Sage Accel Fly Rod Review

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A review of the Sage Accel Fly Rod immediately brings up some interesting new design features and technology. Sage set out to create the Accel as a rod with lightweight feel that shines as an all-around fly fishing tool but still has Sage’s noteworthy casting power. As an added bonus, the Accel comes in at $595 which is a couple hundred bucks less than their popular fast-action cannons like the One or Method fly rods. Despite the lower cost, the Accel may be Sage’s best rod for the angler who uses one fly rod most of their fishing. In an era where all fly fishing gear and especially fly rods are highly specialized tools designed for specific purposes, the Accel can do everything well and is Sage’s jack-of-all-trades.

Overall Impression: The Accel Difference

As rods fly rods have gotten lighter they have also become stiffer and traditional slower rod actions that were once common are almost a novelty these days. Anglers used to the signature Sage ultra-fast action power and distance employed in the One or Method will find a much different rod in the Accel.  The Accel is an ideal compromise between very fast modern rod actions and slower traditional actions. While the Accel does have the power for long, accurate casts in the wind with bulky hoppers or lead-eyed Clousers, it also has the sensitive touch for up-close mending and loads quickly with less effort for quick, precise presentations. The difference is in the Accel’s action and technology.

The rod utilizes a slightly slower, medium-fast action that has inherent power but is also softer for more feel when loading and casting. This is no super-stiff broomstick and novice anglers will have a much easier time casting this rod that something like the Method. I don’t really enjoy casting rods that have the flex of a piece of steel rebar and these super-fast rods often fail to load without a significant amount of line off the tip of the rod. This can be a problem when finesse is required at point blank range. The Accel is no beginner rod however, and experienced anglers who appreciate more finesse, even in a saltwater weight fly rod will appreciate the smooth, effortless casting that comes with Accel. Whether trout are rising mere feet away or a giant bonefish is slithering through inches of water out at sixty feet, the Accel will get it done.

Accel Technology and Features

The Accel features new Generation 5 graphite which was developed with elements of their successful Konnetic Technology but with a new rod design. By adding axial fibers to the graphite, Sage was able to build a rod with a slimmer diameter without sacrificing strength. The result is a lighter rod with a smooth, responsive action. This rod will definitely appeal to anglers who need a rod that does everything and allows them to enjoy the feel of pure casting performance.

The Accel showcases an attractive emerald green finish and comes with a rod bag and ballistic nylon tube for storage. Trout weight rods use a cork half-wells grip while saltwater weights add a fighting butt to the grip. The stealthy black anodized aluminum reel seat is up-locking which keeps fly reels securely locked on to the rod. Rosewood inserts give trout rods a classic look while heavier rods use a beefier aluminum insert. Hard chrome snake guides and ceramic stripping guides round out the features.

The Accel Line of Fly Rods

Accel fly rods come in a range of sizes for most fly fishing applications and cover everything from small trout in tiny creeks to permit tailing on tropical flats. Rod weights from 3 to 9 are available in lengths from seven and a half feet to ten feet. It’s easy to choose a rod for your type of fly fishing with the Accel. My personal favorites are the 9 ft four weight for general trout fishing and the ten foot seven weight is an incredible tool for throwing streamers from a drift boat or for targeting spooky bones or reds on shallow flats.

Check out the full line of the new Sage Accel Fly Rods and our full inventory of fly rods at Vail Valley Anglers in Edwards, Colorado or shop online

Brody Henderson, Guide and Web Content Writer