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Looking to buy a new 8wt rod. Would like some advice the pro and cons between Beulah,Winston, Sage, Loomis, mostly for skagit casting on the Clearwater and rigging area. Thank you
 

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Pot-aa-toe...pot-ah-toe

There'll be many opinions on this one for sure...I like a fast rod, couldn't live without my Sages (XP, Z-Axis etc...)



Cheers
 

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For a supremely capable skagit rod you might want to add one of the Meiser MKS rods to your list. As good as it gets.

CT
 

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rod

newbe,
Why not plan to spend a day with Poppy at the Redshed
fly shop near Peck, Idaho. He can set you up with a number of
combos. You can find his shop info under "speypages sponsors."
Best deal in the world.
Best,
lsteinb
 

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Looking to buy a new 8wt rod. Would like some advice the pro and cons between Beulah,Winston, Sage, Loomis, mostly for skagit casting on the Clearwater and rigging area.

I'm noticing a distinct lack of ill-founded opinion on this thread so far. Let me see if I can help that. Here are some random thoughts.

I should note I own or have owned rods from all the producers listed, most in the 7/8 range (my Beulahs are 6wts). Almost universally what I fish now is either a Meiser or, actually, a beat-up second-hand Scott T2H. Having said that, given that there are multiple models of fly rods available from all those producers, particularly when you count the recently-discontinued models that are still widely available at retail (often closeouts) and/or secondhand, your request covers a lot of ground. I'm guessing there are few people if any that have deep experience with so wide a range.

Loomis makes range of rods in several different actions. One of them, the Dredger, and this turns out to be the one I have, was specifically designed with continuous-motion casting in mind. It's a deep-loading, relaxing rod to cast. Given the price point, I don't especially like the cosmetics/fit/finish on the Loomis rods. But this rod is really the exemplar in the deep-loading relaxed-casting category if that is what you are after.

The previous-generation top-end Winstons (BIIX) and Sages (Z-Axis) I both found annoying in that they more resembled overgrown trout rods (wimpy hardware, up-locking reel seats, short grips). That is not what I want in a heavier-class spey rod. Both appear to have partially addressed these issues in the newer models. The BIIX I have is squishy in the tip then gets stiff real fast, not at all what I want when pulling out a deep sunk line. I've spent a fair bit of time with a Z-Axis 8134 and a skagit head, but at the end of the day I prefer the MKS action, even past the build issues.
 

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newbe,
Why not plan to spend a day with Poppy at the Redshed
fly shop near Peck, Idaho. He can set you up with a number of
combos. You can find his shop info under "speypages sponsors."
Best deal in the world.
Best,
lsteinb
Brilliant!
 

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I've tried many, but its hard to beat a Burkheimer 7127 or 7134. IMO, best feel and casting at the same price point as Sage Method/One and G Loomis NRX.
 

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Looking to buy a new 8wt rod. Would like some advice the pro and cons between Beulah,Winston, Sage, Loomis, mostly for skagit casting on the Clearwater and rigging area. Thank you

If it is mainly a Clearwater rod, and 8wt is not to much. I was down there this weekend and the wind was challenging even with and 8wt.

Curious as to what time of year you usually fish? If it is August through mid November or November on? What size flies do you cast, size 2 to 6 or big intruder type? The reason I ask is if fishing more traditional flies up through November I would suggest visiting Poppy or contacting Lee Davidson at Snake River Outfitters (might be close to you) and trying a Vector line. I switched last year and now casting a Skagit feels odd and clunky. Unless you are fishing a sink tip and intruders I would see no reason to strip that much line and deal with line management. I have been fishing a Deer Creek 14' 7/8 and just switched to a Brukheimer 14'2 8wt. You can do a search here and see that several folks who fish the Clearwater love the Burkie 8142. You can also get a winter authority by Nextcast that is similar to the Vector but has a removable floating tip so you can add a sink tip.

If you want to stick with Skagit lines the Burkie 8134 would be a good choice.
 

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I just got done with 4 days on the Grande Ronde and used my Meiser MKS 13'6" 7/8 wt and Skagit heads to swing for and fight some nice fish. It was a joy to cast and an authoritative rod to fight with. I can recommend it highly.
 
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