Fly Poles Affordable VS Exspensive?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by Akuriko, May 22, 2013.

  1. Hi, Im new to this forum i am curious what is a good starter pole for someone who wants to get into fly fishing? is affordable like $30 good like a wallmart special? or a combo from say basspro or cabelas? or do you recommend something different?

    or is it better to dive in and spend $500 to $900 for a rod?

    Thanks for your time


  2. What is a "Fly Pole"? Now a Fly "ROD" yes price makes a difference. Do you need to spend a lot to catch fish? No. BUT a good fly line is a must. Sad thing is, a good fly line will run close to $100. But you can cast a good line with a broom stick.
    You do need to get one that the action works with you. If you whip back and forth fast then get a fast action. If you cast slow and take time, then a medium action is good.
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  3. If you don't know how to cast or are a beginner, I suggest getting an inexpensive fly rod, cheap reel and a quality fly line. At some point in time you will be able to feel the differences in fly rods and when you can feel those differences you can make a good rod choice.
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  4. Your best bet would probably be to buy a combo from one of the many outfits that offer them. You will get a decent rod, a line that matches it and a reel that is more than adequate to learn with. Use it for awhile until you can develop your own skills and taste enough to step up to something better. Ignore advice that suggest you jump right into a many hundred dollar outfit to begin with.

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  5. Affordable gear and spend the money getting streamside

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  6. One more time I will stress A Good Line. This past two months, I have had three gentlemen give me there budget fly combo. Said they tried but could not get it. Too much work. I put a good line on all three and OMG! they are still fly fishing.
    I taught a class of newbies. One student could not get out more than ten feet. He asked me to show him how. I could NOT get this line to load.
    By good line, I am not saying you HAVE to spend the $100. I found some Sage line at Sierra Trading Post for $29.00 and it is wonderful!
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  7. I started with a 906-2 Cabela's Fish Eagle II combo and it still launches line right up there with my Winston, St. Croix and Sage rods. There are a number of great rod/reel/line combos available and often on great sale prices... pretty good option to get started. After the Passport having come in 5th place in the George Anderson blind test 5 weight shootout a few years ago, I recommended this combo to a friend and my brother and they really like them. They are an import, but I've talked with the folks at RL Winston and they maintain a very tight control on quality. One of a number of good options to be sure, but wanted to give you something specific as opposed to generalities. Have fun with the search and with the new sport.;cat104793480;cat104762880;cat105571980
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  8. Lessons. I took one lesson with Bob Triggs and it made a world of difference! And guided trips too. The sport is about casting and fishing, not shopping!

    Equipment wise, buy used rods and reels and many of the "off brand" lines that are recommended to save money if budget is tight.
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  9. I don't think you need to spend a lot to get a good starter outfit in today's market. But I would avoid the Wal-Mart special and look for something from a reputable fly fishing brand for better performance, service and warranty. I was shopping for rods last weekend, and cast an Echo Solo alongside several high end rods. I was impressed with the Solo's performance. It held its own against the more expensive rods. I recommend you check them out - the rods are $119, and the packages with rod, reel, and line are $170. Another good value is the Redington CT on closeout if you can still find one. The Winston Passport mentioned above is also a good option, but more money (around $250 for the rod). If your main quarry is trout, I would start with a 9' 5wt. To me that is the most versatile if you are limited to only one rod.
    Akuriko likes this.
  10. I recently went down this path, so here is my opinion, quality is undersold, quality gear is a greater pleasure to use, maintain and own. The short answer is that casting and catching fish on a 180 combo vs $800 rig is night and day.

    You would not expect the same experience from a $50 dollar car stereo vs a $500 dollar car stereo tho both play music.

    Remember why you are fly casting to begin with, it is a nuanced direct connect with the wild. I figure I spent 4x as much on my favorite rod reel lines, as I did on my last tv.
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  11. Lean toward the inexpensive, that way if you lose interest you won't be out much. If you like it you'll have a the rest of your life to go gear whorin'
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  12. Personally, I wouldn't buy a cheap outfit just because it's cheap. There are plenty of good buys at places like Sportsman's Warehouse, Sportco, and other sporting related outlets. I would spend some time at a shop and look closely. I've seen numerous lower end rods that have been discontinued but are still in inventory and a shop will sometimes cut a deal for the rod, reel and line combination you might put together. The bigger box stores also have lower end reels available that are quite serviceable but my coice would be a local shop that has people who know what they are alking about and can fix you up for way less that $400 or $500. Theat way, when you want to step up to something a little better, you already have a connection. You can also get lessons at the small shop whereas they probably aren't readily available at the bigger stores.
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  13. You have to watch it when it comes to real cheap combos. The really low end ones have the bottom of the bucket rods, reels and lines (make sure it comes with a WF line not a level line). I would suggest talking to your local fly shop and let them set you up. Get a decent rod that, if you stay with it, you wouldn't hate it in six months... and spend less on the reel. A good line is important but most moderately priced lines will work and will be good enough for now. Any combo's under $100 aren't worth buying. Casting lessens are something to think about and you're local fly shop should have them, add that to the gear you get form them.

    Redington has some decent combos (Crosswater, pursuit and voyant) are between $100 and $200 and would get you started with good stuff and great warranties, of course all the manufactures have there own starter combo's. Good luck.

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  15. I respectfully disagree. You can get plenty of enjoyment out of an inexpensive rod combo. I've fished with my friends Sage XP 4wt and my own older Redington Crosswater 3/4wt and the pleasure of small stream fishing with either was about the same for me. But conversely, I did used a Kabuto 3wt glass rod once and it was flat out awesome but it cost over 10X what most of my rods cost me. I think the quality of rods at the entry level are now quite good and have vastly improved over the last 10 years I've been paying attention. For a newbie to the sport who is still learning to cast, they are most likely incapable of being able to utilize a premium rod in a fashion to realize what an experienced caster would experience with it. I've seen plenty of people with high end rods that couldn't cast to save their lives. Instead of that $800 rod in their hand, they would have been absolutely fine and dandy with just a $60 Redington Crosswater, which is fine rod. In the top pic below I used a $40 Eagle Claw Granger XG rod, the entire combo with line was obtained for under $90. I've also caught a 34" Redfish with it. In the second shot, I used an old South Bend Glass Pack Fly Rod. That entire combo set me back less than $75. I'm not saying anyone should buy either of these rods, they admittingly have their limitations. But one can have a lot of fun and enjoyment and not spend very much in the process.

    Attached Files:

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  16. I think a lot depends on your casting style. My pace is relatively moderate, and while I can definitely appreciate the superior performance of premium rods, I can't recall a single slow day of fishing where I decided the reason I didn't do better was because I had a sub-par outfit in my hands. I have a couple premium rods in my quiver, but the only way I was able to justify buying them was finding them via Craigslist and a sweet consignment deal at my local fly shop. They're a pleasure to fish, but my cheapies catch me just as many fish.

    For someone starting out, I highly recommend buying a Cabelas Three Forks or Wind River rod. The per-assembled outfits they sell in those lines are actually pretty decent fishing tools, but the reels that come with them are absolute pieces of shit. Even with that said, while I have endured several failures of those reels' function when stripping off line and while fighting fish, I have yet to lose a fish because of them. Mind you, these are trout outfits; NEVER fish salmon or steelhead with a crappy reel. Reels aside, those rods cast great (in my opinion), even if they are mass produced "overseas," and on sale, they go for about $30-$40. The outfits are usually under $100, tax included.

    I suppose what I would consider a solid starting outfit would be an inexpensive rod, matched with a "decent" reel (read that as "containing no plastic parts, handle excepted") and a good line. A floating, weight forward Cortland 444 is a classic, solid performer at a moderate price point. Ask about factory seconds, too. Every once in a while, you can find a great line for pennies on the dollar that way. You shouldn't have to spend over $175 to be "in the game," at least for trout, and realistically, you can get there for less than $100. When you get better and can appreciate the virtues of premium outfits, assuming you've got the money to spend, they start to become more sensible purchases. The main difference I notice when casting premium rods is that they tend to throw more line more easily, probably due to their faster actions and superbly-engineered tapers. They're nice, for sure, but they're much more a luxury than a necessity. 30 years into my hobby, I still fish mostly middle of the road stuff.
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  17. As others have pointed out, there are many good inexpensive rods and combos on the market today. You can't really go wrong with one that comes from a name brand (e.g., Redington or even Cabelas). Bear in mind that, if you persist in this sport, you will eventually want another rod (and another, ...) that will work better for specific needs (bigger fish or bigger rivers, salt water, etc,). So, buy something today that you won't be looking to replace when you get a second rod, but rather have your second rod be for a different line wt, or different purpose.

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  18. Check out Craigslist. I have found many great deals on more "expensive" rods that someone just didnt use and is trying to get rid of...
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  19. Just buy the Best you can afford, You wont be sorry. There's lots of good deal's in the classified's. Look for a medium action fly rod for starter's.
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  20. Just so you use the right terminology, a fishing rod and a fishing pole do not mean the same thing in the USA. They are interchangeable in Great Britain.

    A fishing pole has no guides and no reel seat. The fishing line is tied to the end of the pole. So the first Macedonian fly fisher thousands of years ago used a fishing "pole." Today we refer to Tenkara "rods" but really they are Tenkara "poles."

    Fishing rods are what most of us use with line guides and a reel seat.
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