The best holiday fly fishing gifts can be tough to narrow down but there are plenty of great mid-range price options starting around $300 and under $500. In this price range anglers can expect both quality and value in the major fly fishing categories. This is a good price range for any angler, expert or novice, because you can get a lot of bang for your buck without buying low quality gear or draining your bank account on the most expensive rods, reels or accessories.
Sage Fly Rods
Sage has done a great job of bringing quality fly rods into the mid-range market and these three rods will fit the bill for any fly fishing situation:
Based on the much loved XP, with a similar graphite composition and medium-fast action, the Approach comes in at $295 in a versatile range of weights and lengths for all-around freshwater and saltwater fly fishing. Quality components, a travel case and built for easy casting and inherent power, the Sage Approach fishes like a much pricier fly rod.
It’s hard to find a good saltwater fly rod under five hundred bucks these days. Sage broke the mold with the Motive. For $425 anglers the Motive delivers new salt specific tapers that cover short, fast casts and accurate, long shots through a stiff wind. Reds, bones, tarpon or tuna-this rod will get the job done. Save a few bucks for tipping your guide with Sage’s Motive saltwater fly rod.
Built for the angler who wants performance without spending twice the money, the Response was designed by Sage to deliver a sensitive fly rod with feel and power. High-modulus blanks reduce weight while an improved taper increases touch and sensitivity for effortless casts. These all around rods are available in three through six weights and start at $395.
Hatch Finatic Plus Reels
For that new fly rod you are going to need a new reel and it is hard to find a fly reel better than the new Hatch Finatic Plus. They are available in a range of sizes and are designed to balance perfectly with specific rod weights. Fully machined bar stock aluminum, large arbor spools, super lightweight strength and a smooth powerful drag are all standard with the Finatic Plus. The Finatic starts around $350.
Fly Fishing Waders
Simms G3 Guide Pants
As much time as I spend in a boat in the summer without wearing waders, there comes a time when the weather turns, I need to get out of the boat to fish a choice riffle or it is time to wade for some winter trout. For me waders are a necessary evil and I’ve found no better pair of waders for the mobile hiking angler or for fly fishing from a boat and rowing. The Simms G3 Guide Pants cover about ninety percent of any anglers’ year-round wading needs and most importantly, they are comfortable. They aren’t bulky and wear like pants and the zipper is an added bonus. The 5 layer Gore Tex material is tough, waterproof and breathable-I have punished these waders for years with no ill effects. Unless you need to wade up to your chest, which most of us never do, the durability, waist high versatility and comfort of the Simms G3 Guide Pants is a bargain at $499.
Fly Fishing Coolers
Yeti Tundra 65
I was late to get on the Yeti Coolers bandwagon, and each summer bought a new cooler to replace the beat up one from the year before. The Tundra 65 changed all that and I’ll never look back. It’s just the right size for transporting in a vehicle or boat but has the space for plenty of drinks, ice and food. The long-lasting cold factor, which keeps ice from melting for days, is great but for me the totally reliable, bulletproof durability of my Yeti Tundra is what makes it worth the money. They really are indestructible and for $400 you’ll end up saving money in the long run.
For more fly fishing gift ideas, stop by Vail Valley Anglers in Edwards, Colorado or check out vailvalleyanglers.com
Brody Henderson, Guide and Content Writer