Over-Lining Our Fly Rods

By / January 24, 2016 / Fishing
Ross Flystart 2

Not sure when we started doing this, but we tend to over-line (go up one line weight) on our 4-Wt and 5-Wt fly rods. I think we did this by accident when we used whatever fly line we had at the time we picked up a new fly reel.

So far, have been good with the casting results by going up a weight. That said, was not aware of a debate about this, until I saw an article online by Field and Stream – “Is Over-Lining Fly Rods Good or Bad?

For the most part, would agree with Field and Stream that there are no set rules. Would go on to say, “whatever works best for you”!


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Much of my fishing is in small creeks where I usually make fairly short casts, often just the furled leader and a few feet of fly line. I often use a 5wt line on my 3/4wt rod and it works very well. I even tried a 6wt line once and didn't have any problems with short casts, although the rod started to feel sloppy with longer casts. I occasionally underline a rod, especially if I'm making long casts in a lake with a DT line. I think most fly rods are fairly forgiving when it comes to line weight.


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