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  1. #1

    Default Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    Let me start off by saying that I'm not an expert when it comes to fly rods and reels. I've never owned an expensive rod/reel and consider myself a budget consumer. I try to purchase the best quality I can within my budget and let the others argue about name brands.

    This review is for the Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus combo. Currently on sale for $59. It is a 7'6" 3 piece rod. I ordered the rod on a Saturday using normal shipping and it arrived on Wednesday.

    Unboxing/First Impression:
    The rod came packaged in a long cardboard box. It was secured with plastic inflatable packing material. It did not come with a case, but was in a rod sock. I hesitate to really call it a sock, since it was made of a nylon material, but it will hold the 3 pieces of the rod individually and serve its purpose. The cork handle was covered in plastic, which I was surprised to see. Overall the rod was packed well enough to prevent damage.

    The Prestige Plus reel was in its own box at the bottom of the bos the rod came in. I was expecting a flimsy reel and was plesantly surprised that this was not the case. The reel did not seem flimsy at all. In fact it felt better then then the Ross Flystart 2 I have on my 5Wt rod.

    The backing (150 yds), flyline (3wt) and leader (5x) came in a single plastic bag. They are what I would consider the low point of the package. The flyline had no loops and the sticker indicating which end was for the backing had come off. This necessitated a complete unraveling to determine which end to attach to the backing. The leader also did not have a loop but should be adequate for the task at hand. It would be nice if Cabela's would let you choose what wt line you wanted since I really wanted to overline with a 4 wt. I did call Cabelas and was told that packages could not be altered. I guess that is to be expected at this price point.

    Overall I would say that what you get is worth much more than the $59 I paid.

    First Use:

    The first thing I had to do was spool the reel. The reel comes setup for left hand retrieve. There are instructions to shift to right hand retrieve if needed. I attached the backing (150 yds) and the flyline. I found that since I was doing this manually, 150 yds of backing and flyline caused binding. I ended up removing about 20 yds of backing and reattached the flyline to ease the binding. I figured I was using this on a small creek and didn't expect to EVER get that far into the backing anyway so it was no big loss. In fact I may even take off another 10 yds in the future. I attached the leader and then it was time to take the rod out and test. Unfortuantely it had to be in the backyard and it was windy. Surprisingly the rod performed well in the windy conditions. I was easily able to get the line out 40 to 50 feet (remember I'm not an expert). The rod has a medium action and requires a slow cast.

    Last night I had an opportunity to take it to the creek. The fish were rising and I could see 5 to 10 nice size browns in the pool. I found the rod casts well with the 3 wt (I'm still planning on overlining though). I was able to hit my spots fairly accurately. I'm only casting to between 20 and 50 ft and found the rod a joy to use. It was light and short and easy to cast. Unfortunately I couldn't entice any fish to take my flies (that is another story ).

    Final Impressions:
    To sum it up, the Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus combo is a great setup for the money. The rod seems well built and handles very nicely. The reel is decent quality and considering at this wt it is only really being used to store the line what more could you ask for. I give the setup a

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  3. #2

    Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    Nice review-- and a fair approach to it. I bought the 3 forks combo (with the 3 forks reel), in the same weight, a few years ago. I've since replaced the reel with an old pflueger medalist. Not that (for what I need) the 3 forks reel was terrible, I just had an extra medalist laying around...

    I agree with everything your review states-- fit and finish is as good as needed, the cast is nice, and it has a decent amount of 'umph' to pull in fish that are bigger than what you might be targeting with a 3 wt.

    I fish mainly warmwaters and the 3 wt three forks is a fantastic sunnie and smaller sized largemouth rod.

    One word of caution-- the rod feels a little soft to be overlining it at 50 foot distances. Just my humble opinion. Try it and it might really wake the little rod up, but I suspect you might be going back to the 3 wt. line.

  4. #3

    Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    Thanks for the review. I've heard nice things about the rod.



  5. Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    I own this rod as well and it is my go to rod for small creek fishing. I really enjoy it. Even when I double rig it with a dual nymph combo and some weight it seems to do OK. Naturally throwing dry flies and small nymphs is more ideal.

    I recently landed an 18" Brown on the Provo River with this rod and although it was a bit tough, it was a fun fight and I landed that fish no problem.

    I endorse the Cabela's 3 forks rods in the lighter weights for sure. I don't know about the heavier weight rods. Fit and finish is surprisingly good as well.

    Tight Lines,


  6. #5

    Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    I just got the 5wt version of this setup today and I'm going to try it tomorrow. I'll post what I think tomorrow but I'm still a newb. I have not owned any good rods yet as the one I have now is a shakespeare kit that my kids got me for christmas.

  7. #6

    Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    Ok I just got back from using the 5wt version and I love it. I can cast with little effort just got to get my timing down better. I was casting into the 15mph wind. It feels really balanced. like I told my girlfriend (comparing it to my old rod) its like driving a yugo then going to a ferrarri. I can cast a good 30 feet more then I could before. Its stock, nothing new added.

  8. Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    I have the 8wt combo and use it for steelhead. I have landed several and never had a problem. I replaced the line it came with and made a world of difference. For a combo under $100 you can't beat it.

  9. #8

    Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    Awesome and fair review! I own the 5wt and 3wt in these exact rods and love them. For the value they are hard to beat. I am also the owner of some high end stuff as well, but when I am trudging around the urban scene in downtown Phoenix, this is my go to setup.

    I agree with everything you said in your review. The rod cast really well for the price, and the reel is hard to beat. I have landed numerous 10+ lb carp/koi on both of these rods, and the reel's drag does the job. I call these rods my carpin' sticks. On another forum I am part of this is the setup we recommend to all the new guys looking for some entry level equipment. Thanks for the review.

  10. Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    I also bought the 4wt Three Forks/ Prestige combo, and I have to say that this little combo kicks my old Ross combo right in the go-nads in terms of price and performance. I am also fairly new to the sport and haven't owned any of the higher end tackle, but if this rod keeps performing like it has been I don't see any reason to spend the money on another 4wt. I am planning on buying the 3wt rod for some of the small creeks around me, so this review has helped me. Thanks for taking the time to post.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Hillsboro, OR

    Default Re: Cabela's 3 Forks 3wt/Prestige Plus Combo

    I have this in a 7wt. Unfortunately my luck with it wasnt as good. After a couple uses the filler in the cork handle had all come out. I think i got a rod with D quality cork, because there was a whole lot of filler in the handle.

    The rod itself ,for the price, performed very well. After only a single fall of use to have the handle degrade so much left a really bad taste. I guess it is hard to complain for the price though.

    If you are on a really tight budget this would be a rod to get. However, if you have a little more flexibility i would suggest something along the lines of Redington, Echo or Allen.

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