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  1. #1

    Default What was your first rod/reel setup?

    Being that I grew up in a fly fishing oriented family I don't remember the first time I picked up a fly rod. With that said, I do remember the first rod, reel, and line setup that I purchased with my own funds. I was a young teenager and had just received my drivers license. I had $100 saved up and purchased a $35 7'6" 4wt fly rod, a $35 cast click and paw reel, and the cheapest double taper line my local outfitter had. I probably caught more fish on that rod and reel than any set-up I have ever owned.

    Eventually the reel springs fell apart on the water never to be found again and the tip of the rod broke while backpacking in the high country. $35 dollars didn't come with a lifetime warranty

    Do you remember the first time you wet a fly?

    What was your first setup?

    Tight Lines,
    Quality Fly Fishing Reels at

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  3. #2

    Default Re: What was your first rod/reel setup?

    A Garcia Lee Wulff signature fiberglass rod and I don’t remember the make of the reel.

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  5. #3

    Default Re: What was your first rod/reel setup?

    An Orvis Clearwater 9’ 6wt combo. Still have it and still use it a couple times a year. Great set up!

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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  7. #4

    Default Re: What was your first rod/reel setup?

    I started fly fishing with a 8 1/2' Horrocks and Ibbotson 'West Canada' bamboo fly rod and a HI automatic reel that a neighbor let me borrow. I was about 12 years old.

    From money I saved cutting grass...I purchased my first fly rod which was an entry level LL Bean fly rod combo when I was say 14. I still have this rod and reel.

    When my neighbor moved away....he gave me the bamboo fly rod combo as a gift. I didn't thank him enough.

    I still have both setups and use them to this day.

    “If I fished only to capture fish, my fishing trips would have ended long ago.”
    ~Zane Grey

    " . . . shouldn't a man stand on his own two feet and catch his own steelhead? Maybe put out some effort and find his own fish just for the fun of it?"
    ~Syd Glasso

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  9. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2009
    Boise, Idaho

    Default Re: What was your first rod/reel setup?

    The first outfit I bought and fished was a 9' 7 weight Shakespeare composite rod with a plastic reel. It was brown with a brown foam grip. The plastic reel would have made a better New Years' noise maker. Early experience trying to cast weighted streamers with this $21. piece of art combined with my limited casting ability produced an audible "ZZIINNGG" right about ear high that made me an early proponent of barbless hooks.
    Talking with another dad at parent teacher night, he told me he was interested learning to fly fish. The only advice I had time to give him was to avoid the outfit described above. I ran into this guy a couple of weeks later and guess what he'd bought: The appropriately brown colored thing I'd told him to avoid, supercharged up by being shortened 6" at the tip.

    "Every [child] has the right to a first fish. On this particular planet, no man is granted a greater privilege than to be present and to assist in the realization of this moment". Bill Heavey

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  11. #6
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Snake, Clearwater and tribs

    Default Re: What was your first rod/reel setup?

    Wow, I was working my way through college as a cook in Yellowstone NP in 1982. I was right on the lake so we would go down and fish every night with gear. Wanted to try fly fishing so went to Cody and bought a "combo" Ugly stick and a clicker reel with a line. Long time ago!

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  13. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Montrose, CO.
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: What was your first rod/reel setup?

    In think it was a Cortland package; definitely a Cortland rod. Dad surprised me with it one day in the trail head parking lot ready to go. Rod is stashed away. The reel I think broke. Been so long I don't remember.

    Sent from my VS988 using Tapatalk
    Nice fish! Do you have anymore pictures of it lying in the dirt?
    As publicity increases so does the propensity of tripping over yards of mono attached to a Dipsey sinker.

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  15. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2014
    SF Bay area California

    Default Re: What was your first rod/reel setup?

    The first rod I used was my big brothers rod (not sure of the make). Then after he broke it, I salvaged the parts for a Herters fiberglass 6' 3wt blank that I bought. I salvaged the winding check, guides and the reel seat and the reel (a Martin "Tuna Can"). The Herters rod and Martin reel is prominently displayed after also being broken many years later. I repaired it good enough to be displayed but not good enough to fish it.

    The first rod I bought was a fiberglass Shakespeare 9' 6wt (don't remember the reel) which I later handed down to my little brother.


    Tim C.

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  17. Default What was your first rod/reel setup?

    My first setup was whittled locally at the stream and did not include a reel or a modern fly line, the gentleman at the local hardware store had given me and my friend lengths of tapered line and a small box of flies.

    The next level for us were fiberglass spinning rods (about 6-7ft) fitted with bait reels (constant friction from a washer I think). We also had actual lengths of modern fly line and spools of mono tippet courtesy of the same gentleman at the hardware store. We got pretty darn good fishing dry flies and nymphs on small streams with these. I recall the action as being kind of close to modern fly rods.

    My parents then gave me a real fly fishing setup. They purchased it at a sporting goods store in the city. It was a hollow Kunnan 9ft stick of monster proportion, rated as a 7wt and overlined with an 8wt DT line on a really crappy plastic reel.

    I was ecstatic.
    I would describe the rod as being a slow to medium sluggish heavy swampy action, but with a dead stiff tip.

    My casting abilities were drastically reduced, and I caught a lot less fish, but I always believed this was because I wasn’t skilled enough. After all my previous rod wasn’t a REAL fly fishing rod so this had to be better. What was your first rod/reel setup?
    Last edited by troutman75; 12-19-2018 at 04:57 AM.

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  19. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Albuquerque, NM

    Default Re: What was your first rod/reel setup?

    Sage DS II 590 with a Galvan OB-4 reel.

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