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I was up on the Cache la Poudre last weekend doing some camping with the wife and dogs. Got a chance to do some fishing with my spinning gear and had great success (2 rainbows and 1 brown in 20 minutes -- but then the cheap rod broke). It looked to me that if you knew how to fly fish you could go up there and have a 30-40 fish day without much of a problem. In short, I love that place -- so much fishable water!

I've decided that this year I will learn to fly fish for trout. To that end, I need some reccomendations on equipment (rod length, weight, reel, etc.). I'm fairly adept at casting as I grew up fishing for panfish and small bass on flies. I'm just not sure what size gear to get for the trout (was thinking 4 or 5 weight). I'd probably use this gear for chasing some bluegill/small bass as well. Are there any advantages/disadvantages to longer rods? My budget is about $150 for the rod, reel, and line. Looks like Cabelas has some decent combos...

Many thanks in advance for the advice.
 
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i would look at cabela's. i have a friend that outfitted himself with a nice 9' 5 wt 2 piece rod with a decent reel for just over $100. add in the line and backing and you are right at or a bit over your budget.

then flys, leader, tippet, etc. - but all that, except flies would be cheap.

just look on cabela's web site or their fly fishing specific catalog. you can even call them toll free and they will mail you that catalog.

e-bay might have some stuff that you could consider. but by all means stay out of kmart, walmart etc. for you gear.

perhpas even some local fly shops that have rental equipment might part with some cheap? worth a shot.
 
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scottdog-

this link to cableas would do you fine (IMO) for getting into the sport.  the combo deal is really thorough.

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/templates/product/horizontal-item.jhtml?id=0011202315859a&navAction=push&navCount=4&indexId=cat20457&podId=0011202&catalogCode=QS&parentId=cat20457&parentType=index&rid=&_DARGS=/cabelas/en/common/catalog/item-link.jhtml_A&_DAV=MainCatcat20431&hasJS=true

im6 graphite rod is good, a disk drag reel is a must, the weight forward floating line is a must...it comes with a case, chest pack, leader and a few fly boxes (some flies included but you'll need others/more).  i recommend the 9' 5 wt. 2 piece.  this whole combo is $149.00 on sale at present.

i fly fish the poudre a lot and do pretty well so if you have any questions please let me know.

good luck!
 

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scottdog900
I started fly fishing with Cabela's Traditional Series rods a long time ago, they are a ok to start with, but you soon will realize the limitations (hard to load small size flies, not accurate). A few years ago I moved up to a Prestige Series rod (faster action) and that made a ton of difference. But, I have a very open stoke when casting, with the faster action rod combined with a very fine tippet, it was not very forgiving. Last week I received the PT Series, and oh MAN what a difference. The Moderate action is so forgiving and so easy to load. I can send a midge a mile away. The cost is a bit more, but very much well worth it. Purchase the combo that is the only way to go. Remember this is a very expensive hobby. 5wt, 9 foot, 2 or 3pc, is a good general size to start with. Be warned this is so addictive, in two years you will have every other weight rod and reel. Tons of little extras needed to be successful. Flies, leaders, tippet materials (in many different sizes), floatant + sinking chemicals, split shot, strike indicators, net, and ETC, ETC. The theme is that it takes some cash to get into this side of fishing. :eek: Well worth it once you commit!!!! Good Luck
 

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With no intention of stirring up a lot of animosity, let me say that, IMHO, your target price of $150 for your outfit is too low unless: a.) you only intend to shortline nymph the Poudre a couple of days a year, or b.) you have somebody else in mind to give the gear to later. Reason? It's based on false economy.

A $75 rod that you outgrow after a few days of fishing is no bargain compared to a $150 - $200 rod that has more applications (for different types of water) and that you can use forever (with a no-fault warranty, to boot).
 

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Cabelas Le Tort combo is an 8'6" 5/6 weight. I like the shorter stick and heavier weight to do battle with the wind. This was my sons first combo. A little heavy after a full day of fishing but a good stick.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for all of the great advice. The bit on the "economy" of equipment really makes a lot of sense especially since the fishing conditions one encounters while fly fishing seem to vary widely. And also, I'd rather buy the right equipment the first time than buying it over and over again

After doing a bit more research, it seems that the best advice is to buy the nicest equipment you can afford. Although I'm losing my job soon, I'm getting a nice severance package, so upping the budget a little shouldn't put me in the poorhouse (besides, I'm a fishing fanatic, so I'll get my money's worth -- at least this summer while I "search" for a new job ;)).

From what I've read, it sounds like fast action rods are the most versatile although they present a much steeper learning curve for beginning anglers. Is this accurate? I'm willing to pay my dues now so to speak in order to have better performance down the road, but does it make sense to buy something I can "grow into"? I've talked to some folks at the local fly fishing shops in Boulder, but it seems that just like in fishing, there are 100 different perspectives on the same technique...
 

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I think you're wise to pursue the "best rod you can afford" course. I still regularly use the first "good" graphite rod I bought about 15 years ago (about $200 then) and there've been several other rods added in the subsequent years.

As far as buying a "fast" rod (tip flex rather than a deeper flex down the rod), I don't know about that. But you're right, there are lots of opinions out there. It might be worth thinking about it this way: ALL rods are some kind of a compromise. While you might love that well designed tip flex rocket-launcher when you need to punch a 60'+ cast into a strong wind, you will be wishing for the softest, slowest noodle out there when you're playing a good fish on 6X tippet to protect that light terminal line. So maybe something in between will suit more conditions better.

It's hard to test cast rods when you're starting out, but that's the ideal. Try to find out what the repair costs will be on any rod you want to fish for years. The so-called "free replacement warranties" can seem a bit of a joke with excessive S&H charges. On the other hand, some mfr's who don't offer that warranty may charge nominal repair fees. Fly rods are fragile, it's worth it to ask about repair policy up front.

Good luck. There seem to be more good entry level rods out there now than ever. Temple Fork, Redington, St. Croix, Sage DS2 (they've been discontinued, but there are still some around) are worth looking at. I like the rod I built with a Cabelas SLi blank, have been underwhelmed with the rod I built from a FT blank -- so I'm not so sure that Cabelas offers any real value, but I admit my experience with them is limited.
 

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Take a day and drive to Cabela's Sidney, Nebraska Retail Store. 3-1/2 hours from Denver. They will really help you to pick out the correct gear, and accessories you will need to get started. That way you can actually check out the product and see for your self. They will create the hierarchy of product in the order which you need to purchase. I have dealt with cabela's warranty department with my XML rod which I broke, it took less then a week to get things fixed. I received a brand new rod. That is what I call service! :) I agree with bitafurnfeather, you will want a moderate action rod, you are consistantly using fine tippets out here in Colorado, and that type of action will help out big time.
 

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I know almost nothing about fly fishing. I should tell you that first. However, if your buget was important. I got a Hobbs Creek rod/reel combo (Bass Pro Shops) as a gift. The whole set up is under $200. Alot of my friends do fly fish, and they said it's a decent rod? I've caught Nice Trout, small (very small) Bass, and Bluegill on it. I got the Bass of a fly that looked like a wooly bugger w/ a propeler in front of it. It was at a pond that I ussualy get them off black rooster tails. Anyway, like I said I'm not experienced or anything. I'd fly alot more, but I'm uncoordinated, and terrable w/ knots.
 

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Yep there are some fly shops here in Colorado, few and far between. And yes, if you want to spend $1.50-2.00 on A fly, that is cool. Fly shops are dying because they do not tend to the beginning fisherman.
 
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