Fly fishing gear and I have a love hate relationship. I find a rod, reel or whatever that I like and I stick with it. My infatuation with my old Sage 490-LL that is 25 years old and the Ross Gunnison (original) that rides the old Sage’s reel seat is a prime example of my stalwart ways. Not that I haven’t tried and liked other, newer gear. Thing is, I am very comfortable with this set-up for trout-why change? However; it dawned on me(thanks boss) that since I have been in the fly fishing industry as a guide and electronic media person for 20+ years that I should maybe upgrade or at least get some new stuff. So I decided that I would put together some gear packages that I would like and tell you about them – hoping that my significant other might get the hint.
This Fly Rod Can Almost Do It All
Casting and fishing are two different things. I have guided people who can cast a mile but can’t fish a lick. There are also a lot of great fly anglers who can hardly roll cast that understand how fish think and are great fishermen.
The Accel is one of the few rods that is truly “medium-fast” by definition that is available today. I enjoy casting this rod because of the ease at which it loads with any line. This beautiful rod is fast enough for big bugs and streamers with a little extra zip if you follow through with a light push of your thumb. Yet, it is delicate enough for fishing small midges and mayflies. But where this rod “Accels”(UGH! I know, I know) is when there is a fish on the end of the line.
My preference is for slow action rods. Casting for me isn’t the issue but my Alaska guide hookset is crippling at times. More flexible rods are more forgiving on overzealous hooksets lending themselves to be more forgiving when using light leaders. The Accel is the best melding of casting and fishing characteristics that I have found in a rod since the Winston BIIx. It is a rod for all occasions and conditions with a classic look.
Trout reels are a hard one for me. I have used most of the battery of brands available and I have not really found one that I wouldn’t use. I own Galvan, Ross, Nautilus and an even old Orvis large arbor Battenkill and they all are great. So I have decided that I really need to add the local Oregon company’s reel to my collection since I don’t have one.
The Bauer RX size 2 in Agate Green with the classic teardrop design to match the Sage Accel would be the reel that I would add to my Christmas list as my trout reel selection. Bauer makes some of the best reels in the world that few people know about. Always innovatively designed, Bauer reels are prized for their tough construction that is aesthetically pleasing. Encased inside the RX is a drag that never fails with absolutely no maintenance. There is no other floating carbon fiber drag like the Bauer RX that has as low starting inertia as the RX. This characteristic makes fighting large or small trout almost effortless on the lightest of leaders. Balancing the Sage Accel perfectly, the Rx will help me land more fish or I can convince myself that at least.
Towing a Fine Line!
Fly lines are more confusing than the tax code at times. But since I am dreaming about what line I would use on this all around trout setup then I will go with the Royal Wulff Ambush Triangle Taper Floating Line. Truth is, I haven’t fished it yet, but I have cast the line. Roll casting this line was effortless even with a bobber and a two heavy flies on the end. What really impressed me though was how delicately I could lay the line on the water even with the super short 20’ head. It isn’t perfect every time but this line cuts through the wind with more accuracy and feel of most lines. This line
impressed me enough to want it without ever fishing it. This Royal Wulff line seems to be perfect for the experienced fly fisherman on both rivers and lakes.
Now what? I have put together my trout gear wish list. What more could I need? How about a Spey fishing wish list? What I am going to ask for next might surprise a lot of you. But it is Christmas after all and I might as well go big on my next post.