One of my favorite rods for dry fly fishing is a very old Sage Graphite III 490 Light Line. It is impossible for me to not compare slower action rods to this old Sage (pardon the pun) since it is my bellwether rod. After testing the Sage Circa, there is now a challenger to leader of the flock!
I was immediately intrigued when I heard first about the Circa. The designers at Sage had hinted around that they were designing a rod comparable to the revered Light Line Series. There was a lot of scoffing from Light Line loyalists and industry insiders. However, after being introduced in 2013 the Circa has changed many of those Light Liners’ and dry fly aficionados’ minds.
What a Beautiful Fly Rod
The beauty of the Circa was the first thing I noticed. The Green Tea colored blank coupled with Olive colored thread wraps with Slate accents give the rod an air of sophistication. The feel of the unique Super Plus snub-nose, half-wells cork grip was indescribably comfortable. The emotions that are evoked from the Circa’s aesthetics are almost as satisfying as the casting of the rod itself. This is the true joy of the Light Line Fly Rod Series and Sage has captured this essence in the Circa.
Casts Like No Other
Using the Circa 489-4 for the first time was really no different for me than using my old 490-2 LL. The rod cast with a deliberate accuracy that I haven’t felt in a newer designed rod. The Sage Konnetic Technology obviously makes a difference in the accuracy of this rod. Casting at close range is done with a minimum of effort and I was able to pick up 35’ of line easily from the water without having to strip in any line. This was great since I was casting to a fish that was feeding in a very small window. My caddis barely made a ripple when it landed or when it was pulled from the water.
Casting the rod at distance of about 70’ was what I expected. Double hauling the line through the Fuji stripping guides and the chromed snake guides was almost effortless. The Circa loads with more ease than most slower action rods making this a wonderful introductory slow action rod for the angler delving into the world of high accuracy, delicate presentation dry fly rods for the first time. The only caveat is that it doesn’t take much wind to affect the accuracy of this rod at distance. This rod in the hands of an intermediate or beginning caster will cast a dry fly at distance more accurately than any rod available. Ultimately, the Circa is fun to fish and casts like no other rod out there.