Orvis Ratings and Reviews

Top Rated Product

Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit

Instead of the term “entry level,” we prefer to describe our new Encounter rod outfits as “affordable awesomeness.” Built for the hardcore angler, yet priced with frugality in mind, the Encounter rod series combines state-of-the-art rod design with a smooth, crisp performance—packaged with a large arbor Encounter reel, weight-forward floating line, backing, and leader. The 8'6" 5-weight is the best all around freshwater rod for trout and light bass fishing it is considered to be the perfect first rod for any fly angler. Small streams, big rivers, or ponds and lakes, this new 8'6" 5-weight Encounter rod outfit is the perfect answer to the question, "What's the first rod I should buy?".
Average Customer Rating:
4.754 out of 5
4.8
 out of 
5
Open Ratings Snapshot
Rating Snapshot (69 reviews)
5 stars
57
4 stars
9
3 stars
2
2 stars
0
1 star
1
66 of 69(96%)reviewers would recommend this product to a friend.
Customer Reviews for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Review 1 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
New Addiction,
August 28, 2015
By: kilowatts
from North Carolina
"Took the free class at the store... Then went into a stream in the VA mountains with loaner gear for a weekend. Time to start buying my own.
A great entry level setup. For a beginner it has everything you need.
"
Review 2 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Best Introductory Outfit I've Ever Purchased!,
August 12, 2015
By: KootenaiGuide
from Mammoth Lakes, CA
"I purchased two Encounter 5 wt outfits for a young couple who expressed an interest in learning to fly fish. They both love the rigs, are learning quickly, casting gracefully and seeking advanced instruction and new water to fish. I fished the Encounter and found it to be perfect for a variety of water conditions for the beginner and intermediate angler. It's weighted and balanced nicely, casts smoothly, responds quickly and acts great on fish."
Review 3 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
3 / 5
3 / 5
Good for the price...,
August 2, 2015
By: Juvi1624
from Philadelphia
"Good for the price, but don't expect top notch performance. I got this setup as my first rod/reel outfit to get into fly fishing to see if it was something I liked. I've caught several fish on this combo. but I have since upgraded to the "Clearwater" outfit and looking back on it, I wish I would've just bought the Clearwater setup from the get go. However, I do regularly let my friend borrow it when we go out because he's still on the fence about fly fishing vs regular spinner rod fishing and he has caught a fish on this combo almost every time we go out.
The one thing I did that made this combo 100x better was have it relined with the "Hydros" fly line. Doing that made combo very fishable and I still occasionally use it, but mostly it's just a back up to my 2 Clearwater setups. Giving it a 3 star rating with the line that's on it, and because of the cheap price range that it's in you can't complain to much. But with the Hydros line I'd give it at least a 4. I also put no I wouldn't recommend it to a friend simply because I'd recommend just pay a little more initially and get the much nicer clearwater outfit."
Review 4 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Solid & Sexy In A Way Only Orvis Can Do,
July 27, 2015
By: mattinvirginia
from Rixeyville, VA
"I needed a backup rod package and this one goes beyond just a backup - this package has replaced my other setup and is the one I grab first. A few friends have tried it and immediately ordered one themselves."
Review 5 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great Backup,
July 24, 2015
By: Wyobraz
from Wyoming
"Purchased this as an economical backup for my fishing/camping trips in Wyoming. This setup performs better than expected and would be a perfect setup for someone who is just getting started without a huge investment."
Review 6 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Knockout Quality,
July 16, 2015
By: TiRomi
from Butler, PA.
"After a 10 year hiatus, I decided to get back into fly fishing. Upon locating my old second hand gear, I gave consideration to an upgrade. During my product research, I stumbled upon an add for an Orvis entry level system. The high quality of every piece of equipment is indeed impressive. From the durability of the prespooled reel to the sleek looks of the rod, I fish with high confidence. Heck, even the attention to detail of the rod tube and reel cover are impressive. Thank you Orvis!"
Review 7 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great Casting Rod,
July 4, 2015
By: flytyerlee
from Saint Helena Island, SC
"This rod casts really great I was very surprised and please with it. For the money this an outstanding rod, reel and line combination."
Review 8 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
4 / 5
4 / 5
Great beginner rod.,
July 2, 2015
By: Mountaineer1234
from North Carolina
"I heard that this rod was an ideal choice for those who are beginning fly fishing, and it has proven to be just that."
Review 9 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great value and Quality,
June 18, 2015
By: Purko
from Trabuco Canyon ? CA
"I bought this outfit for my son and it is the best quality and value for an entry level rod and reel on the market today . Smooth , responsive yet powerful to land even the biggest trout ."
Review 10 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Excellent product,
June 2, 2015
By: MacTavish
from Stokesdale, NC
"I am a beginner fly fisherman. I went to the Orvis fly fishing classes 101 and 201. Both classes were great. This rod outfit is perfect for someone starting out in fly fishing. I highly recommend it."
Review 11 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Encounter fly rod outfit,
June 2, 2015
By: saltylady2
from Germanton, North Carolina
"I just tried out my now Encounter outfit at a local trout stream. It performed beautifully. I caught a trout within ten minutes! The 8'6' rod made it easy to cast under trees and brush. I have taken the two beginner Orvis fly fishing classes and I'm on my way to another great hobby!
Thanks Orvis.
"
Review 12 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
4 / 5
4 / 5
Great Starter Rod,
May 28, 2015
By: JMarteeny
from Somerset PA
"My son received it for his 12th birthday an has used it and loves it. I love the 25 year warranty on the rod as 25 years will fly by and the amount of use this rod will get from a 12 yr old boy will be heavy as he loves to fish. He will use it for trout and bass in the mountains of Pa. Thanks...I am going to buy one for myself as I need to learn to fly fish with him..."
Review 13 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great product,
May 27, 2015
By: Bobby58
from Staatsburg N.Y,
"I'm new to fly fishing so when bought this rod reel combo i wasn't sure what i was doing but with the help of the live chat operator it all worked out. Great price really felt good.IK loss a fish the first time out but i'm sure it was me not the rod."
Review 14 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
fantastic starting rod,
April 29, 2015
By: DanKat
from Denver
"I am so pleased with my Encounter fly rod. The rod itself is beautiful, and it comes with the reel completely assembled. It makes it very easy for any beginner to get right out there and start fishing. The price is extremely reasonable considering the quality of the rod."
Review 15 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great rod,
April 24, 2015
By: BoxerMD731
from Baltimore, MD
"Bought this rod because I am a beginner fly fisher. Took his thing right out of the box and riggged it up and caught five browns about six inches long within a half hour of hitting the river. Before I knew it... I was out there for five hours! This is a great casting rod and I couldn't be more pleased! If you have thoughts about getting this combo... Don't hesitate! Do it!"
Review 16 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
4 / 5
4 / 5
First Fly rod,
April 7, 2015
By: Tom47
from GA
"I have already caught my first trout. I had a good day fishing with no problems from my first fly rod."
Review 17 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Bought for my husband's birthday!,
March 25, 2015
By: flyfishvaldez
from Valdez, AK
"My husband is very excited to try this out! I purchased a fly rod for myself in the past and he really liked it, so I bought him his own for his birthday! :)"
Review 18 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Can't wait to start using it,
March 2, 2015
By: shoegal
from Fort Collins, CO
"We live really close to a wonderful river for fishing and I am eager for summer to start my fly fishing lessons and using my new rod. My husband thinks that it is the perfect rod for me since I am a beginner but he even thought that it would be a good rod for someone with more experience as well. I will keep you posted on how it goes!"
Review 19 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
First Orvis Fly combo,
February 26, 2015
By: PeterGee393
from Floral Park , NY
"This Encounter outfit seems to be well worth the price. This is my first Orvis tackle , and I cannot wait to start practice casting. I haven't fished for almost 40 years, but, being a Vietnam vet with PTSD, I feel it would be beneficial"
Review 20 for Encounter 5-weight 8'6" Fly Rod Outfit
Overall Rating: 
5 / 5
5 / 5
Great Rod,
February 16, 2015
By: Tonythebrit
from Griffin Georgia.
"I received my rod from the delivery truck on Thursday, I went to try it out and stretch the line on Sunday. Weather and conditions not good to fish, fished one hour and caught two bass about one pound each. Great casting and very happy with my new possession."