I am thinking of buying the St. Croix Imperial switch rod in a 7 or 8 weight for fishing Atlantic Salmon . Would appreciate hearing if a standard weight forward line will do well with this rod or if not any recommendations would be welcomed . Thanks........Frank
You'll want to over weight your rod by at least two line weights.
I use a Deer Creek 11' 9 wt. switch rod from my skiff in tidewater for salmon, lined with a 12 wt. Rio
Outbound overhead intermediate line (this is a fairly powerful rod hence the 3 size over weight). This line allows me to throw a roll cast at the end of the retrieve to straighten it out, then just pick it up and shoot a two handed cast of 60' easily and efficiently.
And I use an Echo 10'10" SR 7 wt. switch rod lined with a Rio
9 weight Steelhead and Atlantic Salmon (SAS) line when wading small steelhead rivers where I really don't need my longer spey rods, for either swinging sub surface or drifting nymphs down narrow channels. This is a great line to either OH cast or single spey cast, and also roll cast and mends well.
So would suggest up-weighting by two line sizes or more, definitely weight forward, and go with the Rio
SAS line, or something similar that is made for both OH and single spey casting...
And before you buy the St. Croix, you might want to look at the new line of switch rods Beulah has come out, specifically made for east coast beach casting to atlantic salmon, stripers, etc..it's so new it's not even on their web site yet, so best to give them a call about it. I just talked to their reps at the Corvallis fly tying show, and they are very excited about this new rod..