Best Beginner Fly Rod: Top 5 Picks (Entry & Intermediate level combos)

Are you looking for a beginner fly rod?

But don’t want to deal with buying a new rod that could end up being a complete waste of money?

If so, you’ve landed on the right page.

In this guide, I’ll show you my top ten picks for the best beginner fly rod (based on budget, length, weight, and features), which will give you the best bang for your buck. 

As always, this is just my opinion, based on what I believe is best for a good beginner fly fishing rod.

The rod should:

– be durable. It would be best if you weren’t replacing it every few weeks.

– be lightweight. For most beginning anglers, 5-7 ounces isn’t overkilled. If you need a lighter rod, look at 6-9 oz, not cost a fortune. 

I will also guide you about the best fly rod combo for beginners based on length, weight, and features that make the rod more comfortable.

The best beginner fly rod combo is a combination package of the reel, line, rod, spool, and tube. This helps to make the most out of your investment in fishing equipment and is more affordable to invest in quality products. And you don’t want to be stuck with a poorly made rod.

In addition to a list of my good beginner fly rods, I will also discuss how to set up and balance the rod and reel together, in brief, to make your fishing experience more exciting.

If you want to learn in detail about fly fishing working, check out my post here on the fly fishing rod and lures setup.

So, let’s get started.

I can’t wait to help you find the best fly rod length for beginners for your needs.

Best Beginner Fly Rods Quick Comparison List

Here’s a quick comparison chart of the top beginner fly rods based on length, Weight Line, Price, and Reaction Time.

I will go in-depth about how these rods differ and why I chose them.

How I Tested The Best Fly Fishing Rods for Beginners

This is a list of my favorite beginner fly fishing rods based on various factors. Some are rods I actually use on the water, while others I’m looking forward to trying shortly.

My testing methodology is simple.

I fish with each rod until I find a flaw that can’t be fixed. For example, my favorite rod for fly fishing is an Orvis Clearwater for all of the reasons listed above; however, I just found out that it has a tiny burr on it.

This process forces me to choose the best rods I’ve ever tested, which separates the good from the great.

Best Beginner Fly Rods Reviews & Buying Guide

Now that you know what to look for in a fly rod let’s talk about which of the best beginner fly rods are worth your time and money.

If you need something light and within the budget, my first two reviewed rods are the best option. The last two are worth considering if you need a fly rod for trout fishing, specifically as a beginner.

As I mentioned earlier, I will also list out the best fly rod combo for beginners; you can then decide if the combo package will suit you the best or if single rod buying would do wonders for you alone.

You can opt out of the best entry-level or an intermediate fly rod combo.

1. Orvis Clearwater fly rod


The Clearwater fly rod is perfect for those looking to step up from a traditional 6-footer to a 7-footer. I’ve had my eye on this rod for a while now, and when I saw it at the online shop, I decided to go for it. It’s a lot lighter than a 6-footer, but the grip is still soft enough that I’m comfortable using it.

I really like the medium-fast action of this rod. It has a good backbone and an excellent weight distribution between the butt and tip. It’s a bit heavier than my 6-footer, but I think that’s a good thing because it allows me to fish heavier lines without the rod feeling too light.

The 8-weight model is a great one, as it’s the perfect balance between a light enough rod that casts well for beginners but still gets the job done with more giant flies. 

This is an excellent rod for various species in salt water and fresh water environments and can handle a wide range of fish.

I like the durability of this rod. It’s built to last, and it has a 25-year warranty. I would give it 4 stars instead of 5 because the butt cap is plastic. It may not be the best option if you want a rod with a stainless steel butt cap.

2. Redington butter stick fly rod


I’ve tested several brands of inexpensive fly rods from Walmart and Lowes over the years, and none of them can compare to a Redington when it comes to quality and affordability.

After checking out a few of their rods, I found the BUTTER STICK to be an excellent value for the money. It’s pretty easy to use and comes with decent-sized taper guides. Its 8ft length made it easy to cast, and our test sample has plenty of power. 

Redington, a renowned brand making a fishing tackle for nearly 100 years, is introducing a new line of rods called “Translucent Sunshine Yellow.” The blank comes in a translucent color that makes it look bright yellow.

The new rods are intended for the beginner angler and boast a 4-piece construction, and are designed to be easy to learn and cast with.

Redington claims that the rods have a smooth handle that will be comfortable for most users. The rods come with a traditional half-well and a threadless reel seat, making them easy to store and transport.

A solid set of guides on their rods help to ensure accuracy when you’re casting, and their rods are designed to provide maximum power for consistent distances.

All of the rods from Redington are high-quality and come with a lifetime warranty. It’s a nice perk since they’re typically cheap, but the warranties are worth it.

We couldn’t find anything negative about the quality of the rods, and we think you’ll love having a solid, durable rod to spend hours on the water with!

3. Temple Fork Outfitters NXT Black Label Fly Rod Kit


The Temple Fork Outfitters NXT Black Label Fly Fishing Rod is a durable, lightweight, high-performance rod that delivers outstanding casting performance and a smooth, soft feel. It’s designed for beginners who want to learn how to cast and land fish and have enough power to handle big fish.

This particular rod is perfect for beginning fly fishing students and those who enjoy the sport. It features an advanced composite construction, with a beautiful medium-fast blank and the most pleasing stainless steel guide rod, and is an excellent choice for fishing in the wind.

The anodized aluminum up-locking reel seat is adjustable, and the reel has a quick release system to allow easy removal of the spool. This fly rod will give you years of use with an incredible lifetime no-fault warranty.

This is the absolute best gift to someone, a gift that is the highest performance to-price ratio, the ultimate value, the gift that seldom goes out of style.

4. St. Croix Mojo Trout


Blank: SCIV and SCII Graphite

Guides: Kigan Master Hand 3D Stripping & Sea Guide Snake Guides

Reel Seat: Machined Aluminum w/Uplocking Components

Rod Tube: Cloth Rod Sack

Rod Action: Medium-Fast

Best for: Dry Flies, Small Water

Grip: Reversed Half Wells

Ability Level: Beginner – Expert 

Length: 6ft – 9ft

Action: Medium-Fast

Line Weight: 2-7

This new model from St. Croix, a reputable company known for making quality fly rods, is perfect for beginners and intermediate-level fishermen. The rods are affordable and will fit anyone who wants a great starter rod for trout fishing.

The rods come in three different lengths, from 2wt through 7w, and are built with graphite, fiberglass, and anodized aluminum. The rods are designed with a firm grip, and the reel seats are comfortable and won’t pinch the fingers.

They’re also lightweight and easy to cast. The handle is ergonomically shaped for comfort, and there is an extensive guide window which makes it easier to see the fly line.

5. Redington Classic Trout


Rod Action: Medium

Best for: All Water, Dry Flies

Grip: Reversed Half Wells

Ability Level: Beginner- Expert

Guides: Titanium Oxide Stripping & Lightweight Snake Guides 

Reel Seat: Rosewood Insert w/Uplocking Component

Rod Length: 7ft – 9ft

Handle: Cigar

The Redington Classic Trout is an excellent choice if you want something for the intermediate to advanced angler. The rod is very affordable, and it offers decent action and performance. The action is medium-heavy but doesn’t feel heavy.

This is a great rod for fishing various trout species, including brook trout, brown trout, rainbow trout, and cutthroat trout. It’s perfect for someone who wants to spend less money but still enjoys catching fish.

The insert itself is gorgeous and perfectly matches my other rods, making me a happy camper. It fits the rod perfectly, holds the reel in place, and keeps it light enough with its uplocking component.

It’s been through a few challenging trout fishing trips without a problem and I haven’t had any issues with it either.

I have fished with both the Snake guides and the standard titanium oxide guide, and I found that the Snake guides make the rod lighter than the definitive guide.

The rod is more delicate because the rod is being held at a lower angle, which increases the leverage and makes it easier for the angler to cast.

The Classic Trout is an entry-level rod with an elegant appearance, a Cigar handle, and a gold-tone reel seat ring.

How to set up a fly fishing rod and reel?

When you’re putting together a beginner’s fly rod kit, there are a few things to consider. It should be easy to assemble, maintain, and store. In addition, it should fit the budget you have to spend.

When picking a rod, you want to choose one that feels good to hold and is well balanced.

As your skill level increases, you’ll need to be able to handle the rod comfortably and confidently.

In addition to weight and balance, you want to make sure your rod has an easy-to-adjust reel seat, a smooth crank handle, and a comfortable grip area.

How to care for a fly fishing rod and reel?

The rod and reel set is often the most expensive thing to buy in a fly fishing setup, and even after you’ve bought it, you need to be sure to take good care of it.

Here are some things you should do to keep it clean and ready to use.

First, wash it thoroughly. When you first purchase a rod and reel set, you want to clean it thoroughly. There is no such thing as “too clean.” The better you treat the rod and reel, the longer they last.

Second, be careful when you use it. A lot of people think that cleaning and oiling the rod is enough. Not so. If you are using a baitcasting rod, it should be dry between the butt section and the handle. Otherwise, the lure can stick to it, which can cause serious problems.

When using it, make sure you are using the correct line size for your fly. A smaller line won’t allow your fly to sink or move very far. A more significant line will.

Third, store it properly. Don’t use it until it is stored properly. It can go lousy swift if it isn’t stored correctly.

Fourth, oil the rod. Oil is key to keeping your fly rods and reels performing at their best. Make sure to buy the correct type of oil for your specific fly rod and reel.

Fifth, clean your gear. When you are done fishing, clean your gear. It is essential to keep it clean. Please do not leave it in the water or on a dock.

Closing Thoughts on my Best Beginner Fly Rod

I hope you enjoyed this list of the best beginner fly rod and found the information about what is the best fly fishing rod for a beginner.

Redington and Orvis, as discussed already, are the best brands to use for a good beginner fly fishing rod and therefore are prioritized at the top of the list.

For the combo package, I hope the list of the best fly rod combo for beginners is helpful enough that it’ll serve you well for years to come.

I hope you enjoyed this guide on finding good beginner fly rods.

Happy fly fishing!

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