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Sage - Redington - RIO SALE!!!
Having the right leader is just as important as having the right fly. The leader is responsible for presentation and is vulnerable to abrasion and breakage. Choosing the correct leader optimizes the presentation of the fly and increases the chance of landing the fish of a lifetime without the worry of break-offs.

Construction The leader is constructed with a thicker butt section, tapering in the midsection, terminating at a thin portion. Most leaders are made of nylon monofilament or a fluorocarbon material, which are extruded to exacting tapers to help the leader turn over the fly in a straight line. Most are light green to clear in color to blend in with the natural surroundings and are supple enough to allow the fly to behave as naturally as possible on the water.

Breaking Strength Leaders are classified by diameter and break strength. The bigger the species of fish sought, the higher the pound test needed to successfully land the fish, which makes the leader thicker. In today’s market, manufacturers have made it simple to choose a leader. If fishing for trout, look for a trout leader; bonefish, grab a bonefish leader. This system guarantees the correct leader for the application. Freshwater leaders are classified in a designation of ‘X’ where the higher the number, the lighter the tippet. As an example, a 6x leader will handle 3 pounds of pressure before breaking, whereas a 0x leader's break strength is 15 pounds. In saltwater applications, they are rated in pound test.

Length This is an area of confusion to most anglers. The general rule of thumb is: the longer the leader, the smaller the flies and the more delicate the presentation. If fishing size 22 Blue Wing Olives on a Montana spring creek, use a leader that presents the fly with the least amount of drag at the maximum controllable distance. If casting big streamers to the bank on the Roaring Fork River in Colorado, use a leader no longer than 7 ½’ to turn over those heavy flies.

Fluorocarbon Material Fluorocarbon material allows fishing with the most stealth since it is pretty much invisible under water. Fluorocarbon has nearly the same refraction index as water so the fish do not see it, greatly increasing the chance that a fish will take the fly and not be spooked by the leader. Fluorocarbon does not absorb water at the same rate as monofilament, retaining its dry break strength throughout the fishing day. Also, fluorocarbon offers greater abrasion resistance and higher structural stability against ultra-violet radiation than monofilament, providing greater durability in all fishing conditions.
 

 

Leader

fly size

lb test

0x

2, 1/0

15lb

1x

4,6,8

13.5lb

2x

6,8,10

11.5lb

3x

10,12,14

8.5lb

4x

12,14,16

6lb

5x

14,16,18

4.75lb

6x

16,18,20,22

3.5lb

7x

18,20,22,24

2.5lb

8x

22,24,26,28

1.75lb