Orvis Ratings and Reviews

Top Rated Product

Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels

There is not another true large arbor, big-game fly-fishing reel out there that carries this drag system performance at a price starting at just $225. It's unheard of until now. The new Hydros® Reel Series features a sealed drag surface that increases total drag surface by model: The larger the reel, the larger the drag surface and the more resistance available to handle larger fish. Using stacked carbon washers, controlled by a positive click adjustment system, the Hydros can be fine-tuned to handle any fish from a trout to a tuna with sustained and infinitely durable drag pressure.
Average Customer Rating:
4.573 out of 5
4.6
 out of 
5
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Snapshot (124 reviews)
5 stars
101
4 stars
8
3 stars
6
2 stars
3
1 star
6
110 of 124(89%)reviewers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Stories:
Customer Reviews for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Review 1 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
best quality reel,
March 3, 2015
By: 007Eamon
from Oxfordshire UK
"great engineering,perfect presentation and most of all outstanding reliability"
Review 2 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Best reel I have ever used,
March 2, 2015
By: GW1958
from Newcastle upon Tyne England
"This reel is the best reel I have ever used. The feel and drag system is first class. Excellent quality and finish and I would recommend anyone who is in the market for new and high end products that there is no need to look any further than Orvis"
Review 3 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Bigreel,
March 2, 2015
By: brooktroutfishrmn
from Richmond, VA
"Bought this reel for Saltwater fishing. Haven't used it yet, but thanks to my local Orvis store its all ready to go. Good Price."
Review 4 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Oh yes!,
February 19, 2015
By: Brinx
"Easily the nicest reel I've ever bought. Soooooo smoooooooooth. Those rainbows won't know what's hit them once I've found the rest of my tackle in my garage.
Keep up the good work Orvis and please keep those constant stream of emails coming, they really brighten up my day!
I used to have spam fritters for school dinner which were delicious but nothing like Orvis spam.
Top notch!
"
Review 5 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Top of the line,
February 12, 2015
By: dvail12
from Mystic, CT
"When fishing larger fish, the drag system on a reel is all important. Both the Mirage and Hydros have smooth drag systems. Fish do unexpected things, it's best if your gear doesn't."
Review 6 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
consistant quality performance,
January 1, 2015
By: PtReyesMick
from Pt Reyes Ca
"I have been using the Hydros large arbor reels now for about 5 years in salt water fishing, primarily in Belize and the Yucatan and the Sea of Cortez.
These reels hold up very well in all conditions. The sealed drag system is a real plus as a wet reel is still as dependable as dry-no changes in lbs/pull at all.
From tarpon to bonefish ,permit to sailfish, the performance is consistantley flawless.
I will continue to expand my ownership of this product as well as recommend it to others.
"
Review 7 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Just what I wanted,
December 27, 2014
By: Ruefdawg
from Tulsa, OK
"It's just what I wanted. It's lightweight and balances my new Access 8 weight rod perfectly. This is great for bass and striper fishing here at home and tailing redfish on the flats of South Padre Island."
Review 8 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Perfect reel,
December 13, 2014
By: Igbilbao
"I really like this reel when I was fishing in the Patagonia / Chile some Chinook Salmons"
Review 9 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great All Round Reel,
December 10, 2014
By: DLPCapeCod
from Cape Cod MA
"I began with Battenkills and had them salt up quite regularly. The Hydros goes longer before the drag needs attention. Really happy with the reel. Even though it has a sealed drag, you still need to pay attention. I generally break it down and do a real cleaning annually with regular cleanings after each use. Great Real for the money."
Review 10 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
4 / 5
4 / 5
Great Value for the dollars,
December 9, 2014
By: Swingingfly
from Washington State
"Looked at internet reviews for large arbor, large capacity fly reels for my Skagit heads. Decide this reel was the best bang for the dollar. Sturdy construction, good drag system and fancy looking."
Review 11 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great look and feel,
December 7, 2014
By: Siesta
"I have the hydros IV reel and I love the finish of the titanium silver and the feel of the construction. It honestly feels better in the hand than a lot of the most expensive fly reels out there. It has a great sound and just feels solid."
Review 12 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great reel and Great service,
December 5, 2014
By: Flyfishaddict
from Asheville NC
"I bought the 7/8 Hydros reel in Asheville NC retail store. Used in in FLA and love it."
Review 13 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great reel for the money,
November 30, 2014
By: WNCFlyGuy
from Asheville, NC
"Sharp looking, nice smooth drag that's easily adjustable, well balanced, light but sturdy. Put drag to the test on several BIG Davidson River browns this fall. Very good value!"
Review 14 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great drag,
October 31, 2014
By: TNBud
from Smoky Mountains, TN
"I've paired the Hydros IV with an Access 6 weight. This reel performed amazingly in the salt with 5-8 lbs bonefish pulling. Got a little nervous when I hooked a 4 foot lemon shark, but the reel did it's job well. I also use this setup for bass and carp on my home waters. I've not experienced any issues with the line getting caught, as others have mentioned. Nothing but good results from this reel. I would definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a reliable reel."
Review 15 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
3 / 5
3 / 5
HydrosIV fly reel,
October 11, 2014
By: BigHiz
from Sugarloaf PA
"Tried the Hydros IV at Salmon River NY 2014 season and was disappointed with this reel.
I use straight mono line and it was a real problem when using this reel. When you strip out line the line gets between the frame and the spool and is outside the frame arm instead of under it. So every time you strip line you have to work it back between the frame arm and spool and with a fish on it frustrating. I do not recommend it if using straight mono. I do understand it is set up for fly line which I have never tried. Otherwise the drag is great and smooth and is a great reel.... for fly line users. Sent it back to Orvis and was issued a refund. Orvis customer service is fantastic. If Orvis resolves this tolerance issue I would gladly buy another Hydros fly reel. THX BigHiz
"
0 of 1 people found this review helpful.
Review 16 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Best Reel I ever Bought,
September 29, 2014
By: ColFrank
from Houston, TX
"For bonefishing I needed a reel with a first class drag system. The Hydros V was my choice and I really like the Incremental drag. Other reels - with one click you go from free wheeling to lock down - not the Hydros. I now have two Hydros V's for Saltwater.
For fresheater I went with two of the Hydros III's and have never been dissapointed with their performance.
Highly recommended!!"
Review 17 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Two thumbs up,
September 14, 2014
By: RodVar
from Mexico City
"Just to let everyone out there know how good this product is. I just got back from a trip to the Mexican Caribbean and was lucky to land a 120+ lb tarpon on a Hydros VI matched to a 12 wt Access. I fought the fish for an hour and the reel performed excellent (so did the rod). And the price tag is wallet friendly too. With this price you'll get to fish an extra day and buy some beer at the beach. Once again, thank you Orvis: I love your toys!"
Review 18 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Excellent Birthday Gift,
September 9, 2014
By: JRBurbage
from Hampton, VA
"My son who is an avid fisherman and holds a PhD in Marine Toxicology, finds great pleasure in fly fishing in the surfs of VA as well as the Rockies when he travels out west. This reel offers features that are not even offered with other manufacturers. I gave him this reel with the expectations that he will have an opportunity to test this it out on the current migration of Red Drum."
Review 19 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
3 / 5
3 / 5
August 26, 2014
By: eddy3131
from Port Alberni, BC
"I have had this reel for 9 months and already the click pin is worn out. This reel has had a moderate amount of use and has been babied since I bought it. The drag on it is excellent for the price but the components are cheap. I wouldn't recommend any Canadian buying this as the shipping is way overpriced and took nearly a month to get to me. It is a good looking reel that could have been a real bargain but has yet to impress."
Review 20 for Hydros Large Arbor Fly Reels
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Hydros - Best Orvis Valued Reel,
August 25, 2014
By: Qrachel
from LA
"Dollar for Dollar, the best reel value and that's not just my opinion. Checkout 8wt Shootout by Yollowstone Anglers. I have an 8wt and a 4wt, just top shelf products. I'm thinkng about an H2 3wt , 10' and looking at FWX, Lamsom Lightspeed and the Orvis Mirage. Hydros is at a tough value to turndown. I'm new to the sport and wouldn't mind an upgrade, but nothing seems $100-$200 better.
Good problem to have. Rachel"