Abel Vaya Reel Review


The new Abel Vaya, which is Spanish for go, is a hell of a reel. Half ported, half solid frame for lightweight sturdiness, quick spool release, and carbon stainless multi disk drag all combined with the beautiful aesthetic of this reel make it one of the best new reels we've seen. Watch as Tyler goes hands on with the Vaya and talks through these features and more.

Double Pawl Drag System

One of the cool features about this reel is the dual-pawl drag system. People who are familiar with the click-pawl drag system know there's usually not a drag knob to adjust your drag tension with. This has a drag knob even though it is a click-pawl style. It's a dual drag pawl.

The dual drag pawl gives you that nice clicking noise that most people are accustomed to with the click-pawl. You can also adjust the drag if you're worried about breaking off a big fish on lightweight tippet because the drag is a little too tight. This is a clear advantage of over some of the other click-pawl drag systems.

Abel Vaya Drag

Half Ported Frame and Weight

The Vaya has a half ported, half solid design. This makes it a little more lightweight and is noticeable, but probably not going to be the lightest reel you own. This is a 4/5 I have in my hand, but for comparison the Abel Vaya 5/6 weighs about 5.5 ounces where a Ross Animas 5/6 weighs 4.4 ounces. It's a little heavier than some reels, but but isn't too noticeable.

More of a trout reel, but you could also use it for saltwater. It comes in a 7/8 model that can handle bonefish and redfish, and of course the 5/6 for your typical trout water.

Spool Release and Artwork Inside

Another feature we like is the Vaya's free spool release. You can just pop it off just like that. Real simple to get into.

Vaya Spool Release
Inside are engraved flies on the reel. The 4/5 model has a hopper dropper, the 5/6 has a hopper and a streamer, and the 7/8 has a bonefish fly and a streamer.

Super, super cool looking on the inside, very technical. You can see the click-pawl system right there. It's a carbon stainless multi disc drag, so when you are watching it from the outside it almost looks like a nice fancy watch. You can see those parts working in there clicking away. Some people might get a little afraid of that being a little exposed, but Abel is pretty confident that you're not going to take any wear, tear, or any damage with it being exposed like that.

Super Large Arbor and an Overall Beautiful Reel

It's a large-arbor reel, letting you retrieve line a little quicker compared to other reels on the market. Abel is known for some great custom colors, and the half ported frame really shows off the design. We all know Abel has some sweet colors and patterns out there. If you're looking for a new trout reel, or a light saltwater reel, Vaya should be high on your list. Overall very sexy and coming from Abel you know it's top of the line.


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