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A Note from Brooks on Airflo’s NEW Polyleader Plus


Posted on: Oct 12 2020

Categories: News Products   Staff Recommendations  

A note from Brooks on Airflo's new Polyleader Plus:

"OK, I’m a bit jaded on any newfangled fly-fishing gizmos. Many of you that have known me for years may remember the crackerjack toy-like SA L2L leader-connect debacle. Remember, the orange plastic snap piece of carp that was supposed to revolutionize line-to-leader connections?  Well, those SA L2L’s ended up in the back alley fly shop dumpsters of America. And I ate a lot of crow.

So along comes the new Airflo Polyleader Plus with a tippet ring.  “Uh-oh” I said to myself. I better vet these leaders myself before the Hart-Montgomery team starts pushing them throughout the territory.

Well the great news is (and no crow to be eaten): They are fantastic.

My first day casting the new Polyleaders was on the Bitterroot last month. Fish were doing that big eddy carousel thing with rainbow mouths gulping tricos. I was fishing a CD XLS II Rod (from New Zealand) and I looped on the 6.5’ Polyleader Plus and added 4-feet of 6X tippet, tied to the tiny aluminum tippet ring. The Polyleader Plus delivered the size 20 GT trico pattern perfectly, and drag-free. Fish ate with reckless abandon.

Then around noon, it warmed up and I switched to hoppers. I cut off the 6X, clinch knotted on 3-feet of 3X, tied on a Trina’s Carnage hopper. The same Polyleader now shot the hopper with a nice splat, and, gulp, it worked great.

Days later, on a local stream, I tried the same leader on my Ray Gould 8-for-5 bamboo rod, which, being bamboo, is obviously not a powerful fast rod. I cast both small caddis and large hopper patterns. It worked flawlessly.

Then last week I drove down the Salmon River, with my Bob Clay 12’ Suskwa spey rod. I tied on an MFC Gerath's Curb Feeler (skater) with 4-feet of 10-pound Maxima Chameleon, to the Polyleader Plus tippet ring. It turned over the skater effortlessly. That's pretty wild: The Polyleaders worked great from tricos to large steelhead skaters.

So. . . what are the Airflo Polyleader Plus applications?

  • In my opinion, it is a perfect tool for guides. One looped-on leader, switch tippets from tricos to hoppers, all on the same Polyleader, and it turns over, even with a soft open-loop-limp-wristed-beginner-cast.
  • For Flyshop Sales: a dream come true.
  • I’ll be using it on all my rods. Because I’m turning into an old bamboo-loving weirdo, I’m especially excited about how incredibly well it works on everything from my delicate Adams four-weight to my Bob Clay 12-foot spey rod.

Why doesn’t the tippet ring sink? I don’t know. I guess because it is so small, and it is light aluminum, it hangs up in the surface meniscus (surface tension). 

Please give them a try. You won’t be sorry. And please let us hear about your successes with the new Airflo Polyleader Plus.

-Brooks Montgomery

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