Welcome back to the blog today! Today I am going to be talking a bit about my adventures in beginner fly fishing. I’ve always been an outdoorsy kind of person, believe it or not. My grandparents would take me fishing on a pretty regular basis, and once I met my now-husband, hunting came into the mix. But I also just love being outside and experiencing nature. So naturally, I follow several outdoorswomen on Instagram, and after watching many videos of the beautiful and serene time they seemed to be having fly fishing, I knew I wanted to try it!
I’ll be honest here, fly fishing can get super expensive. There are fly rods and reels out there that can easily cost as much as a used car. Ya girl is not about that life, especially for something I am not certain I will enjoy. Yeah, fly fishing looks like it’s fun in the videos and pictures, but did they cut out and delete the shitty parts? I set out to do a little research and came across a quality brand of fly rods that had great reviews and weren’t going to break the bank. So I started building my set up from there, and have a pretty great working set up for just under $300! Let’s dive into this adventure together!
So here is the absolute basic gear you need to begin fly fishing. You’ll need a rod, reel, fly line, and backing. I chose this rod from Moonshine Rod Co. because it had great reviews and you get a really good value for the cost. This is a good beginner rod for fly fishing as it comes with an extra tip piece and it has a good medium-fast speed. This means that you don’t have to worry about whipping the rod super fast or getting tangles or knots in your line because the line doesn’t unfurl properly during a cast. I also started with a 5/6 weight rod and reel. Depending on where and what you are fishing helps in determining rod weight. I am mostly fishing for trout in trout streams and occasionally hitting up lakes, so this middle-of-the-range weight works best for me. But if you are fishing saltwater or tiny brooks, you can opt to up or down in rod weight.
I picked the Piscifun reel, backing, and line because again, they were budget-friendly and had great reviews. Backing is something I didn’t know I needed until I went about setting up my reel. It’s there to give you a little extra wiggle room in the event that a fish runs out all your line. The Piscifun Sword line is a nice weight forward line that helps you lay your line out on the water nicely and keeps it from running back down the rod when you’re trying to cast (which, trust me, is the most irritating feeling in the world!).
Beginner Fly Fishing Tips
While it’s possible to set up your own rod and reel, I highly recommend taking a trip to a local fly fishing shop if you have one in your area. We have a great resource relatively close by, Feather-Craft, and I was able to sign up for a free lesson to learn how to properly cast, as well as a few other basic moves for fishing. They were also super helpful in getting my reel straightened out after I added too much backing to it! A good fly shop will not only carry almost everything you need, but they will also offer lessons and be able to help you set up your rod and reel.
Another thing I would take the time to look up is different knot tying techniques. Because it isn’t just backing, line, cast, and catch, you have to add things like leader and tippet into the mix. That’s most definitely where your local experts can come in handy when it’s time to add those to your rig.
If you plan on fishing for a while or fishing in trout streams, a vest and waders will definitely come in handy. You’ll also need flies and potentially a dip net, but flies especially are a personal choice and something that you want to base on the area and type of fish you are looking at.
This vest is a really great option from Amazon. It has a ton of pockets, a mesh back for breath-ability, and a handy little loop and Velcro closure to hold your rod in place while changing out flies.
The waders came from Cabela’s. While I like them well enough for fly fishing, I definitely would need a few extra pairs of pants underneath them for duck hunting. Also, these are men’s waders because it was extremely difficult to find waders for women who are not only bigger in size, but have larger than average feet. But to take on the women’s outdoor clothing shortfalls will have to be another post. Ideally, I would prefer a neoprene wader over this material, because you have a bit more range of movement with neoprene and it will help keep you warmer in colder conditions.
So if you are looking to be begin fly fishing, I hope you find this article helpful. Let me know in the comments below if you are looking to expand your outdoor activites as spring and summer roll around!
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