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Trouts Journal

Budget Fly Fishing Setup for Beginners

Jon Moore / Aug 17, 2022

Looking for a budget-friendly fly fishing setup for beginners? At Trouts Fly Fishing, we’re here to help. We have an expansive selection of fly fishing rods, reels, and lines to choose from. In this blog, we’re going to break down whether you should buy a combo kit or customize your own set up by purchasing individual pieces of gear. We will also feature products that we love and are suitable for the budget-conscious beginner.


In general, there are a couple key points that differentiate fly fishing combo kits from individually-purchased pieces of equipment. We’re going to give you a brief rundown, so pay attention!


First and foremost, you must consider the warranty. Look, we’ve been around long enough to know that eventually you will break your rod. Whether it be on a fish, in a car door, or the infamous rod vs. ceiling fan fiasco, it’s bound to happen. When it does, depending on the piece of fly fishing gear that you purchased, you may or may not be able to get it repaired or replaced by the manufacturer. Often, combo kits are not covered under warranty. If you break it, that’s it. Sayonara, old friend. This is not the case with all combo kit manufacturers. For example, for a nominal fee, Temple Fork Outfitters (TFO), will repair or replace the broken section of your rod. However, the same cannot be said for all manufacturers of fly fishing combo kits. If you think you’re going to fall in love with the sport of fly fishing like the rest of us at Trouts Fly Fishing, choose wisely. As with all things in life, you get what you pay for.

The next point to note is arguably the most important factor in deciding whether your initial investment is going to be in a fly fishing combo kit or if you will pick out each piece of your rig individually. That significant, defining, overwhelmingly-important distinction is quality. We’re not just here to sell you a bill of goods. Even the cheapest, most entry-level pieces of individually purchased fly fishing gear are going to be of significantly better quality than their combo kit counterparts. All major components of your set up - rod, reel, and line - are going to make your fly fishing journey more enjoyable if you spend a little extra money. Remember that whole, “you get what you pay for” bomb we dropped earlier? It applies to more than just your warranty.

Now you’re probably thinking, “Golly, what makes fly fishing gear so expensive?” The answer is ultimately that fly fishing is not unlike any other sport. There are immense amounts of research and development that go into designing and manufacturing fly fishing gear. The cost of the rod is generally indicative of how much time and effort went into creating cutting edge technology found in your rod, reel, or line.

Now with that said, there are a ton of really great entry-level rods, reels, and fly lines that you can purchase. You don’t have to spend an arm and a leg to get your hands on quality fly fishing gear. Whether you choose to purchase a combo kit or individual pieces of equipment to get started, we’ve got you covered. As such, we’re going to highlight some of our favorite pieces of budget fly fishing gear for beginners.

OUR FAVORITE BUDGET RODS

Orvis Clearwater Fly Rod - Freshwater
Orvis Clearwater Fly Rod - Freshwater
$249.00
Rods - TFO Rods
Temple Fork Outfitters Blue Ribbon Fly Rod
Temple Fork Outfitters Blue Ribbon Fly Rod
$269.95

OUR FAVORITE BUDGET REELS

Reels - TFO Reels
Temple Fork Outfitters NTR Fly Reel
Temple Fork Outfitters NTR Fly Reel
$169.95
Reels - Grey's
Greys Tail Fly Reel
Greys Tail Fly Reel
$129.95

OUR FAVORITE BUDGET LINES

Terminal Tackle - Fly Line
Scientific Anglers Mastery Infinity Fly Line
Scientific Anglers Mastery Infinity Fly Line
$79.95
Terminal Tackle - Fly Line
Scientific Anglers Frequency Trout Fly Line
Scientific Anglers Frequency Trout Fly Line
$59.95

As always at Trouts Fly Fishing, we’re here to help. Whether you want to shop for your new rig in-store or online, we’re available to answer your questions. If you want to talk shop about what you should be looking for in a beginner fly fishing setup, drop us a line or stop by the shop.

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