There really is nothing quite like landing bass on the fly. Few other rod makers in the bass space understand that more than G. Loomis.
G. Loomis’ mantra is to “heighten the angler experience through tools that expand tactical opportunity, boost effectiveness, and enhance natural ability.” And since the company’s inception in 1982, that’s exactly what’s been done. With a focus on technology, innovation, and design, G. Loomis pushes the boundaries of what can be done in the fishing world.
The brand’s latest line of NRX+ Fly rods is no exception. The NRX+ Swim Fly sets a new standard in bass fly fishing excellence. Specifically designed for accurately throwing big swim flies into heavy cover, the NRX+ SF also “connects” you with the fly so you can feel every twitch and bump, making the swimming action on the strip more lifelike. With the brand’s “most advanced compound taper construction to date,” anglers can expect to maximize fishing performance on the water.
In short: The NRX+SF sets a new standard for fly fishing anglers on the chase for their next personal best bass, with specific designs and innovations to enhance success on the water.
G. Loomis NRX+ Swim Fly Rod: Review
- Innovative design specifically built for streamers and heavy lines
- Shortened length (8’8”) for improved casting control
- Tons of strength and stiffness in a lightweight package
- Purpose-driven for streamer fishing and heavy lines
- Includes an aluminum rod tube with cloth rod bag
- Lifetime warranty
- $990 for the rod alone is a tough pill to swallow
- No options for different lengths or weights
- Purpose build detracts from versatility
The NRX+ SF was made to fight aggressive predators. It comes with a full wells, AAA-grade cork grip, and custom aluminum reel seat with fighting butt. The rod is four pieces, 8’8” long, and is built with single-foot recoil guides and titanium stripper guides.
The rod launches big flies, and its casting distance is only limited by the caster’s ability. G. Loomis designed this rod with a “purpose-driven taper” that enables the caster to lift the forward mass that large flies create and shoot line out effortlessly. The slightly shorter length makes it easier to throw these heavy flies at structures or tight places without sacrificing casting distance.
Not only does this rod offer exceptional strength in a lightweight package, it also boasts incredible sensitivity. You can feel every bump, twitch, and flutter of the fly as it cruises under the surface, giving you more control to mimic baitfish and improve your odds of hooking a giant.
You can detect nibbles and bites, and the rod’s responsiveness and fast recovery make setting the hook efficient while reducing the chances of missed opportunities. It truly feels like the only limitation this rod has is me.
Testing the Rod
The NRX+ SF has been part of my fish kit for an entire season now, fishing everything from metro lakes to open spaces on the Mississippi River and everything in between. I’ve wet-waded small lakes after work in my Simms G3s. I’ve wandered into every nearby river to toss flies. I even hopped on my Old Town Sportsman 106 PDL to cast over bigger water further away from home.
As one can expect in Minnesota, you experience a little bit of everything weather-wise from spring to fall. Cold and windy, humid and sticky, steady rain, and even the occasional perfect 70-degree and calm day. I used the NRX+ every single time I was out throwing big flies and never found it lacking.
One of the things that stood out for me was the immediate familiarity with the rod. With other fly setups I’ve used, there is always an acquaintance period where I have to get a feel for the rod’s action and familiarize myself with how to cast at a distance or with accuracy. The NRX+ felt like my “go-to” right out of the tube.
The stiffness of the rod was also impressive, without feeling heavy or misweighted. It feels like G. Loomis cracked a code with stiffness and strength while keeping a weight feel similar to smaller finesse rods. The brand touts its “Dynamic Recovery Technology,” which makes the rod strong and stiff for managing heavy flies and heavy subsurface lines.
At the same time, it maintains a surprisingly light overall weight from GL8 resin and Mega Modulus+ high-performance graphite materials. Admittedly, I am not well-versed in materials and resins used in rods, but the strength-to-weight ratio on this rod is undeniable.
If you’re shopping for a G. Loomis rod, chances are you already have in your mind that you’re going to need to drop some coin. At this stage in the game, that is the only real drawback I can muster up. It’s gonna cost ya.
The innovation and quality that the brand uses to build its rods come at a price. That being said, the company stands wholeheartedly behind its product and offers a limited lifetime warranty. Rest assured that your investment is covered should something go awry.
Is this rod necessary to enjoy chasing bass on the fly? No. However, for a serious angler who longs for a purpose-built rod that can deliver long, heavy flies with accuracy and animate those flies on the strip, the NRX+ Swim Fly is worth every penny.
G. Loomis NRX+ Swim Fly Rod: Final Thoughts
The G. Loomis NRX+ Swim Fly rod makes the experience of casting big swim flies and hooking into bigger freshwater fish that much more fun. The rod provides everything you need for precision casting, sensitivity on the strip, and the stiffness to pull in even the most aggressive bass.
If you’re big on streamer throwing and have the dime to drop, you’re going to have a hard time finding a better rod for the job.