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Gear Review: St Croix Bank Robber Fly Rod
Gear Review: St Croix Bank Robber Fly Rod
A high performance fly rod that does exactly what was designed to do
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Default Gear Review: St Croix Bank Robber Fly Rod

A high performance fly rod that does exactly what was designed to do.

October fly fishing is all about throwing meaty streamers to aggressive brown trout. Unlike the spring where fly fishing is at its classical apex of brimmed hats, pipes, and noble dry fly presentations to sipping trout, fishing during this time of year is a street brawl with fat nasty fish that smash a swinging fly like a crazed linebacker.

I cannot think of a better rig to battle ornery fall browns with than my 6WT St Croix Bank Robber Fly Rod. One of the first truly niche rods to hit the market, the St Croix Bank Robber is specifically designed for streamer fishing…hence the name derived from the term “bank robbing,” or casting streamer flies to undercut river banks where the biggest nastiest fish lie. Made from high modulus/high strain graphite blanks, the Bank Robber is equipped with a fighting butt, anodized aluminum reel seat, and stout lower section that tapers into a sensitive tip. The rod is perfectly suited for making big booming casts, covering a lot of water, and fighting big fish caught on naughty streamer patterns. I’ve used it while fishing for trout, smallmouth/largemouth bass, and schoolie stripers…basically any species for which fishing streamer patterns is the preferred method.

As previously mentioned, I am a purist in matching gear that is appropriate to the task and have outfitted my St Croix Bank Robber with a Lamson Litespeed 2 Reel that is spooled Scientific Anglers Mastery Series Wet Express Sinking Tip fly line. I’ve found this setup to be best pairing and that it really enables me to take advantage of the rod’s power, accuracy, and get my flies down deep to where the big naughties are.

On the versatility front, the Bank Robber was made for one application and one application only. One is guaranteed to find yourself frustrated if you try to tie on anything but a streamer…but like hunting woodcock with a 10 GA shotgun, why would you even want to try? A slight nit that I have to pick with this rod is that it does not have a hook rest which is annoying. I’m told that the reel seat is designed serve this purpose, but it is a miss nonetheless. Bottom line…if you are not into this type of fly fishing, move on, this is not the rod for you.

I always have my 6WT St Croix Bank Robber with me when I’m targeting large trout in big water and would highly recommend this rod over more its more expensive competition. Hit your local fly shop or eBay (see article) and check out a Bank Robber for yourself!
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By rsagebrush on 04-23-2016, 02:30 PM
Default Re: Gear Review: St Croix Bank Robber Fly Rod

I have been curious about that rod for quite a while although I have not purchased one. For streamer fishing I use my current rods in sizes 6,7 and 8 for the big nasties. I also use a 200 and 250 grain Streamer Express line. I see Mr. Galloup uses the 7wt as his tool of choice.
I understand the theory of a dedicated piece of equipment for a certain style of use but is it really necessary? I mean I have so much current equipment I find it hard to justify a rod like this.
Kelly is certainly knowledgeable when is comes to streamer fishing.
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By isaiah20 on 08-06-2016, 11:30 PM
Default Re: Gear Review: St Croix Bank Robber Fly Rod

I disagree with it being a one trick pony. I carp fish with mine all the time.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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By rsagebrush on 08-11-2016, 04:09 PM
Default Re: Gear Review: St Croix Bank Robber Fly Rod

I recently acquired a used 7wt and it is indeed a very good streamer rod. Finish if so so, but really who cares, it's a blunt instrument and very good at what is was designed to do, which is toss big baits. Not really a very good dry fly rod but it works well with large poppers, are those dry flies? Truly a brute of a rod, which is what it was meant to be.

Still, while I do a lot of smallmouth fishing in the Potomac I still prefer baitcasters for these big boys, their just better for the job at hand. It is fun to whip out every now and then, but compared to the previous, rather a sissy stick and tiring to use.

Now in the fall, for browns it certainly will be a go to rod for me.
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By sweetandsalt on 08-16-2016, 03:06 PM
Default Re: Gear Review: St Croix Bank Robber Fly Rod

I don't own one but have cast Bankrobber. I like it and the way it looks too; pale gray weird reel seat and no hook on a saltwater intended rod, who wants a large sharp object an inch away from your fingers, put that fly on a forward guide and wrap the leader around the circumference of your reel. If I recall, St. Croix toughened their rod with Nano resin too.

I'd score one but for my old 9 1/2'/#6 Loomis IMX, my long-time dedicated steamer rod.
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