Spey rods

Tom Johnston

Been around a while
#1
So I have been looking back into the two handed world(again:D). Had a short stint with a 8wt switcher(Fetha Styx) with a Beulah Elixer switch line. Should have taken some lessons before giving up on it but oh well! I have been doing alot of reading and research(about steelheading and two handed rods) and was wondering what is your go to rod? I just got done reading through this previous thread and Meiser rods seems to come up but lets face it I cant afford a Meiser or any other high end rod right now. Probly not good for my marriage to be buying a thousand dollar setup as my first setup. What is your favorite line to fish on that rod(I know it depends on time of season and what fish is being targeted but your go to line that you enjoy the most), and what reel do you match up to that rod. Is reel weight all that important, does the reel need to be heavier as the rod gets longer? I know there is practically a million different variations when matching up rod to line to reel. I am looking for a rod that I can throw big flies, little flies to winter/summer steelhead locally. And possibly fish the rod on the beach for salmon and possibly searuns. I have been looking at the TFO Deer Creek series and alot of people are impressed with this line(what would you expect from Meiser and Kinney). Seems Airflo the makers of the best single handed line makes many good spey lines. Reels?? There are so many, what and where to start! I am thinking of a Skagit compact line but what the hell do I know???? I see there are Delta style lines, Scandi style lines, and Skagit style of lines.
 

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
#2
Having never cast a two hander ever before, not really even in practice, I took my TFO Deer Creek 8/9 13'6" rod to the Hoh. Leland suggested a Rio AFS 10/11 (I got it in the summer so he thought this would do nicely for a newbie). I did not fish summer flows at all with it but did use it on the Hoh in March. Flows were pretty low and but I was tossing some heavy tips and chickens. Right out of the chute I was casting into fishable seams, nothing pretty, but decent enough. For the price how can you beat one of the TFO's? I don't know. This setup likely was not optimal for heavy tips and flies but that is what I had and I used it and never had any issues with fly delivery, turnover or anything else. I fished that rod for two full days and half of another in my three days on the river.
 
#3
Kind of overwhelming isn't it!?

Thankfully you can make it easy on yourself by trusting an accomplished SPEY shop to listen to your needs and set you up with a balanced outfit in your price range. The Red Shed earns my money every single time.

There are so many combinations and factors that will affect your decision it's tough to recommend anything specific. Any chance you could attend the Clearwater Clave on September 26th? Lots to be learned and lots of hands on with different combinations all for free. If not how about River Run Angler's Day on the River program every Saturday? Same thing. Lots of rods and lines with some great instruction all for you guessed it...free.
 

Tom Johnston

Been around a while
#4
I would love to attend the Clearwater Clave but I cannot due to work. Would be killer to attend that clave pick out a spey setup and head down river and fish it! I was thinking about that clinic that is put on every Saturday buttttt is it for newbies??? Will they spend time showing you how to cast and what setup best suites me? That amount of time you would think cost money! Some good hearted people out there dedicated to the spey world huh?
 
#5
Hi Tom either Aaron on saturday or myself on sunday is a good way to get started. And yes we spend time with beginners showing you the basics. Because the clinics are free it is not private instruction but it usually is not going to sinkin in one time out any way. Plan on spending 3 or for saturdays or sundays before you even think about buying a rod or taking lessons. I do have a couple of full sets of TFO deer creeks and lines to match. MK
 

LD

Active Member
#6
Hi Tom either Aaron on saturday or myself on sunday is a good way to get started. And yes we spend time with beginners showing you the basics. Because the clinics are free it is not private instruction but it usually is not going to sinkin in one time out any way. Plan on spending 3 or for saturdays or sundays before you even think about buying a rod or taking lessons. I do have a couple of full sets of TFO deer creeks and lines to match. MK
Take him up on the offer!!!
 

Salmo_g

Well-Known Member
#8
Tom,

Do you know the first thing about steelhead fishing? Seems you were posting last year as a total newb. First and foremost, don't waste a single dime buying gear when you're totally clueless. Read Mike's post. Attend several of either or both of the Saturday (Snoqualmie R @ Tolt) or Sunday (Sky @ Ben Howard) Spey sessions before you even think of buying a Spey rod.

If you have never caught a steelhead, just maybe what you need is not a Spey rod. Maybe what you need is to learn how to fly cast and learn how to fish for steelhead in terms of wading, reading water, and fly presentation. Or you can spend thousands of dollars on gear and still not know what the hell you are doing. What is it you want? Answer that and then we can offer more constructive suggestions.

Sg
 

Ian Broadie

Flyfishing is so "Metal"
#9
Tom,

Salmo has valid points even if his choice of words is terse...... I'll come at you from the "go to" rod choice because I have three "go to" rods at the moment depending on my mood. All three are 7 wt's and all three get fished about equally, my goto rods in no particular order are:

TFO Deer Creek 13 7/8
CND Soltice 13' 4" 6/7/8
Echo 2 Scando 12' 4"

All three perform essentially the same function but each feels very different when they are being cast due to action, taper and all that jive. So if I was to just straight up answer your question I would start writing some kind of dissertation on rod taper, action, lines, casts, water levels, clarity, weather, and a host of other kaka poo.

My "Go to" suggestion would be to visit Mike or Aaron, you can't go wrong either way and you'll just get different perspectives on the same thing from two different jedi masters :D, so learn before you buy cus going cheap isn't the answer to getting in to the whole two handed deal and neither is buying the most expensive setup you can afford.

:beer2:
 

Tom Johnston

Been around a while
#10
Yes I am still a newb at it. I have done alot of research in the last year(nothing comared to actually doing it). Rented dvd's on steelhead asked alot of questions and read some books. I am not going to go out and buy a spey setup without knowing about it and how well it will work for me! Thats why I am on here asking about spey rods, and will be taking up the offer to the weekend clinic. I also want a spey rod to fish off the beaches. Nothing like getting my ass kicked by the wind with a single hander all day and not catching a dang thing. I can hold my own on a single hander just fine.
 

Ian Broadie

Flyfishing is so "Metal"
#11
I also want a spey rod to fish off the beaches. Nothing like getting my ass kicked by the wind with a single hander all day and not catching a dang thing. I can hold my own on a single hander just fine.
It's a blast being able to stay out in the driving rain and wind when nearly everyone else has bailed from our local beaches.

:beer2:
 

SpeySpaz

still an authority on nothing
#14
Tommy, there's lots of good and inexpensive options out there. You don't have to buy a Meiser.
yet.
The difference between bottom end-and top-end rods, to a beginner, is barely noticeable...really. Once you learn to cast and feel the love, that's when the unquenchable thirst takes hold and bank accounts, marriages, and leave balances begin collapsing:rofl:

get out while you still can, bro...

seriously now, just take Mike's advice.
My advice--save money. learn to cast, and cast as many rods as you can get your hands on. Have fun. Do it your own way.
 

Tom Johnston

Been around a while
#15
Thanks for all the helpful info on the clinics and how a NEWB should approch the spey world. But the real question in this thread was only really answered by one person! What is your goto setup? Reason I ask is what is your fav rod/line/reel combo you enjoy the most to cast. Of all my single handed setups my favorite is a Reddington 9'6" 6wt saltwater rod lined with Airflo extreme distance wt line. I am not asking this question just so I can go out and buy a duplicate setup. Just curious and passing time till I find that right setup for me!:thumb:
 

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