Who Makes the Best Fly Fishing Rods?


If you are just learning how to fly fish, or if you are interested in learning, you might be wondering who makes the best fly rod or who are the top manufacturers?

However, the answer you are looking for can be tricky. If you were to speak with a fly fishing guide, they might vouch for the brands they endorse or are authorized dealers of one. To try to provide the best answer possible, our team at Forrester’s Bighorn River Resort has created a list of the top fly rods based on the world records they set.

Who Makes The Best Fly Fishing Rods?

The following are the best fly fishing rods on the market:

  1. Orvis fly rods. Named “Best of the Best” by Field & Stream magazine two years in a row, Orvis fly rods are a household name for outdoorsmen throughout the United States.
  2. Sage fly rods. Holding 75 world records, Sage has more than three times as many records as the next closest competitor. Founded in 1980 by notable rod designer Don Green, the company is located in Bainbridge Island, Washington.
  3. G. Loomis fly rods. This brand holds 24 fly fishing world records, including the world casting record of 243 by designer Steve Rajeff. Founded by Gary Loomis in 1982, these high-end rods are made for both freshwater and saltwater anglers.
  4. Thomas & Thomas fly rods. Established in 1969 in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania, Thomas Dorsey and Thomas Maxwell focused on producing some of the best bamboo and graphite fly rods in the market. These rods received a couple Presidential commissions – when President Ronald Reagan gave a bamboo fly rod to Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Frazer as a gift in 1981, then when President Reagan gave matching fly rods to Prince Charles and Princess Diana.
  5. Redington fly rods. The company was found in 1992, based in Bainbridge Island, Washington. While it is a relative newcomer to the fly rod making game, Redington understands the new generation angler better than many rod makers today and manufactures its fly rods to that demographic.

Honorable mentions: Albright fly rods, R.L. Winston fly rods, Cabela’s fly rods, and Temple Fork fly rods.

Here on the Bighorn River we use the Orvis 5 weight rod which is a good all round rod. In windy conditions we will move to a 6 weight can really help punch through. For the avid dry fly enthusiast we recommend a 4 weight, which will give you much more feel.

We will pre-order any equipment and have it drop shipped to the Bighorn River Resort. We offer equipment discounts for all of our guests!