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Old 07-03-2010, 08:51 PM
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nvr2L8 nvr2L8 is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Maryville, TN
Posts: 1,063

I fished a 7'9" 4wt for a couple of years and could not imagine something longer on the smaller brookie streams. However, after a lot of listening and reading, I went for a 9' 4wt and like it much better. I have fished it on both Road Prong and Sams Creek and I find it much easier to work with than the smaller rod. I had handled a 9' at LRO and it seemed more like a mile long. But when I tried it on the streams, I much prefer it to the shorter rod. In early June I broke the 9' and finished the day with my shorter rod and the lack of reach really made me want the 9 footer back.

My advise is to find someone who has a shorter rod and is willing to loan it to you for a day. Rod length like most anything is a personal preference and you may find you like the smaller length better. But trying it out before you fork over the bucks to get one might save you regrets later.
Charlie B

His eye is on the sparrow and I know He watches me.
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Old 07-03-2010, 09:56 PM
dalerio dalerio is offline
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Location: Four Mile, KY
Posts: 130

that's my favorite kind of water........
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Old 07-03-2010, 10:29 PM
knucklehead knucklehead is offline
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 88
Default shorties

the longest rod i now own is 7'6. i've caught trout from 3-16 inches on it and have no complaints. my main rod is a 7 ft 4 wt bass pro discount special i've had for a couple of years. most of the streams i fish rarely require a cast of more than 20 ft. i've found i can now stay free of lot more trees by using shorter rods, since i primarily stand under them when fishing. i too, believe the short rods are just plain fun to use. they also seem to be very accurate up to about 15 feet. i've done battle with plenty of 6 in specs on an 8 ft beast and sent all of them flying from the hook set. not much fun to me. technically speaking, they probably are worse than the longer ones. but after my brief experiments with them, i've found the short ones truly enjoyable.
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Old 07-04-2010, 03:35 PM
lauxier lauxier is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: irvine ky
Posts: 444
Default rod

i use a 7ft 6in bamboo rod built by w. babb,its a 5 wt i also have 4wt 7ft babb,perfectionist taper,a 3wt 7ft6in w.babb,and 7wt 8ft6in babb bamboo rod he called the big gun.use it on the cumberland river...i like longer rods,because they give you options,and you need options in streams that get technical,the streams of the smokys are high tech because the streams of the smokys have got (usually)a canopy,pocket water,riffles,water snakes(they bite)copperheads,rattlers(i hate snakes),bears,tubers(they bite)..for me its about catching fish,and the good feel of bamboo..makes for a natural cast,to wild trout,it does not get any better
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Old 07-04-2010, 03:55 PM
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WVBrookie WVBrookie is offline
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Burlington, KY
Posts: 89

I must be in the minority here. I've caught my fair share of brookies and fished my fair share of "trickles" (but not 60 years worth) and i do just fine with the short rod.

My primary rod of choice is a 6' 1wt Vandalia bamboo. If I fish a stream that I think may have fish larger than 12", I have a 6' 2wt 4-piece Orvis Trout Bum. I also own another 5' 4wt WV-made bamboo and last weekend a friend let me try out his 5' 2wt Diamondglass....talk about light!

I can throw small, cone head buggers with either and I also landed a 27" Idaho bull trout on the Orvis 2wt.

I just think the shorter rod is much nicer when fighting through a rhododendron jungle. The 6' 4-piece rod is also nice for pack trips.

To each his own,
The Search for Native Salmonids
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Old 07-04-2010, 06:59 PM
Jim Casada Jim Casada is offline
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Location: Rock Hill, SC
Posts: 992

Wvbrookie--I pretty much totally disagree, but you nailed it when you suggested that when it comes to rods "to each his own." If the short rods in low weights work for you, that's fine. Still, I will offer a number of points in support of long rods (see below), and I mean really long--nine feet or more. Incidentally, I'm just back from a day on Beech Flats Prong with a 9'6" four weight, and it did just fine--probably 40 fish although admittedly lots of them (mostly specks) were five-inchers. Better still, I caught a Smoky Mountain Slam, which isn't all that unusual in that stream, and had one of those occasional magic moments when I took fish on both the dry fly and the dropper simultaneously. Both were rainbows. It's something I have done a good many times over the years, but I don't think I've ever caught two fish simultaneously of different species. Has anyone here had that pleasure?
Now to what I perceive as some of the advantages of a long rod.
(1) Greater reach in really tight quarters means you can dapple with less likelihood of scaring the pool.
(2) Appreciably more length on bow-and-arrow casts
(3) Appreciably more length on roll casts, which are often the only option in truly tight canopy situations.
(4) It is easier to mend line with a long rod, whether conditions are tight or not.
(5) Greater versatility when high-sticking.
(6) A bit more backbone on those occasions when you need it.
(7) Although someone posted thoughts to the contrary, to my way of thinking there is no question that short, low-weight rods can present the problem of stressing larger fish because of how long it takes to land them. Of course that's a product of other things as well--tippet strength, rod action, skill of the angler, etc.
( I simply don't buy the argument about getting through close quarters with a shorter rod being a real advantage. That's true when bushwhacking, but there's an easy answer--break down the rod when you leave the stream That's precisely what I did when I climbed out of Beech Flats Prong back up to 441 today, and I went through about 50 yards of hellish rhodendron before breaking into the open woods.
(9) For the poor boy, and being a son of the Smokies you can rest assured money matters always figure into the equation for me, a longer rod unquestionably has more versatility if you can only afford one or two. Think longer casts in big water, for example.
This entire discussion has been an intriguing one for me, because I have long advocated long rods and consistently have a fair segment of my audiences look at me like I'm loony (at least until I explain). Of course those looks are nothing compared to some I get when I mention "release to grease."
Speaking of which,there are five fish waiting for me to get the skillet hot. Add some new potatoes from my garden (I raise two and this one is at my father's in Bryson City, where I am at present), some of the season's first tomatoes, a pone of cornbread made from stone-ground meal, and blackberry cobbler for dessert from berries I picked yesterday, and I reckon it is fair to say that I'll be living large.
Jim Casada
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Old 07-04-2010, 07:07 PM
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ifish4wildtrout ifish4wildtrout is offline
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I got a double once with 2 species. A rainbow and a chub. Not sure if that really counts since one was a chub, but it was still pretty cool to land 2 at once.
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Old 07-04-2010, 07:55 PM
Knothead Knothead is offline
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Location: SE Tennessee
Posts: 644

My small water rod is a Sevier Tigereye, 6 ft., 2 wt. I built it specifically for the Smokies and a couple of other streams in E. Tennessee. The action seems to be a med-fast and throws the tightest loops of all my flyrods. Accurate, casts to 20 yards with no effort. BTW, fished it on Sam's Creek and caught a nice 12" 'bow with it.
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Old 07-04-2010, 09:13 PM
pineman19 pineman19 is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Greeneville, TN
Posts: 751
Default Tiger Eye Blanks

Hello Knothead,

I notice you have a Tiger Eye blank. I looked at them last winter, been thinking of building a fiberglass rod, had read a few some good things about them on a fiberglass forum. Would you be willing to share some info on your build? I have pasted my email address if you want to share information there.


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Old 07-05-2010, 01:13 AM
dalerio dalerio is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Four Mile, KY
Posts: 130

i can't believe all the fuss. i just was wondering who uses short rods and you'd think i had asked if your republican or democrat. i had heard there was a fuss or strike indicators so i would never ask that. which i use and don't use by the way. it depends on the place and time. my only little river bow there was white leaves in the water with it up so i tied one on, but that was the first time in the smokys. haven't did it since but if the time was right and there was white leaves in the water i would do it again. right place right time.

thats the point who uses them short rods not wether its what you should do. i personally HATE long rods but they have there place. i don't fish big rivers or care ANYTHING about the size of the fish i catch. caught a minnow on rock creek trib. awhile back. but i caught a fish. and thats the whole point. FISHING not catching. i wouldn't eat a trout if i had to, i don't like them. the fishing some call bluelining takes me back to m childhood playing in the creek, back up on a mountain in eastern ky. and the senery at back either.

the old ways are great but not the only way. and remember the old guys was fishing to eat not spend time away from work. wouldn't awhole lot of long johns back then. as far as money, look we are talkin on $500 or more computers right now with a service fee for the internet and we drive a hour or MORE to fish the smokies with gas the way it is. all the money i have in my rods are less than a $1000 including gear and fly tying stuff. so i think i or we can afford a $100 rod if fishing in tight little creeks for brookies is what we want to do. and i do call em brookies, not specks, am i wrong for doing that. or do i have to call the native char what you or somebody else calls to be right.

now i don't want to change the rods i have. what little i get to spend fishing i don't want to have to learn a new rod, if i had plenty of time that would be different. i just want to fish and have fun. i come on here to learn something new, a different place to go, what is hatching, new flies and live vicariously through other peoples pictures and stories. it is a highlight of my day. this long rod short rod reminds me of TEAM JACOB or TEAM EDWARD and Obama did this, the party of no.

lets just fish...........
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