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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
If a person could only afford one rod, reel and line, what would that be? We're assuming that this person has access to lots of different waters with an assortment of different game fish, but has a limited budgit.
There are many who would like to take up Spey Casting but are overwhelmed by the prices of the equipment and are stymied from the start. Is there a basic "set up" that might serve them well.
Any ideas?
Stan
 

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too many options!

after all i've never owned a rod i disliked!!!,and that's the truth but i don't spey all day since i have a boat and that's the alldaylonghardcore way for me to fish,,my belief is that there are many,many rods out there at around 300.00 dollars either new or used that will get a beginner going,,,and will cast great if not overlined,i'm glad some unification is occurring concerning line wt.s/rods!,,i'd say the line is the key to happy speycasting,and the actual rod used is secondary,there ARE many,many rods availlable at this point for `entry' dollars thru many channels,it's almost scary! ,i'd recomend any rod that is sold by a trusty source,several sponsors here carry rods that are `entry-level' priced;;;redshed and those TFO rods comes to mind,i cast one of those and was impressed and stunned at the price,,scary!,,i will say this though;one guy i know and run into bankside occaissionaly i always let him cast my rod= it seemed he struggled with a shorter rod more than a longer one in his extremely limited casting abilities so i'm wondering if longer IS better for beginners or?????????
 

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Junkyard Spey
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For a person owning only one rod I still think 14' is the best length for a variety of water and while the debate rages on as to the perfect head length a Delta/WC will suit most people just fine when starting out. A multi tip line is a worthwhile investment but if one is on a tight budget a floating line and a couple of poly sinking leaders will cover a lot of fishing conditions.
Several spey orientaed shops have package deals which work and are priced pretty good. Three places to look are Mark Bachmann at The Fly Fishing Shop.
http://www.flyfishusa.com/rods/sage-2001/03-sage-combos.htm
Aaron Reimer at River Run Anglers
http://www.enthusiastmedia.com/php/...th/88?osCsid=31305788810504f332d6fd3a5cb1dd41
I also have package deals that I think are pretty good.
http://www.redshedflyshop.com/PACKAGES.html
 

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I think this is an intersting question. As someone in just this situation, (a new spey caster with a seriously limited budget), I needed to find something I could use to learn to Spey cast but that would also be reasonable to fish with around here. There really isn't any Steelhead or Salmon water around here. We have either small trout streams, large slow moving rivers or lakes and ponds. In most cases I fish these waters from shore. There are some good size fish to be caught but the largest trout is about 3 lbs and the largest bass is 5 to 7 pounds but 1 - 2 lb fish is more normal. For this kind of fishing I really don't need a heavy weight rod. I chose a TFO 12'6" for a 6/7 wt line. Small enough to have fun catching the fish available around here but large enough to learn to cast a 2 handed rod properly. I took MJC's advice and got a Airflo Delta line to go with it. I'm planning on using an old Pfleuger medalist reel with it so I have an entry rod for just a bit over $300. (I may only get 1 foot of backing on the reel, and may even have to cut off some of the running line to get it to fit on the reel, but since I'm not likley to catch anything that will run, it should be no problem. Balance will be the only issue.)

So rather than trying to choose a single rod to cover many kinds of fishing, figure out what kind of fishing you are actually going to do and choose a rod to match that kind of fishing.

As a side note we have some good Striper fishing about an hour away. A Spey rod would probably work well, but a decent 9wt single handed rod with a quality saltwater fly reel is probably a better choice. I thought about getting a heavier Spey rod just in case I went striper fishing. But I decided I probably wouldn't go striper fishing so I went with a lighter outfit that better suited the fish I was going to catch.
 

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Speytarded,

I'll look at this question irrespective of price. I will consider the very best all-round set-up... one rod for all conditions :Eyecrazy:

As I have about 30 rods I can choose from in the rod room this is a daunting task - I truly hope I am never faced with such a task... only one rod :eek:

Interestingly, the rod I choose is one that I rarely actually use - that is the CND 14'4" Steelhead Specialist. I guess the reason I seldom use it is the very reason why I would choose it as my only rod (jeez.. that hurts to even think about). The Steelhead Specialist is so versatile that it can fish virtually any type of river with any type of line - for any type of fish. I have specific rods for most situations - so an all-rounder is not often my choice - but if I had to...

When we were testing the prototype we had a few casters out on the Snoqualmie one morning. Aaron Reimer, John Farrar, Marlow Bumpus, as well as Dana and myself. While we were doing that "pre-spey standard" dance of trying to decide which line weight loaded the rod best - we ran into a problem... the rod seemed to cast almost all of the lines equally well. It didn't seem matter, Mid-Speys, Accelerators, old version Grand Speys - even some of Marlow's Skagit lines. Furthermore, it handled moving up and down in line weight.

Our little group actually started trying to find a line or system or style of casting that the 14'4" didn't like - we didn't. Within the designated 8/9/10 range the rod handled everything, in my mind a true all-round rod.

As a fish-fighting tool the 14'4" is also "all-round". While a little more rod than I would choose for say the Morice, the progressive action would certainly allow smaller steelhead to show their stuff. Then larger fish - even chinook can take the rod further into the deep reserve of power in the butt section of the rod.
 

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Line Carron Jetstream.
Rod Carron 15ft. Has the advantage that it comes with two tips and twp butts so you effectively have more than 1 rod.
The thought of just 1 rod just cannot get my head round it. Next you will be suggesting just 1 car madness.
 

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I have answered this question in the past by saying a 14' 9 weight. While I still think that a good set-up, I have started to think that perhaps the better option would be a good 14'ish 8 weight. The eight will handle all but the biggest brutes and will not overpower the common 6# summer fish. As for line, I would go with one of the mid-belly offerings: Midspey, Long Delta, Jetstream etc.
 

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Size matters

Stan:

It would help to know the size range of the fishes that are available to you. Eight ounces-five pounds produces one answer; 4-40 lbs. requires another. Almost as important are the average widths of your streams.

As a topic, this reminds me of a hoary favorite of the gun magazines: "If you could have just one caliber for North American (or world, or eastern U.S.) game, what would it be?" (Probably the most common answer is the .30-06.) The irony is that a million or so .30-06's, etc. would immediately be aimed at any beaurocrat who suggested that hunters should be limited to one rifle.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Nooksack Mac,
Figure Summer Run Steelhead, 2 to 5# to Stripers upwards of 20 to 25#.
I know this isn't a perfect situation but there are a lot of people that will have these constraints.
Stan
 

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Stan,

By limiting yourself to "Summer Run Steelhead, 2 to 5# to Stripers upwards of 20 to 25#" you are limiting your audience to a small population of people who already Spey cast. I'd really like to widen the audience for Spey casting beyond the east and west coast. I think Spey casting is usful for more than just Steelhead and Stripers. Let's include middle America. Let's explore beyond the established fishing situations.

:whoa: :saeek: :whoa:
 

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loco alto!
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Stan, the 5 lb summers warrant a 7 wt spey to be fun for the angler. The 20-25 lb. stripers present another story. I've had 20 lb stripers sound in the salt (in their native range), and even with the short lever of a 10 wt single hander, it was rough work bringing them up. Also, it can sometimes take a good morsel to "feed" a 20 lb striper, more fly than a 7 wt spey can handle. I'd really consider 2 rods, don't have to break the bank as MJC proves, but you want the steelhead fishing to be fun for the angler, and the striper fishing to be fair to the fish.
 

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I wholeheartedly agree with SSpey and Baldmountain. For summer run fish and big stripers, there isn't a single rod that wouldn't leave you over or under gunned.

Summer run fish, 13' to 14' 7 weight.

Big stripers, 11' to 12' 11 or 12 weight.

To answer your question though, with a limited budget I'd buy the best used outfit I could get my hands on.
 

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Junkyard Spey
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Boys, boys, boys...

While I am open to the suggestion that I may be missing the boat here, I think if I read the original post right you guys may be missing the boat. With the exception of "baldmountain" everyone that has posted here so far has several two handers. The way I read the original post this is about a guy/gal that badly wants to start fishing a two hander and because of things like a wife, some kids, a mortgage, a second, two car payments, "yada, yada, yada can't see his way clear to get tackle that will work. I have been there as I'm sure several of you have at one time or another. I talk to anglers about this all the time. This isn't about a light rod for summer or a heavier one for stripers, this is about one rod, period. Yes there will be a great many compromises involved here. For a lot of people it dosen't matter because there will be these compromises or there won't be anything. We (most of us posting here) are a jaded group of spey rod owners and fortunate to be so however I didn't think "speytarded" was talking about us but people new to the sport and on a tight budget.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
MJC,
When I posted this question that was my intent. It was strictly hypothetical, and intended to solicit information. I know that there isn't a "magic bullet", a single rod that will handle all fishing situations. I could have be a bit more clear in incorporated some additional detail.
I find myself working with more and more people, new to Spey Casting that ask the question, "What is the best outfit that can satisfy my needs?". There many other considerations such as, budgit limitations, type and size of fish and finally, the fishing location itself (Big rivers, small rivers, salt water, etc.)
Stan

The road to Fly Casting excellance is a journey that never ends.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
MJC,
When I posted this question, that was my intent. It was strictly hypothetical and intended to solicit information. I know that there isn't a "magic bullet", a single rod that will handle all fishing situations. I could have be a bit more clear and incorporated some additional detail.
I find myself working with more and more people, new to Spey Casting that ask the question, "What is the best outfit that can satisfy my needs?". There many other considerations such as, budgit limitations, type and size of fish and finally, the fishing location itself (Big rivers, small rivers, salt water, etc.)
Stan

The road to Fly Casting excellance is a journey that never ends.
 

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MJC said:
While I am open to the suggestion that I may be missing the boat here....

Actually I'll stick to my comment about buying the best used rig I could find. Sites like the Red Shed or FlyfishUSA have used gear on consignment and a $700 or $800 rig can be had for half or less. I just think Speytarded's desire (theoretical as it may be) for a rod that would double as a summer run steelhead rod and big striper rod begs us to reccomend a rod that doesn't exist.

However, upon further review and taking into consideration the woeful fiscal outlook of the prospective buyer (Oh yeah, been there, done that) I'd try to find a used Sage 7141, a used Tioga 12 or similar inexpensive reel and an Airflo delta line. I think this outfit would allow for fun spey casting to all but the biggest anadromous fish and also allow overhead casts with the same line to toss fairly good sized striper flies into the salt or estuaries.

You could still probably find a cheaper rig by buying a used Reddington or TFO, but I'd rather have a yard sale and sell everything that wasn't nailed down or cried over and buy the better outfit.
 

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loco alto!
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If you fish one place 90% of the time, be honest about it and get the right tool for the job. You'll enjoy it more. You can always borrow tackle for the other 10%.
 

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Steelhead are cool!
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8139 Burkie, Marquis Salmon 2 with a extra spool, Carron line and a cut back Windcutter. Not exactly budget minded but will work for any river where Steelhead swim.
 

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gee

i read about this all the time;the fixation with sizing the rod too the `hunted',,,here you might end up hooked to any size fish,the runs overlap and the salmonids can be 2 inches or 74 pounds,i'm certain most rivers or salt environs offer the same `unknowns' as far as quarry goes..so i do not see a choice of rod other than what makes the user smile and a balanced line rod reel is what is vital for beginners,speytarded is a casting instructor so i understood what he meant,,,and i pm'd him some options that i hope helps his aspiring associates,,but since we have two threads going;why not cast and fish what you like,the fish aren't going to know what rod/reel/line you've stuck them with
 
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