What is the best fly shop in your state?
This is a very subjective question. But in a day and age when online reviews actually have an impact on the success or failure of a business, we have something close to objective data to work with. I’ve looked at a few review aggregations, and compiled a list of the top rated fly shop in all 50 states.
This doesn’t mean that the shops listed are, in fact, the best. More importantly, it isn’t a slight at other excellent fly shops that aren’t listed. Of course, there are some factors that propel the ratings of certain shops over others: being in a metropolitan area, offering guide services, and even catering to a demographic that is more willing to leave an online review. Still, these online reviews are a legitimate 21st century indicator of a place – and people – that anglers appreciate.
In part II, I list the second 25 states: Montana – Wyoming. Is your favorite fly shop on the list?
Montana: The Missoulian Angler – Missoula
“The most helpful fly shop I’ve ever stopped in. Didn’t hesitate to show me the floats they thought would be appropriate given the conditions and my experience. Super friendly and made my trip to Montana much better. Can’t say enough good things about them.” – Dillon A.
Nebraska: Bass Pro Shops – Council Bluffs
“I am from out of town, all the places near me do not have a large fishing sections. They have a nice selection of flies and a good selection of make your own fly supplies.” – Hardy H.
Nevada: Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters – South Lake Tahoe
“We were on the go passing through South Lake Tahoe. Last minute decision; I wanted to go fishing. Tahoe Fly Fishing Outfitters helped me outstandingly. They hooked me up (pun intended) with not only great tackle and the right permit, but also useful advise where to go. Great service, nice people, good gear.” – Lammert V.
New Hampshire: Stone River Outfitters – Bedford
“Fantastic shop. We were visiting from out of town and the shop is close to my parents house. We just went in to check it out, and Nate generously took the time to walk us through New Hampshire fishing seasons, and what we might be able to find with the old gear my parents had handy. The staff is knowledgeable, friendly, and passionate about
fishing. We’ll be back on our next trip for sure!” – Samantha B.
New Jersey: Tight Lines Fly Fishing – Parsippany
“I’ve been to fly shops all over the country and this is one of the best. The selection of rods and reels is great. Where Drew separates the shop from your average FF store is their selection of materials – they’re second to none. Highly recommended!” – Mike N.
New Mexico: Taos Fly Shop – Taos
“This was just the best experience for my husband and myself. Christopher and Nick were amazing! Not only did they put together exactly what we needed, they didn’t try to get us to spend more than we were comfortable with. They were beyond knowledgeable, incredible friendly, and even put us in contact with some other people after finding out we’d just moved to the area. We will absolutely be back here for any and all of our fly fishing needs. Thanks so much guys!!!” – Victoria W.
New York: Beaverkill Angler – Roscoe
“Great fly shop, very helpful staff. experts on Beaver Kill and many other streams in the area. I have called and asked questions and they were so helpful. Huge fan of these guys and willingness to help explain everything regardless of how much you spend.” – Stan P.
North Carolina: Due South Outfitters – Boone
“Have been to fly shops all over the country and never have i ever had such a great experience at one till i came here. Great people. Would most definitely shop in here again and would definitely book a trip the next time i come out! Thank you for being such great people.” – J Arkvarr.
North Dakota: Scheels – Bismarck
“Fishing staff are excellent.” – John M.
Ohio: Chagrin River Outfitters – Chagrin Falls
“This fly shop has everything you need to either as an experienced angler or someone getting started – support local fly shops and you’re investment will be returned ten-fold at Chagrin River Outfitters!” – Joshua P.
Oklahoma: Beavers Bend Fly Shop – Broken Bow
“It is probably the most reasonably priced fly shop i have ever been in, not to mention the service is fantastic they treat you like family. They are super helpful in ensuring that you have a great time not just when you’re in their shop, but in the water as well.” – Paco S.
Oregon: Bend Fly Shop – Bend
“The perfect boutique fly shop. This is not the place to go if you want a Home Depot experience (can’t find anyone to help you). This is more like the Cheers experience — instantly making friends with the friendly and helpful guys in this compact store that has everything you need, and only the good stuff. Easy to get help, get what you need, and get out to the river.” – Brian R.
Pennsylvania: Precision Fly Fishing – Mt. Holly Springs
“Family owned shop. Good selection of fly tying materials. However the highlight is the large selection of flies. Justin is knowledgeable and friendly.” – Joel S.
Rhode Island: The Saltwater Edge – Portsmouth
“First time visit to fish Rhode Island- excellent customer service showed me google earth points to fish around Inn at Castle Hill as well as flies and set up that had been working. More than one member of store engaged in conversation and was truly interested in sharing knowledge and conversation. Custom made flies worked well.” – Timothy C.
South Carolina: Southern Drawl Outfitters – Hilton Head
“Great friendly knowledgeable staff. This is where you want to be. They will take good care of you, tell you when and where to go and are just good people in general. They know what they are doing and do it extremely well.” – Mick S.
South Dakota: Dakota Angler & Outfitter – Rapid City
“The shop is staffed with friendly people who will answer your questions,and help you to make a informed decision. They are what all fly shops should strive to be. We are fortunate to have them here in Rapid City and they have a great working knowledge of local and distant fishing waters.” – Tim B.
Tennessee: Little River Outfitters – Townsend
“Great fly shop. Very clean and organized. I took my 10 year old daughter fishing in the Smokies 2 weeks ago. They took their time and helped me with knowledge. We caught several nice wild rainbows. Great trip!” – Gareth G.
Texas: Living Waters Fly Fishing – Round Rock
“Great People. Great Gear. And Great Shop. Couldn’t ask for a better shop this close to home. More than willing to help you along your way to a great day on the water.” – Tyler R.
Utah: Fish Heads Fly Shop – Heber City
“Went to Fish Heads for first time yesterday and chatted up Ben. In addition to being the owner, Ben is also the resident guide. Great advice and fly suggestions is what sets any shop apart. In this area, Ben excelled! Remember, I was a stranger when I walked in. He not only told me where to fish and what fly to use but also timed the hatch!” – Mark H.
Vermont: Fly Rod Shop – Stowe
“Awesome shop. Tons of great Gear, Books, gadgets, paraphernalia having to do with fishing of all kinds. The flies are exceptional. The prices are good. Staff were very friendly and helpful. Ample supply of fly tying vices, supplies, hackle and such for tying. Not just fly tying supplies, but spinning bait casting supplies as well.” – Tom J.
Virginia: Albemarle Angler – Charlottesville
“If you are traveling into the Shenandoah Valley from the eastern part of VA there is no better outfitter that will set you up for success for getting on a multitude of species on the fly. If you’re trying to target trout, small mouth, or even musky, Carson, Spotswood, John, and Scott are true masters of their craft.” – Mike H.
Washington: Silver Bow Fly Shop – Spokane Valley
“Most knowledgeable and friendly staff around. I’ve never not found what I needed and more in the shop, and their prices are great! I would also suggest checking out their website to shop around and check reports if you can’t make it into the shop.” – Luke L.
West Virginia: White Fly Outfitters – Harpers Ferry
“Awesome experience! Being from out of town, the staff got me everything I needed to get out on the river and catch fish. I’ll be back for more.” – Nick H.
Wisconsin: Driftless Angler – Viroqua
“This is an amazing shop! They have a good variety of gear and plenty of flies for any fly fishing you are going to do. The employees are incredibly nice, welcoming and helpful. I am new to fly fishing so they answered all my questions and showed me many different fly setups that will work. I would HIGHLY recommend this shop!” – Tony E.
Wyoming: Platte River Fly Shop – Casper
“Small town feel with small town customer service, but with a huge inventory of gear. The Platte River Fly Shop has a good mix of the latest gear along with an impressive amount of sale/clearance inventory. Shipping has been quick and painless. This is my first and usually my only stop for fly fishing gear and apparel. Tight lines!” – Eric L.
Looking for Alabama – Missouri? Check out Part I!
Did your favorite fly shop not make the list? Let me know what it is and why in the comments below.