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SALT LAKE CITY — If your spouse, significant other or anyone else in your family fly fishes, chances are you're at a loss as to what to get them for Christmas. The fly fishing world is full of weird terminology, an endless array of products and a shockingly large gamut of pricing that makes finding the best products a difficult task.
This gift guide will give you some ideas on what to get the fly fisher in your life. I've personally tested or owned all the gear mentioned in the article. And I spend roughly 175 days a year fly fishing so I know this gear can stand up to rigorous use — and most importantly, it can handle big fish.
Outerwear: Frogg Toggs
Staying warm and dry, especially during this time of year, is a must for fly fishers. Frogg Toggs make the best 100 percent waterproof shell jackets on the market and you can buy them for $30 at Sportsman's Warehouse. Whether you're on the Bear River in the Oneida Narrows during an Idaho thunderstorm or out on Strawberry Reservoir during a Utah downpour, Frogg Toggs will keep you dry and warm no matter what.
Fly rod: Winston Boron IIIx
Picking out the right fly rod is a lot like picking out the right hunting rifle — at the end of the day, it comes down to how the rod feels in your hand. However, you can be sure that the fly fisher in your life will love the feel of the light and powerful Winston Boron IIIx fly rod.
In a 9-foot 5-weight configuration, the rod can throw heavy streamers and deliver small dry flies with delicacy and ease, making it the best choice for most any angler. However, at $795, the rod is a bit pricey. It comes with a lifetime warranty, but if $795 is too much, consider instead the highly-servicable St. Croix Imperial fly rod. It's no Winston, but it'll make any fly fisher happy.
Simms waders are widely regarded as the best in the industry, but Orvis' Silver Sonic line of waders are cheaper than Simms' entry-level offering ($280 vs. $350 respectively), and just as durable. Plus, the Silver Sonic waders come with a unique suspension system that allows them to convert from a chest to a hip wader for those days when the heat out on the water gets unbearable.
Wading Boots: Korkers Devil's Canyon
Thanks for the boot love! InstaRepost: @riverman.fishing_eddie.mcrae "I'd like to express my sincere gratitude to the fantastic folks at @korkersfootwear. I've been wearing their wading boots exclusively for 3 years now and honestly could not manage without them." Photo credit: @thirddayfarm #korkerslife #boots #outdoorsman #bornready
A good pair of boots can make a huge difference in how an angler is able to navigate a river. The Korkers Devil's Canyon boots are extremely lightweight and come with a bevy of great features. They have the popular BOA lacing system, which makes getting the boots on and off quick and simple, and ensure a snug fit. Pair that with Korkers' proprietary OmniTrax sole system and the fact that these boots were built with an athletic fit in mind and you have yourself a very solid wading boot, with a 1-year warranty, for only $200.
Fly Line: Cortland Trout Boss HTx
Picking out the right fly line largely depends on what fly rod you buy, but the Cortland Trout Boss HTx fly line is built to perform well on the majority of today's fly rods. The line has a longer head than most traditional weight-forward lines, which gives it the ability to mend in complex current almostas well as a double-taper line. Cortland has also introduced a new heat coating to this fly line that helps it last longer, stay clean and perform better.
Finding the right gift for the fly fisher in your life can be challenging, but with this gift guide, finding them something they'll love should be as simple as setting the hook on a rising trout.
What is your favorite fly fishing product? Let us know in the comments.
Spencer lives and breathes fly fishing. If he's not out on his favorite streams, he's at home tying flies or he's writing about fishing. Connect with him on Twitter @Spencer_Durrant.