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Glass Rods and Mountain Lakes

David Kirkpatrick

I was a bit nervous when my Wetfly NitroGlass rod arrived a couple weeks ago. I had never used a glass rod before and had no idea what to expect. Once out of the case and in your hand, the first thing you notice is the sensitivity. This is a rod that will make you rediscover your love for small water fishing and 8-14 inch wild trout. I knew instantly the first place I would take my new glass rod.

In Southern Oregon, there is a small mountain lake most people either don't know about or pay any attention to. Some may overlook it because it isn't considered a blue ribbon fishery and it is pretty far out of the way to go for a few small trout. My experience, however, has been a lake loaded with hungry, wild cutthroat trout that will occasionally push 17 inches. 

Once at the lake I strung up the Nitro Glass for the first time and headed down to the lake. I got into the rhythm of casting pretty quick and noticed right away I could feel the rod loading more acutely than I could with my graphite rod. This enabled me to throw consistently tight loops at a distance of 50-60 feet with accuracy. 

 The first fish I hooked absolutely crushed the fly with the innocence of a fish that has probably never seen a fly before. I felt every head shake, run and jump in a different way than I had ever experienced. "I could get used to this" I thought to myself as I hooked another fish.

Over the course of the day I fished size 14 ants, 18 BWOs and size 8 buggers in different colors. The size 14 ant felt like the sweet spot, but the rod performed well with every combination I used. It didn't take long before I felt at home with the 8 foot glass rod in my hand. 

As the fish got off the ants, I switched to an olive bugger and immediately hooked up with what felt like the best fish of the day. This fish put a deep bend in the rod and sent furious head shakes reverberating down the rod to the handle. What happened next is a bit of a blur, but apparently I played the fish well and we got him to the net. The take had been so vicious, my hands were still shaking from excitement. 

As we were hiking out I realized this was the most fun fishing I'd had in a long time. I won't ever be confused for a glass rod guru, but this rod was an absolute blast. We are just weeks away from the salmon fly hatch here in Southern Oregon and I have a feeling this is going to change the big dry fly game for me entirely.