RE:looking for single-handed dry line summer rod suggestions
Haven't fished the Scott, but I fish the RPL+ 796 and the 7136 quite a bit. In my opinion, the 796 is an awesome fish fighting tool--as with any single-hander compared to a two-hander, the amount of control you have over the fish and the feel you have to respond is excellent. The 796, in my experience, also has plenty of backbone to fight big fish. I use it for both sink tips (type 5's in deep slots) and dry-lines on the upper part of the Dean every year, and have landed some huge fish. As you probably know, the Sage single-handers tend to be right-on for their listed line weight at 9 feet, but at 9.5', the added stiffness seems to fish one line weight heavier perfectly--so I usually fish an 8 weight line on that 796. Anyway, you'll never need anything stiffer than this rod for steelhead. In comparison, the 7136 is very soft, and while I recently landed a 28lb king with it, I don't recommend it for big fish. I don't believe rod strength has anything to do with how far a fish will run, but when you're trying to move a fish in close or in heavy water, the 7136 makes for a lot of work and finesse (not to mention luck). I do love casting and fishing the 7136, though, and it's a real treat after lugging and casting the 9140 all winter. Incidentally, the primary reason (for me) for using the heavier rod in the winter/spring has to do with the size of the flies I fish at that time. Anyway, I think that 796 is the perfect compliment to your two-hander--it fishes everything from floaters to type 5's beautifully, and man, can that rod whip steelhead. If I havn't already bored you to tears with all this tech-babble, I wish you luck on your decision making, and keep me informed of what you decide.