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  1. #11

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    Quote Originally Posted by clsmith131 View Post
    ...generates line speed quickly over fewer false casts...
    In my view of pike and musky fishing with big flies, one false cast is ideal, two is ok but not every cast, and three is either you're undergunnned or you're playing with it and need to cut it out and get back to fishing.

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  3. #12
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    SE Wisconsin
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    198

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    Quote Originally Posted by joe_strummer View Post
    In my view of pike and musky fishing with big flies, one false cast is ideal, two is ok but not every cast, and three is either you're undergunnned or you're playing with it and need to cut it out and get back to fishing.
    Anyone who does three false casts for every presentation isn't likely to last long unless young and in great physical shape. As I pointed out on a different thread, Rick Kustich, in his new book on flyfishing muskies, recommends as many as five false casts each time. I couldn't believe it. It's about the only thing in his major work I completely disagreed with. Most of my presentations have NO false cast at all-just a powerful backcast and a forward cast. Now I'm mostly fishing midwestern rivers and 60' casts are not only unnecessary but actually a disadvantage in most cases, but to cast 40' with no false casts requires a very aggressive backcast to load the rod. Most of the time my approach is to do a Belgian cast right from the end of the "figure 8" which actually for me is a large oval rather than a true 8.

  4. #13

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    Quote Originally Posted by jr spey View Post
    Anyone who does three false casts for every presentation isn't likely to last long unless young and in great physical shape.
    Yep, totally agree. Get enough rod and line to move the flies you're trying to fish the distance you need to move them, with command of the cast but as little false casting as possible. That's big fly fishing.

    In my case, I'm often have a lot of space and am trying to make a pretty long cast, tuck the rod, and make a two-handed retrieve. I want a long cast so I have a lot of room to accelerate the retrieve in front of a follow. My casting technique is enough of a false cast to get everything airborne and moving, strong backcast that feeds as much line as I can, then shoot.

    Duck and chuck.

    This kind of casting, this is a place where the marginal performance advantages of SA's textured lines assert themselves.

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  6. #14

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    Allen Fly Fishing has a line of very fast Azimuth rods that include a 9' 10 wt priced @$300 that appear perfect for musky work. They are designed to pitch big flies in big winds and the salt. Anyone use one?

    My hand is hovering over the buy it key....

    ddb

  7. #15
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    SE Wisconsin
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    198

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    Quote Originally Posted by ddb View Post
    Allen Fly Fishing has a line of very fast Azimuth rods that include a 9' 10 wt priced @$300 that appear perfect for musky work. They are designed to pitch big flies in big winds and the salt. Anyone use one?

    My hand is hovering over the buy it key....

    ddb
    .

    I wouldn't pull the trigger unless you can use one first. A lot of 9' 10 weight rods cast musky flies quite nicely. The proof in the pudding is how the rods perform after you set the hooks in a decent fish. Way too many 9' 10's that I've fished don't cut it, including some that are named as musky rods. It's hard to put a rod to the test unless you have a friend that has the same model and you can use it. I've even been fooled by trying to bend the rod in-hand as if a fish were on the end of the line. I ended up buying a Sage Peacock Bass rod in their Bass II Series by an in-store test of the bend/flex of the rod. I fished it for a month and sold it. My ten weight rods, and I own a bunch of them, are either permit rods, tarpon rods, or musky rods. The needs for all three are quite different. Unfortunately, even the opinion of other musky anglers may not be reliable. Too many posts that I read worry about how they cast, maybe the swing weight, but rarely say anything about how they perform with a fish on. I wouldn't even know what line to start with on that rod. At the very least, you'll need to have a bunch of them available to determine the grain load needed. As I mentioned in another thread about muskies, there's new rod coming out this spring that is going to be superb. I've fished the prototype last fall and fell in love. Be a little patient and when the rod is introduced officially I'll post it here. As I said before, I'm quite certain it'll be worth the wait and probably will be priced about where your Azimuth is (although that's not a promise.). And just to clarify. I have no financial interest at all in this new rod. I'll be paying retail for mine just like most everyone else.

  8. #16
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    SE Wisconsin
    Posts
    198

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    Tell you what. I went to the website to look at the rod. It's mostly a trout series (4 5 and 6 weights) that happens to have a ten weight. That makes me nervous. Its action is described as extra fast. That makes me even more nervous. However, there was something on there about a 30 day test drive. If you can actually fish the rod during that test drive and have the patience to wait until you'll get a chance to use it fishing before you acquire it, and that depends upon where you live (you don't have that filled out for us) then if you're lucky enough to catch at least one fish, you might have something. (Bad sentence, but it's too late at night to fix it!) Many times test drives mean casting on the lawn but no actual fishing. But, that's at least a start. I don't want to talk you out of it, just caution about buying something only because the price looks good.

  9. #17

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    Mystic Rods makes a musky edition in 10-12wt. I am hoping to order one before too long. I currently have an Echo 10 wt that works pretty good and better than my Sage RPLX. I feel a 10 wt is all I need as most of the flies are synthetic and sparsely tied. I have only used a floating musky line so far but did pick up a 300 and 350 grain streamer lines to start using.

  10. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    SE Wisconsin
    Posts
    198

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    I've heard good things about the Mystic rod. I've cast other Mystics and really like them. Which Echo 10 do you have? They have had a bunch over the years, some of which were better than others for musky.

  11. #19
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Location
    SE Wisconsin
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    198

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    Quote Originally Posted by jr spey View Post
    That depends a lot upon what material is used in the long fly. I have a few I fish for pike that are all of 12" long and can effectively be fished with an eight weight. Most serious musky flies, though, use a lot of natural materials and require a minimum of a ten weight. Unfortunately, as I pointed out in the Musky Fly fishing thread here, not all ten weights make the grade. I've used the Mangrove ten and found it lacking. Worse yet, I've used the heavier of the two Esox rods and found it lacking, too. The truth is that it tosses large flies quite effectively, but when you stick a big fish, the rod just folds over onto the cork which does not allow one to effectively fight the fish. That's especially a big concern in rivers, especially midwest rivers which are generally shallow and loaded with debris. For the same price, I would look for a used 10 weight TFO TiCr (not the TiCrX) or the original TFO Axiom in a ten weight. Both are far superior to the Mangrove/Esox series. I haven't tried the new Axiom II as yet so I'll reserve judgment on it. There's a new musky specific rod coming out from a small manufacturer in Minnesota that should be available some time in February. I had a chance to fish the prototype last fall and think it might be the best yet and the price should be quite attractive. I'll make a point of noting here when that rod is released. Trust me, unless they've screwed up since the prototype you'll be glad you waited.
    Don't usually respond to one of my own posts, but I couldn't figure out another way to do this. I mentioned a new musky rod that was coming out in February by a small company in Minnesota. I had a chance to fish the prototype last October and was very impressed. Now I'm following through on my commitment to you to announce when it's actually on the market. It was announced today, in fact. The company is Limit Creek Rods in Spring Valley, Minnesota. It's retail price is $360.00. Now, an opinion from my opportunity to fish it. It was somewhere between 8'9" and 9', I don't recall exactly. It's weight was heavy by modern standards at over 6oz. However, I've come to realize that that weight is almost a necessity to give one a blank that will not only cast a large fly but will fight a good sized musky adequately. For many of us, that means shallow rivers in the upper midwest where you just cannot afford to give the fish an inch. The handle of the rod has an extended rear grip and an extended fore grip. Both are necessary to effectively use the rod as a two-handed rod when desired. You need that spread between the hands for the leverage necessary to pull off a crisp two-handed cast with no false casts. For those of you who remember the old Beulah Bluewater rods series, these handles are very similar. It's designed to toss a flyline of about 450-500gr. I was using the SA Titan Sonar Intermediate in 500gr. when I fished it and it seemed perfect. It's a four piece rod and will come with a hard tube. Haven't seen the tube yet, but that's been the plan. Their website now has the rod listed, and there is mention of it on their Facebook page and Instagram. It is called the Force M1 Apex Predator. I have not seen the finished product, but the designer assures me it's what he wanted with maybe a picky quibble or two that most of us wouldn't even notice. The crew from Limit Creek are at a fishing show in Wausau, Wisconsin through Sunday so expect that there might be a delay in answering any inquiries. Let me know if you have further questions. By the way, I have no affiliation at all with this rod company, and just ordered mine at retail.
    Last edited by jr spey; 02-20-2018 at 01:29 PM.

  12. #20

    Default Re: Gearing Up for Musky- Lend me your opinions (TFO Esox, Mangrove, others)

    I have the Echo Ion in a number of weights. The 10 wt is a pretty good rod for the price. I have a Mystic Reaper in 7 wt that is a fast action rod. I think Mystic still has their buy one get one free rod sale going on.

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