Fly Fishing Guide: From Beginner to Expert

Trigg Skoe

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By Michael Berg

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Whether you are a beginner, or an experienced guide, the right fly fishing gear can help anyone in a tremendous way. Here are some profile categories to fit any fly fisher out there:

Beginners-  When starting out, it can be hard to justify purchasing any equipment. I would personally recommend taking a couple intro classes to make sure you start off on the right foot. Experts in their field will make sure you receive the proper training needed to become a successful fly fisher. If you decide you want to further pursue the sport, and purchasing equipment is still too much, then I would recommend renting equipment the first outing or two. This can be a great economical way to get a feel for fly fishing. (St Peter’s Fly Shop in town rents gear and provides lessons.) If you get hooked on the sport, then purchasing a starter kit is my best recommendation. There is no reason to spend a thousand of dollars on gear when you are still a novice. At the end of the day, the skills of a fisherman/woman are more important than how much they spent on the gear. Here are a few items that would compliment any beginner…

Trout Fishing:

Rod and Reel Combo- Redington Crosswater Fly Combo, 4-5 weight, $150 (Jax or Dick’s Sporting Goods)

Intermediate- If you have been fly fishing for a couple years now, and are very comfortable with the basics, you should want to upgrade the beginner gear you still have. Test out some higher end rods and reels to figure out just what you have been missing. Smoother, longer, effortless and more accurate casts become much easier than your old discount rod. Reels start to handle better when submerged in water, drag systems become smoother and more advanced, and overall durability is improved greatly. With another upgrade, waders suddenly become something you comfortably wear all day. Some of the following gear should be front of mind for you intermediate fly fishers…

Trout Fishing:

Rod-  Sage Foundation Fly Rod, 4-5 weight, $325 (St. Peter’s Fly Shop)

Reel- Sage 2200 Series Reel, $140 (St. Peter’s Fly Shop)

Advanced- If you have been around the sport long enough to be considered an advanced fly fisher, then you most likely have grown to appreciate the finer things. Money becomes less and less of a factor when purchasing gear, and your spouse probably has no clue how much you actually spend. When you spend high amounts on gear, you should obviously expect nothing but the best quality. However, sometimes that is easier said than done. Here are some high quality brands and products to consider for those pursuing the best the sport has to offer…

Trout Fishing:

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Rod-  Scott G Series Fly Rod, 4-5 weight, $845 (St. Peter’s Fly Shop)

Reel- Ross Evolution R Reel, $455 (St. Peter’s Fly Shop)