I'm looking for a rod to use while backpacking in the Smoky Mountains. I'm completely UNSKILLED at fly casting. It will be used on the smaller streams, tight quarters with a lot of trees, and primarily for dry files. Only short casts will be necessary, and the trout are tiny in these upper streams. I've read where outfitters in the area suggest 3-6wt rods from 7-8.5'. Not sure if a short rod is a good thing for me? Anyway, I'm thinking an 3wt 8' rod would be my best bet? Now, would you suggest a “starter” model from an “upper end” rod maker (Sage – Launch/ Winston – Ascent/ Orvis - Clearwater), or would my money be better spent on a St.Croix (something I could find at bass pro)? I want to keep the rod around $200....on sale. I found two sage Fli rods on sale for $205: 4 piece 3wt 8'6” 4 piece 4wt 7'6” Any suggestion on power/length/brand would be greatly appreciated...it just needs to break down to under 30” for backpacking.