What weight rod for Salmon or Steelhead?

Discussion in 'Steelhead' started by rooinater, Aug 4, 2009.

  1. rooinater

    rooinater aka "JAWS"

    Joined:
    May 6, 2009
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Gig Harbor, WA
    Home Page:
    I was looking at buying a rod for fishing for salmon on the sound and in the rivers this year for fishing with my dad. Usually when I've gone with him in the past I've always used a spincast reel and setup. This year I'd like to get a decent rod that will work well, but isn't going to cripple the bank and get a lower end reel like a Cabela's Prestige until I can afford a really nice real.

    I was looking at the Echo Ion rod and I'm trying to decide whether to get an 8wt or 9wt? I've only really done trout fishing with a fly rod, but would really like to try salmon and saltwater fishing. Any other brands that won't break the bank but are a quality rod?

    Presently all I have for rods is my backpacking setup, which is a 5wt 5 piece cabela's and a scientific anglers double pawl reel. I don't think I'd want to be taking that salt water or salmon fishing.
     
  2. Ed Call

    Ed Call Mumbling Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2008
    Messages:
    17,856
    Media:
    283
    Likes Received:
    1,670
    Location:
    Kitsap Peninsula
    A 6 will handle most but during heavy water flows and using heavy files and lines you might need to go up to an 8wt. Check your Outdoor Outfitters (formerly Sportsman's Warehouse) for Redington RS4 rods. Most can be had for $100. Great bang for the buck. I use a 6 from the beach. I use a 6 for summer river low flows. I use an 8 for winter river heavy flows, heavy flies. Since you've already got a 5 I would lean toward a 7 or 8 so you can have most bases covered with two rods (or buy ten more rods like too many of us). Good luck.
     
  3. Jerry Daschofsky

    Jerry Daschofsky Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2003
    Messages:
    8,043
    Media:
    453
    Likes Received:
    795
    Location:
    Graham, WA, USA.
    Home Page:
    For salmon and steelhead, I'd say you can't go wrong with an 8wt. It's the best all around rod for most of the species you'll be trying to catch.
     
  4. grizz

    grizz New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 6, 2008
    Messages:
    24
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Campbell River, B.C. Canada
    Summer run's, when there was some, 6 wt.
    Winter run's, not many left, 8 wt.
    Salmon, 8 wt.
     
  5. Arthur Vakulchik

    Arthur Vakulchik Young Gun

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2008
    Messages:
    525
    Media:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    lynnwood, wa
    id probably say a 7or8 wt. if your gonna be doing more sound fishing then lean more towards a 7, but if your gonna be fishing rivers a lot then go with an 8.

    arthur
     
  6. Warmonger

    Warmonger newt

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2007
    Messages:
    201
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Yakima, WA
    if you got a 5/6 i would vote 8/9 cortland has a starter rod that is sweet... thinking of buying one, but i dislike the reel. they are around 160 8/9 # with case and all "outfit"
     
  7. Jay Burman

    Jay Burman Experienced Ne'r do well and Layabout.

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2003
    Messages:
    320
    Media:
    81
    Likes Received:
    11
    Location:
    Snoqualmie, WA, USA.
    An 8 Wt would be a perfect addition to your collection. It's great for steelhead and salmon plus it's also ideal for Largemouth Bass, Bonefish, carp, shad and Stripers..
     
  8. Porter

    Porter Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2003
    Messages:
    6,591
    Likes Received:
    595
    Location:
    Kenmore, WA, USA.
    iagree
     
  9. Scott Keith

    Scott Keith Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Messages:
    602
    Media:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Arlington, WA
    I've got an 8wt TFO that I've used for fishing from the beach for pinks and it's worked well. I wouldn't hesitate to take it steelhead fishing either.

    Scott
     
  10. alpinetrout

    alpinetrout Banned or Parked

    Joined:
    Apr 28, 2004
    Messages:
    3,906
    Media:
    294
    Likes Received:
    73
    Location:
    Hiding in your closet
    For some reason, I'm completely confused by your capitalization/uncapitalization of fish names.
     
  11. Upton O

    Upton O Blind hog fisherman

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Messages:
    2,216
    Likes Received:
    246
    Location:
    out of state now
    Home Page:
    So, Alpinetrout, I'm completely confused on how your comment is related to the topic of the thread?

    My comment is: I don't have enough experience with any fly rod to offer advice. I do know that this forum has some real experts and I believe what they write, particularly when it comes to gear, technique, and where to fish.
     
  12. gt

    gt Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2005
    Messages:
    2,616
    Media:
    19
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    sequim, WA
    steelhead in moving water, 8wt. salmon? depends on which species of salmon you are after. hog sized chinook will not be fun on an 8wt.
     
  13. TC

    TC I live with wind knots

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2007
    Messages:
    161
    Likes Received:
    9
    Location:
    Bothell, WA
    So Karl, I am completely confused as to why you found that offensive. I read your blog, you write well, are funny sometimes, and that was a bit of humor stuck in a thread. We are all bored fishermen sitting here reading other bored fishermen's meanderings about this and that. I am sure you can understand a slight deviation off topic on occasion, right?
    BTW Rooinator...a 7 weight is fine, an 8 weight gets the job done better. Hope we didn't rooinate your thread. :)
     
  14. Ringlee

    Ringlee Doesn't care how you fish Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2005
    Messages:
    1,858
    Media:
    162
    Likes Received:
    49
    Location:
    Somewhere you don't know about, WA
    Ion 8 is a great choice as an all around Steelhead and Salmon rod.
     
  15. bouface

    bouface Member

    Joined:
    Feb 3, 2005
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Exactly. Rod choice depends a lot on which species and where you're fishing. For Chinooks in big rivers I'd want a 9 wt. For Pinks in the Sound and most summer steelhead I'd want a 6 wt. Deschutes (and other large desert rivers) summer steelhead I'd want a 7 wt. to help beat the wind. For winter steelhead and most salmon in rivers, I'd want an 8 wt. Of course, for all of those scenarios I'd rather use a spey rod, but that's a whole 'nother set of issues. My advice is to think about which rivers you'll fish most often, and ask fly shops in those areas for their recommendations. Alternatively, if you're not going to be targeting specific rivers, go with an 8 wt as an all around choice.
     
  16. Porter

    Porter Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2003
    Messages:
    6,591
    Likes Received:
    595
    Location:
    Kenmore, WA, USA.
    So many answers...but has Jerry pointed out an 8 weight would probably be the best all-around option (IMHO). Slight overkill for pinks and a tad undergunned for kings, but on target for all other species.
     
  17. Denny

    Denny Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2001
    Messages:
    4,095
    Media:
    100
    Likes Received:
    58
    Location:
    Seattle, WA, USA.
    Agreed.

    We can get mired down in the nuances of if you're more likely to fish in the Sound vs. rivers, what percentage of the time are you going to target what fish, but . . .

    the most versatile line weight for your stated purposes is 8 weight. There are a lot of good rod choices out there, and the rod you have selected, the ION, should be a good one.
     
  18. rooinater

    rooinater aka "JAWS"

    Joined:
    May 6, 2009
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Gig Harbor, WA
    Home Page:
    well, i'm a poor college student living off of my gi bill, so buying a 6wt, 7wt, 8wt and a 9wt will be unlikely especially after buying a 5wt setup earlier this year to cover all my trout fishing (eventhough i'd like a 3wt or 4wt setup for alpine lakes). Until I get done with college I just need a rod that will work fairly well for trout, and one that will work for the larger fish but not be overkill.

    I fish all over, from the stilly to the peninsula. Granted most of my salmon fishing will be done up north on the stilly, and the north cascade hwy area, mainly because I don't know where the hell to fish down south, and my step-dad lives for salmon fishing and knows a lot of the good spots up north. Spey fishing would be nice to learn but i'm just finally getting my regular casting back into my memory in my forearm. Mainly we fish for chinooks, and pinks are really unlikely unless they are released.

    so i've been doing some more research on gear in my price bracket and I came down to 3 setups for starting out so far:

    Echo Ion with a cabela's prestige reel about 280 dollars with line.

    ross essence rod and flyrise reel setup about 280 dollars with line.

    cortland presicion xc rod with a waterworks/lamson konic reel about 340 dollars with line.

    it needs to be sufficent for this season for chinook, and if I need to upgrade the reel or something next year I could. any comments on the gear listed above? will a prestige reel hold up to salmon fishing? If so I could replace it next season with a konic or nicer model. The ross sounds like a fairly better drag system than the prestige...

    thanks for all the helpful info and side bars :p any additional help with selecting a rod would be helpful, thanks again.
     
  19. rooinater

    rooinater aka "JAWS"

    Joined:
    May 6, 2009
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Gig Harbor, WA
    Home Page:
    I'll probably do more medium to small river fishing than the sound, but as I progress or if I figure out how to fish more in the sound I will slowly do more of it. We have at least a couple shore trips planned. After I finally figure out a fishing setup, I need to start figuring out what flies I'll need. Somedays being a noob at a particular part of a sport sucks. But thank you all again for all the help so far!
     
  20. Scott Keith

    Scott Keith Member

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2006
    Messages:
    602
    Media:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Arlington, WA
    Jared,

    I've got an 8 wgt TFO, if you want to take it out on the Stilly and try it out let me know. I've got a Lamson Konic and I love it so far...

    Scott
     

Share This Page