When considering the purchase of a new rod, it is beyond easy to be confused and overwhelmed if you don’t know what you’re looking for.

G Loomis rods are top of the line rods that build a rod for every salmon and steelhead need.















They have a great warranty policy with dealers located all over the Pacific Northwest that you can take your rod to for replacement/shipping for repairs. They have built their rods with several different types of graphite to choose from in all lengths and weight class. When looking for a rod and reel, something that is easy to forget is not how the rod is going to perform, but how the rod is going to work for you! You can find quickly, that the perfectly balanced rods make them virtually weightless in your hand and when fishing with a rod as long as 13 feet, it’s imperative that it’s weight is distributed evenly from the very tip, all the way to the butt of the rod.

G Loomis has several features to choose from when picking out a rod and you will find below the basic information you need to know before making your purchase. The STR before a model number is going to indicate it is a steelhead rod, but I use these for many salmon rods as they have incredible sensitivity. SAMR before a model number indicates it’s a salmon rod and is typically going to be for trolling. HSR is a hotshot rod and is designed for pulling plugs. They have a very solid backbone but maintain the sensitivity so allow a plug to work its magic as freely as possible. BBR models are designed specifically for back bouncing which is primarily used to target Chinook. It is a shorter rod with much more backbone.

Weight class:

When purchasing any rod, you need to have a species in mind that you will be targeting. Different fish are different sizes, have different fishing techniques, and fish differently. Weight class can make all the difference between losing big fish and not enjoying the fish of a small fish.

  • The most universal weight class for both salmon and steelhead is going to vary depending on the graphite and taper of the rod, but typically a rod that is 8-12 lbs, will work great for both salmon and steelhead of all types.
  • If you want to target just steelhead, you need to keep in mind that native fish tend to be much more aggressive and larger than hatchery fish. For a hatchery fish, anything 6-10 pound is going to be ideal for most hatchery steelhead and you will want something a bit heavier if you are fishing a coastal river or targeting native steelhead specifically.
  • For your Chinook, Coho, and Chum salmon, an 8-12 pound rod will work for most salmon depending on your fishing technique.
  • Also keeping in mind, you can get away with a lighter rod that has a bit more length (anything over 10’), and a heavier rod if is a shorter, more stout taper.

Graphite designs:

G Loomis categorizes most of their conventional fishing rods in 4 categories. They are going to cover the most sensitive, light-weight rods to the most stout and strong types of rods. When choosing your graphite, you want to keep in mind the type of technique and the type of species you will be targeting. When fishing with a float for Chinook, you might not worry so much about sensitivity in the tip and you won’t be feeling anything until you hook a fish, but might worry more about needing a good solid backbone to help control the muscle and power of a larger fish. The more backbone the rod has, the further towards the tip the bend of the rod will be. The more sensitivity and flexability, the further back towards the butt of the rod the bend will be.

  • IMX graphite rods are typically going to be the most sensitive rod that G Loomis offers and it also is going to be one of the more light action rods. The backbone of the rod won’t be quite as stiff, but you are going to get the most sensitivity and flexibility with this graphite.
  • GLX will be the next step towards a heavier rod. It is still considered an extremely sensitive rod, but will have a bit more back bone than the IMX.
  • GL3 rods are where you are really going to begin to see the stiffer backbone. These rods will have the backbone you need for your larger fish, but enough sensitivity to feel the tick while drifting.
  • GL2 graphite rods are G Loomis’s most solid, stiff rods. These rods are great for larger fish, pulling plugs, and back-bouncing.

Casting v Spinning:

Spinning reels are going to be your best friend when starting out. They are easy to cast, easy to fish, and allow you to “feel” your technique to the max potential. They give you the opportunity to hold the line with your finger allowing you to feel any bump or tick while fishing giving the perfect image of what is happening beneath the water. These types of reels/rods are designed to cast far with larger guides than a casting rod and are great for float fishing, twitching jigs, and fishing spinners. G Loomis rod models will all be classified with an “S” at the end of the number indicating “spinning” rod.

Casting reels definitely require a lot of patience and practice when learning but you quickly reap the benefits if you can master this casting. It allows you to feed necessary line while drift fishing, spoon fishing, and float fishing better than a spinning reel and is the only type of rod/reel that can be used to trolling, pulling plugs/bait divers, and back bouncing. You will very quickly be able to expand your skills and techniques once you master this cast. G Loomis rod models will all be classified with a “C” at the end of the number indicating “casting” rod.

Below are a few favorite rods that will cover most fishing techniques. G Loomis makes several rods that are extremely universal and versatile rods for both species and techniques as well as the highest quality rod made just for one technique and species.

~ Bry