Catching Steelhead and Chinook on the Sage 7126-4 ACCEL

October 19, 2014

I finally got to put the new Sage ACCEL 7126-4 into live combat this past 14 days.  I get fired up about new rods, they get me fishing harder and thinking about my cast which in turn makes me more productive.  As you read on, you will learn that I personally really like this rod!  No secret there.  We also realize that it is $750 so it better be good!  Also, for those of you really looking for a new spey rod we want to make the rod, reel, and line selection easy.  Before you are done here, check out the complete Sage ACCEL Spey Rod, Reel and, line combo we put together.

I had cast this rod at the shop a bit and I know that a few of the other guys were raving about it.  I wanted to be excited, but until I got a chance to put this rod into extended use I didn't want to get too excited.  I get to cast A LOT of nice rods and I always seem to approach new product with a bit of skepticism.  I personally like a 12'6" 7 weight, because most of the rivers I fish are mid-sized and we make a lot of short casts.  Much of the time we're just throwing the head of the line. 

I really like the G Loomis GLX Stinger 12'6" 7/8 and fished it since its birth and haven't looked at much else other than the Sage ONE 7126-4 in the "full spey" arena.  Both of these rods favor a quick casting stroke and are super fun with Scandi lines.  I am a fairly aggressive caster and always liked the performance that I got out of these quick rods.  The ACCEL is very different!  It seems to load up slow and smooth allowing the caster to be patient when setting up their anchor and even drifting the fly into the appropriate position before the cast.  After guiding a bunch of beginner level casters this week and fishing the rod myself I have to say I've got a new favorite.  It offers very high performance in a rod that is slower and smoother upon delivery.

I would say one of the most comparable rods is the Winston 7129-4 Boron III-TH.  Many of the guys in the shop (and others all over the country are raving about this rod).  If you get a chance to cast both, which you can at Red's, do so and decide for yourself which one fits you better.   

Easy Casting = Staying with the Swing = More Success?

For some reason, not sure why, we seemed to catch more fish swinging than ever over the past two weeks.  MANY anglers that had never caught a fish, or hardly spey cast, caught their first every fish on a tight line! For those that swing, you know what a monumental feet this can be.  It requires finesse, confidence, and patience. Most new steelheaders or nymph fisherman can't stay with spey casting or swinging long enough to get good at it! Therefore they struggle to break the ice.

This season so far, I truly believe that the ease of casting of the Sage ACCEL with its fun and powerful rebound against a 525 Grain Skagit Intermediate Line made the casting so enjoyable, easy, and effective that they were able to fish runs without getting frustrated with their cast.  The folks spent more time fishing, less time casting.  Not to say there are not other rods that can do this, but if you are looking for a new rod this would be a great choice.  I also think that when it comes to pure "catching" the Skagit iFlight Intermediate line really fishes well.  I am getting more confident in intermediate heads every time I use them.  More on that in another article.

Complete Rod, Reel, and Line Pacakges - Sage ACCEL Spey Rods

6126-4 - Great rod for light summer steelhead fishing. Fish to 10 pounds can be tamed with this rod. A bit on the big side for trout spey, but would be a fun way to streamer fish for trout if you want to polish your casting. It is a DREAM to cast and is surprisingly light in hand. Keep the flies sized reasonably and this rod won't complain about casting to the far shore. 

7126-4 - This is the best seller. It is VERY easy to cast and develops tight loops without required Tommy John surgery on your elbow a few years down the line. Beginners and advanced casters alike cling to this rod. In comparing this rod to the 7136-4, it is better on mid sized water and gets you started easier when it comes to making very short casts inside the head and feeds line which makes getting started easier. 

7136-4 - This probably should be the best seller. Anyone taking on bigger rivers, winter fishing, or wants to cast long without having to struggle will love this rod. A 13'6" rod picks sink tips and flies UP out of the water upon casting better and makes your fishing easier, more efficient, and is much better for beginner to intermediate casters.

8136-4 - This is the best rod for winter fishing with big flies or when you have Chinook in the system. Smooth, great casting, and very good for anglers that need to cover some water. It doesn't feel like a big rod but the line JUMPS out there. Very capable of handling Kings and Steelhead of almost any size. It wouldn't be our first choice as a dedicated King rod but is a good overlap.

  1. I love the Sage Accel review, thank you for the expertise. In the video, is that BBQ sauce on Joe's face?
  2. That is meatloaf sauce. Totally worth it.
  3. Meatloaf sauce? In what aisle of the supermarket can I find that? see ya next week buddy!