Stay Fly: Graduate gift guide for
High school graduation is starting to come into focus for both the graduating seniors and their families. Many grads are showered with money and gifts from family and friends, and I thought this would be a great time to throw together a small gift guide for those grads that love fly-fishing or might want to get started.
VVA Logo Hydro Flask: These slim profile bottles are great for any trip or occassion and they help reduce the amount of plastic bottles that are overflowing our landfills. The narrow mouth is super easy to drink and pour from which helps minimizes spills. This would be a great bottle for your grad to take to their classes or the next ultimate frisbee game. For $30, you get a great stainless steel bottle that rocks the Vail Valley Anglers logo.
Simms Guide Nipper: You can buy a cheap pair of nippers and need to buy a new one next year and the year after and so on — or you can get a quality pair and maybe have to replace the jaws once every three to four years. Nippers are a great tool to have when you need to cut tippet or thicker leader line. They help save your teeth (less dental bills) and are able to get very close to the knot to cut that pesky tag end. These nippers are machined aluminum and made in Montana with replaceable stainless steel jaws. The Guide Nippers from Simms are $50, but they might be the last nippers you’ll ever own (if you don’t lose them).
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Peak Rotary Vise: If your graduate has been tying on the same vise that he or she started on, then this would be a great time to upgrade. The Peak Rotary Vise is the best vise for the money and they are made in our great state of Colorado. It comes with a nice heavy base and multiple adjustment points. This will be the last vise your grad will need unless Dad takes it for himself. This vise is comparable to ones that are in the $250 price range but only costs $154.95.
Loop Q Rod: The Loop Q rod is a medium/fast action rod that is designed for all levels of casters. This rod comes in a wide range of sizes and weights to accommodate a variety of different styles of fly-fishing. This rod gives you instant feedback on the back and forward casts and also gives you a great bend when fighting a fish. It also has a great modern look with its grey matte finish and aluminum reel seat. It comes with a rod sock and a cordura rod tube for protection when broken into its four sections. For $229 (or $360 for a complete outfit), you can’t go wrong with this rod that comes with a lifetime warranty.
$250 and Up Gifts
Riversmith River Quiver: The River Quiver is one of the best ways to protect your fully assembled rods from the elements and theft. This is vehicle rooftop fly rod holder that is lightweight, durable and very secure. The 4-Banger model will fit four fly rods that are up to 10-feet long and fits most standard and aero roof rack bars. The opening securely locks and comes with two keys for peace of mind when you are not around your vehicle. The 4-banger is $549 and the 2-banger comes in at $349 but only holds your two favorite rods.
Simms G3 Guide Waders: If your graduate is in need of a new pair of waders, the Simms G3 Guide waders are the best you can find. These waders are very durable and extremely comfortable due to the three layers of Gore-Tex in the upper and four layers in the seat and legs. These are the go-to waders for most guides and will likely last your grad until he or she graduates from college. The G3 waders retail for $549.95 and come with a no questions asked one year warranty and after the year, a small cost for any repair.
Fly-Fishing Guided Trip: Why not treat your graduate to a full-day guided float or wade trip that they will remember forever? This would be a great way to spend a full day on the river making memories before they move away for college or other endeavours. Floating down our local rivers can be beautiful on its own, but when you place a fly rod in someone’s hand, it raises the experience to a whole new level. Vail Valley Anglers offers a wide range of guided trip experiences that would be great for most ages. Trips for two start at $395.
Ray Kyle is the shop supervisor and a guide at Vail Valley Anglers. Reache him at 970-926-0900 or email@example.com.
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Jeff Shiffrin, with his wife, Eileen, made the Vail area their home decades ago, and together raised Mikaela and Taylor Shiffrin, who was a member of the two-time NCAA Champion University of Denver Ski Team.