The best fly fishing rods of 2018
Walk slowly and carry the right stick.
HD Sage Salt ($ 950)
Allowed at 70 feet, head winds at 20 mph, guide screaming in your ear. What do you want in your hand? HD salt. Sage has tweaked the composite of its already whipped Konnetic rod technology to transfer energy more efficiently, for a faster cast. Of course it’s expensive. But do you really want to miss your shot?
Scott G ($ 845)
Scott’s G-Series can do it all, and the company updated it in 2017 with new cones and lighter materials. The rod is fast enough that you can extend the line when you need to, and it has enough feel that you can place a size 24 gnat without any ripple.
Echo Gecko Kit ($ 169)
Parents: Want to fish more? Bring the kids. The staff favorite Echo Gecko looks awesome and costs next to nothing. Do you have no children? Get a Gecko for the back of the truck, so you always have a small supply of water.
Winston Nimbus ($ 650)
Six bones, is that a good deal? It’s for the Nimbus. It’s basically one of Winston’s famous $ 900 graphite and boron rods, but made exclusively from graphite. You won’t even notice the difference on the water.
Redington Butter Stick ($ 250)
The Butter Stick isn’t new – it debuted a few years ago – but it’s been responsible for more laughs than any cane for years. The slow acting fiberglass results in a perfect presentation (except in the wind) and makes the eight inch fish feel twice as big.
Orvis Helios 3D ($ 845)
The casting master
Forget the image of Orvis as a heavy brand for traditionalists. The Helios 3D (the D stands for distance) is as advanced as any rod. The exclusive blank reduces vibration and lateral movement, correcting your mistakes (trust us, you make a few) so the rod launches smoothly in only one direction. The only limit to its reach is your arm.