Review: The Sage BOLT Fly Rod

Sage BOLT fly rod

In June, Sage announced the addition of the BOLT fly rod – an ultra-fast action rod designed for all-water and the toughest conditions. When Sage, uses the term, “ultra-fast,” it peaks interest. Sage has been mastering the fast action rod game for some time, and when they have created ultra-fast rods like the TCX and METHOD, an almost cult-like devotion follows.

In the past, these ultra-fast rods have been matched by some of the steepest price points in the Sage line-up of rods. Now, anglers who seek to spend less and gain the edge of a high-performance ultra-fast Sage rod can have the BOLT in their sights.

Upon casting the rod, I was pleased with the feel. Fears that the rod would be too stiff or need to be over-lined were immediately eliminated. The 7wt that I demoed casts beautifully, and handles heavy lines with ease. For my own applications, I consider big lines, big flies, and shooting heads — all of which the BOLT would take on well. In my experience, a rod’s action and power can change quickly on the water with some T-14 and a Whistler. With the case of the BOLT, such pursuits will be handled well. In addition, the ultra-fast action will come in handy on beaches, the flats, big windy rivers, and other waters that warrant high line speeds and tight loops.

George Revel Sage BOLT
George Revel of Lost Coast Outfitters checking out the Sage BOLT.

For George Revel of Lost Coast Outfitters in San Francisco, the rod was also well-received.

George states:

“When I threw my first cast with the Sage BOLT 7wt my head went straight to the flats of Florida. A fast action rod like the BOLT is the perfect tool to cast your fly into the all to common stiff winds. Utilizing Generation 5 Technology, once made up TCX’s and Z-Axis, The Sage BOLT is a fast action rod that is connected enough to allow the bend to come progressively deeper. Meaning that it’s hard to overload the rod. Energy transfer is not as good as the Konetic resin that Sage is now using for the One, MOD, Circa, etc. It feels as though the rod is a little more beefed up TCX presumably for fish fighting and durability. In fact, the 7wt BOLT is listed 1/4oz heavier than the TCX was. All around a damn fine rod for when a fast action rod is the right tool for the job.”

Sage BOLT Rod

When it comes to materials, as George points out, the BOLT is made up of Sage’s Generation 5 graphite technology — a hallmark of Sage’s finest rods. Last year, Sage brought this technology to the ACCEL, and with the huge response that followed, Sage ought to see a similar amount of enthusiasm for the BOLT. And like many Sage rods, the BOLT is attractive. With a “salmonfly” blank color and a black up-locking reel seat, many anglers (especially S.F. Giants fans) will be drawn to the rod. The handle is a snub-nose, half wells cork and rods for line weights 6-8 include a fighting butt.

The BOLT comes in weights 4-8 and in 9-foot lengths and are available for $650 in all sizes.

To check out more on the Sage BOLT fly rod, please click here.

And to check out more from George Revel and Lost Coast Outfitters, please click here.

– Tim Harden

Disclosure: Sage is in a professional relationship with the Fly Fishing Guide Directory, LLC and the Venturing Angler. Though potentially benefiting from this relationship, we do not post what we do not believe to be true. To read more, click here.

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