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RIO Freshwater Outbound Short – Loud presentation, stealth retrieve

6-29-13 Gear Shoot-195

 RIO Freshwater Outbound Short WF8F/I, $80,

 The Good: Long casts with little back cast, stealth retrieves.

The Bad: A lot easier to hang up on bottom structure and lose flies.

The Ugly: Moss laden wooly buggers and my foul cussing mouth.

Designed for casting large flies a mile, RIO’s Freshwater Outbound Short delivers huge flies to deep marauding trout and bass in deep runs and still waters. The Outbound comes in five densities providing a range of options to the fisher where in and how he would like to fish in the water column. The Freshwater Outbound Short series is as follows:

-      Full floating line

-      Floating line w/ a 30’ ultra slow sinking “hover” tip (1”/second)

-      Floating line w/ 15’ clear intermediate tip (1.5-2 ips) REVIEWED

-      Full intermediate w/ 30’ clear head (1.5-4 ips)

-      Intermediate line w/ 30’ fast sinking head (6 ips)

The WF8F/I Outbound Short line (floating line w/ 15’ clear intermediate tip) was tested for this review have a total line length of 100’ and a 30’ line weight of 315 grains.

RIO_Outbound Sink

 The RIO Outbound Short lines including front and rear welded loops for quick and easy rigging and the DualTone (Moss/Ivory) line color change designed help identify the length of line that will best load the rod while casting. RIO’s XS Technology, providing “ultra slick, dirt-repelling” properties is integrated into the Outbound Short to maximize distance and performance.

Testing of the RIO Outbound Short was performed with a fast action 8-weight rod over 2-months on the following waters and associated conditions:

Kilarc Reservoir, near Shingletown, CA (4-acre pond; brown trout): Super Slow Stripping

Kilarc demands long casts and slow (almost imperceptible) retrieves to catch browns on damsel fly patterns. Like other sinking lines, the Outbound Short loaded the rod quickly with very little line out of the guides and 70-feet of line could easily be delivered within three false casts. The line would “plop” down on the surface pretty loudly, but the circling browns on the small pond did not seem to mind as they would electrify the line after retrieving about ¾ of the way back to shore. I found that I needed to fish the deeper areas of the pond with the line, as the slow retrieve style (required to catch fish) would cause the fly to hang up on the bottom near the shore. This was easily remedied by simply lifting the line off of the water sooner in the retrieve for another cast.

 Cow Creek, Palo Cedro, CA (small tail water, smallmouth bass): Stripping

Picture a slow moving, slightly turbid creek with moss mats floating on top; that’s Cow Creek in late spring/early summer. Under the moss, shadows of spunky 1-3 lb smallies are cruising. My typical early summer experience with a floating line under these conditions…is pulling half of the f#cking moss off the creek to reveal the shadows darting away. The Outbound Short is the perfect line for this scenario. The clear sinking tip passes quickly through the water column and gets the fly beneath the moss allowing a presentation of a clean wooly bugger to the fish. Fisher beware, you still have to keep the line moving with quick strips to keep it from hanging up on the moss-laden cobbles on the creek bottom. The Outbound Short has increased my fishing season on this favorite local creek by 3 more weeks! I am sold on this line.

 “Lower” Sacramento River, Redding, CA (large tailwater, rainbows): Swinging/Quartering

Roll casts and abbreviated steeple casts are required to deliver flies while wade fishing on the LSAC in the summer evenings. Rainbows are aplenty at dusk as they splash the surface for emerging caddis. The Outbound Short performed well under these conditions. Though the line was clunky to roll cast, once I got the line out the unweighted flies could be delivered right to the nose of the rising fish and raised slowly to elicit a strike. The clear sinking tip of the Outbound Short proved to be less likely than a colored floating line to spook the fish off bite. The clear tip of the Outbound Short blends in with the surroundings and since the line is beneath the water surface at the depth of the fish, there is no shadow to pass over the fish. Brilliant!

6-29-13 Gear Shoot-201

 The RIO Freshwater Outbound Short is an excellent line to add to your extra spool. It has extended my fishing season and has resulted in more hook ups on my favorite waters this year. I hope you will find the same true.

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