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  • Rod/Reel Suggestions

    Hey everyone. I recently got into fly fishing after visiting Bozeman, MT. I bought a cheap Magellan rod/reel combo when I got back to see if I stuck with it. Considering it's been about 8 months and I'm still enjoying it, I think it's safe to invest in a nicer setup. Anyone have any recommendations on a decent novice setup that's under $300? I'm mainly nymphing and some occasional drys. I'd love to get into streaming eventually, but would probably need a different setup for that. All suggestions welcome, I'm on the low end of the knowledge scale.

  • #2
    Originally posted by dkschrute View Post
    Hey everyone. I recently got into fly fishing after visiting Bozeman, MT. I bought a cheap Magellan rod/reel combo when I got back to see if I stuck with it. Considering it's been about 8 months and I'm still enjoying it, I think it's safe to invest in a nicer setup. Anyone have any recommendations on a decent novice setup that's under $300? I'm mainly nymphing and some occasional drys. I'd love to get into streaming eventually, but would probably need a different setup for that. All suggestions welcome, I'm on the low end of the knowledge scale.


    If you’re primarily fishing big water like the hooch in ATL then a 9’ 5wt is a good “all around” trout rod. If you’re primarily fishing the mountains of N Georgia then a 8’ 4wt may be a better choice but you won’t be able to cast heavy nymph rigs as well. Orvis, Redington, and St. Croix all have nice offerings...go cast them and see what feels good to you. Spend the majority of your budget on the rod and find a cheap reel (line holder) that balances it well. You may even be able to reuse the reel from the Magellan combo and spend the money to upgrade your line. Good luck!


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    • #3
      For small streams there isn't a better rod than tyre eagle claw feather weight.
      It's about thirty bucks off Amazon. Any reel will work.
      I use a five dollar plastic thing.

      For the hooch, nymphing, I'd recommend a 9-10 foot 3 wt, personally. It can handle big fish and feels good on smaller fish too.

      By "you primarily nymph" do you mean Euro nymph, suspension nymph, or something else?

      I think noisy folks on here would recommend a syndicate nymph rod for the price, and I agree it's a great rod. That being said, at $250(ish) I notice very little difference between it and my $45 Chinese nymph rod. I wouldn't go spending loads on gear, it can easily empty a bank account.
      Good luck out there.



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      • #4
        Dwight K Schrute??? Look out for the bears on the river man.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Jakkbauer View Post
          Dwight K Schrute??? Look out for the bears on the river man.
          Bears...beets...Battlestar Galactica

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          • #6
            Originally posted by splatek16 View Post
            For small streams there isn't a better rod than tyre eagle claw feather weight.
            It's about thirty bucks off Amazon. Any reel will work.
            I use a five dollar plastic thing.

            For the hooch, nymphing, I'd recommend a 9-10 foot 3 wt, personally. It can handle big fish and feels good on smaller fish too.

            By "you primarily nymph" do you mean Euro nymph, suspension nymph, or something else?

            I think noisy folks on here would recommend a syndicate nymph rod for the price, and I agree it's a great rod. That being said, at $250(ish) I notice very little difference between it and my $45 Chinese nymph rod. I wouldn't go spending loads on gear, it can easily empty a bank account.
            Good luck out there.



            Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
            Thanks for the advice. And I have been Euro nymphing.

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            • #7
              Originally posted by dkschrute View Post
              Thanks for the advice. And I have been Euro nymphing.


              If you’re primarily Euro nymphing then you may want to get a dedicated EN rod. I started out trying EN with my 9’ 5wt before I got a 10’ 3wt syndicate. I’ve been very pleased with it...the difference in sensitivity is dramatic. You can feel every little bump on the bottom and usually feel the takes instead of seeing your sighter twitch first. As splatek said there are cheaper EN sticks out there but I’ve been very pleased with my syndicate.


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              • #8
                Another option you could check out for a pretty good Euro nymph rod that doesn’t break the bank is The Fenwick Aetos. It has nice sensitivity to dectect strikes and also has enough backbone to fight bigger fish. The 10’ 3wt, 10’ 4wt and 10’ 5wt all retail for $199.95 and come with a lifetime warranty.
                Instagram https://www.instagram.com/wes.mcelroy/

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                • #9
                  I love my Syndicate 10' 3 wt. It works for streamers too.

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                  • #10
                    Like Wes Said, the Aetos are really nice rods for the money ($199). I own a 10' 4wt aetos and it will throw normal sized streamers, indicator rigs, euro rigs, and dries, all fairly well. If you are primarily interested in euro nymphing, get the 10' 3wt. You will give up some versatility, but get a lighter, more sensitive rod. We have both the 10' 3wt & 10' 4wt in the shop if you would like to see them in person. You are also welcome to mess with my 10' 4wt aetos sometime if you would like.

                    I would pair either with a lamson liquid (100$), and a cortland 444. That would be a sweet setup to get started, especially if you enjoy euro nymphing.

                    Another option (my favorite) is the classic 9' 5wt. Although euro nymphing is effective, my goto rod is a 9' 5wt, it is just more fun. You want a rod that will do it all, the 9' 5wt is it. It'll do everything the 10'4wt can, but better, but you give up some of your euro nymphing capability, although I have still done it plenty. A 9' rod is the industry standard for a good reason, casting a 10' rod against a 9' is night and day difference in swing weight and responsiveness. For a 9' 5wt I would check out the redington vice.

                    My two most fished rods for trout are a 9'5wt, and a 10' 4wt. Both have their strengths and shortcomings.
                    Jackson Dockery
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                    • #11
                      I'll pile on in support of the Fenwick Aetos. I bought a 9' 5wt Aetos last summer and absolutely love it. The only thing I have not done with it is euronymphing. It's done well on dries and indicator rigs for trout and small streamers for bass in the smallmouth stream near my house.

                      If euronymphing is your thing, though, I'd definitely go with a 10' rod in a 3 or 4wt.

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