The 10 Best Fly Fishing Poles
This wiki has been updated 15 times since it was first published in August of 2018. Traditional anglers are sometimes hesitant to test their skills at fly fishing, but once they do, they’re usually hooked (excuse the pun). Whether you fancy trying your hand at catching some trout, bass or salmon — in freshwater or saltwater — one of these specialized rods should suit your needs. Some come in the form of starter kits, complete with a reel, line and bait. When users buy our independently chosen editorial recommendations, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
June 04, 2020:
We removed a few items due to quality concerns, including the M MaximumCatch Extreme, which is prone to snapping and suffers from a serious lack of durability. While the Headwaters Deluxe was previously available in multiple sizes and styles, we’ve adjusted the listing to indicate that this is no longer the case. We also note that it comes with a solid aluminum tube for protective storage.
We concluded that the list already contained enough “starter kits,” opting to add models geared toward more experienced fly fishermen who likely already possess much of the necessary gear.
The Okuma Crisium is an affordable option that should satisfy both beginners and experienced users, making it a good choice for budget-conscious fishermen. The Echo Base offers solid performance as well, but it’s also known for its stylish look, with ceramic guides and a polished blue surface.
It’s worth noting that the Fenwick Aetos, our final new addition, is available in a wide variety of sizes, so regardless of the conditions you typically fish in and the species you’re targeting, there’s a good chance you’ll find a style to fit your needs. Anglers praise its sensitivity and the ease with which it casts.
Sage The X Freshwater The X is designed to minimize lateral movement and vibrations while you cast to produce an accurate, efficient presentation through reliable loop control. According to Sage, it’s built with a higher density material than most fly rods, resulting in a stronger pole with superior recovery. sageflyfish.com
Winston Bamboo This two-piece bamboo fly rod has an eye-opening price tag, but if you’re a passionate fly fisherman who has the means, you may have found your next prized possession. Handcrafted in Montana, it offers slow action with delicate line control, allowing you to cast with remarkable finesse. winstonrods.com
CF Burkheimer Kerry Burkheimer — who started this artisan shop more than 30 years ago — believes today’s fly rods are too “fast”. Therefore, he set out to create rods that are slow and soft by comparison, offering specialty options for trout, steelhead, salmon and saltwater fish. cfbflyrods.com