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Fly Fishing Accessories: Tools for the Water

There are a lot of tools used in fly fishing, but what do they do? Here are the top fly fishing accessories and how each of them are used.

Fly Fishing Tools and Accessories

My first fly fishing purchase was waders. On my first trip ever, I rented wading boots and waders (and felt like Ralphie’s brother from A Christmas Story) as well as borrowed a fly rod. All I knew at that point was that you needed the things I was wearing, plus a rod, and maybe a bag for your beer and sammich afterwards.

Of course I saw some fly fishing tools being used, but I didn’t really know what they were. Or what they did. So I proceeded to buy waders (I have the Patagonia Swiftcurrent), boots (Korker’s Buckskin Mary), and a rod (Douglas DXF). I held off on other fly fishing essentials for a bit so I could get used to the basics.

It wasn’t until I went to the Orvis fly fishing school that I started poking around and checking out the fly fishing accessories available in a fly shop. That’s a little bit of a hint that you’re liking your new pastime, by the way. You start looking for more goodies to buy (I can’t be the only one?).

Fly fishing accessories in a fly shop

Let me pause for a second to let you know what an easy sale I am if I’m starting a hobby. I don’t go for the most expensive stuff, but I don’t necessarily go for the cheapest either. I also want to “have all the things” due to my excitement.

So during fly fishing school, I asked what the most important fly fishing accessories were. Then my new friend and fly shop owner Mike grabbed several things off the rack and threw them into my pile of purchases. I had no idea what any of them did. Yet I happily shoved my chip into the little reader and signed away.

I don’t know what it is, but I know I need it. Right?

LIfe has changed significantly since that time. Now not only do I know what the tools and accessories are, I actually use them on fly fishing trips! And I’ll be honest, I guess I haven’t started a hobby in awhile. I definitely experienced a thrill when I busted my nippers out of my bag for the first time.

If you’re brand new to the sport like me – or maybe you’ve never picked up a fly rod and are here for research – here are the tools and accessories I’d recommend checking out on your fly fishing journey. While there are plenty of other items made for a variety of purposes in the fly fishing world, these are some of the most common you’ll see.

Not every fisherman will want to use everything I’ve got listed below. As you find your groove fishing, you’ll also find the accessories that work best for you. You’ll try things, and you won’t like them. You’ll also find some tools you can’t live without. This is just an introduction!

Fly Fishing Accessories

What do you need on the river or lake besides your rod and reel? Check out this list of useful fly fishing tools and accessories, and learn what each of them does below.

What fly fishing accessories are most important to you? Which have you tried and which are you looking forward to trying? I’d love to know in the comments!