Last updated on September 2nd, 2023.
Fly fishing starter kits are a good way for beginners to get into the world of fly fishing. We show you what to pay attention to.
Disclaimer: All products in this guide are independently researched by our team. We only recommend products we believe in and never get paid for the reviews. Learn more about our review process here.
Besides the essential fly rod and fly reel, the best fly fishing kits for beginners also include backing, a fly line, leader materials and flies. Everything you need to make your first casts with a fly rod should be included in the starter kit.
In this guide we specifically look at gear for beginners. Most importantly in the beginning you don’t want to spend a fortune since you can’t be sure yet that fly fishing is for you. That’s why all our kits for beginners come in between $70 and $170. If you are looking for a little more advanced gear be sure to check our Fly Rod Combo Guide.
The great thing about buying a fly fishing starter kit when making the first steps is the fact that all the equipment is well matched and balanced.
Fly Fishing Kits for Beginners
In this article we want to give you an overview of the best fly kits for beginners on the market. We only recommend products we are convinced of ourselves. Generally speaking it holds true that it is worth investing a bit of money in your gear. This is especially true when you know you want to use it for a few years. Here are our recommendations.
The Orvis Encounter 5-Weight 8’6″ Rod Outfit is our top choice when it comes to value for money. Orvis is a brand with a long tradition in fly fishing. They also manufacture high end rods. It’s always a good idea to get products from such a brand since you can be sure they use their knowhow even in their more entry level products such as the Orvis Encounter 5-Weight 8’6″ Rod Outfit.
The basis of the Orvis Encounter 5-Weight 8’6″ Rod Outfit is the 5wt – 8’6″ Encounter Rod that comes with a cordura rod tube. If you had to fish with only one rod, you should probably get a 5wt since you can cover most fishing situations with it (sure the bigger the fish you target, the stronger a rod you’ll need).
With the Orvis Encounter 5-Weight 8’6″ Rod Outfit comes an Encounter reel, an Orvis WF (weight forward) floating line, Dacron backing and a tapered leader. All that’s left for you is to tie on a fly and you’re good to go. This set does not have flies or a box included. If you are looking for flies and a fly box check out our “Guide to the best Fly Boxes“.
- High quality rod and reel
- Cordura rod tube included
- Orvis guarantee
- Flies are not included
- Reel cannot be left attached to the rod for travelling
If you’re just starting out with fly fishing but want a quality product that can last you a few seasons, take a look at the Redington Kit. Redington is known for produce quality gear at affordable prices and this kit is no exception to this rule. It includes everything you need to make your first cast and catch your first fish on a fly rod.
The 9 feet fly rod and the Crosswater #5 (a quality trout reel) reel build the foundation of the Redington Kit. The reel comes pre-spooled and all you have to do is tie on a piece of tippet (included as well) and one of the dry flies that also come with this set. For easy transport, the Redington Kit also features a cordura case that protects your rod and reel.
- Great tube for travelling
- Nipper included
- A few nymphs or a streamer would be a nice addition to the set
The Pflueger Fly Rod Starter Kit is another quality entry level product that is hard to beat in its price to value ratio. Its main components are the 8′, three-piece #5/6 fly rod that is the ideal beginner’s fly rod since it’s mainly targeted at catching your first trout or smallmouth bass.
The fly reel that comes with the Pflueger Fly Rod Starter Kit is no high-end reel but that’s not crucial in the beginning. It does what it’s supposed to and that is to hold the backing and fly line that come with this set. Just tie on the tapered leader that’s included in the Pflueger Fly Rod Starter Kit as well and one of the flies and you’re ready to catch your first fish. The only downside of this set is the fact that it does not come with any rod tube which makes transport a little less convenient. But that would probably be too much to ask for at the price of a lunch for two.
- Solid build quality
- Set includes everything you need to make your first casts
- No cordura rod tube included to protect your fly fishing kit
The Wild Water comes with all the gear you need to make your first casts with a fly rod. At the heart of the set are a 9′ (9 foot in length) rood and a reel with a 85mm diameter spool. The reel comes pre-spooled with backing, a WF5 (WF = weight forward – an easy line for beginners to cast) and a tapered leader (the last piece of your fly line where you attach the fly).
Rod and reel – which can easily be changed from left hand to right hand retrieve – of the Wild Water are protected by a 32″ rod case. The great thing about this one is the fact that you can leave the reel attached to the rod. Furthermore, the rod case features a pocket to store your fly box for example.
The fly box of the Wild Water is waterproof and floats if you drop it into the water. With it come nine flies in three patterns to get you started. A retractable reel (to attach a pair of pliers) and a line nipper round off the great set.
- Set is very well equipped and even comes with a fly box and nipper
- Built quality of the reel is not up to par with the Orvis or Redington
Starting at only $69.99 (depending on the version you choose), the M MAXIMUMCATCH Maxcatch Extreme is a real steel. Just like the Wild Water set it comes with everything you need to catch your first fish.
In terms of what is included in the package the two sets can be compared well. They feature the exact same items. What sets the M MAXIMUMCATCH Maxcatch Extreme apart is the different rod and reel combinations you can choose from.
If you know you’ll be fishing small streams, a 3wt rod and reel is the right choice. If you want to target trout and smaller bass go for a 5wt rod and reel. Should you be looking at pike for the beginning, a stronger rod and reel of the M MAXIMUMCATCH Maxcatch Extreme are necessary. In this case you should opt for the 8wt.
- Reel comes with a pouch
- Richly equipped set
- Good protection of rod and reel
- Quality of the flies is not the best
The Kastking Emergence is a great choice if you are new to fly fishing and you still have to find out if it’s for you. You don’t have to spend a fortune to get going with this fly fishing starter kit.
The Kastking Emergence comes in three versions. The 4wt – 8’6″ option is a good choice if you are mainly going to be fishing small streams and creeks. The 5wt – 9′ is a classic rod to target species like trout. It can handle stronger fish and is a great all-round rod. If you are looking to target bigger species such as pike or bass, the 8wt – 9′ is the best choice.
With a classic 4-piece fly rod, the Kastking Emergence is also great for travelling. It comes with an aluminum reel, a line and backing, a tapered leader and a selection of 12 flies including dry flies, nymphs and streamers in a box.
In addition the Kastking Emergence features all the little tools you need to handle a fish. It includes a forceps, a line nipper with retractor and strike indicators to make it easier for you to catch your first fish.
- Excellent case for travelling
- Set comes with a pair of pliers
- No pouch for the reel included
The Piscifun Fishing Rod and Reel Combo is another great entry level set. Piscifun is known to produce good quality products at a decent price.
The Piscifun Fishing Rod and Reel Combo comes with a 5/6 rod with a length of 9 ft. The reel comes pre-spooled with backing, line and leader. All that’s left for you is to tie on a fly.
There are nine flies of three different patterns that come with the Piscifun Fishing Rod and Reel Combo. They are safely stored in a box that can be worn around your neck with the lanyard. A line nipper makes it easy for you to change flies.
- Rod performs surprisingly well
- Set included all the tools for you to catch your first fish
- No pouch for the reel
- A few streamers would be nice addition to the set of flies
Conclusion on the Best Fly Fishing Kits 2023
Starter kits can be a great way to enter the beautiful sport of fly fishing. It takes the thinking and guessing away that sometimes makes fly fishing seem hard in the beginning. The sets in our review all come with all the gear you need to make your first casts (except the Orvis where you have to get the flies separately). Any of these sets is also a great gift if you know that somebody wants to get into the sport.
We hope this guide has helped you make a good decision. No matter when or where you start fly fishing, we are sure you’ll have a great time.
Last update on 2023-11-26 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
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