Gear Review – Sage TXL-F

The Sage TXL-F goes perfectly with the Sage Click II.

I came across a video about the Sage TXL-F. I then met Jamie Lyle, the guy from the video, at the Sportsman’s Expo in Sacramento and we talked small creek rods. I didn’t have the money, so it was just talk. Between my 5-weights for California trout and 7-weights for Alaska steelhead and salmon, a tiny rod for little trout wasn’t a priority.
Over a year later, I bought a 1-weight and paired it with a Sage Click II 1-weight reel. Not because of the video, but because my bouts with 8-inch trout in Sierra Nevada streams were less than exciting and I was drawn to some of the last words Lyle said when convincing possible owners – “They’re fun”.
He ended up being right. About everything.
When he talks about increased feel, he’s right. It’s nails. The casting is smooth and delicate, not fragile like I may have expected from a rod so light and thin. It presents flies elegantly from distance and can stand up against light wind. It’s not going to punch through gusts, because after-all, it is a 1-weight, but for small creek fishing, this rod is outstanding. The section of the Stanislaus River near Knights Ferry offers decent boulder-hopping fishing as well as some runs and riffles below the bridge. The combo worked great presenting flies to trout waiting under the boulders or hiding in the runs under brush. Once hooked up, every shake of the head is transfered back to you through the rod. The landing of the fish is almost chaotic as the dial on the Click II reel does allow for a bit of a resistance, though the reel does not have a traditional grad system. It’s exactly the almost out of control chaos that I wanted when I made this purchase.
This is not a rod you start out with, or one that you buy two months into your fly-fishing career. It’s one for the Trout Bum who wants to scale down and match trout and water, not use brute strength to dominate it.

The trout couldn’t tell the TXL-F difference, but I could.

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