Scott Radian     9’ 5-weight   $795.00

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

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George's Notes:

In our 2016 Shootout the Radian placed second and finishes in the top three again in both the overall and performance scores.  There are good reasons for this though – this is one of the best performing rods you can lay your hands on, and it is also one of the best looking rods on the market.  Scott fans absolutely love this rod and if you try one, you’ll likely be a Scott fan too.  

The blank follows Scott’s practice of sanding the blank very lightly but allowing the tape marks to remain. (All graphite rods have tape wrapped around them before they get baked in an oven, but most manufacturers sand the tape marks off completely).

Scott claims that their approach gives the rod better strength, and we cannot argue with them as we see very few broken.  The color is the natural dark graphite gray, trimmed with two lighter colors of gray, and utilizing some snazzy orange trim wraps.  The skeleton uplock aluminum seat has a beautiful reddish piece of burl to complement the orange trim wraps.  This is truly one of the best looking rods on the market and one you’ll be proud to show off to your buddies.  

I just love the feel of the unusual full wells handle.  Scott puts a pronounced swell forward of the center of the grip, giving it a unique and comfortable feel over other rods.  I wish they had put the same grip on their less expensive Flex!  We especially like the measuring marks at 12 and 20 inches, something I have added to my own rods.  I wish more manufacturers would do this.  

Performance-wise, the Radian was very close to the NRX LP.  It matched the LP with a perfect score at 45 feet, and was nearly as good at 25 feet. Then out long, I felt it was slightly better.  Here is another rod that will throw beautiful tight loops and produce great accuracy combined with a lot of feel that some of the other rods don’t have.  

 

The perfect line: S.A. Amplitude MPX in WF-5-F.

Performance at 25 feet:  19.5 points out of 20

Not quite as good as the NRX LP, or Zephrus but in head to head casting proved better than the Asquith, Avantt and Helios 2.  Lots of feel with this rod in close gave me confidence. 

Performance at 45 feet:  20 points out of 20

Totally solid- only the NRX LP felt this good at mid- range.  Tracked perfectly with terrific accuracy and feel.   

Performance at 70 feet: 9.5 points out of 10

At long distance the Radian blasted out long casts with ease.  Good loop control.  Definitely one of the best rods out long. 

 

 Scott Radian

Scott Radian

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James' Notes:

For the third time in a row, I have the Scott Radian tied for first place.  The Radian is one of the most well rounded 5-weight rods ever made, and as such it is a great tool whether you are fishing a spring creek, a small mountain stream, a tail water river, a freestone river, or a lake.  The rod feels good in close and will protect light tippets (6-7X) yet still has the beans to throw a streamer and the entire fly line.

 

The Scott Radian is the perfect for the Yellowstone, Madison, or Big Hole where fishing often involves a large dry (like a Chubby Chernobyl or hopper pattern) followed by a rubberleg or tungsten beadhead dropper.  Yes, a 6-weight rod might be better but this is one 5-weight that can do it all.  The Radian’s stiffer butt section has plenty of power to turn over a wind resistant rig, yet the tip is soft enough that it mends exceptionally well and still feels fun to fish.  The only 5-weight rod I’ve liked better on the Yellowstone for this type of fishing was the Hardy Zenith, which has now been replaced by the Zephrus.

 

The Radian has also proven itself while fishing the Missouri and Bighorn, where we are typically fishing small mayfly dries like tricos.  When the bugs aren’t coming off however, (and the fish aren’t rising), we’ll often be fishing nymphs with long, 12-14 foot leaders. Our typical rig would be a couple of sow bugs, scuds or mayfly nymphs under an indicator as well as small split shot.  Not many 5-weight rods have the power to do this. The fact that the Radian does it all easily eliminates the reason to bring along an extra rod.

 

A few standout points for the Radian – first and foremost is the quality build and craftsmanship.  You can tell that Scott’s rod makers pride themselves on attention to detail.  The epoxy coatings on the guides are better than we see on Sage, G. Loomis, and nearly all other rods.  Hats off to Scott here.  Second, is the interesting shaped grip with the swell well above the center of the grip.  Once you have gotten used to it, you’ll love it.  And this also reduces the swing weight slightly.   Third, the Radian 9’ 5-weight comes in two color choices, the original bright orange wraps or blue with purple wraps.  Last but not least, I like the 12 and 20 inch marks, which make measuring fish quick and easy, and allows you to keep the fish wet and less stressed for a more responsible release. 

  

Performance at 25 feet:  19.8 points out of 20 

Feels great but not quite as much feel in close as the G.Loomis NRX LP.  I have to punch it a little harder to get a tight loop and turn the 12’ leader over, but when I do the result is usually a bull’s eye.

Performance at 45 feet:  20 points out of 20

I’m impressed by the Radian’s incredible feel and accuracy – This rod doesn’t miss!  Nothing was better for me at this distance, although the NRX was equally delightful.  I felt the NRX LP had a tad more feel, but I was a bit more accurate with the Radian. 

Performance at 70 feet:  9.7 points out of 10

This rod made me feel confident that I could put the fly a yard or less from the plate or less at 70 feet, which most rods here could not.  Going the distance with this rod was fun since I didn’t have to punch it as hard as others, I just loaded the rod, and it would do the work for me.

  

 

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

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Logan's Notes:

The Scott Radian has to be one of the most attractive rods on the market today.  The craftsmanship is absolutely superb. One feature I really liked is the measuring marks on the side of the rod.  A nice way to quickly size up your catch.

Logan’s Casting Notes:

Performance at 25 feet: 19.5 out of 20

The Scott Radian is a great rod at this distance.  Not quite as consistent as the NRX-LP but extremely close.  Great feel too.

Performance at 45 feet: 19.5 out of 20

At 45 feet there is only one word, “MONEY!”

Performance at 70 feet: 10 out of 10

This was one of my favorite rods at 70 feet.  I was surprised it was able to form the tight loops as well as it did, considering the softer tip.

  

 

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

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JG's Notes:

Despite not having the most delicate presentation in close, the Radian is a great rod.  I really liked its smooth delivery to mid range targets and the way the grip fit comfortably in my hand.  The Radian is a real looker too, aesthetically pleasing to all of us.

 

25 Feet – 18.1 points out of 20
I really like the Radian, but just not for short-range targets.  The full wells grip feels great in my hand.  A softer tip would help this rod, a lot as I found I didn’t get the best accuracy, and my presentations were not very delicate.

 

45 Feet – 19.7 points out of 20 
I like the Radian very much at 45’.   The action is perfect for a versatile 5-weight.  Here it loads deeply enough to give me great feel, which made my cast timing effortless.  

 

70 Feet – 19.5 points out of 20 
The Radian is a nice rod at 70’.  It’s got the kind of power and accuracy I like at long range. I found that it cast best at the longest targets when I used a very aggressive casting stroke.
 

 

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

Scott Radian

Buy Now