-Axis and his distaste for Helios (not enough low end grunt) and ONE (too sharp a tip section). I have both a 905 Z- and a ONE. Sage's Jerry Siem has done a great job with both rods but their personalities are quite different. Z-Axis, loaded with RIO Gold, has been my go-to #5 for several years but over the past year and into this one and using the same Hatch 5+ and Gold, the ONE has won me over. I have not experienced issues with in-close presentations with feeling as Anderson has nor has protection of long, fine tippets been a problem. ONE has very sharp reflexes and is highly communicative which is important to me. Note that I fish all but exclusively with surface floating flies and predominantly on mid to large rivers. Also I have recently added an NRX 9'/#4 (which Anderson does not like at all; even lower in scoring than Helios) which incorporates a soft tip but large river appropriate #4 into my quiver.

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  7. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    I have a 590 Z-Axis, and have enjoyed using it for years. It was lined with a 5wt GPX until recently, when guide Jim Landis suggested I use a 6wt GPX. I haven't put a 5wt line on since! It's not a delicate presentation rod with the 6wt line, but does great in wind with small dries to 1/40oz Clousers. The tip is soft, and even a little sunfish puts a bend in the top section. I bought a 490 on clearance, but returned it without even trying it... This isn't to say that the rod needs to be uplined, as I've also used a 4wt GPX line with the same Z-Axis.

    I'd like to try to the ONE, but am afraid that I'll like it too much. That's how I came to buy a Z-Axis.

  8. #6

    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    Frank, I have sampled several lines on my 590 Z- including RIO Grande (a .5 heavy line like GPX), SA Expert Distance (a good match for this rod), Airflo Rangefinder (too long a front taper for in-close loading) and Gold (a straigh 5 but with a 25' rear taper). At first I thought the heavier Grande migh be the one untill I got to know the rod better and realized the Gold not only loaded it perfectly but offered a more refined sense of communication. Same goes with the ONE, the Gold rules. Unless you are making many in-close shoots with big or weighted flies, in my opinion you will enjoy the almost magical subtelties of Z-Axis more with a #5 Gold or Expert Distance elongatged head and rear taper line.

  9. #7

    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    Personally, I have cast both rods and I think the One is an incredible rod. I own a one, but donot own a z axis.

    I do like the Hardy Zenith 486 over the 486 One, ZXL and Winston BIIIX.. I do agree with George on that analysis.

  10. #8
    Join Date
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    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    Hi S&S,
    I used a 5wt GPX for over 4 years with the Z-Axis 590, and it was my go-to non-dry fly rod for all that time. I argued with people on this forum who said the Z-Axis needed a 6wt line to lad properly, and reported that mine worked with a 4wt GPX. A former poster (and self-proclaimed expert) said that the Z-Axis was incapable of roll casting at any distance. I made a video and posted it here, of me roll casting the Z-Axis with about 10 feet of line out. I hit the target every time, and was using a weighted nymph.

    Pennsylvania has been a non-stop wind storm all year. Jim Landis tried to get me to at least try a 6wt line with the 590 Z, and I resisted for the longest time. We had temps in the 70's and 80's during the first week of April, and the big smallmouth came to dinner HUNGRY! I consider myself an above average caster, but casting Clousers into howling winds finally convinced me to try the 6wt line. While a heavier rod would have worked well, a shoulder injury makes using 4-5wt rods a must. The first cast into howling wind almost made me howler with joy! Delicate presentation was not a concern, and was not happening: it just blasted the Clousers right on target every time. After a couple months of using the 6wt line, I can deliver a dry fly with acceptable results...i.e. I catch fish. The wind wasn't quite so strong a few days ago, and I almost strung the rod with a 5wt, but decided to use a 6wt. Good thing, as the wind picked up to the usual gale force once I was downstream a 1/2 mile. I did carry a 5wt spool a couple times this Spring, but haven't seen the reason for using it.

    I read all of your posts, and respect what you have to say. I'm not trying to argue with you, but I've been fly fishing for 35+ years, and this combo feels great to me....and Jim Landis.

  11. #9
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    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    I think the One is a great rod in the 9'0" 5 wt. (I reviewed it last July for the forum). But when it came to the opportunity to trade in my Z-Axis for a One, I cast both and I kept my Z-Axis.

    I do have a 9'0" One in a 6 wt. which I really like.

    Pocono

  12. #10
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    Default Re: Sage One Yellowstone Angler Review

    Those shootouts are entertaining reads and I appreciate them for what they are. I have held and wiggled the 490 and 590 One but haven't cast them, I love my Z's. The 590 was my first and I picked up the 490 on closeout then added a 6110 switch. Something about those Z's that I just love.
    ~*~Leave only your footprints~*~

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