The Trout Bum’s Holiday Gift Guide
Twelve gifts for the angler obsessed with brooks, browns, cutties, and rainbows
Whether you chase stocked rainbows or wild browns, and whether you swing Muddlers or dunk mealworms, there’s a gift for every kind of trout-crazed angler on this list. Best of all, there are ideas here that fit any budget, whether you need something for the angler jetting off to New Zealand, or just the one hitting his favorite hometown stream after work.
Finn Utility Visor Fly Patch
$70 • Finn Utility Joe Cermele
Are you one of those fly guys with bugs stuck all over the ceiling and visors of your truck? You know that doesn’t help the resale value, right? Finn Utility brings a big touch of class to auto interior fly storage with their visor patch. It creates the perfect spot to stick loose patterns, or to simply let the day’s offerings dry out on the way home before putting them back in your box.
If you’re a serious light-tackle trout angler, there’s a good chance you’d agree that there aren’t a ton of high quality trout-sized spinning reels on the market. Abu has changed that by offering their rugged Revo X in a stream-friendly size 10. Featuring a carbon fiber drag and a spool that holds 140 yards of 4-pound test, there’s no trout on the planet this little brute won’t stop.
Panther Martin Opening Day 3 Pack
$10.99 • Panther Martin Panther Martin
I’ve been throwing Panther Martin spinners at trout since I was about six years old, and I’ve always been a fan of the classic yellow teardrop body with red dots. Over the years, however, Panther has developed some fresh offerings that have proven just as lethal as the old standbys. Now you can try three of them—UV, hammered, and holographic—with their new Opening Day 3 Pack.
Montana Fly Company Dirty Worm Fly Box $25 • MFC Montana Fly Company
Maybe you buy this fly box for a buddy that’s probably better off using night crawlers. Maybe you buy it as a reminder of how you got your start—you know, before you were the fly guru you are today. Either way, you’ve got to admit this new design from MFC is pretty funny and clever.
Here’s the perfect stocking stuffer for the trout guy that’s all about throwing meaty streamer patterns. Rio’s Big Nasty series of tapered leaders and tippets were specially designed for extra abrasion resistant to help when that giant brownie runs under that nasty root ball. They’re also slightly stiffer than your average tippet and leader to make turning over those big bugs a little easier.
Loon Rogue Quickdraw Forceps
$24.95 • Loon Outdoors Loon Outdoors
How many pairs of forceps have disappeared on you? With the Quickdraws, you’ll never lose them again (or you’d at least have to work really hard at it). An integrated carabiner in the handle allows you to clip these forceps to your pack or waders without relying just on jaw strength or a flimsy tool retractor. The Rogues also feature a cutter and hook eye punch, kicking their usefulness a few notches above glorified pliers. The non-slip coating is also a big advantage when you’re working with wet hands.
The new Helios 3D may not be the cheapest rod on the market, but for the angler that wants the Lambo with all the bells and whistles, this is it. Arguably one of the finest rods I’ve ever cast, the 3D series was designed to be the most accurate rod ever made, even compensating for wind and minor angler error, helping to put the fly exactly where you want it to go every time. It’s all thanks to science, which Orvis used to reduce horizontal and vertical tip frequency in the blanks.
Simms G3 Guide Stockingfoot Waders
$499.95 • Simms Simms
With four layers of GORE-TEX in the legs, the G3s can take any punishment you dish out. From trekking through brush to sliding down boulders to reach that perfect pool, the last thing you’ll have to worry about is getting wet when you finally wade in. These waders also feature a roomy chest pocket, flip-pout tippet tender, and hand warmer pockets for some added comfort during those not-so-warm trout outings.
If you’ve ever fished a one-piece fly rod, you know that they track exceptionally well, making for a very accurate stick. The problem is that one-piece fly rods are kind of a pain to transport. The Sole aims to give you the one-piece feel without the complete hassle. Though the tips are removable (and each rod comes with two), the butt is one long piece. Storage and transport are a bit more manageable, yet you get all the smoothness of delivery you would with a full one-piece blank.
Redington Behemoth Desert Tan
$110-$130 • Redington Redington
While the Behemoth has been around for a few years now, let’s be honest… everything is cooler in desert tan. This new color option adds a killer look to an already proven (yet very affordable) big-fish reel. For the streamer junkie on your shopping list that digs the “tactical” look, ask Santa to send one of these tanks in 5/6- or 7/8-weight.
Fishpond Thunderhead Submersible Backpack
$299.95 • Fishpond Fishpond
With smart features like the Quickshot rod holder that lets you carry a fully built rod hands free, as well as traditional rod tube straps, the Thunderhead is the perfect bag for the fly angler that likes to really “get out there.” Rain nor an unexpected dunk in the river will compromise the dryness of what’s inside, and since this bag is made from recycled nylon, it’ll stand up to being thrown on the rocks and dragged through thorns. Buckles on the straps are also compatible with most Fishpond chest packs.
No matter how slick those rocks, no matter how many logjams you need to climb over, the new G3 Guide Boots are designed to keep you upright and comfy. With the incorporation of a molded external TPU heel counter, a dual-density midsole and ESS plates for improved cleat retention, this is one of the most stabilizing boots Simms has ever produced. Factor in the rugged Nubuck leather construction that’s highly abrasion resistant, and you’ve got a boot the nastiest wade on the Earth won’t wear out.