Tag: Loomis EastFork

Rod review: G. Loomis EastFork FR1085-4 (Part 2)

gear bagIncluding a taste of the Grey Reef

Following up on part one of the G. Loomis Eastfork 5 weight review, I finally had a chance to put the stick through the paces. The location for testing was the Grey Reef – North Platte River, Wyoming.

Casting

I’d previously noted that the rod was very accurate at intermediate distances, and felt a little mushy on the long end. I can’t say I had much of a chance to air it out, but I can say that on a large western trout stream you’ve got all you’ll ever need with the EastFork. I threw weighted and unweighted streamers, including doubles, and did a fair amount of nymphing with it as well. It performed admirably with all. I did not, however, cast any small dries with the rod, but I’m not going to wonder whether it can cleanly turn over a #20 Parachute Adams – the rod isn’t built for ultra-light work (although it still fared well protecting tippets – see below).

Catching

Marketers would like you to think that ‘feel’ is what it’s all about when it comes to fly rods. But while ‘feel’ may make you think you’ve been transported to some mystical place where the trout eat your fly and then swim directly into your net, the reality is far from it. Once you cast your magic rod, you still have to hook and land fish! And that’s where this baby seemed to shine.

During a day and a half of testing on a large mountain states tailwater, I caught and released roughly 25 fish. Better yet, I did most of that on 5X tippet and in very heavy flows. Best…the smallest fish was 17 inches and the average fish probably weighed a couple of pounds.

Loomis EastFork Fight
Bend or break – it bends and bends and bends

To get ’em to net you need a outfit that has leverage in its heart but isn’t so much of a broomstick that you’re on your second spool of tippet by noon. The Grey Reef was running around 2,000 cfs, meaning every hookup was a challenge. And while I pulled more than my fair share of hooks, I only popped one tippet (and I’m chalking that one up to user error to boot).

Here’s the best catch of the test…

Grey Reef Pig
Screwing up the weight average – at minimum I’ll call the rod lucky

Proof is in the pudding. The G. Loomis EastFork has earned itself a permanent spot in my multi-rod tube.

Rod review: G. Loomis EastFork FR1085-4 (Part 1)

gear bagEvery once in a while a person gets stuck in a quandary. My jams usually rear their ugly heads when I’m fishing a lighter medium-action rod, the sun starts to set, and I’ve decided to tie on a couple of leaches and go for broke before my party starts complaining about the empty beer cooler and my unbridled obsession with catching just one more. Yea…I’d fish well into the darkness if I had my way, and unless the day started with a 200-grain line and a Sex Dungeon, I’ve been left wanting for stiff speed on multiple occasions. I finally decided I could either continue making backcasts, and then checking my watch, tying up a new leader, and grabbing a quick snack before beginning forward rod motion, or I could pick up a faster 5-weight. I took the rode more traveled (buying yet more fly gear), and the rod of choice was the G. Loomis EastFork FR1085-4.

I’m going to start by saying I’ve had my eye on a premium rocket launcher in this weight class, but the price, combined with the fact that the only way I could test one required subjecting myself to massive amounts of dealer-tude (a.k.a. dealer bad attitude), means the upper-crust lost on appeal. Secondarily, the folks that pushed me into this stick once steered me into another they didn’t even carry, so I was pretty certain I was getting straightforward advice.

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