Years ago, during the process of a divorce, I rented a brand new and very expensive home intending to purchase it in the aftermath. It was five bedrooms, four bathrooms, and had all the top of the line bells and whistles you would expect with a higher market home. By all outward appearances, it was perfect.
And then I lived in it.
The first time the large jacuzzi tub in the master suite was used, my son, who was doing his homework at the dining room table below, announced there was water dripping on his homework. When my children were sick after Christmas, I noticed one of the toilets had steaming water in it and found out half the bathrooms in the house had been plumbed backward. Then, just to add insult to injury, my first gas bill arrived and was $1500, and I came to the realization that there was no insulation or ceiling in one of my master closets, and all my heat was simply vanishing into the space above. I was, to say the least, very happy at that moment that I had decided to rent and not buy.
Every day, thousands, if not millions, of people around the globe rent everything from homes to power tools for one reason or another. Now, fly anglers have that same ability. There’s a company out there that will let you rent rods, reels, and lines instead of buying them. When I first came upon Rent This Rod some years ago, I was intrigued and a little bit skeptical. I wondered secretly how this would work without making manufacturers and retailers upset? Would the average angler rent a fly rod instead of buy? But then I got to thinking about it, and in the right circumstances, just like renting a home, it made sense.
Here are my top three reasons to rent instead of buy fly gear.
Try it before you buy it.
It’s no secret that fly rods can be pricey, at times upwards of the $1000 mark. Rent This Rod offers high-end rods from manufacturers like Sage, Thomas & Thomas, and Tom Morgan Rodsmiths, so you can try that premium rod you’ve been dreaming about in a real-life situation before you buy and know it’s a great fit for your casting stroke and your waters. Renting it first lets you know you love it. Then, you can walk into the fly shop, drop the rod on the counter knowing it’s the perfect fit for you, and spend the rest of your time deciding what else you can’t live without.
You're only going to use it one timet’s a one-time use.
If you live in Colorado and high mountain trout are your thing, you probably have a plethora of rods in the 2-4 weight range in your quiver. But what happens when the opportunity comes along to take a once in a lifetime trip to Christmas Island? Adding a 10-weight rod to your quiver makes no sense as a single-use purchase. In this instance, renting that rod becomes a great alternative. Do you want to leave the choice of fly rod to a guide you’ve never met? Rent This Rod comes right to your door so you know exactly what you have and can spend time worrying about other things for your trip, like whether you already packed your underwear or not.
You live in a tiny house.
Tiny houses are all the rage. Turn on the tv at any random time and someone is building a tiny home. If you’ve made it your life choice to leave a smaller footprint by moving into a tiny house, then you probably don’t have room for a bunch of rods. Renting the rod that you only use a couple of times a year works perfectly in this situation because you’ve downgraded and you need that extra room for, say, your bed or something unimportant like that.
Like all good ideas, Rent This Rod is the brainchild of two good friends, Dave Moore and Brian Guengerich, who dreamt up the idea while on the water fishing one day, and is currently based out of Asheville, North Carolina. In addition to their high-end rental rods from Sage, Tom Morgan, and Thomas & Thomas, they also rent reels from Hatch, Ross, and Abel, all equipped with lines exclusively by Scientific Angler. Shortly, they expect to add additional rod and reel brands. You can rent daily in the western North Carolina area, or choose from 10 and 14-day packages for that trip you’re planning on for 2020. For more information or to rent a rod, check them out at Rent This Rod