05 Dec Gear Review: GLoomis Short Stix Fly Rod
Gear Review: GLoomis Short Stix Fly Rod
The GLoomis Short Stix fly rods have received a lot of accolades including the 2014 ICAST New Product Showcase Winner for “Best New Fly Rod”. You can’t do much better than that and I can tell you they make a great first impression. Light in the hand, nice cosmetics and it reeks of power; but how does it fish? We reserved judgement until we got some time on the water and settled into a new shorter casting stroke. We used the best albie season in years to test the fishability of the Short Stix.
Here’s what we found:
As mentioned these rods are optimized for the aggressive tapers found on lines like the AirFlo Sniper and Wulff Ambush. Use of these lines will minimize false casts. Still some casters made the adjustment to the shorter casting stroke quickly while others seemed to have a moderate challenge to find their groove required by the shorter rod length. That said the Short Stix seems to offer castability benefits that both the novice and the expert caster can appreciate.
The fishabilty is superb/stellar/fun and that starts with the light in the hand “throw it all day” feeling you have with a Short Stix in your hand. The rod is accurate and powerful; delivering distance with minimal false casting. You need that to land 6 albies on the fly from the stones!
The 2014 albie season put the Short Stix to the test and the consensus is there is not a better fish fighting fly rod that we can think of. The relative stiffness and length puts the pressure on the fish more reminiscent of a spinning rod. The 18lb albie at the top of the page “never saw the backing”. The heavier Short Stix is ideal for reefs and boulder fields were they fly rod can be over matched.
In summary, the GLoomis PRO 4X Short Stix has attributes that fly rodders of most any ability can appreciate. Most will gravitate to the fast load and minimal backcasting needed to generate line speed. Often only two backcasts are required and your fly is back in the water…where the fish are.
Here’s what GLoomis says about the PRO 4X Short Stix :
” Designed to make 80-foot-plus with less effort than traditional 9-foot rods, the new short length, fast-action PRO4x Short Stix are a true breakthrough for fly anglers. Using today’s new generation of short head fly lines, the 7-foot-6-inch rods load easily and offer exceptional casting distance especially with big, bulky, air-resistant flies. The four 3-piece ShortStix fly rods are inherently lighter and stronger – in hand they have the feel of a 9-foot 5 weight. Rods offered include an 8/9 weight for use with 300- to 350-grain fly lines; a 9/10 weight for 375- to 425-grain lines; a 10/11 weight for 425- to 475-grain lines; and a 11/12 weight for 475- to 525-grain weights.”