Fenwick fly rod ....or [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Fenwick fly rod ....or

04-15-2007, 08:43 PM
Howdy all....

I have been checking out the fly fishing forum here and I am impressed with the great information and camaraderie I see from the posts I have read. I am a life long resident of Montana and started fishing when I was 5 years old (36 years of experience now). :) Rivers, streams, high mountain lakes, summer time or ice-fishing in the deep of winter….I have spent many hours at my favorite past time. In all my fishing, I have strictly used a spinning rod with lures or bait. For the longest time I have been intrigued with the art of fly fishing and I have a few questions I hope some members here will answer. I can see myself spending most of my fly fishing time at lakes. The size of trout are anywhere from ˝ pound to 4 pounds (brooks, cutthroat, rainbows), and I have no idea what an ideal rod and setup would be for me. I do have a rod that was given to me when my father-in-law passed away. It is a four piece Fenwick Voyageur (SF74-4 7’ 3 7/8oz.) AFTMA Fly Line No.6, and it mentions 1/8-3/8 oz lures, which leads me to believe this is a combo rod. Would this be an OK rod? If not, I would greatly appreciate any suggestions on a different rod/reel and line setup I should look into. I have been saving my pennies and have nearly a $300.00 budget. :)



04-16-2007, 05:12 AM
Dan. Check your personal mail. You will find good info there. Welcome to the Forum!


04-16-2007, 02:21 PM

That is indeed a an old Fenwick spinning/fly combo rod, which for a time back in the 60's/early 70's was not uncommon. The rod is not really all that great as either a spinning or a fly rod unless you are only going to use it for small streams or casts under 40'. It was a compromise rod with guides that are too small for a proper spinning rod and an action that is between that of a fly rod and a spinning rod.

With you having nearly $300.00 saved for a new fly outfit, you will have no trouble getting a decent rod, line, and reel. Put most of the money into the rod, get a good quality WF floating line, and a cheap reel because the reel only needs to hold the line and for what you are going to use the rod for, all you really need is a click drag.

There used to be a very good fly shop on the west side of Helena on Hwy 12 right in town; but since it has been 16 years since I left Boulder and moved to WA, I don't know if it is still in business or not. There are two good shops up I-15 at Craig, another in Butte (just south of I-90 on the old Pipestone road), Fran Johnson's in Butte, and there used to be one in Deer Lodge (again I don't know if it is still in business) that could set you up. At any rate, your local fly shop would have what you need for the price you want. Plus the local shop would give you a short casting lesson and be a great resource as you learn to fly fish.

I'd recommend you look into a 9' 5wt for the high mountain lake fishing you are planning to use it for. This rod would also be very good on the Missouri, Big Hole, Little Blackfoot, and Clark Fork, as well as being fine for use on Prickly Pear.

04-16-2007, 10:07 PM
Thanks for the great welcome and for the time spent in both your replies. Phil, I looked at my e-mail this evening and I didn't receive any mail from you. To be safe, I even looked in the bulk mail in case it slipped into that folder. If you still have the e-mail in your sent folder, would you please send again?

I will have to see if the fly shop on the west side of Helena is still in business. I dont recall one in that area, but I could easily be wrong. I do know of one of the shops up I-15 at Craig, and the one in Butte (Fran Johnson's). I have a tendency to do lots of research before buying certain items in hopes of purchasing what is correct the first time around, and I really appreciate the time and information from both of you.

The weather in Montana is warmer with less moisture than usual this year and I believe I will be hitting the lakes sooner than expected. Cabin fever set in some time ago and I need to move on finding a great setup and learn to cast. :smile:

Thanks again,


04-22-2007, 05:28 AM
Dan. Top right hand corner ogf the screen. Click on private messages. I did send it as it is in my sent mail.


05-03-2007, 02:34 PM
Fly tyer hit it on the head with his point to invest your money into a good rod. I have spent a ton of time fishing in Idaho/Montana and if it were me I would look for a 81/2' 5 wt. with a medium action. You want something that is stiff enough to throw line during windy days or when throwing big bugs, yet something with enough of a moderate action that still has feel to it, and, if you hook into a bigger fish it will be a little more forgiving on your tippet.

Save your money as far as buying a reel. It is very tempting to want to buy a hot shiny reel, however, the high quality reel can wait, the rod can't. Second to the rod is the line. You can have the best rod made, but if you have a crap line it doesn't make a bit of difference. I would buy a good Scientific Anglers WF line. They are pricey, but well worth every penny. Just don't go with a line that is too heavy for the rod. For example, if you put a heavy WF line on a rod that is meant for a DT line or lighter WF line you will get a "backlash" or "bouncing" if you will. This will throw off the smooth casting motion and create bad casting habits, you don't want that. Also, get a cleaning kit and clean your line often, after every day on the water if you can, this will really make it last and will put a good slick coat on it which will help your casting the next time you are out. Just go into a local flyshop (stay away from the big sports stores for this kind of stuff) and have them set you up with the proper gear. It will be a little more money in a specialty flyshop, however, their knowledge is usually much better and they will get you started in the right direction.

I would personally recommend one of the intro Scott or Winston rods, I used to sell a ton of those when I worked in various fly shops, and for the money I thought they were good feeling rods that offered new flyfishers good gear at a decent price. With either of these rod makers you get a warrantee and both are great companies to deal with if you ever have a problem, made right here in the Western U.S. too. I don't know the actual name of the intro rods Scott/Winston have now, but I would check them out.