ICAST Preview:

Steve Kantner, the Landcaptain, and our intrepid reporter goes in search of technology

[dropcap]I[/dropcap]t’s time once again for the annual ICAST Show, where the tackle industry gathers to strut its stuff. From modern, innovative designs in hardware and lures to eye-popping advances of interest to fly fishermen, here’s where you find the goodies—making it one event you won’t want to miss, not if you’re a buyer, a reporter, or a media rep. One out of three isn’t bad, so I’m off to Orlando on July 17th—the fourth of five days in this sensory bacchanal.

Basically, it’s a trade show—I heard this one’s a sell-out— where buyers order products for the upcoming year. Me? I’ll be signing books. But I’ll be checking-out stuff, and filing reports, too. Before leaving for Orlando I decided to do some research. Consider the following:

My pal, John Mazurkiewicz’s (Catalyst Marketing) stutorial on the new Loomis fly rods. These rods, in a word, are short. They were designed specifically for casting the new short-headed fly lines that are gaining in popularity for casting large flies. Why go shorter?  It’s about building up line speed, which is essential for casting bulkier lures.

Think of it this way: Say, you’re using a standard 9-footer. The tip takes longer to travel the required distance from back cast to turnover than a shorter equivalent, regardless of line size. Imagine a fly swatter with a four-foot handle.

The same principle applies to moving a fly line, where faster means farther. Apparently, that’s how Loomis designer Steve Rajeff sees it, and who knows better about booming-out fly lines?

Rajeff refers to the new Loomis Shortstix as “high-performance rods that both experienced and novice anglers will appreciate the lightweight feel and speed.” He then added: “The ShortStix rods have stiffer tips than ordinary saltwater rods to reduce collapsing loops that decrease distance, and simply just make fly casting easier.”

According to the company, they load easily, too.

Measuring 7 ½ feet in length, Loomis fast-action PRO4X Shortstix rods are available in four sizes, which includes an 8/9 weight for use with 300- to 350-grain fly lines; a 9/10 weight for 375- to 425-grain lines; a 10/11 weight for 425- to 475-grain lines; and a 11/12 weight for 475- to 525-grain weights.

PRO4X Shortstix. Loomis photo.

PRO4X Shortstix. Loomis photo.

All four rods feature K-frame stripper guides to reduce tangles when shooting line. The two larger rods also featured integrated fighting grips for more power and better fish control.

Suggested retail for these rods ranges from $400 to $425.

Steve Kantner


ICAST 2014 Show Hours – Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, FL
Tuesday, July 15,         5:00 p.m. – 7:00 p.m. (New Product Showcase Reception-Buyers and Media-Editorial Only)
Wednesday, July 16    9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Thursday, July 17        9:00 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.
Friday, July 18             9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.



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