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Thread: Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

  1. Default Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

    Travelling to Fort Pierce in a few weeks to visit some family. I've arranged to go out a course of times with a guide that week and plan on returning at least once or twice a year from now on so I don't mind spending some $ on quality gear.

    What would be the suggested set-up for snook/trout in Southern Florida? With that being said, I am a staunch Winston supporter for all my trout rods. How does the BIII-SX stack up to Loomis and/Sage?

    What about reels? I have a Galvan Torque for my 4/5wt trout set-up that I absolutely love.

    Thanks for your help!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Pinedale, WY
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

    Taylor: Take a look at this thread:

  3. Default Re: Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

    I caught a fair number of snook, drum, trout, etc. around Sanibel using a $40 8wt Cabela's Cahill combo with an upgraded saltwater line. I just couldn't justify spending more for a rod/reel I use one week a year. Not exactly what you are looking for though but it worked just fine.

    Now of course, I'm already planning an upgrade. My guide used a 330gr Sage Bass II and Xi3. Interested in what others suggest...

  4. #4

    Default Re: Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

    Snook fishing is very situational, so a little more info for choosing a rod would be needed.
    How will you be fishing for them, shore/wade, boat, docks etc.

    The reel should be solid with a very robust drag. You won't need more than about 60 yards of backing. Snook have major power but can usual/y be bested reasonably quick.

    Remember also that though these fish are not tarpon, your final leader tippet could be as heavy as 30lb flurocarbon.

    These tips are if you are specificly targeting snook.

  5. Default Re: Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

    Anything from a 7-9 wt with a reel that roughly matches the rod rating is fine. I've caught 30+ inchers on a 4 weight in open water, but bigger snook have incredible power in short bursts and are masters at using cover to their advantage, so something with a bit of sack is advisable near structure. A guide will most likely have you pitching flies along mangroves and oyster bars, especially at this time of year since the fish will either be holed up in backwater haunts or in the back bays beginning to transition outside—depending on cold fronts. The old stand-by is an 8 wt rod/reel combo, and you can't go wrong with it. I favor 7 wts for the Florida backcountry. Like you, I am a fan of Galvan reels (T-6 and T-8), either of which will do the trick down here. That said, a more affordable option like an older Teton Tioga or an Orvis Battenkill Mid Arbor IV will suffice. As for a rod, I do not see the sense in spending big dollars on rods since so many "entry level" rods nowadays perform on par with the big-ticket stuff. I use an old Heliply 12 for big tarpon, but otherwise I rely on a very budget-friendly—and very capable—Echo Ion 7 wt. There are scores of rods from other companies—Albright, Redington, Colton, etc—that will offer similar performance. (My other rod is a TFO TICRx). The best thing about this sort of 7- or 8-weight outfit is that it can be used for many other pursuits, from steelhead up north to bonefish in the tropics.

    Have a ball, and know that redfish, juvy tarpon, speckled trout, jack, etc. are likely to join the party.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

    Talk to your guide. They will know where they will be fishing, and under what conditions, as well as the expected size of the quarry. If you chose a quality guide, they will know.

    There is no greater fan of fly fishing than the worm. ~Patrick F. McManus, Never Sniff a Gift Fish, 1979

    Anger is like peeing in your pants: everyone can see it, but only you can feel it. ~Jeff Yalden

    Remember: The winner gets to write the history books.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    middle Tennessee

    Default Re: Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

    I just bought a Colton outfit. I have heard nothing but good about the Torrent reel. I also bought one of thier new model rods and I put it out there about 80' and I am not a good caster. Give them a call before you buy.

  8. Default Re: Snook in the flats... Rod/reel recs?

    8wt rod will handle most everything down here on the flats.
    Clutch, Sage, Scott or whatever rod works best for you.
    I prefer rio redfish line.
    Reel is totally up to you. Unless your targeting tarpon you will probably not have a fish take you more than 10 years into backing if at all.

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