Sage SALT review revisited


The Sage SALT has been with us for about a year now. A year ago, I had the privilege of demoing the rod at the casting club and putting together a review with George Revel of Lost Coast Outfitters. Normally that’s that for a rod review on this end, but a year later, my praise for this rod has only grown.

Many saltwater rods have come and gone over the years, and it’s no wonder why they often disappear as quickly as they arrive. There has always seemed to be an imbalance of extremes: either a rod casts well or it is a strong rod with lifting power (and nothing in between). My own dissatisfaction with saltwater rods can be told in stories. I took one saltwater rod on a tarpon trip and used it for a total of five minutes before borrowing someone else’s rod. Simply put, the rod was a graphite broomstick. “No, you have to over-line that rod,” a friend told me. On another trip, I had a 10wt that was a delight to cast but shattered on the first fish in the bluewater. “Those XXXXXX rods always break on my boat,” reported the guide.

So this left me in an undesirable place. My favorite casting rod even seemed to be weak when picking up heavy lines (ie 12wt lines or shooting heads), and was worse altogether with fish on. Then comes the SALT.

The SALT, in my book, outperforms everything we have seen to this point. Now I know that we all have preferences, but for me, this rod is the cat’s meow. I can load the rod with just a little line out, thereby allowing me to act quickly (as saltwater angling often demands). I feel confident in delicate presentation-focused casts to permit and also chucking big, heavy flies offshore in the wind. I can feel the line and thus feel confident that I know how the cast will turn out, and just as important, I know I can fight fish without worrying about breaking the rod on hard-fighting salty critters.

The rod never failed to impress ... but that albie failed to escape that shark! Whew!

The rod never failed to impress … but that albie failed to escape that shark! Whew!

The SALT, provides both confidence and range. Confidence in casting and fish fighting is what I need in saltwater. And having a rod for every plausible saltwater situation (without shortcomings) is something I have desired for years. A day on the salt can come down to one moment, and and with the SALT in hand, I am not thinking about gear at all in that moment — just the task at hand. Now I just want to get a few more of these puppies!

To check out the Sage SALT rod, please click here.

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