Bigger Flies Beefier Lines

Bigger Flies Beefier Lines

The roots of fly fishing are deeply embedded in the trout streams of our youth, the salmon rivers of lore, and the literature that came before us.

But fly fishers have branched out from those roots, using fly tackle to deliver hair, foam, and feather creations that aren't really "flies" at all.

In nearly every state, there are people fly fishing for carp. And it's not because that's all they have. Colorado is one of the carp-fishing hotbeds of America and there, serious fly fishers pass up opportunities to fish blue-ribbon tailwaters for trout, instead choosing to sight-fish for urban carp tailing amid concrete rubble.

Pike and muskies aren't nearly as accessible as carp, but where they are around, fly fishers are studiously pursuing them. And while carp require bonefish-type tackle, and reasonably sized flies, some warmwater species require extremely specialized tackle. In the Oct-Dec 2010 issue of Fly Fisherman Rick Kustich penned "Hunting the Hunter" and explained how when pursuing apex predators like muskies, efficiency in both fishing and casting keeps your fly in the water longer. The industry has responded to this growing trend in pike and musky fishing with new lines designed for huge flies up to 16 inches long, and new rods designed with pike, muskies, golden dorado, and peacock bass in mind.


Make no mistake, warmwater fly fishing is not the realm of people stuck in Kansas. It's the cutting edge of a sport looking for bigger, stronger, toothier fish than they grew up with.


Sage Bass II $550


The original Bass series rods were deep-loading slingshots short enough (7'11") to meet tournament requirements. The new Bass II rods take advantage of new Sage technology for lighter rods that are stiffer through the butt section for faster-action rods with more leverage to pull a largemouth out of heavy cover, or to drive large flies against the wind. In addition to the Bluegill, Smallmouth, and Largemouth models, Sage also added a Peacock Bass model for 390-grain lines. You won't need to worry about line weight though, because all Bass II rods come with a Bass II taper line, so you'll get exactly the action rod designer Jerry Siem had in mind when he made the rods. The Peacock Bass model is also for large warmwater fish like pike and muskies, and for saltwater bruisers like snook and tarpon in the mangroves. sageflyfish.com

//www.flyfisherman.com/files/2011/11/FFMS-120022-WARM-02a.jpg

G.Loomis Shore Stalker $320-$350

FFM contributing editor Dave Whitlock is passionate about bass and bluegills, and you can feel it when you cast the Shore Stalker rods he designed with G.Loomis chief engineer Steve Rajeff. They are designed to make short, 20- to 50-foot casts into lily pads, weed beds, downed trees, and other structure where accuracy with large poppers and baitfish imitations is paramount. Whitlock said the rods load quickly in close casting quarters, but have the muscle to horse a fish away from snags, piers, weeds, and other obstructions. The 4-piece rods come in 5- to 9-weight models from 8' to 8'8" to handle everything from suburban bluegills to Lake of the Woods muskies. gloomis.com


//www.flyfisherman.com/files/2011/11/loomis.jpg

Rio Pike $75

The name says pike but the line is also for muskies, and a good bet for any freshwater fishing with oversize flies. RIO calls the fat, steep front design a "bullet taper"the bullet is a 14' front taper and front body, followed by a smaller-diameter 27' rear body and taper to provide stability while carrying line for the long, searching casts often required for chasing "the fish of a thousand casts." Available in line weights 7 through 10. rioproducts.com

//www.flyfisherman.com/files/2011/11/FFMS-120022-WARM-03.jpg

SA Titan $80


What's the difference between SA's already popular Magnum Taper lines and the new Titan line? Compare XL to XXXL. Magnum lines are for " bigger flies " like an 8-inch bunny leech. In the world of the new Titan Taper, "big" means flies in the 12- to 16-inch range. The short tip and powerful 5-foot front taper help turn over anything short of a dead cat. Titan lines are part of the Mastery Textured Series, and use 3M microreplication technology for a bumpy line with less friction, less memory, and longer shooting. scientificanglers.com

//www.flyfisherman.com/files/2011/11/FFMS-120022-WARM-04.jpg

Get Your Fish On.

Plan your next fishing and boating adventure here.

Recommended for You

Chip's Monster Magic. Designed in Saskatchewan's pike paradise - works anywhere. Fly Tying

Fly Tying Chip's Monster Magic Fly

Dwayne 'Chip' Cromarty - January 15, 2016

Chip's Monster Magic. Designed in Saskatchewan's pike paradise - works anywhere.

How an Atlanta craft brewery is helping to save Georgia's most important trout stream. United States

Saving the Chattahoochee River

Ross Purnell - April 23, 2019

How an Atlanta craft brewery is helping to save Georgia's most important trout stream.

Fly Fisherman's documentary Industry

Fly Fisherman Magazine Documentary Recognized by Outdoor Writers Association of America

Fly Fisherman - June 24, 2019

Fly Fisherman's documentary "One Path" was recognized with two awards.

See More Recommendations

Popular Videos

Breaking the Surface

Breaking the Surface

Attack of the Bass continues as Breaking the Surface attacks bass with fly and lure 12:30pm ET Sunday, April 17th.

Fly Fishing for Taimen in Mongolia

Fly Fishing for Taimen in Mongolia

Finding giant Mongolia taimen and a state of enlightenment.

Bahamas - Bonefish

Bahamas - Bonefish

Conway casts for his personal best bonefish while fishing the Grand Bahama islands.

See more Popular Videos

Trending Stories

American River California United States

American River California

MIchael Wier - March 23, 2017

American River California

George Daniels offers his advice on which types of fly-fishing leaders are best for the most common applications you'll encounter on the water. How-To

Picking the Perfect Fly-Fishing Leader

George Daniel - January 22, 2018

George Daniels offers his advice on which types of fly-fishing leaders are best for the most...

Best Panfish Flies Fly Tying

Best Panfish Flies

Skip Morris - October 17, 2016

Best Panfish Flies

See More Stories

More Flies

This buck smacked a big pink Intruder (thanks Mr. Ward): Big fish tend to make a big splash. Especially during a hard surface hit. Flies

Pink Intruder: More March Madness

John Larison - March 18, 2012

This buck smacked a big pink Intruder (thanks Mr. Ward): Big fish tend to make a big splash....

This five-minute tie imitates one of the most common baitfish in trout streams across the country. Sculpin Fly Pattern Flies

Sculpin Fly Pattern

Chuck Stranahan - February 01, 2015

This five-minute tie imitates one of the most common baitfish in trout streams across the...

When you spend years working in a fly shop, you become callous to the many items that surround you. But I eventually figured out that bucktail bodies would be a great option. Flies

Bucktail Bodies

Paul Weamer - May 03, 2012

When you spend years working in a fly shop, you become callous to the many items that surround...

See More Flies

GET THE MAGAZINE Subscribe & Save

Temporary Price Reduction.

SUBSCRIBE NOW

Give a Gift   |   Subscriber Services

PREVIEW THIS MONTH'S ISSUE

GET THE NEWSLETTER Join the List and Never Miss a Thing.