On the Fly column: First rod in your quiver
On the Fly
When you work in a fly shop, the question we answer the most is “What should I look for when it comes to my first fly rod?” For the person new to this sport, the number of different rods, weights, lengths and actions can be daunting, to say the least. Like everything else in this world, you can keep it simple or make it as complicated as all get-out.
To make it easy on yourself, look for a 9-foot, five-weight rod for most trout fishing in the Roaring Fork Valley. You can fish ponds, lakes, creeks, streams and rivers here with that single rod. Five-weights can effectively fish dry flies, nymphs and streamers with ease. Most rods these days are “fast action,” meaning stiff versus soft and flexible. Medium- to fast-action rods are perfect for novices who are learning the different casts for these fishing techniques.
Novices also ask about reels and lines to add to their rod selections. Reels typically come in different sizes, and any fly shop can help advise you when it comes to proper size selection. Most companies use a number system, and sizes 1.5 to 2 are usually right on the money.
Fly lines are even more complicated than rods, so keep it simple and select a weight-forward floating line in the proper weight (Five weight rods require five weight lines, etc.). Yes, there are intermediate sinking, full sinking and plenty of other options, but a floating line is really all you need to get started.
Once you start to master this sport, you’ll want some different rods for different situations. A soft and light two-weight is a bit more fun to cast on small streams to small fish, and a heavier six- or seven-weight is optimal for throwing large, heavy streamers. You’ll get there, but for now, find a reasonable five-weight and find some willing fish.
This report is provided every week by Taylor Creek Fly Shops in Aspen and Basalt. Taylor Creek can be reached at 970-927-4374 or taylorcreek.com.
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