Did you know that the “World’s Foremost Outfitter” is rooted in the fly business? That’s right. Cabela’s, which now operates more than 30 retail locations throughout the United States and Canada, generates more than $2.7 billion a year, and employs over 14,000 people, actually started in 1961, when Dick Cabela placed ads in national sporting magazines that read: “Free introductory offer!!! 5 popular Grade A hand tied flies. Send 25 cents for postage and handling to…”

Filling orders from the kitchen table of their Nebraska home, Dick and his wife, Mary, took the money they made to buy and market more fishing gear. They invited Dick’s younger brother, Jim, into the business…soon produced the company’s first catalog…and the rest, as they say, is history.


A shining example of how world-class outdoor ingenuity invariably generates from fly fishing and national sporting magazines.

And in celebration of the company’s 50th Anniversary, Cabela’s has given us an assortment of great fly fishing goodies to give away to Fly Talk readers. We’ll start with a 50th Anniversary Graphite Fly Rod, valued at $250. Available in five models (you can pick), there will only be 625 of these made (in the USA).

And sticking with the “5 Flies” theme that started it all, here’s the deal: Guess the top five best-selling fly patterns Cabela’s shipped last year. Nail all five, and you win the rod. In the event of a tie, we’ll throw the names in a hat, pick one rod winner, and give the others consolation prizes of Cabela’s 50th Anniversary Fly Assortments (value $50).

Good luck to you all, and thanks to Cabela’s…