Setting Up a Fly Fishing Rod

Setting Up a Fly Fishing Rod
Proper set up of a fly rod is important so that you can get the best performance for casting and fighting the fish. This is even more important for a fisherman who is new to the sport, as he may not have the experience and skill to make up for an incorrectly rigged rod. If you take the time to carefully connect the backing, fly line, leader and the fly to your rod and reel, you'll be rewarded by landing lots of fish later.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Fly reel
  • Fly line
  • Spool of fly line backing (not to be confused with the spool of the fly reel)
  • Tapered, mono-filament leader
  • Fly
  • Strike indicator and split shot (optional)
Step 1
Make sure that you have the right line weight to match your fly rod. The line weight is listed on its packaging, and most fly rods have some lettering just above the grip that indicates the rod weight. For example, you should have a 6-weight line and a 6-weight fly rod.
Step 2
Mount your fly reel onto the fly rod reel seat and then remove the reel spool from the reel.
Step 3
Pull off about 18 inches of fly line backing from its spool. Take the end and wrap it around the spool of the reel twice, leaving about 8 to 10 inches on the tag end, and then tie it off using an arbor knot.
Step 4
Re-attach the reel spool to the reel. Place the backing spool on a table and run the backing underneath a book so as to provide some tension. Crank the reel from the other side of the book, loading the backing onto the reel.
Step 5
Leave about 8 inches of the backing off the reel spool, and tie it to the end of the fly line that is marked "this end to reel" using an albright knot. Crank the fly line onto the reel in the same manner as the backing in Step 4.
Step 6
Attach a tapered, mono-filament leader to the other end of the fly line using a nail knot. Take the loose end of the leader and string it through all the line guides.
Step 7
Tie the fly of your choice onto the end of the tapered leader using an improved clinch knot. For wet flies and nymphs that you want to sink, pinch a split shot sinker about 18 inches above the fly, tie on a strike indicator, and you are ready to fish.


Article Written By Anthony Smith

Anthony Smith began writing for Demand Studios in May of 2009 and has since written over 1400 articles for them. He also writes for "The College Baseball Newsletter." He attended the University of New Mexico, and has more than 25 years of experience in the business world.

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