Fly fishing is not a sport of necessities.  It is a sport of preferences, credos, opinions and mystique.   If you are just starting out or recently began an interest in the sport of fly fishing, then you need to learn the very basic in fly fishing which is choosing your rod.  There are no right and wrong choices, if a fly rod does not make you happy, choose another fly rod. Consider also your budget, and then buy the best rod you can afford. Before jumping too far with the details of choosing fly rod, first, you must know the following purposes of fly rod:


  1. Casting.           Like a spin rod, the fly rod allows for the fly line to be casted with power and accuracy. A good fly rod, in combination with good fly casting skills, also allows the fly and fly line to be placed on the water in such a way so as to not spook all the fish into scurrying into cover.
  2. Line Control.  Once you have your fly out in the water and it is floating away, the next function of a fly rod is to provide for line control. A fly rod allows you to have much control over the line that is out on the water- at least once you figure out how to do it.
  3. Striking and Landing Fish.  The fly rod is used to both set the hook on a fish and to fight and land the fish. As such, the fly rod needs to be flexible and strong enough to bend, sometimes under great pressure, without breaking or snapping.


Now, that you know the purpose of fly rod, it is time to choose the type of fishes you will be fishing and where will you be fishing? Is it in freshwater or saltwater?  Where you will be fishing affects the choice of fly rod you are going  to use.


You need to choose a fly rod with a slow, medium, medium-fast, or fast action.  The fly rod’s “action” is a term that has been applied variously to the stiffness, speed of “recovery”, and tendency to flex in specific areas. Do not choose slow action rod or an ultra-fast rod for your all-rounder.  Rods with medium, medium-fast, or fast actions are toward the middle of the action spectrum: not too stiff, not too soft.  Medium-fast rods, are universally easy to cast and a joy to fish.  Fast action rod is best for fishing in larger and windy rivers.  Slow action fly rod are very flexible, ideal for fishing in small streams where you have to use stealth to track down fish.  Then, decide if you need a 3 or 4- piece rod, to stuff inside a suitcase, strap onto a backpack, or carry on the plane.  Or whether a 2-piece rod, which you may leave strung up for the entire season.  Choose what is more convenient for you.


Now that you have an idea of choosing your fly rod and you have decided what you want to pay, it is time to look closely at the offerings of the various manufacturers.  Once you have determined which manufacturers make the type of rod you are looking for in the price range you are comfortable with, head down to the local fly fish shop and begin casting the various brands, or better yet, check out some of these great links:

Fly Rods


Sage Fly Rods

Hardy Fly Rods

G. Loomis Fly Rods

Redington Fly Rods

TFO Fly Rods

Winston Fly Rods


Fly Reels:

Abel Reels

Hardy Reels

Hatch Reels

Ross Reels

Tibor Reels

Lamson Reels