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So, I'm curious about the benefits of choosing different length/rating combinations for swinging flies for steelhead in the smaller rivers of Michigan (PM sort of thing) and other Great Lakes tribs.

With length roughly a choice between:
  • 10ft 6in
  • 11ft
  • 11ft 6in
And rating being pretty much a straight choice between 7wt or 8wt...

What would be your preference?

I can see the benefits of a shorter rod where casting room is restricted and a longer rod in terms of line control, but would you value one over the other in the region?

Where distance isn't really the issue, and (to my understanding) the rivers are relatively shallow, I feel like 7wt makes the most sense - but am I wrong about that?

I'd be interested to hear anyone's thoughts on what their ideal combination of length/rating would be for smaller water steelhead in the region?
 

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fly on little wing
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1,110 Posts
So, I'm curious about swinging flies for steelhead in the smaller rivers of Michigan (PM sort of thing)

what their ideal combination of length/rating would be for smaller water steelhead in the region?
i use 9' -8wt for PM.
no need for longer rod. no need for lighter line.
need to keep things out of the wood.
fighting fish and bushwhacking.

November PM double stripe buck pic for attention.
 

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Having fished quite a few Michigan Tribs with a spey rod, I can honestly say I think a switch rod with a commando head would be the best for 90% of the rivers, especially rivers like the PM and such. Rivers like the Muskegon or St Mary’s and open sections of the Big Man, I like a long rod ......even a 14-15’
 
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Premium Member
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Heck yeah a switch rod would be great.

I really love my switch rod when I've been forced tight to the bank by deep water in front and had cedars poking my back. It literally feels like casting in a phone booth but you can do it!

I'm based out west now but I'm grabbing my 11'6" pretty often
I'm also recomend looking at G.Loomis imx short spey at 11'11"
I recall hooked4life on you tube has
Reviewed the imx in 7 and 5. He's based in Ontario goes by peter.s.c. on here I think.
 

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Brockton
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467 Posts
Having fished quite a few Michigan Tribs with a spey rod, I can honestly say I think a switch rod with a commando head would be the best for 90% of the rivers, especially rivers like the PM and such. Rivers like the Muskegon or St Mary’s and open sections of the Big Man, I like a long rod ......even a 14-15’
Not that I’m an expert, but that’s pretty much what I do around here.
 
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