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Cortland Products...

Phil Lilley

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I am considering becoming a Cortland Pro Shop. That means I have to make a substancially large initial order from Cortland in rods, reels and line.

I'm especially interested in carrying their lines. But when I mentioned this to Bill Babler, his reply was "their lines are junk!" Not what I wanted to hear.

I defended Cortland a bit, stating they offer dozens of lines of fly line and he had probably only tried one or two and they were just the wrong application to what he needed. He conceeded I may be right.

After hearing Bill's opinion, I thought I might post the question to the hundreds of wise souls on OAF and see what I get.

I liked their new line of rods- their Brook Series. Great feeling, very pretty and they come with a hard case with reel pouch for $130. Their Diamond Flawless Series is nice too. Both are new.

What way ye?

Lilleys Landing logo 150.jpg

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I have been a fan of Cortland lines for years. Their 444 classic peach is probably one of the best on the market for many applications, especially slower action rods. I also like the Cortland reels. I am not familiar with their newer rods. Leon Chandler one of the top names in this sport worked for Cortland most of his life and was quite the innovator in design. I think that in itself says a lot for Cortland.


Glass Has Class

"from the laid back lane in the Arkansas Ozarks"

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Not familar with their rods or reels, but I really like the 444 Lazerline. I feels and casts beautifully.

Fish On!

Mike Utt

“Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift from God, that’s why its called the Present!”

"If we ever forget that we are ONE NATION UNDER GOD, then we will be a nation gone under" - Ronald Reagan

Member: www.ozarkflyfishers.org

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The fly lines mentioned above are about the only thing going in the Cortland Line that really stand out. But there are better lines for the same money. I know Walmart was really pushing Cortland in stores near Fly Fishing areas. I thought you have a pretty good selection already in your shop, why are you looking for more? Price point for a low end market?

"Life has become immeasurably better since I have been forced to stop taking it seriously."

Hunter S. Thompson

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I think 2 of their fly lines are OK. The 444 is pretty good and a classic. And the 333 isn't a bad lower priced line. But a while back I test cast their newest most expensive line - the 555? Anyway I just didn't like it at all compared to SA and Rio lines. It seemed overly stiff and didn't want to "shoot" well for me.

Cortland rods and reels? I've never cast or even seen their better quality rods and reels. The only ones I've seen have been the low priced stuff which seemed OK.

But please take my opinion with a grain of salt. I have some experience with their fly lines but almost 0 with their other stuff.

The Cortland brand might be worth carrying for you though just because so few shops and retailers in this area carry their stuff.


"My biggest worry is that my wife (when I'm dead) will sell my fishing gear for what I said I paid for it" - Koos Brandt

Greg Mitchell

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Switched from Cortland lines to SA 3 years ago and never looked back. The Cortland offerings were adequate but the SA offerings are superior as far as I'm concerned. I have cast some of the Cortland rods in the past ... I thought they were a pretty good value. I have no experience with the reels ... is STH a Cortland company?

Cheers. PC

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Cortland Fly lines were my favorites until a few years ago. I was not happy with those new lines at that time as they were easily damaged and had inconsistencies in thickness of the line in some areas. Cortland did replace them though the replacements were not any better. Perhaps their new lines will show an improvement though i'm not spending my dollars to find out.

I 'm now using the Rio lines and have been reasonably satisfied with them though I wish the Tip would float better after some use.

Here's what I feel is important for a good floating Fly Line.

1. Smooth and consistent thickness in the coating.

2. Tip of a floating line rides high in the water.

3. The fly line doesn't abrade easily.

4. I prefer a light colored line.


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In regard to Rolan last comment, " I like the lighter colored line" I have always wondered how the color of the fly line affects the presentation or the stealth of the line floating on the water. I seems to my novice mind that the bright orange and other colored lines would spook the fish more than the lighter lines or the green or brownish lines. Maybe not but I always select a line that is not as visible on the water. Maybe the fish see the line differently that the angler.

Any thoughts or comments?

Thom Harvengt

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Good question Thom. I suspect fish see color or at least degrees of color. I am wondering though if maybe the line just represents a shadow versus the fish actually distinguishing its color scheme. Could it be that fish see florescent orange as just a darker shade of gray than say an olive which would represent a lighter gray on the scale. But if we remember that presentation to the fish extends past the line (with added clear leader and tippet) to the fly it really doesn't matter. That is if you fish first nearest to you as not to spook them at the onset.

Glass Has Class

"from the laid back lane in the Arkansas Ozarks"

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