Ever since Scott sent our testers a couple of rods from their new Scott Sector range, we’ve been gagging for a verdict from their long-term test. After all, the Scott Sector has retired the legendary Scott Meridian. Both of our salty guinea pigs, Fred Davis and Peter Coetzee, are unabashed long-term Scott fans,. But, they’re also hyper-critical SOBs who demand a lot when it comes to gear. They put both the 8-weight and the 13-weight (the latter designed specifically for GTs) through their paces in various spots around the Arabian Peninsula. Here’s Pete’s verdict on the 13-weight.
Rod: Scott Sector 8’4” 3-piece 13-weight (aka. ‘the GT’ rod)
Tester: Peter Coetzee
Test areas: Socotra Archipelago, Socotra Governate of Yemen
Species caught: Bluefin trevally, snapper
“The missed photo opp of a lifetime for both myself and Scott Fly Rods happened on the north coast of Abd al Kuri, one of the rocky islands of the Socotra Archipelago.
In hindsight, the sea was too big for the run to the island, even in the long and sharp panga boats. In a remote place like this, the distance away from help plays in the back of your head like ominous background music in a suspense movie. The language barrier and the boat driver’s inability to read swell didn’t help either. As the panga gave the ground a brief kiss on landing, I set off further east into an ominous valley of rocks that look like the spine of Godzilla rising from the earth. You’ll always hear stories of the Socotran Djinns and how eerie the mountains are in these parts. They do have an unsettling effect on you, particularly if, like me, you have a habit of hiking 10km and more away from everyone else and you’re only 50 miles from northern Somalia.
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Leather-tramping down a long beach, a phenomenal sight materialised. A shoal of a hundred or so 40-60kg yellowfin tuna, about 40m off the beach, hauling ass. I was far enough ahead and they were close enough that I knew I’d get a shot. I stripped line off the X3 and ran out, clearing more line as I laboured through deeper water until I couldn’t go any further. The missing 8 inches off of the Scott 13-weight were apparent already, maybe because I’m used to 9-foot rods, but I was able to clear the line and get the fly in the zone. The tuna moved so fast that only a single shot was possible and they didn’t see the fly. The egotist in me spent more than the rest of the day daydreaming about that beach selfie that never happened.
The 13 is a throwback to the Scott specials of past, rods that I still troll eBay for. These specials seem to coincide with periods of more hardcore rod series coming out of the Telluride, Colorado workshop and they just seem to have buckets of cool. I have my bluewater special but I’m still after the unicorn – the LS2 shooting head special beach rod.
This 13-weight is aimed specifically at GTs, which makes it even more alluring. And although I miss the additional eight inches when I’m in deep water, there was an unexpected positive. If you’re hiking super long distances with multiple rods in hand (I usually carry more than two), you’re always untangling tips and blaming a specific rod (usually the light one). The shorter length means that the 13-weight doesn’t play footsie with the other tips. Although that sounds minor, it was one less headache to deal with while working myself half to death hiking the stark granite mountains and eroded limestone beaches and I loved it for taking away that little bit of hassle. I didn’t fight any fish from the boat, but the shorter length would also play into your hands heavily there.”
For the rest of the 13-weight review, check out Issue 22 of The Mission for free below.