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Basic Fly Fishing Supplies

There seems to be an unending amount of fly fishing supplies that you “need” to go fly fishing for trout. The word “need” is relative of course. I have enjoyed many days fly fishing with just my rod and reel, my box of flies, polarized sunglasses and a fly fishing hat.

OK, I had on more than that.

Here is my list of some of the fly fishing supplies you will find helpful depending on the type of fly fishing you plan on doing. Of course as you move beyond the fly fishing basics this list will grow.

I will keep these in the order that you should buy them.

Your First Shopping Trip: (Also known as “don’t leave home without it.”)

Fly rod, reel, fly line and leader material

  • See the navigation buttons for more information on which products are best for you.

Fly box with a couple dozen essential trout flies

  • The box should include nymphs, dry flies and streamers. Your local fly shop can help you with this.

Fly fishing hat

  • You may already have a good hat. A lot of people wear baseball caps but a hat that has full coverage is even better. I have taken this more seriously since the doc cut off part of my ear because of a malignant melanoma. Learn more about getting a good fly fishing hat.


  • This is common sense, but keep in mind that the fish can smell it when it gets on the fly.

Polarized sunglasses are a must.

  • I once took a young man fly fishing out to a well-known hole and asked if he could see the fish. He said, “No, you must have a trained eye.” I asked him if his sunglasses were polarized. He didn’t know. We traded. Needless to say, he saw the fish. Click here for more information on polarized fishing glasses.

Your Second (Or Third) Shopping Trip for Fly Fishing Supplies:

Fly fishing vest

  • These are very handy. They save you the trouble of carrying a tackle box. You should be able to take your extra leader material, fly box, indicators and miscellaneous tools in these.

Fly fishing waders

  • Nice things to have if you plan on doing any serious wading. They come in many different materials and of course budgets. A good entry-level set could be as simple as Muck boots used by many farmers. Not good for much more than ankle-deep water but they are good for swampy areas.
  • For safety, always use the belt. Ever try to swim with your waders full of water?

Wading staff

  • I am not talking about the staff at the fly shop here, I am talking about a collapsible rod that you can use for support when crossing a stream. I have been lucky in that I have only taken one fall into the river. It makes you think “what if.” If on a tight budget you can always use a stick found on the side of the river.

Fly fishing nets

  • When it comes to this topic of conservation, a good fly fishing net will allow you to catch and release your trout without harm. The newer materials used today will not rub off the scales of the trout.

Your Last Shopping Trip for Fly Fishing Supplies?

Don’t you wish! But don’t worry about it. What you need to do now is get out there. Go! Learn your local rivers, and get to know the staff at your local fly shop.

Start saving because I know you are already thinking about a fly fishing boat.

More information on fly fishing boats

Save 50% on Fly Assortment Boxes for Trout