beginner [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: beginner

03-13-2002, 11:15 AM
i have basically the same question as wally, but I would prefer to keep the cost closer to $200. Up to $300 would be fine I guess. I figure that I should get some experience with a quality rod and then upgrade once I can include some personal preferences. I fish avidly with spinning and baitcasting gear but have no flyfishing experience. Living in western ny i have great access to great lake tributaries and smaller trout streams. I would like to start with a medium sized trout and bass rod before expanding into salmon and large trout. I was looking at cabela's combos to start with and was wondering if any of you had any advice concerning them. It seems to me that you mainly have more advanced tastes but anything you can suggest would be appreciated. One specific question I had concerned the importance of the reel. I have heard before that for a trout and bass rod the reel is far less important than the rod and so I was planning on putting more money into the rod than the reel. Thanks for your input.

03-13-2002, 12:17 PM

The only true way to see if you like a rod is to test cast it. Which is kind of a moot point since you don't have any casting experience. Hmm... that make this a little tougher.

If you want to start out trout fishing my recommendation would be an 8' 6 wgt. rod. It can also be used for FW Bass but you may be unable to cast bigger flies (poppers windy conditions) or outgunned on occasion. So maybe a 7 wgt. would be better. This rod could also be used on larger bodies of water for large trout & salmon.

I can't speak personally about Cableas flyrods but have heard good things about them from other people. I have owned a couple of their spinning rods and was very happy with them. You may also consider a Temple Fork Outfitters rod. I just bought a 4 pc. 8 wgt for $150.

You are correct to spend the bulk of your FF investment in the rod. Fishing FW the reel does little more than store the line. That is unless you tie into a brute. ;-) An old Plueger Medalist would do the trick or step up to a SA reel without breaking the bank.

Lastly take some casting lessons! That way you won't have the lousy casting habits I have. :-)

Hope this helps.

03-13-2002, 12:17 PM
More trout or more bass? Most trout would call for a 5wt, most bass a 7wt. A 6wt is in between if you fish for both, and if they are lake run trout the 5wt is light.

You could use the same reel for both, but not to upgrade to salmon and steelhead.

If you be so kind as to expand on what you plan to do you'd probably get better feedback...


03-13-2002, 01:53 PM
Juro, not sure about prices but those loaner St. Croix rods from Federation of Flyfishers at the casting clave felt pretty sweet. I keep hearing great things about Temple Fork too.

Sully's right, spend a few dollars on some casting lessons from a certified instructor and you'll avoid a lot of frustration. If you get chance to do so before buying a rod you may save yourself a few $ too;)

old man
03-13-2002, 04:02 PM
I recently got a 4wt rod(St Croix Imperial series). I would like to know which line to use on it I would be fishing mostly lakes with it. A W fwd or a DT. I usually fish rivers and I'm not used to lakes,but I've got to try. I went out and bought a pontoon boat. So I have to put it to use. Jim S. :cool:

03-13-2002, 04:33 PM
IMHO an 8 to 8-1/2 ft 6WT is the best all around rod for those fisheries you named (trout and bass). I would suggest jumping up to at least a 7WT for anything bigger.

In general I believe the posts which suggest putting your money in the rod to be right on. But I would suggest for a biginner with a "limited budget" to consided the following:

Invest in an inexpensive %graphite rod and basic reel. Buy a QUALITY floating line and bank the difference until you KNOW what your limitations and preferences are. Later set up the line as a multi tip system. I have caught more fish (trout, bass, whitefish, silver and pink salmon) on my cheap Kmart branded graphite (an Eagle Claw) than all my Sage and Orvis rods combined. I still use a 30+ year old Berkeley reel with this rod which still functions fine. Use (abuse) THIS rod combo while learning the basic skills and keep it as an emergency backup when later you finally buy the "right" outfit. You should be able to purchase such a starter rod and reel combo for <$75.00, a GOOD starter line about $60.00. Should you break/lose/have stolen such an outfit your loses are minimal. And practice, practice, practice... This outfit should get you over the "hump" and eventually into better gear at your pace.

My $.02

03-13-2002, 04:34 PM
Jim, the Imperial is a relatively soft rod. I would recomend a Rio Classic Taper WF or a Scientific Anglers Ultra 3 line. These lines won't over power that rod. If you are a begining caster, you might want a heavier line like the SA. GPX or the Rio Rio Grand.
Freight Train, when you buy an outfit, get one of the best flylines. It is worth the expense to get a good line. People neglect to consider how important the line is. If I was going to rate the importance of each piece of gear, I would rank them in this order:Fly, Tippet, Leader, Line, Rod, Reel. Get the best of the first four.
Since you are begginig, I would urge you to buy your gear from a specialty fly shop. You might have alot of questions and Cabelas et. all can't give any support. Catalogs serve the experienced anglers who know what they need and can't shop locally. You will be best served by your local fly shop. Unless the're a bunch of jerks, spend your money with them.

old man
03-14-2002, 12:16 PM
Thanks Eddie. But what do you call a beginner. Heck I've been doing this for about 10 years now about 5 seriously and I'm still learning. I have a 5wt GLommis that I use in the summer. I fish mostly what watersprite calls skinny water.

03-15-2002, 07:20 AM
Jim, didn't mean to imply that you are a begginer. We are all learning.
The heavier lines like the GPX are best for people who have trouble feeling the rod load. This is usually a situation that is common for some one who is just starting out. Some people who don't like a fast rod will over line to amplify the "feel". The GPX type lines are like over lining by a half.

03-15-2002, 08:31 AM
I would consider going to an Orvis shop and take a look at ther 5 wt. "far and Fine", a good alround rod for trout.. with a package deal you can get a Battenkill reel (made by Hardy in England) and have a good beginner rod which you will not end up getting rid of when you move up. I think with the budget you stated that would fit. Don't over complicate things with "soft" or "fast" etc. that rod is in between and the 5wt. can handle most situations... see what they have for length.... that rod and combination is good for lake or stream.

03-28-2002, 08:49 PM
My first rod was a Sage Discovery. It costs about $200 but comes with the Sage quality and lifetime guarantee.
But like everyone else has mentioned, try the rods out and see which one suites your style.