January 12, 2021
In the second quarter of 2020, the COVID-19 pandemic forced people away from their offices, organized youth sports, and almost every other type of gathering. But it inspired many people to get outside go biking, kayaking, and fly fishing with their immediate family members. When you suddenly need two or three more fly-fishing outfits in the family, combo packages are the way to go because the lines are already spooled right on the reels, and everything is ready to start fishing immediately—and at an affordable price.
Penn Battle Saltwater Combo
Penn Reels, founded in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in 1932, is a legendary brand in saltwater fishing. In 1936, Penn introduced the Senator reel, with high-speed stainless pinion gears for taking in line faster and standing up to the demands of chartered big-game fishing. The Penn Senator was the same reel used in the film Jaws (1975) and today more than 1,400 International Game Fish Association (IGFA) world records have been set using Penn Reels. Penn has rarely (if ever) delved into the fly-fishing world but today they are owned by Pure Fishing (the same company that owns Hardy and other fly-fishing brands) making it possible to combine saltwater expertise and fly-fishing chops into a saltwater combo that lives up to its name. The new Penn Battle Saltwater Combo is a 4-piece 8-weight or 10-weight medium-fast fly rod matched with a weight-forward floating fly line and an anodized die-cast saltwater reel with a powerful disk drag built to stop large fish. The line is looped and comes with a looped nylon monofilament leader. The rod has an anodized double uplocking aluminum reel seat with a carbon spacer appropriate for saltwater use and comes with hard-tube rod and reel case covered in ballistic nylon with a convenient carrying handle. $250 | pennfishing.com
Pescador on the fly El Jefe packable fly rod Combo
Six-piece rods that fit in your carry-on for business trips, or stash in a backpack for long hikes, ensure you always have a rod with you. The Pescador on the Fly El Jefe Packable Fly Rod Combo is a six-piece, fast-action rod that breaks down into a 22-inch padded rod tube with a rod sock, carry strap, extra tip section, and a machined aluminum reel—all with a lifetime warranty. As far as packable rod and reel combos go, this one really is “the boss.” Available in 3- to 8-weight sizes. $400 | pescadoronthefly.com
Cortland Guide series Combo
Rod and reel combos are great starter kits because they have everything you need to get yourself started in fly fishing, but when a guide buys a combo package, it has to work hard today, tomorrow, and for weeks of clients after that. It has to be durable, and it has to perform, otherwise it won’t be just the beginner who is frustrated.
Cortland’s Guide Series are available as an 8-foot 4-weight, 9-foot 5-weight, and 9-foot 8-weight, making them suitable for everything from beaver pond brook trout to coho salmon. These fast-action rods come with a composite construction disc drag reel pre-spooled with a Cortland weight-forward fly line with a welded loop, a nylon tapered leader and a Cordura-covered rod case with a carrying handle. $180-$190 | cortlandline.com