Have been planning to add a higher end rod to my collection. I attended a fly fishing expo in S/E Michigan so had the opportunity to cast various rods...Sage, Winston, Ross, Loomis, etc. I came across the manufacturer Mystic. I gave the 6 wt. 9'3" a try. It has full well grip with fighting grip (not common on a 6 wt), flawless gorgeous constuction...and cast like a dream...the equal of any other rod I tried. The fact it was $400 was a big attraction too
It is also made in the US...in fact a city pretty close to where I live, Clarkston, Michigan. I was so impressed I bought it...and also a new Sage 3850CF reel.
The rod can put out delicate deliveries, long or short casts and while a fast action, has a softer tip. I like that in a rod as it tends to save tippets and flies when I get a little too sloppy in my cast. It certainly is a "gun" though...capable of nice long casts as well as accurate delicate presentations. It is also very versatile...with a light tippet it can toss the lightest flies, with a heavier tippet it can toss bigger flies, poppers and streamers. I was especially impressed with the wooden insert and unusual bracing. Generally when you get into fighting butts you lost the fine wood inserts...not on this one.
The Sage reel is a full frame model which has been a blessing with light shooting tips. It helps prevent trapped line. I noted that there aren't many reels that have this feature....too bad. The drag is a carbon fiber one with excellent performancer, reel is strong and light and the ability to adjust the drag on the fly is well executed. The carbon fiber replaceable reel is nicely designed...can be replaced without any tools and has a unique curve reel bottom that helps wind the backing and fly line. I am using Scientific Angler GPX 6 wt. based on the reps recommendation. The 1/2 wt addition helps a fast rod cast longer.
I guess my choice was a good one...since than I have seen several reviews of that rod and it got very good reviews and won a few multi rod reviews. While at the expo I had a chance to talk to my fishing guru...Ray Schmidt of Schmidt Outfitters and he recommended the rod. That was especially impressive since he doesn't carry that brand yet!