Top 5 Fly Fishing Reels to Buy

By Sam Feeder , last updated December 29, 2011

The top 5 fly fishing reels to buy will vary based on what type of fish you are looking to catch and how you fly fish in general. Fly fishing is a type of fishing that requires a lot of skill, as you must know how to cast your line in a way that differs from any other type of fishing out there. Due to the fact that skill and technique play such an important part of fly fishing, quality reels are critical to experienced fly fishermen to ensure that they can cast their line where they intended and can keep a biting fish on the hook. Check out the top 5 fly fishing reels on the market listed below.

Pflueger President Fly Reel

The Pflueger President Fly Reel is one of the best fly fishing reels on the market, as fly fishermen everywhere swear by it. The reel has a large arbor spool design with a forged, machined and anodized aluminum frame and spool. The reel has both an over-sized ball bearing and a one-way clutch bearing allowing it to reel more consistently over a long period of time. The patented center-disc drag system for total drag control allows you to successfully cast upstream and let your fly float downstream without it spooling out too quickly. This high-end fly fishing reel retails for a reasonable $180.

Abel Super 5N Fly Fishing Reel

The Abel Super 5N fly fishing reel is one the most versatile fly fishing reels on the market, allowing you to fly fish for just about any fish, be it freshwater trout or red snapper in the ocean. It is suited for 5 to 6 different tests of line, allowing you to successfully catch fish large and small. The spool is narrow for faster retrieval and a slimmer profile and there is corrosion protection on the outside so that it won't rust if it gets wet, which is inevitable. Due to the versatility and advancements on this fly fishing reel, it retails for over $500, meant to last a lifetime.

Hatch Five Plus Fishing Reel

What makes the Hatch Five Plus stand out from all the other fly fishing reels on the market is its ability to start up its drag quicker then just about any other reel. This will allow you to set a hook and catch a fish that took a bite of your fly, rather then loose it to a powerful strike or the current just because you couldn't set the drag quickly enough. It is also indestructible stainless steel and has a lifetime warranty, so the $475 you spend on it won't seem nearly as costly.

Sage 4550 Fly Fishing Reel

The Sage 4550 is incredibly light, weighing just under 5 ounces. This will help make your casting easier and less weighty. On top of the lightness, this reel has a 3:1 gear ratio allowing you to hook fish after fish without having to worry about your drag. The Sage 4550 is meant for fast water and big trout fishing, so if you go on these fishing trips a lot, it is worth its $400 price tag.

Red Truck Diesel

Meant for trout, which is what fly fishing was originally designed for, the Red Truck can handle 5 to 6 test line with a ton of backing so it can handle a trout that runs down river. It is built from aluminum and anodized for an incredibly long life and a number of different trout fishing trips. Best of all, it only costs $200 total.

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