Shop Fly Rods with expert advice
Expert top picks
There are lots of great fly rods out there, but how do you know which one is the best one for you? Here at Curated, our independent experts recommend rods to customers just like you every day. Check out this list of our experts' top-recommended fly rods under $250, then @@chat with a Fly Fishing expert@@ to make sure you find the perfect rod for you.
There are lots of great fly rods out there, but how do you know which one is the best one for you? Here at Curated, our independent experts recommend rods to customers just like you every day. Check out this list of our experts' top-recommended fly rods under $500, then @@chat with a Fly Fishing expert@@ to make sure you find the perfect rod for you.
Is there really such a thing as the "best" fly rod? Here at Curated, we only believe that there's a best fly rod for you. Every day, Curated experts make personalized recommendations on the best fly fishing rods for anglers of all ages, sizes, and skill levels - from beginners to more seasoned fly fishers. This list compiles all of their most recommended fly rods. Want your own free, personalized recommendations on the best fly fishing gear for you? Be sure to @@chat with a Fly Fishing expert here on Curated@@.
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All Your Fly Fishing Needs Can Be Found at Curated
If you’re looking to upgrade your fly fishing gear or gear up for the very first time, you’ve come to the right place. Here at Curated, we’ll match you with a Fly Fishing Expert who will get to know your needs and goals, make free, personalized product recommendations, and answer any questions you have on enhancing your fly fishing. Our team is filled with passionate and experienced Experts who are out on the water testing gear daily to assure that you’re getting not just the best gear, but the best gear for you. Whether you’re looking for a fast-action beefy saltwater rod or a slow swinging glass rod, we’ve got you covered with price matching to guarantee the best price. You’ll no longer need to step into a fly shop—we can provide everything you need right from your phone, computer, or tablet.
What to Consider When Purchasing a Fly Rod
Few things are as exhilarating as catching a fish on a fly. The size of the fish doesn't even matter. Whether pursuing a massive tarpon or a tiny brook trout, there’s nothing like fly fishing. The fly rod is an essential component in getting that rush.
A fly rod is a tool that allows you to reach the fish, present an imitation, apply pressure to hook it, and the leverage to land it. The rod lets you fish with joy, confidence, and ease. Yet the activity remains a challenge that consumes many of us for the rest of our lives.
Whether you're just starting or are a seasoned angler, a fly rod is your ticket to fun and adventure, self-care, and a good deal of humility. Mastering the fly rod takes patience and persistence, but it’s worth it.
Similar to golf clubs, fly rods are categorized by weight. Weights run from 1 to 12. For example, a fly fisher uses a 2-weight for bluegill and a 12-weight for marlin. Fly rod weight represents the type of fish and the size of the reel and line you add to it. A 5-weight rod pairs with a 5-weight reel and needs a 5-weight line.
Rod Weight to Species
- 1 - 3 weight: Small fish species (bluegill, beaver pond brook trout)
- 4 - 6 weight: Medium to large freshwater fish (trout, bass)
- 7 - 10 weight: Large freshwater fish, some saltwater species (redfish, snook, bonefish)
- 11 - 12 weight: Largest freshwater fish, bluewater saltwater fish (marlin)
The length of a fly rod contributes to the energy used for casting and must be considered because of the space needed to cast. Fly rods range between six and ten feet. The standard trout rig is nine feet long, but Euro-nymphing rigs can be even longer to accommodate tight-line techniques. An angler may prefer a shorter rod to a longer one when fishing in overgrown locations with bank vegetation and overhead branches, which cause more snags.
At Curated, we often suggest a 9-foot, 5-weight rod loaded with a matching reel and line for beginners. This setup teaches you how to cast dry flies, nymphs, and small streamers effectively and fish for most freshwater species in the United States.
Fly rods provide a level of stiffness and support to cast, apply resistance and retrieve fish. The best transform your cast efficiently through the rod and accurately propel your fly and line forward.
Casting distance depends on the speed the line exits the rod. A faster tip action increases line speed. A rod must be sturdy yet flexible to deliver a delicate fly presentation or remain in contact with a large fish when hooked up. Rod manufacturers take these factors into consideration when choosing rod materials.
Carbon fiber and graphite rods are the most prevalent today. Lightweight carbon fiber allows for unique innovations in the fly rod space, and anglers can thank this material for increases in casting distance, accuracy, and a reduction in overall rod weight. Graphite fibers are shorter compared to longer carbon fibers, which reduces their overall flexibility. This is most clear when an angler snaps their rod.
For centuries, fly rods were constructed out of bamboo. Bamboo is still used to make high-end rods today, and users prize them for their feel and delicacy in presenting a fly. While not an inexpensive investment, fishing with a bamboo rod is something all anglers should experience. If you shun the idea of ripping lips in favor of the cerebral and sensory challenge of fooling wary fish with tiny flies, you'll find a bamboo rod is worth more than its price tag.
Fiberglass hit the market in the 1940s as a low-cost substitute for bamboo. Prior to graphite fly rods, fiberglass was the dominant rod material and its** **golden age was the 1970s. Fiberglass rods are excellent for soft, short casting. Fiberglass has enjoyed a resurgence as it’s fun to fish with and gives anglers a feel for casting and playing fish that many composite rods don't provide.
Fly rod handles come in various shapes and add eye-catching details to a rod. They are commonly made of cork, which is lightweight and provides excellent grip. Handles offer security and comfort when casting. The addition of a fighting butt on larger fly rods lends counterbalance when battling large fish.
Talk to an Expert
Choosing a fly rod doesn't need to be intimidating. At Curated, our Fly Fishing Experts listen to your needs and love the opportunity to find you the perfect fly rod, reel, or anything else for a fantastic fly fishing experience. Our goal is to maximize your experience on the water because the more time you spend, the more fun you'll have.