RE:New Gear for 2000 anyone?
I'm very excited about underlining a 12 wt rod for fishing heavy structure from shore. Don't know whether I just lucked into a sweet setup, but a 12 wt ('98)T&T Horizon, underlined by an 11 wt Cortland intermediate or a 28' LC13 head works wonders for me. For the first time, I can consistently reach a line of rocks some 80' out, have no trouble at all with large flies, and can easily cast for two hours morning and dawn. (Yes, I am short of sleep lately).
Best of all, I think handling this heavy setup has improved my casting overall. Since it's so heavy, I've been focusing on tightening the loop and intensely playing with leaders to avoid 'wind knots' and fouling the long flies. I was very surprised how much leader butts can influence these points. Another big plus is that shock waves are now gone from my lighter-rod casts (well, most of the time). Understanding and experiencing just how little energy it takes to move out the line os one of the subtler pleasures of this sport.
I wonder if I just lucked into a honey-rod-setup or whether this can be done with most 12 wts? I know it's much harder (for me) with Redington and Penn rods, and have also had a hard time casting the RPLXi 12 like this. Orvis Trident seems to work well. T&T Horizon has a reputation as an ultra-stiff, frequently overlined rod, but there is something about it which makes casting easy. Or is it that I'm just so used to it???
I've had some good-size bass on with it this year, and while it does ovwerwhelm smaller fish, a large bass in rocks is a lot of fun.