Sage has been an industry pioneer since 1980, when it began hand-making lightweight, deceptively powerful fly rods at its factory on Bainbridge Island, Washington. Thirty-six years of technological innovation and enlightened design have produced the company’s newest flagship model, the X. Arguably Sage’s most beautiful rod to date, the X is a wicked-fast, nimble piece of fussed-over machinery that generates an insane amount of line speed — which is the point. Sage’s proprietary KonneticHD (HD stands for “high density”) technology claims to be the most advanced blank material on the market today, and it’s intended to help every fisherman become a better caster, with tighter loops and better line control.
I fished with a 9-foot, 5-weight Freshwater X in late summer (with an InTouch Rio Gold line) and it fulfilled Sage’s every promise, casting accurately and crisper at short and far distances and everything in between — all while helping temper my cast, which can sometimes resemble a high-plains lasso. Comes with a lifetime warranty.