There are no limits to obsession, and I am infatuated with fly fishing for fish. If you’re like me, the opportunity to cast a line in an unusual body of water is not just a challenge but also a chance to encounter fish species you may not ordinarily target.
A sturdy and functioning travel fly rod is required for this purpose. Here, I’ll examine different travel fly rods so that you may buy with confidence and be prepared to fish at the drop of a hat.
Let’s plunge in!
Top-Rated Travel Fly Rods (Overall)
These are our recommendations for the best travel fly rods for use on the water and during travel.
1. Orvis Clearwater 6 Piece, 5 Wt
The Orvis Clearwater model has proven itself to fly fishing aficionados from the East Coast to the West Coast as a budget-friendly and robust travel fly rod.
The Orvis brand is often suggestive of quality, and the Clearwater six-piece lives up to its reputation. With a price tag of $229 and a 25-year warranty, you receive a substantial amount of value.
Numerous fishermen who tested the Orvis Clearwater remarked that despite being a six-piece travel rod, it soon found its way into daily usage due to its ability to pack lightly and perform well.
- 9-foot-long, six-piece
- Chromium Viper Guides
- Gray Rod Tube Is Integrated
- 25-Year Orvis Guarantee
The 5 wt is the norm for fishing for several species, but it also comes in a 4 wt for streams and blue-lining and an 8 wt for bass and pike. The supplied rod tube is as robust as the rod itself, making it a priceless addition.
The Orvis Clearwater is a well-rounded, dependable fly rod for the price, whether you’re packing it in your backpack for a hike or keeping it in your pickup for pond-hopping on your way home from work.
It is difficult to get fly fishers to agree on some things, but the Orvis Clearwater is the benchmark for travel fly rods and is strongly recommended.
2. Echo Trip 8 Travel Fly Rod
The Trip raises the bar for travel fly rods. This eight-piece rod fits inside an 18-inch container. There is no legitimate reason not to travel with this tiny rod.
The case is so lightweight that Echo advises bringing it with you whenever you go fishing. As someone who has had the terror of a broken rod tip after a two-mile trek, I find this to be a solid selling feature.
Due to Echo’s advancements in ferrule technology, this eight-piece arrangement plays similarly to many four-piece ensembles.
- 9′ Length Eight-Piece
- 18″ Segments
- Non-Abrasive Snake Guides
- Moderately Rapid Action
- Enhancements to Ferrule Technology
- Echo Permanent Warranty
The Medium-Fast action enables the user to cast dry flies and streamers with ease, which I find particularly beneficial in a travel rod designed for fishing in a variety of circumstances. The attractive dark green finish complements the chromed snake guides nicely.
Although Echo has a generous lifetime return guarantee, the longevity of its travel rods may prevent you from ever having to use it. It is just a little more costly than the Clearwater, at $279, and it packs smaller.
People who use the Trip extensively report that although they first acquired it as a backup rod, its simplicity of use and adaptability frequently make it the primary rod on fishing excursions where other rods are brought along.
It has received several positive reviews and should be considered when selecting a travel fly rod.
3. Douglas Upstream Ultralight Fly Rod
Douglas has bridged the gap between graphite and traditional bamboo with this collection of rods. Rods used upstream are incomprehensibly light.
I have never cast a fly rod this light before, so I can only imagine the sensitivity and delicacy they bring.
I am a huge lover of brook trout fishing in little streams, and the Upstream series was designed specifically for these conditions. Small flies must be placed precisely while fishing in mountain streams, and the Upstream shines at this.
- 2-4 wt Models
- Exceptionally Light (1.13–1.75 oz)
- 6’6″ Two-Piece to 8’0″ Six-Piece Models
- Graphite Structure Resembling Conventional Cane
- Aluminum Rod Tube and Sock, Brushed
Douglas has blended all the positive aspects of graphite with the moderately slow action of a traditional bamboo fly rod.
These rods are not designed for large bodies of water! Regarding their inclusion as travel fly rods, however, I cannot imagine a finer rod to follow me up a mountain or to a secret spring creek.
Some Upstream versions disassemble into six parts for travel, and all models, from 2 to 4 wt, are featherweight and packable (in a traditional brushed aluminum rod tube).
The Upstream series may be more expensive than the rods discussed earlier, but this represents the product’s originality.
In a world where bamboo is becoming increasingly desirable (and EXPENSIVE), these rods stand out as the modern angler’s answer to attaining that traditional feel and movement.
Best Value Fly Rod for Travel
Want something affordable for your upcoming vacation? Consider this option. This rod is compact and provides excellent fishing performance at a significantly lower cost.
4. Maximum Catch 8 Piece Travel Fly Rod
MaxCatch is a firm that I’m certain many budget-conscious fishermen are familiar with.
Their eight-piece travel rod is an excellent option for an all-purpose rod, and their goods are designed to withstand rigorous usage and damage.
These rods have quick action, allowing the 5-weight to cast chunkier streamers and indicator rigs. It is readily transportable in a backpack and comes with a Cordura tube for storage when traveling.
- 9-foot, eight-piece structure
- Rapid Reaction
- 17-inch Cordura Tube is Included
- Guide for Ceramic Stripping
- Cork Handle
- Reasonable Cost
Some reviewers noted that the MaxCatch was a touch stiff, but at this pricing range, this is hardly a deal-breaker. I would recommend the MaxCatch as your first travel rod or as a backup partner to the rod you currently own if you’re looking for something dependable, inexpensive, and lightweight.
The Best Collapsible Fly Rod
Spinning and Tenkara fishing utilize telescoping rods more frequently. Nonetheless, we discovered a wonderful telescopic fly rod that includes a fly reel and line!
5. REYR Telescoping Fly Rod
REYR has accomplished something extraordinary with its telescopic fly rod. As soon as I began to fly fishing, I discovered how difficult it was to fish a stream that was overgrown with trees and bushes.
It was a pain to maneuver a fishing rod and line into deep trout holes and then trek to the next body of water.
I was advised by more seasoned fishers to avoid telescopic rods since they are typically inexpensive and designed to capture the fisherman rather than the fish. REYR has revived the telescoping rod in this instance.
- Collapsed 19″, Extended 9′, 4 lb
- Moderately Rapid Action
- Easy Assembly, No Knots
- Aluminum CNC Reel Included
- Line Internal Feature
- Neoprene Case
This rod folds to 19″ for travel, which is workable, but its internally routed line is what makes it truly remarkable. Internally, the line ascends through the rod and exits the tip.
This not only allows you to leave a fly connected and ready for use but also allows you to extend the rod to the desired length and begin casting. Additionally, there is a less exposed line that might become entangled in branches and brambles.
Due to the friction of this internally routed line feature, the rod sacrifices distance, but you don’t need to cast far on little water.
REYR has spent significant time and effort rethinking what a telescoping rod is capable of. I still find most telescoping rods to be rigid and brittle. Especially if you’re hiking or backpacking near alpine streams, it’s a worthy consideration.
6. Best Fly Fishing Travel Bags
While traveling, it might be difficult to maintain your fishing gear nice and organized. These two travel bags are ideal for individuals who are going by air or by car.
Allen Company Fly Fishing Rod And Equipment Transport Case
Allen Company has designed a durable and sturdy travel bag for those who want to spend time fishing.
This bag contains an astonishing four four-piece rods, allowing you to cover every preferred manner of fly fishing (from little dry flies to larger streamers) with what you can carry.
The bag has a low profile and packs down tiny compared to its carrying capacity.
- Fits up to four 9.5′ Four-Piece Rods
- Eight Exterior Variable Partitions
- 31.5″ Long, 9.5″ High
- Shock-Absorbing Padded Construction
The outer dividers and zippered compartments may accommodate an assortment of reels and fly boxes. This backpack is well-equipped with organizing features.
The case is cushioned and suitable for long-distance travel. A few delighted customers reported that the bag’s small shape allowed them to keep it close at hand throughout flights and trains.
7. Fishpond Teton Rolling Carry-On Bag
Fishpond has designed the ideal travel companion for regular flyers and fly anglers.
Their Teton Rolling Carry-On bag is a luggage for your fly fishing equipment that can fit all you’ll need for an extended stay in a location with water.
This bag was developed for use on airplanes and meets the size specifications of the majority of carriers. The Teton would function equally well in a cramped vehicle.
It is safe and durable and can contain the required fishing equipment for extended travel.
- Rolling Carry-On Suitcase with Handle
- Bottom Compression Molded
- Mesh ventilation on inside pockets
- Numerous exterior compartments
Fishpond’s dedication to quality and functionality makes this bag essential for hauling premium rods, reels, and accessories.
How Is A Travel Fly Rod Made?
For portability, a travel fly rod is often a multi-feathered rod that is more compact and lighter than a two- or four-piece rod.
Whether it’s kept in a vehicle for use on the commute to work or packed in a backpack for fishing in a spring creek, the characteristics of a travel fly rod are typically the same: lightweight construction with all-purpose line weight and length, the ability to pack down to a manageable size, and the durability required to withstand the hazards of transportation.
How will it be utilized?
Some considerations for a travel fly rod are directly tied to its intended use and your own concept of “travel.” Many of us will not bring our fishing rods on an airline, but some may.
You may just need a travel rod for bank fishing or when you do not have access to waders or a boat.
Durability is essential, and while I appreciate fishermen who can use a 2 or 3 wt rod in overgrown and complex places, I often choose a larger line weight to resist the inevitable snags, bush, and obstacles that accompany pioneering and difficult circumstances.
Using your travel rod as a backup for your expensive primary rod is another alternative. It only takes one unfortunate occurrence to leave you in the middle of the water with a broken tip or shattered eyelet, and having a spare rod with you can salvage an otherwise disastrous day. Determine the intended use of your travel rod and purchase accordingly.
There was once a time when a travel rod with more than four ferrules lacked sensitivity, durability, and performance, but with all of the recent developments in graphite and ferrule technology, I’d say those days are mostly past. As previously said, some of these travel rods perform so well and pack so little that they make their way into a fisherman’s typical rotation of rods.
An investment in a travel rod is worthwhile, even if it remains in the front seat. Not having to make many performance sacrifices is a benefit, and the opportunity to fish for an hour at a moment’s notice is invaluable. Consider one of the aforementioned ways to maintain your preparedness and the fish’s fly education.