Scott Fly Rods S4S series is the rod of all rods. Capable of muscling the largest of fish while still retaining a remarkable amount of feel and precision. Over the past year or so, I have been replacing the rods in my quiver with a range of Scott S4S Series Fly Rods. I do not do this without reason, the S4S series fly rods are extremely fast, strong, light and accurate.
Lets start with why a fast rod is important for the intermediate to advanced fly fisherman. A fast action rod allows for quick recovery and response in a fly rod. This means you can attain high line speed and waste little to no energy throughout the graphite in the rod. This means you can cast farther, easier and quicker. This has become the standard in any windy and lengthy casting scenarios. Scott has also combined the fast action taper with stiff materials. This allows for a great amount of leverage to be put on large fish and also makes for easy pick up of large amounts of line on the water.
The Scott S4S is also crazy strong. At the moment I own 6 S4S rods that have traveled the world with me. They have caught trevally, carp, bonefish, redfish, monster trout and much more. Not a single rod has failed me yet. Now all rod companies guarantee their rods, including Scott, but that does you no good when you are standing on the front of a flats boat in Australia with a broken fly rod. You will have to wait till your trip of a lifetime ends to send your rod back. Scott does several things different in the S4S series rods to make them durable and strong. The main one is, have you ever noticed the slight ribbed feel to the rod blank? This is done for a reason, not because they were lazy and did not sand it (I have had people try to throw this one back at me). I is done to maintain the structural integrity and strength of the rod. When a rod blank is completely sanded smooth, graphite fibers and resin are removed as well. Now we all know when graphite fibers are damaged, you will weaken the rod. This is the reason for the ribs, and trust me, it makes a big difference!
Over the years, I have been able to respect a rod based on how it tracks and accurate it is. This is so true in saltwater and sight fishing situations. This was the rod that won the distance and accuracy contest in the 2011 Teva Games. In fact, it was my trusty 905-4 S4S, that I use day in a day out. The S4S is the most consistent and accurate rod that I have fished. Now, there are other extremely accurate rods out there, but they do not compare because they lack the fish able traits you need in the rod. The Scott S4S does not sacrifice these traits, such as sensitivity and durability.
Now for the less important, but mentionable, looks of the S4S. When you pay $700 for a rod, you do want something that is easy on the eyes and you do get that with the S4S. My favorite is the titanium REC recoil guides. These guides are unbreakable, you can bend and smash them as much as you want. The reel seat is simple and classy, machined and coated 3 times with an anodized finish (wont rust or corrode). The colors are black/grey and kept simple with a blue trim. Not over thought or based on the latest trends. All the S4S’s are equipped with full wells grips, which I love! This means you hand does not slide around on the cork when casting.
One of Scott’s S4S standouts is the 905-4 5 weight. This is my daily rod. It has caught trout, carp, reds, bones, bass and much more. It is capable of throwing dries, hoppers, heavy nymph rigs, streamers, sink tips…really just about anything you need it to do. This rod has the perfect balance of sensitivity, accuracy and backbone to get the job done in the rocky mountain region. The other stand out is the 908-4 8 weight, this is just like the 5 weight, but beefed up for your saltwater needs. These two rods are clearly the stand outs and remain my favorites.
What I want to leave you with is the fact that the S4S is an extremely versatile and capable rod, but it may not be for everyone. I will say, if you are looking for a supple and super sensitve rod to throw just dries, you are looking in the wrong place. You may be a better fit of a G2 or and A4 rod. I end it by saying that the S4S is a “get er done” rod, it will get down and dirty, while keeping it’s class and be a great companion through out your fishing endeavors.
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