Warm water rivers, from 30+ yards wide to ½ mile wide. For fish 8” to 30.”
I’ve been told I push my equipment, especially my rods. My friends say I push, I say I’m playing with them. I wish to know what I can do or not do with them. I fish mainly smallmouth bass - up to 20” - in rivers, larger creeks and streams (although I also catch white bass, channel cat, carp (to 8-pounds), drum, crappie and bluegill, and walleye – ah the joy of fishing rivers). My tippets run from two-feet to four-feet, from 4-pound-test (4X or .007”) to 8-pound-test (1X or .010”). I use mainly PVC floating fly lines and some furled lines. My flies can run to 4” in length, on 1/0 jighooks and weigh 1/10 ounce. My plastic lures (I use Keitech Swimbaits a lot) can run to 3.5 inches in length, weigh to 1/8 ounce on 1/0 jighooks.
The Satoki has performed superbly under varied conditions (in my 24 outings so far in 2023). Casts everything with power or delicacy as needed. Wind? No issue. Water speed? No issue. I can feel very subtle takes (mainly just a “tap”) out to 30’. I can also feel when the fly has picked up weeds.
I can cast it parallel to the water sidearm left, sidearm right, overhead, flip-and-drop it. Powerful takes still can surprise me, but the rod responds quickly and gets into its curve. Hook setting is sure and crisp when needed, or just a raise of the rod when softness is the ticket. Often, once I determine size and species of the fish (by how it feels and fights) the Satoki allows me to feel in control (although carp in current can test my preconceived notions of what a fish can or will do).
I’ve only fished the Satoki at full extension (the sidearm and flip-and-drop casts help me cope with trees and such behind me). I have no interest in (and so far, no need for) the shorter lengths. (Then why did I buy a triple zoom? Because that’s the way the Satoki comes, and I wanted to try the rod. I bought two, sight unseen. No regrets; period.) I like the Lillian length and that it is on a swivel connection to the rod. Big plus to me.
Cosmetics; superb. Note: this is my first time with a foam handle (I’ve always preferred cork). I like it. It feels comfy in the hand (wet or dry) and has “natural materials” feel over cork. It cleans easily too. I’ve used the rod for up to six hours of continuous fishing (though the average is four). Handle diameter works for me. No fatigue. Additionally, no sections have stuck so far (I have two techniques to avoid that) so I have no thoughts there.
Cons? None as of yet.
Satoki. Looks good; feels good; performs good. No complaints - nothing but love.