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Heidi

Recomond a reel for 8 weight 9' rod

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Heidi

I got a screaming deal on a St Croix rod this week.

What brand/model reel would be recommended for this to go after some bass and small northerns. I don't fly fish that often, but I don't want a piece of junk either. Also, if you could recommend line as well. Thanks for your replies

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-Marc V-

Hey Heidi . . . I just got an Okuma Sierra Series reel for one of my 8wts beginning of the summer. I personally like Okuma reels. They are reasonably priced also.

For lines, usually I pick up whatever is in the bargin bins. I don't go the absolute cheapest because, with everything, you get what you pay for. Maybe someone else can chime in with a brand preference.

You'll probably want a floating, weight forward line.

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Alagnak

I've been guiding in Alaska for 8 years and see many fly reels get lots of abuse from long runs and just basic wear-n-tear. I don't think you can beat a Ross reel. Pick what ever one you feel like spending money on and you'll be happy with the quality, years of service, warranty, and probably service as well although i havn't needed any yet (in 13 years).

As far as fly lines- I've went through dozens on a couple pike and musky rods that sit here in the closet over the summer and don't get used except a few trips in the fall and spring and RIO bass/pike lines are great and cast larger flies in the wind very effectively. The biggest thing is they'll hold up great even if you don't have them on the water every day. Use a fly line conditioner every few outings and store them like you'ld store spare 35mm film and it'll last you a long time and it'll seem brand new and help you cast like a pro.

Pete

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Alagnak

Heidi, i forgot to mention. It doesn't matter what line you get. The biggest thing with taking care of your line here in the midwest is keeping your feet off of it when you're casting from the bow of the boat. That's what really messes it up and wrecks it. I hate using it, but whether purchased or home made, a stripping basket can save you some head aches and keeping you from looking like a bad dancer while standing in the front of the boat.

Just make sure it's floating and weight forward. Even with floating, you can still just used a longer leader and heavy fly if you want to go deaper. And with an appropriately lengthed leader you can skate streamers over any depth weed bed very effectively for big water wolfs and musky.

Pete

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SteveWilson

It depends what you're going after with that 8 weight. I would go with a reel that has a great drag. You might consider a Ross Evolution or Canyon Big Game, Lamson Velocity, Tibor Light Back Country CL or Tibor Billy Pate. Tibor had a model change on their Light models (now they have a CL designation) so I was able to pick up a Tibor Light Back Country (non CL) for around 1/2 the price. I keep Rio Grand WF8F on one spool and an SA shooting line on another spool - a fairly decent setup for Steelhead. I might throw a pike taper on it next summer.

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Magneto

Quote:

Ross Evolution or Canyon Big Game, Lamson Velocity, Tibor Light Back Country CL or Tibor Billy Pate.


I have 3 Ross reels,(2 Evolutions, 1 Canyon) 4 Orvis reels (1 Battenkill Large Arbor, 2 Battenkill Bar Stocks, and 1 Battenkill Disc) and 2 Lamsons (1 Velocity, 1 Radius) My personal opinion is that for the money The Lamsons are by far the the favorites in my collection. The Velocity has one of the best drags (for the money) available today. They are very well engineered with a sealed no maintence, saltwater proof drag sytem. They are also very light. I do like the Evolutions as well but again, for the money Lamson.

As for lines, you really can't go wrong with either the SA GPX or just about any RIO line.

Mike

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WxGuy

Quote:

I got a screaming deal on a St Croix rod this week.

What brand/model reel would be recommended for this to go after some bass and small northerns. I don't fly fish that often, but I don't want a piece of junk either. Also, if you could recommend line as well. Thanks for your replies


Heidi,

What I'm about to say may come across as heresy to some, but bear with me. Everyone else has given you some fantastic advice on reels, as they truly are very nice reels and would not let you down. I intend no offense whatsoever to all who have posted previously.

Lamson, Tibor, and Ross reels will cost you nearly double, if not more than that, what you paid for that rod. I'm guessing you are one who likes to search out good deals, and as you mentioned, you don't like junk either.

So, I'm guessing you will be fishing with this rod only on occasion (as you mentioned), and you will be fishing lakes and rivers in central Minnesota, close to St. Cloud. While fishing for bass and northern around there, you won't be getting many screaming runs like you would if you were steelhead or salmon fishing in the Northwest or on our Great Lake tribs. I've done a fair amount of smallmouth catching this year, and have caught some frisky large trout as well. I have yet to use my drag, and only twice out of many catches have I had to bring the larger fish down to the reel.

I have a friend who fishes an 8 wt in the same area as you fish (and he's a guide with many years experience), and he's gotten along swimmingly with a Scientific Anglers Concept II reel. I would recommend that or an Okuma as Marc V mentioned. I use Okuma reels, and like them a lot for the purpose they serve. Unless you'll be fishing for big fighting salmon, steelhead, or bonefish that tend to rip line out of your reel, you won't need an Audi reel when a Ford will do just fine.

Rio bass taper line or SA Mastery Bass taper would be my first pick for you. The Rio is a great line, and will turn over well with some of the big, ugly flies that you'll be using for bass and pike. If not the Rio, I doubt the SA line would let you down either.

Best of luck to you!

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ice_shack

I'll second the SA II reel.

You may want to look at the Orvis Rocky Mtn large arbor, great price and dependable. Plus you can buy extra cartidges to carry more than one line for alot less than a second spool.

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turiprap

WxGuy, I think you interpreted the poster's needs real well. I was thinking somewhere between a Cortland Crown and an Orvis Rocky Mountain Large Arbor. All the other reels mentioned are fine piece of machinery, but are stratospherically priced.

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Ice9

I agree with the two posts above--disagree with the rest.

I've fished a lot of saltwater screaming-drag and there's a lot to be said for a good reel with a good drag, and for that application I'm a Ross guy. But now I live in minnesota and I fish a lot and I've caught a lot of fish on my flyrod including muskies, big smallies, northerns (none very big yet), and lots of lmb's and I've still never gotten the backing knot past the tip. Drag is lovely, but you just don't need it if it costs you $200.

On the other hand a good flyline goes a long way to make a caster, make casts, and catch fish. I'd even go so far as to recommend that your flyline cost more than your reel. And, unless you're going to throw panfish poppers and #6 woolly buggers and catch panfish and #6 bass, you're going to do much better with a premium bug taper. For floating lines I like Rio, I love Wulff, and I loathe Orvis, with lots of experience on each. Orvis trout lines--level lines, DT's, or even WF's if you don't go above a 4--are fine, and when I was on their good guy program I used them for my light stuff, no problems. BUt I trashed everything bigger than a six I ever wound on after one or two outings. At any kind of push--distance, bigger flies, wind--the Orvis lines were anywhere from weak to just plain wrong. I worked for the company and heard that a lot. They pride themselves on engineering but tend to cut it just a tad too fine when they have the real flyline companies make their stuff. Rio windcutter lines are good, and for that St. Croix (which rod, btw) you'll want to go up a notch heavier if you double haul and try to throw more than five or six rodlengths. Same is true of the Wulff TT Bug, which is the most durable and powerful casting line I've ever used (and all I used guidng in tough circumstances for ten years.)My standard rig now is a scott sts7 on a Battenkill disc with a Wulff TT bug taper in 8. Caveat: I was fishing in a situation that did not call for delicate presentations and relied mainly on bigger flies, weighted flies, hairbugs, no roll casting really, and fishing from a stripping basket when we could talk the clients into it.

By the way the fish most challenging, pickiest, most consistently long-running: carp. I've had clients quit fishing after landing one 8 pounder in current. I spent 20 minutes on a 13 pound fish that took me sixty yards into my backing three times. Nothing I've ever targeted was tougher to fool, fight, and land. Steelhead, salmon, and carp: Ross III. Everything else in the Cabelas tank: whatever's on sale at Gofishin (Contact US Regarding This Word).

Ice

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TroutAngler

Another plug for Okuma reels. Perhaps the best bang for your buck. Very good quality at reasonalble prices. $50 gets you a quality disc drag reel. I use them as do anglers who are much more experienced than me. Personally, the rod and line are much more important, and you've already chosen a good quality rod in St. Croix. I know for a fact that I'll never spend more than $100 on a reel, but would pay $1000 for a rod.

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Whelen35

Cortland vista. $40.00 retail, and the last 3 I have purchased on e-bay new ranged from $10.00 to a high of $16.00. Great reels for the price. Another great reel thta you will see on e-bay is the STH reels. Many of them are very good, and some have the cassset system for cheap extra flylines. A new sth mr pop is about $65.00 new retail, and at times much cheaper. I have and love the sth lld which has a lever activated drag system. Ver strong, and two years ago it had a retail price close to $300.00. Last one I was watching sold for $48.00. I love to get the great deals cheap also, with my best a 6wt redington 9.5ft rod that was new and a sth lld reel with a grand total of $68.00. All of this equipment was new and unsused, and came with a box of flys and a floating fly line new in the box.

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turiprap

Great input, Whelen35. I've never participated in the online auction thing, but I ran into a friend last Saturday who had placed the winning bid on a Sage 5 weight LightLine rod. These rods have a real following among collectors, but he got it cheap because, he said, the seller had not promoted the piece correctly. The bargains are out there, if you look.

I will say that I'd urge caution in considering the purchase of an STH reel. Over the years they've had a tendency, in spite of their first-rate appearance and world class anodizing, to be weak sisters in the durability and functionality departments.

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