Well, I am officially addicted. After listening to Paul and Nick's, conversation about distance casting and the 170 technique, I have jumped into the distance casting pool neck deep. Playing with distance casting is nothing new for me, however, it has been many years since I have engaged in any real sort of regimented practice. And, I have never really had a dedicated "distance setup. I just always wielded whatever saltwater line and rod happened to be coming off the wrapper at the moment.
The current kit consists of:
SexyLoops Hot Torpedo 8wt.
Composite Developments Tactical Distance 8wt.
Composite Developments Prototype 6wt.
Early last week I ordered an SA MED 5wt line. My first observations are that the MED is RADICALLY different than anything I've been using for the past 20 years for saltwater sight fishing. I have simply had no reason to put a line like this into play. Although I will say after using it, I can certainly see some possibilities for interesting saltwater applications (pier fishing?)
The Hot Torpedo: What can I say...light fast, powerful, simply a beautiful stick to both cast and fish with. This coming Wednesday it will once again be on the front lines of Captain Freddy Lynch's skiff doing battle in the Laguna Madre.
The CD Tactical Distance: This series has now been discontinued for close to 10 years. When I was working with Marty Johansen at CD Rods developing the prototypes for a working line of rod blanks, he happened to find a stash of the Tactical Distance series in his warehouse, for which I promptly whipped out my credit card and purchased them all. It's a different animal than the HT....slightly softer, and not quite as light in weight but does boast the durability advantage of a carbon helical core.
CD Prototype: Back in 2018, Marty and I looked at the possibility of manufacturing a series of boutique fly blanks to be released into the USA custom builder market, and this 6wt. was one of the original prototypes. These were very forward-thinking tapers. High-modulus, multi-modulus layups with carbon helical core in the butt and mid, topped off with an external carbon veil in the tip, yielding very small diameters for their intended line weight. Unfortunately, this project never came to fruition for several reasons, but I still continue to use the prototypes as they are great rods.
On the first day out, I grabbed the CD 6wt. and the CD 8wt. thinking that because they had a slightly softer action, that might be a more user-friendly place to start. I strung up the 8wt with the MED-5 and was consistently hitting 100'-105. The out of the blue, there was one missle that sailed out to 113'. At the time I had no idea what I did to achieve that, but I will say that I never strung up the 6wt. as I was so amped up about that 113-footer I couldn't be bothered with a different rod. Ironically enough, when I got home later that evening I realized that in my haste, that I had picked up the incorrect rod and actually threw the 113' cast with the Hot Torpedo! You're probably asking how that happened, and you'd be justified in doing so. The answer is that they both have a similar color blank finish, and I have just been to lazy to apply the decals with the brand and model numbers! I have since cast both the CD and the HT 8wt with the MED5 and preference goes without a doubt to the HT8.
Upon Nick's suggestion, I have since been doing the majority of my casting with the CD 6wt. and have had numerous throws in the 105' range with one last night hitting 108'. Certainly not enough length to put any fear into the heart of fellow Texan Rick Hartman, but certainly more than I thought I'd be capable of on the first week in the game!
More to follow as things progress, and thanks to Nick and Paul for the great interviews!
I hope you all are having a great week!