Friday, February 10, 2012

Fly fishing has many creative participants and a dedicated following.  The amount of gear available out there is astonishing and it would be impossible to sample it all.  Being a guide allows me to try a lot of rods and reels that my guests have brought and there are definitely some beautiful rods being made out there these days.  The tendency has been to build faster, harder, stronger; but there has been equal attention put into the softer and slower presentation rods like the Scott F1 and now F2.

The Scott F2  

Scott Fly Rod Company has balls for sure.  They have a hip and photo rich ad campaign that creates a lifestyle image around the company and when they launched the F1 series a couple of years back I remember thinking WOW!  A fibreglass rod series introduced when the industry trend is wrapping blanks for speed.  A throw back in material for sure but enough to catch the interest of our guides Jonny 'Bravo' and Joel Whalen.  They both bought this awesome little pieces of Colorado architecture to do battle with the cutts in some of our smallest waters.  They both purchased one weights matched them with Sages ultra light Click 1 and began a small stream love affair.

It's a super cool little rod which waves like the wand of a sorcerer in the right hands, picture hiding behind a stand of grass and with a couple of flicks of the wrist you can cast the  fly, stack a mend and let it drift softly into the basin sized bucket where trout lips is softly sipping.  As you raise your  arm to set on the poor creature, the arc in the rod doubles over and an epic small stream battle ensues.  The soft blank of the rod allows for short and aggressive runs into the undercut absorbing the tension put on the tippet...truly a small stream specialists rod of choice.   One of our newest clients Jerry Skurka from the Chicago area brandishes this fine little weapon on the countless spring streams of the Driftless area in Wisconsin.  His is a three weight F2 and I gave that rod a few throws on one of our small streams and found it to be an incredibly acrobatic rod.  You can definitely get tricky with these little gems.

For reels I've been married to Bauer for a long time.  I've had some of their reels for 8 years and have never had them fail.  The cork/ceramic drag system is impeccable and smooth beyond compare.  Most of their reels are equipped with this system.  The one fall back of this drag system is wear in the drag knob which can cause the knob to back off during weather changes which is fairly constant in the Rocky Mountains.  This is easily fixed by adding washers which can be sent to the customer by Bauer or you can choose to step away from this system and go with their new Rogue series which is where I have been lately.  A sealed drag system with ultra smooth resistance, the large V arbour allows for excellent line capacity in an extremely light weight reel.  For the Columbia River this is essential as the runs can put you so deep into your backing it is essential to step up a reel size in order to handle the brutes in the massive current.  Having a light weight large arbour allows this to happen without messing up it's balance with the rod.  They have some cool colour options including a splash colour which is added on at a reasonable cost.

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