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Hi, I'm new to the forum having just discovered this looking for information. Recently got back into flyfishing last spring after hooking up with PHWFF. Over the last year I've picked up a decent 6wt setup (TFO 6wt 9' and a Ross Evo Lt 3) and a decent 6wt setup for my 13 yo son as well. I've been given the chance to build a rod with PHWFF this winter and was contemplating building a heavier 8wt setup for possible coastal trips, but thinking more on a 5wt 10' seeing as how I should be able to use the Ross reel I have with it. My question is, the reel is rated as a 5-7wt (I have 6wt line on it at the moment) and I'm figuring the extra foot on the 5wt (as opposed to a 9') may help balance out this setup better. Would a 4-5wt be more optimal? I'm probably way overthinking this and probably just trying to justify a 5wt versus the 8wt, but I'll get more use out of the 5wt fishing streams and rivers of OH, KY, TN where I live.
I'm very interested to get people's views on this subject as I know they will differ greatly. I salmon fish in NW Scotland where slowly the trend is moving towards catch and release. I fly fish for pike in the winter, which is all catch and release. With flyfishing for pike we are encouraged to use heavier tackle eg an 8wt rod and heavier leader. The theory behind this is you play the fish for less time and when the fish is released it is not totally depleted! Also the intro of barbless hooks (I don't need to explain the benefit in a C&R fishery do I?). So you can probably see where I'm going with this..... Last summer 3 fish were played beautifully and skillfully into the back by members of the party I was with in Scotland. Two of them died from sheer exhaustion of a 30min fight and the other well I hope it's still swimming. My question is at what stage do we start to migrate to heavier tackle and barbless hooks in the quest for preservation of our native stocks? I for one will be fishing this summer with an 8wt, heavier leader and barbless hooks as I endeavor to release all I catch. That said I need to catch the silver king first any fly suggestions please? Edward