Selecting a Fly Rod for Trout Fishing
Stopping by the fly shop shortly after the first of the year to check on what has come out that is new or exciting has become a traditional way to begin a new season of fly fishing fun for me every year. The shop is well stocked with all types of new high tech fishing items, gadgets and fly rods. The staff, Russ, John, Brett and Andy have the store spotless and well organized, Vail Valley Anglers is officially ready for the 2014 fly fishing season. Since we have an unrestricted year round fishing season and some open water, it is time to hit the water and test some new fly rods!
Every year when fly fisherman visit the Vail Valley in search of trout they often ask about a fly rod to use for this particular area of Central Colorado. Experience tells me that an angler’s first fly rod should be an investment. Spend enough money to get the quality, performance and a guarantee on the rod. This way should the rod break you will only be faced with a nominal shipping and processing fee, usually not more than 50$. You want to invest in a fly rod that you can use now but have some room to grow into rather than buying a cheap rod and not liking the sport because you cannot cast the less expensive models very well.
Length and Weight
When you are searching for your first fly rod for Colorado trout, get a five weight rod. If you are a novice I recommend an 8ft 6in length fly rod, it is a bit more easily handled in small streams, but otherwise purchase a nine foot rod because this is a great all-around length.
My personal preference is to avoid kits because they generally come with cheap fly line and fly reels. Use a quality fly line from the start and you will be a happy fly angler. If you need to skimp you can go light on the reel. It’s primarily use is to just store your fly line when fishing for trout with the occasional need to fight fish with drag and reeling.
Listed below are three different quality manufactures rods at three different price levels currently in stock and waiting to be fished at the Vail Valley Angler store in Edwards, Colorado. The recommended fly rods can also be found on line at www.vailvalleyanglers.com
Value Fly Rod: The Redington Voyant
This smooth casting, high performance graphite fly rod can be used by the beginner or more advanced angler. The Redington Voyant 586-4 Rod, with its 5-weight line and 8ft 6in length is perfect for fly-fishing for small to medium sized trout and other similarly sized fish. It is used when casting small and medium sized flies and medium-short casts. It has the ability to perform on larger rivers with bigger fish if need be. The Voyant fly rod has a half-wells grip and an anodized aluminum and wood reel seat, which is ideal for freshwater fly-fishing. This Voyant Rod is a perfect rod for some smooth fly fishing on your favorite trout stream.
· Fast action fly rod
· 4 piece configuration
· 5-weight line
· 8 foot 6 inch fly rod
· Alignment dots for easy set up
· Half-wells grip
· Durable anodized aluminum and wood reel seat
· Comes in a cloth tube with zippered closure and black cloth rod bag
· List price $189.95
Do-It-All Fly Rod: Scott A4 Series Fly Rod
Some anglers only dream of owning a handmade fly rod, but may bristle at the cost. Others have discovered the affordable Scott A4 series, and have already added one to their quiver. With its high-end materials, fast, sensitive action and superb build quality, the A4 feels like it should cost twice what it does, and fishes better than many rods costing hundreds of dollars more.
We like the four-piece Scott A4 Fly Rod because it travels well. Its low physical weight reduces fatigue for long days on the water, and it casts flat as a board thanks to Scott's multi-modulus carbon fiber layup. High-quality Super grade cork in a tapered half-Wells shape offers a multitude of grip options, whether you're coaxing a wise old trout from under an overhang or dropping streamers from 40 feet out in a headwind.
TiCH Titanium Carbide coating protects the stainless steel guide frames and reel seat from corrosion, while SIC Silicon Carbide rings provide smooth, friction-free casting. Whether you're a first-time angler seeking an edge over your buddies or a veteran on a budget, it's hard to beat the handmade quality and high-caliber performance of a Scott A4 Series Four-Piece Fly Rod.
· Multi-modulus carbon fiber blank for power with great feel
· Lightweight sleeve ferrule four-piece design
· TiCh-coated stainless steel guide frames and reel seat
· Self-aligning slide hoods for fast, easy rigging
· Super grade half-wells cork grip for versatility in any conditions
· Handmade in Montrose, Colorado USA
High Performance Fly Rod: Sage One Series Fly Rods
The Sage One are designed to meet the demands of experienced fly fishermen seeking to deliver a perfect presentation. Whether you select the featherlight 3-weight 490 or the beefy 8100, each Sage One Series Fly Rod is designed and built by hand for the precise performance needed for stalking and landing trophy fish. Sage's Konnetic Technology ensures these fly rods are vibration-free in both fresh and saltwater environments. And a generous sweet spot gives seasoned anglers the ability to concentrate on the finer points of delivery, while elevating the skill set of enthusiastic intermediate fishermen. Custom cork grips, hard-chromed snakes and Fuji ceramic strip guide inserts are just a few examples of the high quality materials that make the Sage One Series Fly Rods something that will be handed down from generation to generation.
· Fast action fly rods
· Konnetic Technology for reduced weight and vibration control
· Fuji ceramic strip guide inserts with hard-chromed frames
· Hard-chromed snakes and tip-top
· High-grade custom cork grips
· Walnut reel seat inserts (3 through 5 weight)
· Bronze anodized aluminum reel seats (6 through 10 weight)
Come to Vail Valley Anglers to check out our full line of quality fly rods from Sage, Redington and Scott. We have rods for every species of fish and every method of fly fishing in stock. We offer customers the chance to demo a fly rod before purchasing so they know they’ve made the right choice.
Bill Perry, Guide and Content Writer