8wt Smallmouth Rod Recomendation

MGTom

Active Member
WFF Supporter
I found out last year fishing on the Snake impoundments near Walla Walla that my 6wt was not enough rod to throw the flies in the wind, besides being a bit small for some of the flies.
I figure mostly weighted stuff as only the 12" hang out by the shore. Clouser's, Crawfish, buggers and minnows in 8 to 2/0. We will fish about 2/3 of the time from a 20' Thunderjet. The other 1/3 of the time we spend on the Tucannon and Walla Walla wading, so medium size rivers. I'm not real strong, and sometimes my lower back acts up as well as 3 herniated disks in my neck from a work injury. I can make the casts distance wise I want now with a single hand rod, but I'm not set on it.
And since I'll be setting up from scratch a floating, intermediate and sinking line recommendation to make it all work please. Thx tom
 

Wyobee

Active Member
I had a 9'6" 7wt. Sage one that threw big flies like it was born to it, I think slightly longer poles might load faster via increase leverage equals weight and you can definitely feel the rod doing work. That said I've got a fiberglass epic eight weight that's only 8'6" but it loads equally fast for obvious reasons.
I use a haul to further increase it's casting distance and reduce the number of false casts but because of tendonitis rather than back problems, but the less you have to move and strain the better for each.
 

Mark Koch

Active Member
I run a Loomis IMX Pro 8wt with Airflo Streamer Max Short 8wt for full sinking. This is also my large trout streamer rod.

For top water work, I have a Sage Payload 8+ with SA Titan Long 9wt. I do have a SA Sonar Titan I in 9wt on the spool. Have not had a chance to cast it yet. I like this set up for being able to pick up and shoot line without false cast. For my area a 50' cast on SM is a long cast. Rivers are small to medium but mostly small. We do tend to fish large flies for SM as we are looking to pick up Muskie as well. If you carry alot of line in the air and make long casts, stay to the line weight on Payloads. If you pick up and shoot line on shorter casts, overline the Payload one line weight.

Good Review of the Payload

For years I fished a Sage Bass II SM. Really liked the rod, very light in hand, easy to cast. I sold it here last year as for me, I was limited to the size fly it could cast. If you stay in the more traditional size SM flies, this is a great rod.

All that being said, go to a shop (when they open up) and cast lots of rods. I had not intention on buying the IMX Pro until I cast it. Would really have like to go to the 1 piece but that would limit travel use.
 
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Rob Allen

Active Member
I think line choice is more important than any particular 8 weight rod. My advise is likely dated, I'm sure someone could add a more modern take on it.
1. In a perfect world 3 set ups would be great 2 floating lines and a sinking line

1. A bass bug taper.. this will allow you to lob big wind resistant flies easily without having to push your arms.
2. A standard weight forward line for the times you need to cast a tight loop accurately around cover requires more from your arm but bass bug tapers don't lend themselves to tight accurately
3. A full sink line for fishing more horizontally in deeper water

Now back to the rod.. i personally would avoid rods that are stiff with only flex in the tip. In my experience these kinds of rods require too much from the caster and don't lend themselves to heavy or wind resistant flies.
 

troutpocket

Active Member
Here’s a possibility. I have no affiliation.
 

Wyobee

Active Member
I think line choice is more important than any particular 8 weight rod. My advise is likely dated, I'm sure someone could add a more modern take on it.
1. In a perfect world 3 set ups would be great 2 floating lines and a sinking line

1. A bass bug taper.. this will allow you to lob big wind resistant flies easily without having to push your arms.
2. A standard weight forward line for the times you need to cast a tight loop accurately around cover requires more from your arm but bass bug tapers don't lend themselves to tight accurately
3. A full sink line for fishing more horizontally in deeper water

Now back to the rod.. i personally would avoid rods that are stiff with only flex in the tip. In my experience these kinds of rods require too much from the caster and don't lend themselves to heavy or wind resistant flies.
I'm glad to hear you're branching out line wise.
 

MGTom

Active Member
WFF Supporter
Here’s a possibility. I have no affiliation.
I did it, thanks, I think I saw it before but didn't realize it was probably what I was after. Hard to go wrong.
 

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