Ideas on Chesapeake rig [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Ideas on Chesapeake rig

04-17-2002, 02:16 PM
Hey, y'all...

I've almost convinced my wife to let me buy my saltwater rig, the only problem is, with all the different types of stuff out there, I am left with a quandry. What to buy.

I am moving to Chesapeake, VA in 2 months and have fished everything from small brooks to wide cold waters like the Snohomish in WA for steelies. What would be the ideal set-up for coastal Chesapeake?

Spey rods? How about the Scott Heliply rods? Rod weight? Line types? etc. I have about $1000 to spend and I want to get the best. (It's my birthday and Christmas presents all rolled up in one)

Any information would be greatly appreciated. :)


04-17-2002, 03:18 PM

What kind of fishing do you plan on ? Mostly Saltwater ? If thats the case a 9ft 8/9 wt would be appropriate with a good disk drag saltwater reel.

Sage, Thomas & Thomas are extremely fine rods for the Salt. I also really like the Powell Tiboron or the AXS.

As far as reels: Pate, Tibor, Abel, Islander, J.Austin Forbes ( not pricey but still quite nice for around $300. I love mine ).

Best bet is to figure out what type of fishing you plan to do 75-90% of the time and buy accordingly. For $1000 you can buy just about anything you want.

As far as Spey Rods I hear they can be an asset as well as a problem. I just have to put the flex coat on the one I built over the winter and I will try it out on the beach soon. I originally built it for Steelies but with alot of guys using them for Saltwater I figured I'd jump on the bandwagon too. ( I never fished one before, but no better time than now to learn ).

Good luck with what ever you decide on and Happy Birthday / Christmas.

04-17-2002, 03:40 PM
Thanks for the reply.

I see myself mostly fishing from the beach and jetties as I don't have a boat, yet. I've never fished the salt, but knowing that long casts are a must, let me say that I am more than adept at shooting line.

I was looking at the Heliply, but the more I read about it, it looks like it's better suited to bluewater fishing. Then, Iwas looking at the Scott SAS Tactical, which looks more to my goals.

Why Scott, you ask? Well, I just haven't put any research time into other companies. I will have to, now. Thanks for the information.

If anybody can comment on techniques, that'd be great, too.:D


04-17-2002, 03:45 PM
Get out to flyshops and cast every 8 wt rod that you can get your hands on. don't let the owner pressure you into buying until you ahve tried them all. Get the one that suits you best. Notice I said 8 wt. I use an 8 wt for almost 90% of my fishing. Look at the Harris Solitude flyreel. You are making a hasty decision if you don't check it out before you buy something else. Good luck.

04-17-2002, 04:07 PM
I would have to say you should take a long look at the Sage Line. I have a 9wt and 10 wt. Both are the RPlxi. I love them and used the 10 wt most of the time.

Another great thing about Sage is the return policy if something happens to the rod. Last year I broke my 10 wt out at the rip horsing in a fish to get out of Roop's way (ha ha ha). I got the rod back form Sage in about 10 days can't beat that.

Definately don't pass on looking at Sage!

04-17-2002, 04:15 PM
Scott rods are Great too. Its all personal preference. When I used to manage a fly shop here in NY I used we used to carry them. I really liked the SAS in an 7wt or 8wt.

As far as lines are concerned an Intermediate I think will be your best friend, but have a floater and a fast sink handy. Shooting heads are a good way to have many lines without spending alot of $$ on spare spools and lines.

Long casts are not always necissary. I found that 80-90% of the time you can catch fish casting only 40-70ft. Rarely do you have to cast farther, unless fishing for Albies from the beach even then, they too come pretty close at times. Casting far is a misconception in the salt, don't let the guy next to you tell you that you need to throw 80-110 ft in order to catch fish, its PISH TOSH! If you can cast that far GREAT! But believe me, you dont need to.

04-17-2002, 06:27 PM

The range of great rod for stripers and the like is 8wt to 10wt in single hand, everything else is a specialty rod in one sense or another.

Anything less than an 8wt and you'll get your clock cleaned too often, anything more than a 10 and you're wasting your shoulder socket for fishing years down the road - you cast a lot more than you hook up in other words.

If you do more finesse work, estuaries, smaller flies and not too many giant bass, an 8wt is a great way to go.

Middle of the road is a 9wt, not too hard on the arm and strong on the fish.

10wt give you more grains, fly weight and fish moving power. If you fish big water, big flies and fish a 10wt might be the best option.

There are many excellent rods on the market. I am most familiar and fond of Sage. I love the following Sage rods in these weights:

8wt RPLXi, 8wt 9' 6" VPS
9wt XP (4pc) or 9wt RPLXi
10wt VPS (4pc)

Obviously Scott, T&T, Powell, and other brands are excellent rods as well. I am most familiar with Sage and know the rods and their 'feel' best so I stick with them. Excellent two-handed and Spey rods as well.

A lot of this depends on your casting style. Before you Spey cast, did you fish a single hander for steelies up there in my former home state? If so my guess would be that you would really like the Sage 9wt 9ft XP in a 4-pc for a faster rod, and the RPLXi 3-pc 9ft 9wt as an all around SWFF rod. My favorite rod while single-handing for steelhead out there was the old RPL 8wt 9.5 ft 2-pc. It's a sweet progressive long-line rod but just a little under-gunned for SW because of the big currents, flies and FISH we have on Cape Cod, so I now fish the RPLXi 9wt 9ft 3-pc as my goto rod. I'll be adding the VPS 10wt 9ft 4pc to the arsenal this season.


Resistance to sand invasion, easy exchange of spools, maximum corrosion resistance, high backing capacity (200yd of 30# plus)and large arbor are all good things to look for. Many to choose from in that price bracket. Ross Canyon Big Game is a good choice, so is Charlton but there goes your budget ;)

Good luck and if you get up to the Cape let's hook up!