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Our Fly Fishing Reels - The Lowdown on the 406 Series

Our Fly Fishing Reels - The Lowdown on the 406 Series

406 Fly Fishing Reels: Everything You Need to Know

Dive into the specs behind Montana Casting Co. fly fishing reels, our favorite uses for each model, and some useful pointers to ensure your reel is river ready.

Lite, Envy, Elite… What’s the difference between our fly reels?

Every Montana Casting Co.® fly fishing reel is built from high quality, corrosion-resistant materials and boasts a sealed, micro-adjustable, Teflon-cork disc drag system. With three high-performing models to choose from there’s a few key considerations to take into account when you’re deciding which reel is best for you. 

Fly Rods and Fly Fishing Reels - Envy 406 Reels and Warm Springs Flyrods In Action

Warm Springs fly rod paired with glacier blue Envy 406 fly fishing reel.

The Lite 406 Fly Fishing Reel

We achieved ultra-light durability in the Lite 406 with a mixed aluminum alloy and carbon fiber frame. For a 4/6 wt reel, that means balanced stopping power in a smart 5 oz package. Our lightest reel is also our smallest reel: the 4/6 wt has a 20 lb backing capacity between 50 to 75 yards. While the Teflon-cork disc drag system is water resistant, it is not 100% sealed—perfectly suited for a backcountry galivanting but not recommended for harsher salt water conditions.

Fly Rods and Fly Fishing Reels - The Lite 406 Fly Fishing Reel and a Trout

The Lite 406 fly reel is a combination of aluminum and carbon fiber construction.

The Envy 406 Fly Fishing Reel

A touch heavier and a touch heavier-duty than the Lite, the Envy 406 4/6 wt comes in at 5.8 oz. Available in a flashy glacier blue or deep-water green, the Envy is 100% waterproof up to 3 ATM and has a baseline 20 lb backing capacity between 75 and 100 yrds. This is a great choice if you’re looking for a reel that can handle anything from a brookie to a steelhead with the same smooth response.

Fly Rods and Fly Fishing Reels - Craig Fly Rod Paired with Deepwater Green Envy 406 Fly Fishing Reel

Craig fly rod paired with the Envy 406 fly fishing reel in deepwater green.

The Elite 406 Fly Fishing Reel

Far and away our highest performing fly fishing reel,  the Elite 406 is made from an extremely strong and corrosion-resistant zinc-aluminum alloy. If you’re getting ready to wrangle monster trout or saltwater species, the extra backing capacity, perfectly counter-weighted spool, and smooth stopping power of the Elite 406 are well worth a couple extra ounces in packing weight. Sealed up to 5 ATM, it’s also our most element-proof reel.

Fly Rods and Reels - Elite 406 Fly Fishing Reels Are Sealed to 5 ATM

The Elite 406 fly fishing reel is sealed up to 5 ATM to keep water and grime out. 

How to change your fly fishing reel from right to left-hand retrieve:

Montana Casting Co.® fly fishing reels are easily changed from left to right-hand retrieve. To reduce the paper usage and save a some trees, we've taken the time to produce two how-to videos. Though the Elite 406 requires a screwdriver, the video outlines simple instructions for making the switch.

Changing Retrieve on a Lite or Envy Reel 

Changing Retrieve on an Elite Reel

Behind the names of our fly fishing reels…

While the Lite, Envy, and Elite titles call out the unique personality of our individual models, all of our fly fishing reels are united by the 406.

406 means Montana. Just over a million people call the Big Sky state home, making Montana one of the last 12 states to possess a single area code. Montana is also the 4th largest state in the nation, coming in at approximately 147,000 square miles. Public lands comprise roughly 30% of that area, encompassing 350 fishing access sites (three of which serve as the namesake for our fly rods), 7 national forests, 15 wilderness areas, 55 state parks, and two stunning national parks.

It is a privilege to call Montana home. To be inspired by its wide-open plains and rich histories. To be humbled by its rugged mountains and natural wonders. Designed, tested, and perfected on Montana waters, our fly fishing reels are a product of the wild places that feed our love of fly fishing.

Fly Rods and Fly Fishing Reels in Action - The Craig Fly Fishing Rod and Envy 406 Reel in Deepwater Green

Envy 406 Fly Fishing Reel (Deepwater Green) in action.

Want a closer look at one of our reels? Check out the reels page. You can view specs, access our outfit builder, or grab a spare spool for your next fly fishing adventure. 

Questions? Comments? Ruminations on the pros and cons of different fly reel designs? Share in the comment section below!

Some Products Featured in this Article

  • Lite 406 Fly Fishing Reel - Lite 406 Frame Side Lite 406 Fly Fishing Reel - Lite 406 Frame Side
    SALE
    Lite 406
    Fly Fishing Reel
    $269.00
    SAVE 15% In Cart!
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  • Fly Fishing Reel - Envy 406 in Deepwater Green and Glacier Blue Fly Fishing Reel - Envy 406 in Deepwater Green and Glacier Blue
    SALE
    Envy 406
    Fly Fishing Reel
    $324.00
    SAVE 15% In Cart!
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  • Fly Fishing Reel - Montana Casting Co. Elite 406 Fly Fishing Reel - Montana Casting Co. Elite 406
    SALE
    Elite 406
    Fly Fishing Reel
    $375.00
    SAVE 15% In Cart!
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