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Spey in the South?!
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys-

It's been about two years since I first picked up my CND Expert 6/7 trout spey. I have landed some nice fish on it down here in the south, including a three pound rainbow in very heavy flows (quite a fight - keep in mind we don't have steelhead down here, so 3# ain't shabby).

I'm now interested in another trout spey. I've been holding out for a couple years in the hopes that one of the manufacturers would create a true #5 in 12' or longer, with *trout hardware.* Clearly there isn't a market for that at the moment. I'm not particularly interested in going the custom route.

So what I'd like to know is, what's on the market right now, and what do those rods look like?

I know the Sage 12' 5wt is a primary candidate, and I like the look of the rod, though I haven't been able to swing one (local shop has one but how to get it to the water?) I'm a big fan of Scott Rods and am doing what I can to support them currently. I see in my catalog that Scott is offering the LS 5 weight. How does this rod differ from the LS2? Does it come with a tapered grip (I greatly prefer the wells on the front)?

Are Winston or T&T offering trout speys currently?

One of the biggest complaints I have about the spey market is that manufacturers seem to think it's just fine to list the length and weight of the rod without any pictures to accompany the various models. This is especially true of trout speys, which may look much different than their big brothers but which are given no catalog ink whatsoever.

Any suggestions?

Thanks,
Zach
 

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Here we go again!
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Trout speys

I've fished a whole bunch of them in search of the best and in my opinion the finest trout spey out there is the Meiser 12' 6" 4/5/6. I know that this is very subjective, as all opinions on rods are, but for me this rod has it all. It is long enough to act like a real spey rod unlike some of those in the 11 foot range, has a deep flex without being a noodle like the Sage 5120, is strong in the butt without being too stiff like a good many of them are (to me the Scott and Anderson rods are too fast down low forcing all of the casting feel and action into upper 1/2 of the rod) and has an amazing amount of feel with a 47' single hand 8/9 Delta line. This rod will cast short with feel or shoot 25 feet of running line with feel and power. Throws dries or beadheads equally well, and Meiser's quality in build is without question superior to most everything else out there.

Imagine your CND Expert that is a fair bit faster with a better progressive taper, has more power and throws a line 2 sizes smaller. If this appeals to you then you'll love the Meiser 126456. I have a Loop 8-11 on mine and throw the above mentioned Delta, the Hardy Mach 1 Plus 8/9 and there is a Buelah line that JasonH let me try on the rod that was absolutely awesome.
 

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The CND 12'2" Spey Tracker is rated as a 5/6 but I feel it is a 5 wt. The IM8 graphite combined with CND's progressive full flex makes for a sweet spey rod. I won't try to compete with Moose's glowing endorsement of the Meiser - but this rod is definitely worth checking out.
 

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T&T's 1206-3 is another excellent candidate. It is a true light rod, with a softness that allows small fish to make their presence known.

Last weekend I spent Saturday fine-tuning the rod for a floating line, and with humility, believe I found a perfect match, an impression confirmed by four experienced Spey casters at the GGACC.

The line is Rio's WC 10.11.12, minus tip 2. The body is 24 feet, 378 grains, and the tip 17 feet, 172 grains, for a total head length of 41 feet weighing 550 grains. It casts with the effort associated with light single hand rods.

Sweet!!!
 

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I have fished my Sage 5120 for 4 years and really like it, especially for trout in the 1-4 lb range. It did take a while to find a line for it and it is a soft rod, but effortless to cast. If I were to do it againt though, I would have to agree with Moose, the Meiser 12ft 6 inch 4/5/6 is absolutely delightful. I got to play with one for a couple of days last year and it is as light in the hand as the 5120, but significantly more power in the lower part of the rod for longer lines or bigger fish.

Jim
 

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Sage 5120 and/or Meiser's 5/6 Switch rod/10' 6"

My Sage 5120 was finished by Gary Anderson, and that may account for it not being a wimp rod. It can cast/handle the Skagit 450, WC 678 with tips, MS 6/7 and MS7/8 with tips. It is less of a wimp rod than my 7136 or my son's old Sage Brownie 9140. The WC 5/6 and various WC's without tip 1 or 2never loaded this rod.

Recently, I have been trying my 5120 with Rio's Outbound WF 10 Floating line, (I have a current thread with my results so far). With a 15' Rio Steelhead leader and couple of feet of tippet, it does an excellent job of casting a large size 4 dry fly, nymph, streamer, or shad fly. With Rio's Powerflex 12' Intermediate leader and a couple of feet of tippet and size 4 nymphs or streamers, this combo is basically effortless to cast regardless of the cast. The Outbound Floaters mend very well with the 5120, and these two terminal options will cover most of my trout spey casting needs.

Meiser's 5/6 Switch Rod does very well with the Rio 6 weight Nymph line for close order nymphing. I'm working with an Outbound WF 8 Floater with this rod, and I don't have it dialed in yet. I know the OB sinking 6 weight line works with this rod in a boat. A floating OB and sinking OB will enable me to fish from my boat for trout, bass, small mouth bass and whatever in the 3-5 pound range. The Sage 5120 is too long to use in a boat. Fortunately last summer, I had a 3# tippet when a big fish struck and hooked itselfwith me and the 5120 in my boat. There was no way :whoa: I could control that long of a rod from either end of my boat with a good sized fish. So I broke off the tippet and put the rod back in its case before it became :( a 10' Spey Rod.

The Redington CD 9/10 reel is a perfectly balanced reel for both the 5120 and Meiser Rod. It costs $149 and about $80 for a spare spool.
 

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loco alto!
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Zach, a while back you requested input on this quest, and you made it clear that you wanted a "major name brand" rod. Well, here we are 1 - 2 years down the road, and the smaller makers continue to be leaders on this front. You really do owe it to yourself to at least try the rods of these smaller makers. They can certainly make a "factory" rod for you if you want, but to what end? For someone who clearly shows a good bit of savvy and ability to discriminate among available choices, why do you feel compelled to let someone else (a designer at Sage, Winston, etc.) make choices for you?
 

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Zach,
The Loomis Metolius is a great trout rod. My last trip to the Deschutes I had the chance to play with one and met a guy who fishes it all the time for redsides. It casts sweetly and it will bend to the butt with average size trout.

There are some good threads where Ed Ward outlines skagit style lines for it. There are also some threads with recc for standard lines also.

I think the one I cast had a 5/6 WC on it and it seemed very nice.

Gillie
 

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Spey in the South?!
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Hey SSpey-

Valid points. Please remember that I am not up in the Pacific northwest like most of you guys. I have seen exactly three spey rods on the racks down here in the last two years, and all three of them were Sages. I'd like the opportunity to test cast some of the smaller makers, but I am just not where they are, and I would never put someone through the trouble of sending (or making!) one of these rods if I might reject it. So, I am working in the world of rods-we-can-order, which basically means a major manufacturer (of one-handers) this far South. I have never seen Daiwa, B&W, Loomis, Beulah, CND, Meiser, Burkheimer, or Loop speys in person, period. You guys have it pretty good.

Zach
 

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#&%*@^# Caster
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Zach just call meiser as he happily sends demos of already built up rods. You will not be putting him out at all. Plus guys like Red Shed Fly Shop and Irish Angler will also send rods down your way to test out. Just call them and ask. If you do not like it just mail it back. A great service our sponsors provide for guys like yourself who do not have access to rods.

-sean
 

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...

...I can tell you from a fair amount of experience that the Sage 5120, CND 12'2" Speytracker, and Loomis 13'4" Metolius are all sweetheart rods for trouting if the majority of the trout you seek are in that 16" to 5-6 pound range. I've used all of these rods for Russian and Alaskan rainbows, as well as using the Metolius for summer steelheading on the Grande Ronde and Stilly. The Metolius has the widest range of capabilities amongst the three, catching trout on it is fun, plus it will handle the smaller races of summer steelhead quite adeptly. It also has the capability to reach out pretty far for such a light doublehander and I don't think that I would be out of line if I presented the figure of 85' under decent conditions. The fittings on this rod are along the lines of a trout rod too, something which seems to be of importance to you.

To give you an idea of the "weight class" of these three rods, they all perform very well with around 490 grains of line weight, which in my opinion makes for a rod that is well suited to medium trouting, ultra light steelheading. Rods throwing say 40 to 50 grains heavier than this figure are better classified as heavy trout, light steelheading sticks. That's my opinion and I'm stickin' with it!
 

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For most trout in the 14-18" range, I think the 1206-3 T&T is overkill. It will work but is too much rod for the fish. I've had the rod for going on a year now and made it work for trout but you really don't get to enjoy the fight much. This is based on fishing the WC 5/6 on it as a floater and also the 450 Rio Skagit for tips. While I bought the rod for trouting, where it really shines is for summer-runs in the 5-7 pound range. Much like its big brother the 1307-3, it will take on bigger fish if needed. I would not hesitate to target fish up to the low teens on it.
 

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I concur with Tip on this one...the T&T 1206 is really a small steelhead rod through and through. For trout two handers I really enjoy the discontinued Winston LT 1207. Works great with a DT6.

William
 

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Here we go again!
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ZachMatthews said:
Clearly there isn't a market for that at the moment.
Actually, there is a really good market for them out here on the left coast. I'd say that the majority of new rods I've seen guys show up with in the last year have been these light rods 5 and 6 weights). We have a lot of large trout rivers and half pounder fisheries and this allows the angler to spey cast in shorts, in nice weather, through the better bikini hatches.:saevilw:
 
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