4/5 or 5/6 beulah switch?

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by cody77, Jan 8, 2010.

  1. cody77 New Member

    Posts: 8
    Fairbanks, Alaska
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Looking to buy one of the Beulah switch rods to swing streamers for trout in the Upper Willamette drainages...is a 5/6 too much, 4/5 too light? What would people reccomend I set it up with a Skagit or Scandi head. Probably an obvious answer but I've only been spey fishing for a year. Thanks in advance for the help.

    Cody
  2. Big Tuna Member

    Posts: 1,933
    Wenatchee, Washington
    Ratings: +36 / 0
    Depends upon the streamers you fish. I like fishing weighted flies like a conehead zuddler. so I went with the 5/6. I have both elixir (scandi) and tonic (skagit) lines. I'm pretty much fishing the tonic exclusively because I can turn over heavier poly leaders and beefier flies. The 4/5 might be a little more fun w/ trout, but I've caught both trout and steelhead w/ the 5/6, so it's a little more versatile.
  3. fredaevans Active Member

    Posts: 3,079
    White City, Oregon, USA.
    Ratings: +106 / 0
    Yup, what he just said.
    :>)
  4. MikeT Member

    Posts: 98
    Hillsboro, Oregon
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Cody,
    Not to throw cold water on your plan, but let me share my experience with what you're doing.
    Two years ago I bought a Beulah 5/6 switch rod with a Scandi line to take on a float trip on the Alagnak. It was fun to cast but I quickly came to the conclusion that the rod was a solution looking for a problem to solve.
    At 10.5 ft. it was too long to easily land fish from a moving boat. With the St. John reel, it was easily 3x heavier in the hand than my 9' 6-wt. And it gave me no obvious advantage in casting or working a fly for the large rainbows we were catching. After a couple days I switched to my single-hand 6-wt. and found the fishing much more enjoyable, and that rod was much more suitable for indicator nymphing when I wanted to do that.
    I live in Oregon and fish the upper Willamette on occasion. The fish you're likely to encounter up there are mostly small, and will not put much of a bend in a Beulah switch rod. If that's your destination then I'd suggest learning some spey casts on a 5- or6-wt. single hander. Wulff makes a Skagit-style line for single hand rods if that's the style of casting you're wanting to do. But save yourself the disappointment of investing in a spey rod that's far too heavy and powerful for the targeted fish.
    FTI, I sold that Beulah rod and line as soon as I returned from Alaska. There just wasn't an application here that I thought would match the rod's characteristics. I already had a couple spey rods that were better suited for steelhead, and several single hand rods that were MUCH more suited for trout fishing.
    My $.02....

    good luck.....Mike
  5. SpeySpaz still an authority on nothing

    Posts: 1,818
    Roy, WA
    Ratings: +10 / 0
    ...to each his own Mike, and I respect your opinion.Mine is a little different. But my rod is a little different from yours too.
    I have a Beulah 4/5 switcher, and it's a super rod for cutts, etc. I've used it at Rocky Ford and on lakes and rivers too. It's my go-to cuttie rod for the Cowlitz. It's fun, light in the hand, and has some balls if you get a big one on. So that's my opinion, no disrespect to anyone intended. I can't wait to hook a (small) steelhead on her. the 4/5 elixir is perfect on it.

    That being said, I have a total crush on the 3/4/5 12'6" Meiser I got last year...oooh hoooo.....

    Rock on, Cody, in your quest for the perfekt rodd.
    Bob
  6. longstick Member

    Posts: 280
    North West
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    SpeySpaz,
    What line are you using with the 3/4/5 meiser?
  7. cody77 New Member

    Posts: 8
    Fairbanks, Alaska
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Hell yeah fellas...thanks for all the good info. I just enjoy spey casting much more than that single handing now that I've started the conversion. It's much more comfortable and efficient for me when swinging flies. Thus I'd like to transfer that to trout fishing.
  8. longstick Member

    Posts: 280
    North West
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Cody77, you will enjoy it. I have a 5110 and a 5126 z axis and have landed steelies and trout on both I am have a blast and am looking even lighter. Beulah 4/5 and 5 wt plat. series spey are going to be my next look.
  9. Big Tuna Member

    Posts: 1,933
    Wenatchee, Washington
    Ratings: +36 / 0
    That's precisely why I bought the 5/6. I like to fish two-handed rods. I also like fishing streamers. I usually carry 2 rods, a nymph/dry rod and my switch. I've had a lot of fun with it. Although I've tried single handing it a few times, I don't really like it as a single hand rod. For that reason, I might consider going with a light spey rather than a switch. The great news is that you have a lot of inexpensive options with the Beulahs, TFO's, and Dechos. Have fun.
  10. ak_powder_monkey Proud to Be Alaskan

    Posts: 3,207
    Eagle River, Alaska
    Ratings: +111 / 0
    I have the 5/6 and its a rod for big fish, I built it specifically to swing mice for 20+ inch rainbows, and throw other big flies to big rainbows. I wouldn't hesitate to use it for summer run steelhead.

    For the willamette I'd go with something lighter for sure, I think the 4/5 would be great for lower 48 streamer fishing.
  11. wolverine Member

    Posts: 576
    Everett, WA
    Ratings: +4 / 0
    I've got the 5/6 & the 7/8 Beulah switch rods. I tried the 4/5 but it just didn't "fit" what I was wanting it to do. The 5/6 still won't throw big 1/2 chicken tube flies but will throw some long flies as long as they are reasonably sparse. The 5/6 was an absolute jewel on the pinks this past summer.
  12. Brett Bates Member

    Posts: 64
    Longview WA
    Ratings: +1 / 0
    I don't want to ruffle any feathers and I definetly don't want to put down buelah because there service was great. I have the buelah 6/7 switch 10'6" and I just kinda think of it as a shitty spey and a crappy single hand. I have got plenty of steelhead on it but it just doesn't do it for me. The switch is a good idea for cutt on the cow spey spaz but so is a 3wt. single hand. In my opinion if I was to go back and do it again switch wise I would get a 12' scott. Great price, american made and unbelievable rods. Go see Mike Sturza's at the Lost Creek Fly Shop he is a great guy with alot of knowledge. If your going trout fishing seriously try skagit for single hand and save some money but if your running for steel I got a 6/7 birkhiemer 12'6" spey and its has all the bugs already worked out for you. Small spey beats switch for sure and trust me you will never single hand a switch
  13. SpeySpaz still an authority on nothing

    Posts: 1,818
    Roy, WA
    Ratings: +10 / 0
    Bob sent me an SGS scandi head along with the rod. 286 grains, 30 ft. I use 47# varivas aire running line on it. Nice.

    Brett,
    I must live in a parallel reality. I was SHing a 7 wt switch just today on the Skookumchuck! And for me, a 3 wt isn't enough rod for most places on the Cowlitz and at most flows. But hey, whatever smokes your rope right?
  14. Brett Bates Member

    Posts: 64
    Longview WA
    Ratings: +1 / 0
    Spey Spaz it was only my opinion on switch rod's smaller than 12' and then at that point in length why not get a small spey. Are you seriously single handing a 12' with a monster fighting butt. I just don't get the purpose. I am just personally wondering what is the benefit of a switch over a small spey especially when all you can do with a switch is spey or it's awkward. The Cowlitz river is fishable from barrier to 205 bridge and is wadable from one side of the river or the other most the way down and you know when those cutts are in from first week of sept to mid nov they are everywhere and can be caught with your hands while your fishing for steelhead. Why kill the fight of a good cutt with a big rod. The size of the rod has nothing to do with the flow and the cowlitz fish's best 5500 or below (which is easy wading) and it doesn't really get over that when the cutts are in and if it is over 6000 you would have to be in a Parallel reality to be fish'n the cow for cutthroat.
  15. SpeySpaz still an authority on nothing

    Posts: 1,818
    Roy, WA
    Ratings: +10 / 0
    no bro, it was a 7110Z Axis with a custom built Skandit line. It one hands nicely, but I wouldn't want to SH it all day. Caught a big mean buck silver today on it.
    A lot of guys use reels that are too light to balance their rods, which can make SHing a switch awkward. They select a reel that looks neat on the rod rather than a reel that's got enough weight to balance properly. Makes casting more tiring than it needs to be.
    The advantage of a switch is that it's kind of like a swiss army knife, does a lot of things with a lot of different lines. If I want to reach out and touch somebody, I'll use a different tool. But you can get great line control with the additional length of a switch, save yourself a sore shoulder, and have lots of fun with a switch rod. If it's not your cup of tea, that's fine.
    When I gear up and pick technique for the Cow I always take flow into consideration, so I'll let you have your opinion and I'll keep mine, but I will say even a 14" cutt will put a good bend in my 4/5 Beulah switcher, many cutties bend it into the grips. Plus I can land them quickly and let them go. I've fished it for cutts at 9K+, and not needing backcast room is a real advantage under those conditions. Why fish it at 9K? less crowded.
  16. cody77 New Member

    Posts: 8
    Fairbanks, Alaska
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    bought the 5/6 from fin and fire....I'll let you all know how it fishes...