Historically, this has been our top selling Switch Rod at Red's Fly Shop. Between the cost, performance, and warranty offered by Temple Fork Outfitters (lifetime warranty against all disasters including acts of God) this rod sells the best for us. Our guide service manager and part owner, Joe Rotter, has used this rod for steelhead in many situations. It is easy to cast and clients adapt quickly when converting over from single handed fishing. You can email him directly at
with any questions. There are some other options but for a smooth casting medium fast action rod this is hard to beat.
Other Switch Rods to at Least Consider
What kind of online fly shop would we be if we didn't give some advice on other products as well? At Red's we bring it to you straight and there are a few other rods to at least look at. The TFO Deer Creek is a great rod, but there are two other popular models to at least look at while shopping for the right rod (all are great choices though!) Recently, the Sage fly rod company introduced the
Sage ONE Switch Rod
and it has been extremely popular. The price point on the
Sage ONE Switch Rod
is quite a bit higher but if budget isn't a big constraint this is a rod that you will want to consider. It is considerably lighter in hand resulting in far less casting fatigue when using it as a single handed rod. It is tough, crisp, responsive, and a dream to cast. We realize that this rod isn't priced for everyone, but if you get the opportunity to try it you will see why. The cast is simply magic. A much better rod but that of course is represented in the price.
The other rod that rivals the TFO in popularity is the
Echo SR Switch Rod
. It is priced very competitively and right in line price wise with the Deer Creek. It is a great rod. We would characterize the
Echo SR Switch Rod
as a slightly better rod for anglers that plan to do a lot of single hand casting. The TFO is a better rod for true spey casting and getting power and distance with larger flies. It bends a bit deeper into the butt section and will deliver a great cast all the way across mid sized rivers. A new player in the $360 range is the Redington Prospector Switch Rod. It is a bit longer, and a bit faster action. For more advanced casters or folks looking for a slightly more aggressive rod the Redington Prospector is one to consider.
Our most popular models at Red's are by far the 7 weight, as this seems to be the best all around Steelhead size. The next most popular are the 4 weight for anyone that wants an awesome sink tip rod or long rod for high sticking and fishing indicators for trout. (this is gaining A LOT of popularity on our home waters). The 8 weight is the preferred rod for guys fishing tight coastal streams for winter steelhead and has the more distance potential than the 7. Fisherman we know like the stopping power the 8 weight has over these big heavy fish. The 9 weight is not very popular for some reason, if you were fishing Kings on small water this would be perfect but it is a bit heavy for most of what we do. The 5 and 6 weights are fairly popular but most anglers go with the 7 weight for the increased casting range or the 4 weight if is going to be a trout spey.
2014 Fly Line Buyer’s Guide for Switch Rods
Ok, so things change fast in the switch rod game. Its like the damn stock market half the time. As products change, we have a team of guides that use, fish, and sell switch rods year round so please know that our information is based on actual river time and up to date. Below you will find some cliff notes to help you find the right fly line for you. Keep in mind that there is LOTS of overlap here and many lines will work for a variety of things. With that being said, it is wise to buy the line that works BEST for what you plan to do most of the time. If you plan to swing flies on rivers, get a shooting head with a
Rio Grip Shooter Running Line. If you plan to nymph fish most of the time, get a Rio Switch Line. If you fall right there in the middle, get an integrated shooting head like a Rio Switch Chucker Fly Line or a Wulff Ambush Fly Line. Between the video and the notes, you should no longer suffer from SLC, Switch Line Confusion.
Download Video from YouTube | Convert to MP3
Rio Switch Chucker Fly Line - A great all around line, integrated running line. The best line for all around fishing conditions, but not the “best” at any one category. If you are going to nymph fish “big” water consider adding a 10′ Floating Rio MOW Tip to the end of this line. This line is also great for stripping streamers because it has an integrated running line so you don’t get the “loop clang” as your loop-to-loop connection goes through your guides. This line is spot on for size, a #7 line matches with a #7 rod. Perfect for fast action rods longer than 11′, such as the Redington Prospector, Sage ONE, Sage METHOD, or Redington Dually (the #5 Chucker is heavy – if you plan to get the #5 Dually get a #4 Chucker).
Wulff Ambush Fly Line - Shoots like a rocket, short head, great for the shorter switch rods like the Echo SR and the TFO Deer Creek. Medium fast action rods 11′ or less like this line and eat it up! We like this line on the Echo SR, Echo Classic, Redington Dually (esp. the 4 – 6 weights), and the TFO Deer Creek Switch Rod. It has an integrated running line and is good for swinging flies, stripping flies, and indicator fishing small water if you put a 10′ Floating Rio MOW Tip on it.
Rio Scandi Short Versi-ti p - Great line for anglers that want to primarily spey cast with moderate sized flies. One of the sweetest casting lines, it is pure joy rearing back and setting up fora cast with this line. Tight loops. It will overhead cast pretty well. Needs a running line, this is the head/tips only.
Rio Skagit Max Short Head - Big flies are this lines specialty. Not a good overhand line. Great with Rio MOW tips (get the “light” MOW tips). No stretch core makes this a salmon killer when you need great hook penetration for fish with significant bone structure.
Rio Grip Shooter Running Line - The most popular running/shooting line. Pair this with the Skagit Max or the Rio Scandi Short.
Rio Switch Line - The best “indicator” line we sell. Good all around line, it will cast with sink tips BUT you won’t look like Skagit Master. This line is not a shooting head.
Rio Perception WF Floating Line - If you want to try and make use of a line that you might use on another rod or already own, a WF Floating line that is 2 line weights up will usually cast pretty well.
Rio Outbound Coldwater Saltwater – Here is your beach fishing master blaster. This is the long distance KING when pure coverage is at a premium. Use this in the sound or at the beech, OR take it stillwater fishing. They sell it in an intermediate sinking rate… oh man. Think about leech fishing your favorite lakes with 100′ long bombs.