Fly Rod help

I've had good luck with Moonshine Rods. They come with an extra tip section.

I'm convinced most rods in that price range are made in the same factories in China, Vietnam, or South Korea. They slap a TKO, St Croix, Sage, etc sticker on it and send it out. I'm not sure the average user will have much to complain about.
Moonshine rods? Never heard of them, but, I do have knowledge of China fly rod production.

I found a company over there in the 80's, I sent them my logo and asked for 3 samples to be sent back, I requested the action to be modelled on a Sage rod.
To my horror, back came a rod in a tube with the Sage logo!

Eventually I settled on a 9' 6weight, it's what I used to teach fly fishing and sell to my clients, they all came with a spare tip, the finish was superb, and action second to none, and the cost to me.....$30...and that's in a tube!
I won't tell you what I sold them for!

I had 2 come back out of around a 100 rods, the newbies on both occasions had got the leader joint stuck in the tip when landing a fish.

At the end of the day, there is no getting away from the fact, the far east produce some very good carbon fibre.
 
Yep, gotta use the right rod for the fish.
I hooked a 5' tarpon on an 8 wght once, quickest intentional break off to save the rod.
My point was most rods are broken by errant treatment.
The latest warranty hassle for companies is replacing rods that people shove in rod carriers. Those rods rattle around in those tubes unless protected by a sleeve. Everyone in Bozeman uses those things.
I don't disagree.

I always shake my head when I see those truck tube holders. = Truck nuts. The dust and the rattle can't be good for anything. All for what? Saving 10 min to rig up? Also baking in the sun can't help the glue either.

I ruined a really nice rod leaving it in the front seat of my pickup on a hot day. The plastic rod tube got so hot it warped badly. I stupidly thought I could bend it back and get the rod out... I snapped both of them. I teared up a little when my $400 Sage rod went from 2 pieces to 4. I take care of my stuff, but every good thing comes to and end eventually. I don't get to attached to fishing gear. It's fun to replace it.
 
Thank you all for the responses and suggestions. I use Rio fly line currently on my Redington behemoth reel. I enjoy that reel a lot. I will have to make a trip and try out some rods!! And to answer what rod i currently have, there is no stamp on it anywhere. I received it as a gift several years ago the reel was not good. it catches fish but i am just looking to upgrade.
 
I don't disagree.

I always shake my head when I see those truck tube holders. = Truck nuts. The dust and the rattle can't be good for anything. All for what? Saving 10 min to rig up? Also baking in the sun can't help the glue either.

I ruined a really nice rod leaving it in the front seat of my pickup on a hot day. The plastic rod tube got so hot it warped badly. I stupidly thought I could bend it back and get the rod out... I snapped both of them. I teared up a little when my $400 Sage rod went from 2 pieces to 4. I take care of my stuff, but every good thing comes to and end eventually. I don't get to attached to fishing gear. It's fun to replace it.
Yeah, most everything is replaceable.
I will admit I love all my rods, each and every rod has a story.😉
 
Moonshine rods? Never heard of them
Standard inexpensive made to their specs rods from China with their logo. They apparently have a couple lines made in the US but that may have changed. Their $200 Drifter II Rod casts better than my Montana made $500 Winston GVX (discontinued). Of course I broke the tip of my GVX and they don't have blanks to repair it so It'll go from 9' to 8' 6" as soon as I get it sent in.
 
I don't disagree.

I always shake my head when I see those truck tube holders. = Truck nuts. The dust and the rattle can't be good for anything. All for what? Saving 10 min to rig up? Also baking in the sun can't help the glue either.

Bro,

If you aren't already strung up when Salmon fly hatch is booming, you'll totally lose your hole to a dude in a boat.

Those 10 minutes are the difference between 4 12" fish and 6.
 
I fish my older generation Sage rods every year. 5,6,7, and 8 wght. Great rods, but I wouldn't replace them with any of the high end options available now.
The difference between a $1000 rod and a $500 is your pocket is $500 lighter.
That said, I'm close to pulling the trigger on a two hand Beulah for $800 . None too excited about the cost, but it's the only rod which will fill a certain niche.
 
@cedahm I'll have to check. It's in the bottom of a box in the garage. Hopefully the mice haven't gotten ahold of it. It's really slow action with a brutally stiff backbone. It might be good for heavy streamers.
 
I used to fly fish 70-80 days a year. That's dropped quite a bit now, more like 10-15. But what I have found is I am moving away from the super fast, high end graphite rods, to fiberglass, and middle of the road flex rates for all but streamers/super heavy nymph rigs.

Basically I got into fiberglass for dry fly fishing, and tippet protection. But I shifted my entire rod selection to glass because once I learned how to cast properly, they are a much more enjoyable experience. Caveat, I'm fishing what would be considered "fast" fiberglass. Echo and Epic are the two brands I like. Fiberglass roll casts 100 times better than fast action graphite, and it can take abuse the graphite can't.
 
Middle of the road, lot of bang for the buck, Orvis Clearwater series. It's just a good rod. Not sure if you need a reel and line, but the whole thing can be had for 400 bucks. I flyfish year round on the Yellowstone. I put in a lot of days and I'm not kind to my equipment. I use a 6wt as my everyday rod. I have a 10 foot 3wt nymphing rod as well. I think these rods are some of the best for the money. Reputable company and great warranty. I've never needed it though. I just can't break these things.

You said your rod is too stiff. You can try to over line it, which would make it softer. You can start with an inexpensive line 1wt more than your current one. If it works, eventually spring for a better line. For me, a good line makes all the difference.
I’ve got 2 Orvis Clearwater rods, got both as gifts, my gripe with Orvis is the warranty. I’ve broke both rods twice, and that $80 to replace sections adds up to the point where I wish I wouldn’t have fixed either and just bought a different rod all together. I have not been impressed with their warranty or durability. But for what they are, pretty good deal.
 
Story time.

Should have fought the bear
Story time.

Should of fought the bear.
Fishing one of my favorite streams in Beacharof National Wild life refuge. About time to head back to the LZ to meet the float plane when it flew over, circled and then departed away from our L.Z. I knew we had another group about 20 miles that direction and they apparently would be getting picked up first. Gave my guys another hour to fish.
We had been targeting char and grayling but had just started seeing some early arriving silvers. That’s why I had the 8wt. On my pack. Strung it up when one of the clients squealed on hooking a silver on his 5wt. Propped the 8wt. Against a willow and followed my clients down a short chute to the next pool. Got the fish released when one the guys pointed and said BBBBBBBBBBear. Yep, right where my 8wt was. 20 maybe 25 yards. Spray in one hand, 454 in the other I politely asked the bear to leave. He declined and took a step or two our direction. Apparently he wanted our fishing hole. Not having a cast master in my fly box we backed off a couple. Then his buddy showed up. About that time bear number one looked over, sniffed the rod and promptly chomped on it, stepped on it and then really got after it.
We left at that point. Picked up the reel and a few pieces the next day.
 
Another vote for the St Croix Legend series. I’ve had one for about 15 years and love it. The warranty is great, you break it they’ll repair or replace it. You just pay the shipping, or sometimes the shop you bought it from can ship it back for you.
 
I think fly rods are similar to boots and packpacks. What works for one person doesn't necessarily translate to the next. I think they are more similarly compared to a bag of golf clubs, each has a specific purpose and has it's limitation. You can pick one that will serve most of your purposes and live with the limitations or you can own the whole bag... (playing with a 5/7 iron or having the whole bag)

What comes with cost is usually better components and usually lighter weight. (big deal if you cast really well and fish all day) That being said 95% of people will never cast well enough to notice the difference and increased performance from buying a mid range rod to a high end rod.(don't oversell yourself on casting ability, 60+ft in a single pickup, or two backcasts throwing a full 90+ line). Heck some it doesn't matter what they own because they spend more time untangling knots compared to casting..;)

A summary of single hand rods:
Slow action: fiberglass/bamboo/some graphite (the wedge) soft presentation short distance. (dry flies, small nymph's)

Medium action/mid flex: generally a more all purpose rod. (5-7 iron) roll casting, short overhead casts <50ft.

Fast action: punching wind, shooting line, turning over heavy rigs/streamers, double hauling. (the woods)

The fly line is equally important in the pairing as the more you spend, the better quality the line is but it's usually a more specific purpose (Better coatings, shooting heads, sinking tips.) Most fisherman are better served with a weight forward floating line for most fishing and don't need an overly expensive line, maybe a sinking line or sink tip if you fish lakes, deep water with streamers.

Reels:

I would suggest a large arbor. Less memory and kink in your line, faster pickup speed. You definitely want the weight of your reel to balance with the weight of your rod. You'd be surprised how much wrist fatigue comes from an unbalanced set-up...

Weights of rods:
3-4 small streams, small fish
4-6 average rivers/lakes decent size trout
6-8 lakes rivers with larger fish large bass/pike/steelhead
8+ primarily saltwater

If you can get to a fly shop... do.... most will let you cast rods, see what feels good to you...
 
Last edited:
I think it best to start off with a slower actioned rod and go from there. Beginners often get sold fast rods and have a lot of problems trying to cast with them. A good 5 weight is a nice place to start, and if you can manage it get a lesson or two. Lot of people get taught bad habits by well meaning friends. Lot of quality second hand rods around most times, well there is in OZ. It's a good idea to practice on water wherever possible. Someone mentioned the Sage RPL, they were a sweet rod, my first actually.
 
I’d recommend going to your nearest fly shop and test several rods if that’s an option. Have Orvis, Sage, Scott, Echo, Reddington, Winston, and Hardy rods. It really comes down to personal preference.

If I were you, I’d take a serious look at the Orvis Recon or Clearwater combo, Echo Carbon, and the Reddington Crux. There are a few fly fishing sell/buy groups on Facebook with a rather large following. Could easily pick up a budget friendly rod on there as well.

Not sure what your excatly targeting species wise, but a 9ft 5wt or 6wt is a great all around rod for fishing Western waters.
 
Last edited:

Forum statistics

Threads
111,424
Messages
1,958,217
Members
35,173
Latest member
240shooter
Back
Top