Ben F

Trout bum. Fly Fishing fanatic. Business guru. Gear junkie

  1. Ascension Bay, Mexico | Fly Fishing Lodge Shootout

    Ascension Bay, Mexico | Fly Fishing Lodge Shootout
    We’ve been doing tackle shootouts for years. They are among the most visited pages on our website and we take pride in having helped thousands of anglers find the right tackle for their needs. As our business has grown, we asked ourselves: Which area of fly fishing had the least amount of information? The answer amongst our team was travel. Have you ever booked a lodge and wondered if it was the best lodge? Who has the best food? Most comfortable? Best guides? It’s almost impossible to find anyone who’s visited multiple lodges in a given area, let alone any sort of comparison amongst them. With this shootout, we aim to change that.
  2. Choosing a Fly Reel for a Spey or Switch Rod

    Choosing a Fly Reel for a Spey or Switch Rod
    One question that we get asked all the time is whether or not X reel is a good choice for Y rod. In single-handed rods, this is generally a pretty easy – you find a 5-weight reel to match your 5-weight rod. Unfortunately, this doesn’t work so well in Spey land. Rods are much longer, have two handles, and lines are much heavier. Luckily for you, we’ve put together a couple of quick guidelines that will make this process totally pain-free.
  3. How to Create the Perfectly Balanced Fly Rod and Reel Outfit

    How to Create the Perfectly Balanced Fly Rod and Reel Outfit
    One of the questions we get most often from customers interested in purchasing a new fly rod and fly reel outfit is how will a fly reel 'balance' a fly rod. We've decided to put together a post with our thoughts. This is your ultimate guide to figuring out exactly what the weight of your next fly reel should be. Read on to find out what it means to properly balance a fly rod and reel.
  4. Skagit vs Scandi Grain Weight

    Skagit vs Scandi Grain Weight
    One of the questions we’ve gotten most often about our recent Trout Spey Shootout has been in regards to our line recommendations. More specifically, why our recommendations for Scandi lines are much heavier than one might expect, relative to our Skagit recommendations. This has been particularly true for Pacific NW anglers who have been indoctrinated into thinking that Scandi is ALWAYS lighter than Skagit, no matter what. Read on to find out why we recommended the lines we did in our Trout Spey Shootout.
  5. Trout Spey Lines and Tips

    Trout Spey Lines and Tips
    One of the most confusing aspects of Spey casting is lines (and tips). Unfortunately, this has carried over to Trout Spey as well. This article is meant to accompany our Trout Spey Shootout and not to provide an in-depth analysis, review or explanation of every [trout] Spey line on the market.
  6. 2019 Trout Spey Shootout

    2019 Trout Spey Shootout
    Have you ever wondered which Trout Spey rod is the very best? Well, the wait is over. We've ranked the industry's top 3wt Trout Spey rods based on a comprehensive criterion. Which rod took home the title as 'Best Trout Spey Rod on the Market'? Read on to find out. Plus the Best Buy and fly line recommendations for every rod. Don't buy a Trout Spey rod without reading this shootout.
  7. Mystic JXP Fly Rod Review

    Mystic JXP Fly Rod Review
    Remember the Mystic Reaper? It was our best-selling budget rod for a long time. About a year ago, Mystic discontinued it, much to our dismay. But they had something brewing… Mystic has quietly introduced their newest flagship rod, the JXP. While I’m not a huge fan of the name, I’m definitely a fan of the rod.
  8. Sage Igniter Fly Rod Review

    Sage Igniter Fly Rod Review
    Sage has somewhat predictably replaced the second to last remaining Konnetic rod with their new KonneticHD blank technology. The Sage Method has become the all new Sage Igniter fly rod. They’re very similar. Both very fast and both designed to make seriously long casts.
  9. 2018 8-Weight Fly Reel Shootout and Review: What's the best saltwater fly reel?

    2018 8-Weight Fly Reel Shootout and Review: What's the best saltwater fly reel?
    Hey, remember back when we released our first 8-weight reel shootout in 2013? Yeah, we barely remember it ourselves. So, it was high time we redid it. In fact there is no reel that's in production that was in our original shootout. This year we've upped our game big time. We tested 37 reels across 13 categories - including 3 all new categories! We even had 5 new brands participating in what we believe is the largest and most comprehensive apples-to-apples reel test that's ever been done. It involved 100s of hours of work to not only test everything, but review each and every reel. We hope you enjoy it.
  10. Nautilus CCF X2 Fly Reel Review

    Nautilus CCF X2 Fly Reel Review
    After much ado, it’s time to announce the winner of our 2018 8-weight Reel Shootout: The Nautilus CCF X2 8/10. The CCF-X2 replaces the old CCF as Nautilus’ mid-priced big game reel. Usually, mid-price comes with mediocre performance. Not so this time. The CCF absolutely crushes its big brother the NV-G, and takes the top spot in our shootout. Here’s why we love this reel so much.

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