RIO Elite Skagit Max Launch
What RIO says: RIO Elite Skagit Launch heads deliver the power needed to cast large flies and sinking tips more elegantly than ever before. The unique weight distribution deeply loads rods for long, powerful casts, while the refined taper design generates incredibly smooth loops which transition seamlessly from head to tip to fly. The low stretch core gives incredible levels of sensitivity when casting and fishing, and provides enhanced detection of takes, more positive hook sets, and far greater control when playing a fish. In addition, this line is built with SlickCast, creating the slickest, most durable coating on the market—producing the least amount of friction ever measured in a fly line. Built on 60-pound test non-stretch core.
What we say: We've been pounding the water with these RIO Elite Skagit heads for a while. Sample heads came early in many sizes. These heads have been shared with customers on guided trips and Spey School students as well. This sharing has given us the opinions from many angler with varying skill levels. Overall feedback has been totally positive.
If you hold a coil of these lines in your hand or strip one from a reel, the first thing you will notice is the incredible slickness. Elite lines are really well finished. Beyond that they look a lot like the last generation of RIO Skagit heads with perfect loops on each end, etc. But when you actually cast them (if you have good skills) you will notice a level of performance that is above all other lines in the Skagit family. They generate loops comparable to Scandi lines fishing small flies. That is because of the improved tapers that allow power to flow clear through the head and sinking tip like it was all one piece. No humps, bumps or bobbles in the cast; just smooth turnover with no speed robbing slack in the line.
The new RIO Elite Skagit heads come in two configurations: Max Launch 23' - 25' and Max Power 18' - 20'. Given the fact that most winter steelhead flies are large, and some are also pretty heavy, RIO Elite Skagit heads are built to move mass.
Since Max Launch heads are a little longer than Max Power heads, they tend to stay in the loop longer than Max Power heads, and the head that stays in the loop the longest will retain speed longer. Launch Heads are great for casting long. But Max Power heads have more grains per foot and it takes mass to move mass, Max Power heads will cast large flies easier.
More information on Skagit Heads:
Multi-Density vs. Floating Skagit Heads
Why Different Lengths of Skagit Heads?
Selecting Skagit Line Tips