Muskie Fly Fishing Gear with Chad Bryson

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Instructor: Chad Bryson

In this muskie fishing video, Capt. Chad Bryson discusses the essential gear for musky fishing in the southeast. He shares his opinions on rods, reels, line, leaders, and flies for success. Chad, an expert fly tier, shares his experiences with different fly features, line options, rod and reel choices, and leader materials. To catch muskie on fly, the right gear is essential.

Description / Review / Instructor

Video Summary:

    Objective: Understand the right tackle for musky fly fishing.
    Expert: Captain Chad Bryson.
  • Profile: Angler, guide, product development consultant, and industry veteran.
  • Specialization: Freshwater apex predators like brown trout and muskie.
  • Fly Fishing Rods & Reels: Importance of bend, graphite quality, manufacturer recommendations, and significance of arbor size in reels.
  • Musky Flies: Features in fly tying, profile, hook types, and swimming action.
  • Fly Line & Leader Material: Line selection based on fishing depth, variety for different water columns, and insights on fluorocarbon leaders and wire.
    Takeaway: Equip yourself with knowledge to enhance your musky fishing experience.

Captain Chad Bryson: The Musky Fishing Maestro

Captain Chad Bryson isn't just an angler; he's an institution in the fly fishing world. With years of experience as a guide and product development consultant, Chad has earned his stripes in the industry. He's been in the game long enough to target the likes of brown trout and muskie, mastering tactics specific to these giants. When it comes to understanding tackle, baits, lures, and fish behavior, few can rival Captain Chad's insights. He's not just any fisherman; he's the one you want advice from when gearing up for musky.

Chad's passion for fishing started at a young age, and he quickly realized that he had a knack for outwitting even the most elusive fish. As he honed his skills, he began to specialize in targeting trophy species like brown trout and muskie. These fish are notoriously difficult to catch, requiring a deep understanding of their behavior and habitat preferences.

Over the years, Chad has spent countless hours on the water, studying these fish and perfecting his techniques. He's developed a sixth sense for where they'll be and what they'll strike, allowing him to consistently put his clients on big fish.

But Chad's expertise goes beyond just knowing where to cast. He's also a master of tackle selection and customization. As a product development consultant for some of the biggest names in the industry, Chad has had a hand in designing and testing some of the most innovative rods, reels, lines, and lures on the market.

He knows what works and what doesn't, and he's always on the lookout for new gear that can give his clients an edge. Whether it's a custom-built rod designed specifically for musky fishing or a secret bait that he's been tinkering with in his workshop, Chad always has something up his sleeve.

One of the things that sets Chad apart from other guides is his willingness to share his knowledge with others. He's not content to simply put his clients on fish; he wants to teach them how to do it themselves.

Recommendations on Fly Gear

In his "In The Spread" video series, Chad Bryson goes beyond mere talking points. He dives deep into the nitty-gritty of musky fly fishing gear, offering insights and recommendations based on his years of experience on the water. Here's a sneak peek into what you can expect:

Chad covers the essential components of a musky fly fishing setup, starting with rods and reels. He discusses the importance of rod action, power, and comfort for long days on the water, as well as the benefits of large arbor reels for faster line pickup and reduced line memory.

Moving on to flies, Chad shares his expertise as a master fly tier. He breaks down the key features of effective musky patterns, including articulation, undulation, and flash. He also recommends some of his go-to patterns, like the Double Dawg, Peanut Butter, and Hamer's Hula Girl.

Finally, Chad tackles the often-overlooked aspects of fly lines and leaders. He explains how to choose the right line for different water depths and fly types, and emphasizes the importance of using heavy fluorocarbon or wire leaders to withstand the sharp teeth of musky.

Throughout the series, Chad offers a wealth of knowledge and practical advice that anglers of all skill levels can apply to their own musky fishing adventures. His engaging style and deep expertise make "In The Spread" a must-watch for anyone serious about taking their musky game to the next level.

Fly Rods for Muskie

The rod and reel are the foundation of any fly fishing setup, and Chad knows that getting these components right is critical for success.

When it comes to rods, Chad emphasizes the importance of finding the right balance between power and finesse. A good musky rod needs to have a strong backbone for casting big flies and fighting fish, but also enough sensitivity in the tip for accuracy and detecting subtle strikes.

For reels, Chad stresses the benefits of a large arbor design. A larger arbor allows for faster line pickup and reduces line memory, which can be crucial when fighting a big musky. He also looks for reels with smooth, reliable drag systems and ample backing capacity.

By selecting the right rod and reel combo, anglers can set themselves up for success on the water. Chad's expert guidance helps demystify the process and ensures that viewers of "In The Spread" have the knowledge they need to make informed gear choices.

Musky Flies: The Art of Deception

Of course, no discussion of musky fly fishing gear would be complete without talking about flies. Chad is a master fly tier, and he loves to share his insights into what makes a great musky pattern.

Chad dives into the specifics of fly features, discussing everything from the shape of the head to the materials used for the tail. He's a big fan of articulated patterns with multiple hooks, which allow for a more natural swimming action and better hookups.

Some of his go-to patterns will be discussed. These flies have proven themselves time and again on the water, and Chad breaks down what makes them so effective.

Fly Line & Leader Material: The Unsung Heroes

Finally, Chad turns his attention to the often-overlooked aspects of musky fly fishing gear: the line and leader. Chad discusses the various line options available for musky fishing, from floating lines to full-sinking lines and everything in between. The depth of the water you're fishing and the type of fly you're using will dictate what kind of line you need, and Chad offers his recommendations for different scenarios.

When it comes to leader material, Chad is a big believer in using a leader that withstands the sharp teeth of muskie that can easily slice through traditional monofilament leaders, so it's important to use something that can withstand their bite.


Chad Bryson's "In The Spread" video series is a must-watch for any serious musky fly angler. With his in-depth discussions of rods, reels, flies, lines, and leaders, Chad offers a wealth of knowledge that can help take your fishing to the next level.

Whether you're a seasoned pro or a newcomer to the sport, you're sure to learn something new from Chad's insights. So grab your notebook, fire up the video, and get ready to dive deep into the world of musky fly fishing gear with one of the best in the business.

Who is Captain Chad Bryson?

Chad is an esteemed member of the fly fishing community. He has multiple roles including an angler, guide, and product development consultant. With years of experience targeting freshwater apex predators, he is a trusted voice in the industry.

What are the main considerations when selecting fly fishing rods and reels for musky?

When choosing a rod, think about the amount of bend for comfort during extended casting. For reels, the arbor size is a key factor to consider.

How do I select the right musky flies?

Consider the water profile, decide between single-hook or articulated flies, and understand the swimming actions that work best.

What should I know about fly line and leader material?

Selection depends on the fishing depth. It's essential to have a variety of lines for different water columns. For leaders, understand the difference and applications of fluorocarbon leaders versus wire.

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User Reviews

Dan Searle 01.15.2022

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Jeff Snyder 04.23.2020


Capt. Chad Bryson

No sir, Chad Bryson isn't your typical person. He is a maestro of the wide aquatic wilderness and a man of the river, a wise man of the stream. He has served as an angler, a guide, and even a product development consultant for more years than a catfish has whiskers. He is regarded as a pillar of the fly fishing industry.

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