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Lateral view of a Female Hexagenia limbata (Ephemeridae) (Hex) Mayfly Dun from the Namekagon River in Wisconsin
Hex Mayflies
Hexagenia limbata

The famous nocturnal Hex hatch of the Midwest (and a few other lucky locations) stirs to the surface mythically large brown trout that only touch streamers for the rest of the year.

Lateral view of a Male Baetidae (Blue-Winged Olive) Mayfly Dun from Mystery Creek #308 in Washington
This dun emerged from a mature nymph on my desk. Unfortunately its wings didn't perfectly dry out.
27" brown trout, my largest ever. It was the sub-dominant fish in its pool. After this, I hooked the bigger one, but I couldn't land it.
Troutnut is a project started in 2003 by salmonid ecologist Jason "Troutnut" Neuswanger to help anglers and fly tyers unabashedly embrace the entomological side of the sport. Learn more about Troutnut or support the project for an enhanced experience here.

Hunterdau2
Posts: 2
Hunterdau2 on Mar 9, 2007March 9th, 2007, 6:50 pm EST
Hello everyone! Been enjoying your site for a while and i have a question. I used to flyfish but got away from it for a few years now trying to get back to it. I mostly fished for steelhead with some bass and panfish thrown in using a 7 wt 9 ft rod. But i'm looking into a three or four weight rod for trout, i'm leaning toward a 3 wt in 8 or 8.5 length. My problem is i don't have the experience with these lighter wt outfits to know what to look for. What flex and line type would you recommend? Since it will be used on the Ausable and smaller streams for trout should i be looking for a shorter length rod?
Thanks for any advice given.

Dan
Troutnut
Troutnut's profile picture
Administrator
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2758
Troutnut on Mar 10, 2007March 10th, 2007, 3:27 am EST
It depends on the size of the streams. For the Ausable I think an 8'6" 4 or 5-weight would be good... it's certainly not a small stream. (Granted I haven't been there, but I've read about it.)

You'll only need a shorter rod if you're going to spend a lot of time on true small streams with lots of overhanging brush, streams averaging 5-15 feet wide.

Remember that with a shorter rod it will be harder to punch out long casts on the Ausable to reach rising trout that might be in a hard-to-reach deep spot or something. So you have to weigh the benefits against that disadvantage.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
Martinlf
Martinlf's profile picture
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3047
Martinlf on Mar 10, 2007March 10th, 2007, 10:34 am EST
I'd second Jason's advice and recommend a medium fast rod and a weight forward line. But go and cast several rods of differing speeds and flexibilities. Individual styles of casting vary, and if you cast a rod that feels right and works for you that'll be the ticket.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
LittleJ
Hollidaysburg Pa

Posts: 251
LittleJ on Mar 10, 2007March 10th, 2007, 3:48 pm EST
give a diamond back "trout classic" a try. I have an 8'6" 4 wt that I use as my primary rod. It's a lighter action but has plenty of heft to get a fly out there. It's also out performs it's price imo. Stay away from the ultra fast loomis & sage rods they just don't protect the light tippets you'll be fishing w/ a 3 or 4 wt.
Jeff
Hunterdau2
Posts: 2
Hunterdau2 on Mar 10, 2007March 10th, 2007, 4:40 pm EST
Has anyone tried the higher end cabela's rods? Also looking at the Orvis line of rods! So many different brands it's hard to decide.
Martinlf
Martinlf's profile picture
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3047
Martinlf on Mar 11, 2007March 11th, 2007, 3:49 am EDT
My brother-in-law likes the Cabela's rods a lot; I am fishing Temple Fork rods and like them. I've heard very good things about the Diamondback rods too, and I'd agree with Jeff about avoiding the ultra fast rods. There are many many brands and even more opinions about them. Do try casting some rods. Any good shop will set you up, and I'd think that even some of the bigger stores such as a Cabela's or Bass Pro shop (if you are near one of them) would make arrangements to let you try a rod. Best of luck.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Troutnut
Troutnut's profile picture
Administrator
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2758
Troutnut on Mar 11, 2007March 11th, 2007, 4:02 am EDT
I've got an Orvis Superfine that I really like for small streams. It's not a distance rod at all, but that's not what I got it for.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
LittleJ
Hollidaysburg Pa

Posts: 251
LittleJ on Mar 11, 2007March 11th, 2007, 1:37 pm EDT
I've fished the cabelas PT and liked it very much, it's another slow action rod. I'll second louis in that you have to get out and cast some rods and find what feels right. You really can't go wrong with any rods mentioned as far as quality is concerned.
jeff
Jlh42581
Milesburg, Pa

Posts: 24
Jlh42581 on Mar 12, 2007March 12th, 2007, 1:24 pm EDT
jason,
Im a superfine fan also, i have the 7-11 4wt, a rod not made anymore. I bought it last year, last year of production of that rod. I sure hope to have it for a long time to come.

as a side note,
I wanted to buy a heavy rod with the same action. I picked up a Cabelas Traditional 8wt 9'. It feels exactly like the superfine, I may buy a few more. Im a sucker for slow action rods when fishing sub surface.
Jeremy
Sundula
Littleton, Colorado

Posts: 35
Sundula on Mar 12, 2007March 12th, 2007, 4:45 pm EDT
I just bought an R.L Winston Boron 9' 4wt in December. It is fantastic! It is a medium action rod that I can't put down I have fished many rods in the 3 - 5wt range and this is by far the best, hands down. I highly recommend you cast a Winston, along with others when I did there was no comparason.
Troutnut
Troutnut's profile picture
Administrator
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2758
Troutnut on Mar 13, 2007March 13th, 2007, 2:10 am EDT
My Superfine is a 7' 4-weight. I normally like really fast rods, but this slow rod hits a sweet spot too for small streams. It's a pleasure to cast at really short distances.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
Rio
Michigan

Posts: 5
Rio on Mar 13, 2007March 13th, 2007, 7:13 am EDT
Headwaters bamboo rods are reasonably priced and are fun to fish with. They are sold over the internet.
LittleJ
Hollidaysburg Pa

Posts: 251
LittleJ on Mar 13, 2007March 13th, 2007, 11:25 am EDT
Sundula, I agree with you on the winston rods.....I thought long and hard about getting one....in the end I just couldn't justify the cost, but it was the finest rod I have ever casted.
Jeff
RleeP
NW PA - Pennsylvania's Glacial Pothole Wonderland

Posts: 398
RleeP on Mar 14, 2007March 14th, 2007, 12:39 am EDT
>I've got an Orvis Superfine that I really like for small streams. It's not a distance rod at all, but that's not what I got it for.>

I have 2 older Far & Fines, one of which is pre 25 year warranty. Between them, they've been back to Manchester for new tip sections (or maybe it's Roanoke now, I dunno..) 5 times. I have a strike that sends 4" brook trout whizzing past my ears and this has not served me well around bridge abutments.

I love them. IMO, they were the perfect rod for the majority of PA streams 30 feet wide and less and now they serve me well out here in the Driftless Region.

I also have a Small Stream Superfine, 7' for a 5 wgt. It doesn't see much action out here, but it too was a great rod for punching holes in the rhododendron in PA and western NC.

I've fished these rods for a long, long time and frankly, I'm not sure I'd know what to do with a faster rod.
Troutnut
Troutnut's profile picture
Administrator
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2758
Troutnut on Mar 14, 2007March 14th, 2007, 3:04 am EDT
I'm not sure I'd know what to do with a faster rod.


Launch those 4-inch brookies into orbit. :)
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
Trowpa
Eastern PA

Posts: 31
Trowpa on Mar 14, 2007March 14th, 2007, 4:28 am EDT
oh if i could only justify a winston price.... have to give my vote on them too. I got to cast one for a weekend once and fell in love. I'm also a fan of slow to medium action rods. Love the feel and the safety.
-Steve
Stanislav
Bulgaria

Posts: 22
Stanislav on Mar 14, 2007March 14th, 2007, 9:12 am EDT
Hunterdau2, I think that there are too many difference in rods that are 4wt or 3 wt. For example 4 wt Sage TCR has nothing common with 4wt Sage TXL. I think that in your case is better to take smth 4 wt with fast or medium fast action. I casted with Diamondback VSR 8`6 4 wt and think its superb rod. There are too many rods that can be recommended to you but may be the best way to find the rod you looking for is to cast with as many rods as you can 4 and 3 wt, and than you`ll make the correct choice for you.
Troutnut, I also had 7` 4 wt Orvis superfine. And its really nice rod for small streams and brooks.As you sad It`s too slow for long casts. Sorry about the off topic but what line do you use on your rod? Which superfine model is it? And what`s the action?

The life is too short to fish a bad fly
Jlh42581
Milesburg, Pa

Posts: 24
Jlh42581 on Mar 15, 2007March 15th, 2007, 4:03 am EDT
I believe your question was directed at jason but.... i overloaded mine with a orvis gen3 dt 5wt. Mine is rated at 4.5 on the flex index so its sloow
Jeremy
Flybyknight
Milton, DE

Posts: 82
Flybyknight on Mar 17, 2007March 17th, 2007, 8:28 am EDT
Greetings,
This is my first post after just discovering this site. Hi Everybody!
Jason,
Joe Humphreys's "Trout Tactics" Stackpole, 1981 devotes a whole chapter, chapter 6, on "Brush Fishing: The Dry Fly and Small Streams" where he also gets into tackle. Might be worth a look-see before taking the plunge.
Dick
Lightly on the dimpling eddy fling;
the hypocritic fly's unruffled wing.
Thomas Scott
GONZO
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
GONZO on Mar 17, 2007March 17th, 2007, 12:43 pm EDT
Welcome Flybyknight (Dick). Love the Thomas Scott quotation. -Gonzo

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