Review: Sage TROUT LL fly rod

Can Sage's new TROUT LL fill the big shoes of its beloved predecessor?
Photo: Cosmo Genova

The rod tube hadn’t been on the counter for more than ten seconds before a voice from behind me perked up: “Is that the new Light Line?”

In the hour I spent at the fly shop, I was approached by numerous similarly intrigued anglers, a couple of which had owned the previous iteration of Sage’s dearly beloved LL (or Light Line) series of fly rods, designed by Sage founder Don Green over 30 years ago. I had not had the privilege of owning the original LL, and that was why I was there—for some shop chatter with those who had.

Married to fly fishing?

Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue
Photo: Jeff Gilman

"Do you take fly fishing to be your lawfully wedded spouse, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health, until death do you part?"

Whatever vows you may, or may not, have made to your fishing, it’s important to have gear that will treat you with love and respect until it’s time for you to go your separate ways. With that in mind, here are four recommendations that you might want to keep in mind for the remainder of 2019.

Review: ECHO BASE fly rod

The $89 BASE punches above its class in nearly every category
Photo: Johnny Carrol Sain

If you’ve got kids of a certain age, you’ve likely viewed the Pixar flick Ratatouille, in which the lead protagonist, Remy—a rat—is inspired by Chef Gusteau’s proclamation that “anyone can cook.”

It is possible that no other company more tightly follows the vision of its leader than ECHO fly rods follows Tim Rajeff, who proclaims that anyone can fly fish. You don’t need years of practice, and you certainly don’t need wads of money. But Tim knows that you do need the right fly rod.

The ECHO BASE I own is a workhorse of a rod that I’ve put through the paces for various species of warm water fish for nearly four years. You can learn a lot about a rod in that amount of time.

AFFTA announces industry-wide 'Day for Bristol Bay'

It's time for fly anglers to put some skin in the game
Commercial fishing in Dillingham, in the Bristol Bay region of Alaska (photo: Pat Clayton).

Next month, the fly fishing industry will set aside a Day for Bristol Bay. One day for anglers, fly shops, brands, outfitters, lodges, guides and more to dedicate their support to protecting the world's greatest wild salmon fishery. One day to pool their collective efforts—and to put their money where their mouths are—to generate funding to fuel the efforts of the Bristol Bay Defense Fund.

This is heaven, Joe.

And this land is their land
Photo: Chris Hunt

I had just finished leveling the camper when Morgan pulled up in his white sedan. It’s a process—leveling the camper—made a bit more complicated thanks to a slightly hyper mutt running around while I work the jacks, wondering why we can’t just go straight to the creek.

“Who cares if your feet are above your head?” Phoebe seemed to ask. “The cutties are waiting.”

And then there was Morgan. Super nice. Polite. Hat in hand.