Behind the scenes

Review – RIO Elite SlickCast Fly Lines

By Pete Tyjas on 15th July 2020


Fly lines are a subject close to my heart. Get the rod and line combination right and you’re on to a winner but if your set-up doesn’t feel right or cast well you’re in trouble.

It is easy to fall into the trap of just getting a cheap line to do the job and you can, at times, luck out, but others can be disastrous. The advice I always gave as an instructor was to spend as much as you could on the line and spend time getting the choice right for the sort of fishing you’re doing.

The new RIO range of Elite lines is joining the ranks of other super high-end fly lines that are appearing in stores. 

So what are you getting for £119.99?

First off you are getting ConnectCore Plus which is a low stretch core that is going to help when you set up on a fish. 

It also includes MaxFloat Tip technology which describes exactly what it does – it floats high in the water without the welded loop becoming any thicker.

Next up is the coating. It is a new finish RIO call SlickCast. Again, as the name suggests the coating of the line gives a slick finish that will mean less friction as the line travels through the rod rings.

So what does this all mean and is it worth it?

I have cast and fished the Elite Technical Trout from the new range. I have to admit that the slickness of the line is noticeable as you load it on to the reel. After a few test casts at short distance I did a simple overhead cast and shot line. I did this again and then keep pulling a little more line off of the reel. It did shoot line well. Really well.

I watched the line in the air as I cast and it was extremely stable. I wouldn’t expect to see anything  different performance-wise as the tapers are the same as the other finishes available. 

For me, the key word RIO use in their description is durable and this is how I would evaluate the line and whether I would buy one or not. 

The cost of the line is not cheap but if it is going to last me and remain slick throughout its lifetime then the cost per use should make sense.

If I were bringing a new product to the market and had tested it and found it to be durable then I’d happily add that word in the marketing. On this basis I’d bet that RIO have done a lot of work on the line in the field before releasing it to the public.

So, you’re getting a super slick line that will give you extra distance or stop the need for excessive false casts and will last a long time. The question must be, is it worth it? My suspicion over the long term is yes.