Recommendations for a reel [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Recommendations for a reel

01-11-2006, 12:45 PM
Hey Folks

I walked into a going out of business sporting goods
store last night and impulse bought a Cortland 9 foot, 8
piece, 8 wt Precision XC. Normally I am a guy who
researches purchases like this to death but what the
hell. The store was picked over – the Cortland and an
Ugly Stick panfish rod were all that were left of the
fly rods. (Store was TriCity Sports in Fremont, CA- still have lots of lures and lots of Ugly Sticks to go)

After a few false starts, this is a first fly rod for me so it is the one I am going to learn on.

So, I was thinking of it as a steelhead rod. I want
to stay under $200 for a reel if possible—any
Recommendations for a good reel to pair with this rod?
It’s a salt rod according to Cortland, and I do live
in the SF Bay Area, so a reel that could do double duty would be great.

Also, any recommendations for both a good steelhead backing/line/leader setup as well as a cheaper set up that I can practice with and thrash up would be great.

Thanks everyone

01-11-2006, 01:53 PM
Check out the Teton Tioga.

A lot of people use them in the saltwater as well as freshwater.

Rock solid reels!


01-11-2006, 08:45 PM
Why not just stick with the Cortland XC reel? I've no personal experience with it, but I've seen quite a few very favorable reviews on this reel - and its built to match the rod you bought, in looks and balance. It is rated for fresh or salt water use. The price is close to your limit of $200 (I believe $225). Cortland is a long standing company with good service.

A couple of other inexpensive but nice reels to look at are the Orvis Battenkill Mid Arbor at around $125, the Ross Rhythm at about $190-$200. Both have great drags, good looks, are saltwater capable and come from companies that will be around for warranty service if need be. The Orvis is the bargain, hands down. You could also take a look at the Orvis Battenkill Large Arbor (Battenkill LA), which fits in your price range and is a great reel, especially for steelies. Look at the size V ($225) for your 8 wt. The Battenkill LA will work fine in salt water as well. The last reel I'll mention is the Orvis Mach IV or Mach V. They are great for your purpose and would cost you $225/249.00. They have serious, well designed drags and are designed for salt water duty. For serious backing capacity, go with the Mach V with the 8wt.

Unless you regard your reel as a "throwaway thing", go with products from a company that has been around (and will continue to be) and stands behind its products. My 2 cents...good luck!:)


Zugbugz - Arizona

01-13-2006, 12:47 PM
Thanks for the advice you guys!

I went on Ebay and lucked into a new Tioga 8wt AND a 4wt that is listed as slightly used, both in one auction. They also had backing on them already. I picked them up for $154 and $15 shipping. I figure if they show up in the condition advertised I got a great deal, and even if the backing is not great quality it will be good enough to learn with as I am sure I will put some thrash on it.

I was going to make a salmon spinning rod but now it I might just have to make a 4 wt fly rod instead. That is a first for me too, rod making that is.

01-17-2006, 01:19 PM
hi there,
good to hear you got that bargain, if u r looking for another spare spool , on ebay at 40 bucks, type teton tioga in search engine in ebay (ranchodeluxe209 is the seller) id advice you to have at least 2 spare spools, you never know if teton will produce reels in the near future