Fishing | Gear reviews

RIO SlickCast fly line

The RIO Perception Elite, coated with SlickCast.
Chris Hunt photo.

Billed as the slickest fly line ever crafted — and not slick as in “cool,” slick as in … well, slick — RIO’s new SlickCast fly lines are designed to provide the least amount of resistance as the line shoots through the guides of a fly rod.

According to the company’s testing, the new SlickCast line outperforms every line it was tested against in the RIO lab. SlickCast is RIO’s new fly-line coating, and the goal during its testing phase was to craft a fly line that boasted the least amount of friction as possible.

“Fly lines built with SlickCast have the lowest amount of friction to ever have been measured in a fly line,” a RIO news release reads. “This exceptionally low friction makes it easier to shoot line — resulting in longer casts, easier distance and effortless feeding of slack into extended drag-free drifts.”

I got my hands on a RIO Perception Elite line coated with the new SlickCast material, and while I haven’t tested it yet, I’m excited to give is a shot this summer on my favorite backcountry cutthroat haunts here in eastern Idaho. The company sent me a 3-weight line to put to use in an upcoming blog series on fly fishing small streams with light-weight rods and lines (stay tuned) that’ll start next week. I’ll definitely chime in on the line’s performance in tight quarters.

In addition to its “slick” performance, the new line is also designed to be more durable and to last longer. This is music to the ears of any angler who hits the water more than a dozen or so times in a season. I fish a lot — certainly more than the average fly angler — and, even with careful line maintenance, fly lines tend to nick, scrape and wear out after just a season or two. I’m excited to see how well the new SlickCast line performs over the course of a backcountry summer.

The new SlickCast coating is available on the following RIO lines: RIO Gold, RIO Grand, RIO Perception and Technical Trout.