Shooting Line


Fly fisherman with a canon, preparing to shoot his fly fishing line a long distance.

Does a fly fishing rod make much of a difference?

I discovered it makes a huge difference early on! 

At first I had a 4-weight St. Croix rod with a soft tip. It made delicate presentations and set the hook nicely. Then I tried a Sage 5-weight. Suddenly, I felt like I had a canon in my hands. 

The biggest difference was when shooting line

The Sage could put a lot of line in the air. But when there was excess line laying around, it could shoot a ton of line for a very long distance.

That canon power came in really handy when fishing heavy nymphs on the Little Red River in Arkansas. 

Stupidly, I sold that rod before moving to Colorado

I was planning on doing mostly hiking to small streams and alpine lakes, so why would I need a canon? But there are a lot of times I could use that power on warm water lakes and larger rivers around here.

The lesson? 

Fly fishers need a canon in reserve for heavy nymphing and warm water fishing. Don’t let a rod go just because you can’t foresee needing the power. There will eventually come a time you do.

© Philip Riggs 2014