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​Becoming an experienced angler is a process that can take a lifetime. But even expert fishermen still need reliable gear to get that trophy fish safely in their net. In this article, we’ll discuss ten to top fishing rods on the market. Every angler needs something slightly different in a fishing rod, but the products on this list represent a bit of everything.

From striped bass to brook trout, Montana to Vermont, the right fishing rod can turn a good day on the water into a great one. To help you pick the right fishing rod for your needs we have broken down the features, pros and cons, price and warranty for each rod. We have also chosen one overall top pick based on features, performance and value.

Comparison Table

Product FAQ

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​Who Makes the Best Fishing Rods?

​What Are the Different Types of Fishing Rods Available?

​How Do the Best Fishing Rods Work?

​Where Can You Find Quality Fishing Rods?

​Do I Need a Specific Type of Rod For Each Fish Species?

How We Reviewed

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For this article, we reviewed each fishing rod based on features, price, availability, warranty and pros and cons. Each fishing rod was considered on its own merits but also compared with other competing fishing rods in the marketplace. Every fishing rod on our list was chosen carefully to give a representative look at the different kinds of rods that most anglers will want in their arsenal.

Our overall top pick was chosen not necessarily because it’s the best rod for every fisherman out there, but because it has the best overall value. Though some anglers may find another rod that better suits their personal needs, our top pick excels in its specified niche and provides excellent performance for the price.

Overall Price Range of This Product (and Similar Products)

There is a vast range in prices for fishing rods on the market today. Anglers regularly spend hundreds and thousands of dollars on custom rods made by specialty manufacturers. This article, however, focuses on widely available rods that range between $ and $​$$.

What We Reviewed

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SHIMANO Solora 2 Piece Spinning Rod

SHIMANO 0068-0029 Sls60M2 Solara Spinning Rod
  • Durable aeroglass construction rod blank
  • Reinforced aluminum oxide guides
  • Solid locking graphite reel seat

Features

​Shimano’s Solora 2-piece fishing rod offers a good, solid quality at a price that is easy to handle. It’s one of the top fishing rods on the market due to its simple design along with premium features like aeroglass blank construction. The added locking graphite reel guide, aluminum oxide line guides and cork grip make this rod a good choice for beginners and pros alike.

Pros

  • Aeroglass construction
  • Good value
  • Graphite locking reel guide

Cons

  • Less packable than multi-part rods.
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

Shimano FXS 2 Piece Spinning Rod

Shimano FX SPINNING, Graphite Freshwater Spinning Fishing Rod, 5'6"...
  • Durable aeroglass construction rod blank
  • Reinforced aluminum oxide guides
  • Solid locking graphite reel seat

Features

​The FXS 2-piece spinning rod from Shimano is another value-priced spin casting rod that is appropriate for all ages and skill levels. This rod also features an aeroglass construction and reinforced aluminum line guides. It has a molded EVA plastic reel guide and was designed specifically for versatility. So whether you’re surfcasting or stream fishing this rod may be worth a look.

Pros

  • Molded EVA reel grip
  • Aeroglass construction
  • Good for many types of fishing
  • Value priced

Cons

  • May not be as strong as some competing rods
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

Shakespeare Micro Spinning Rod

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Shakespeare Micro Series Spinning Rod
  • Equipment for anglers of all ages and experience
  • Made to be reliable and durable
  • Tested to be easy to use and high quality

Features

​The Micro spinning rod from Shakespeare has a powerful combination of performance and super lightweight design. This is the first entry on our list in the ultralight fishing category and features a graphite composite fiber design. With aluminum line guides, a classic reel guide, and a cork handle, it’s ideal for running lighter lines and lures while working smaller fish.

Pros

  • Super low weight
  • Classic design
  • Great strength to weight ration

Cons

  • May not be powerful enough for larger fish
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

UglyStik Elite Spinning Rod

Ugly Stik Elite Spinning Rod 5' - Ultra Light - 1pc
  • Line Rating - 8-17 pounds
  • Ugly Tech Construction with added graphite for lighter weight and increased sensitivity
  • Ugly Tuff one piece stainless steel guides provide maximum durability

Features

​The UglyStik Elite spinning rod provides impressive strength and performance at a fair price. This rod has Ugly Stik’s signature clear tip, which provides added strength at what is usually the weakest point of a rod. With a graphite reinforced construction it will provide lots of bend under strain, and the one-piece stainless steel line guides will hold up for years to come.

Pros

  • Premium quality at an affordable price
  • Reinforced tip
  • Stainless steel line guides
  • Graphite construction

Cons

  • More expensive than some competing rods
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

SHIMANO Stimula 2-Piece Spin Rod

SHIMANO Stimula 2-Piece Spin Rod (5-Feet 6-Inch Ultralight)
  • Graphite composite blank
  • Low profile aluminum oxide guides
  • Custom Shimano reel seat

Features

​Shimano’s Stimula spinning rods were designed with a range of anglers in mind. There are separate rods for fishing different species and some options include trout and bass. This rod has premium features like aluminum oxide line guides, a classic Shimano-style reel guide, multipurpose hook keeper, EVA butt cap, and quality cork handle.

Pros

  • Specific rods for different species  
  • Hook keeper
  • EVA butt cap

Cons

  • Could be less versatile than some competing rods
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

Abu Garcia Medium/Heavy Veritas Micro Guide

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Features

​Abu Garcia’s medium/heavyweight Veritas micro guide rod is ideal for those needing a powerful bait casting rod without too much weight. This rod boasts a spiral core construction made from graphite stock and titanium alloy line guides with Zincomium inserts. These quality parts create a sum that is super strong for big fish but also light enough for a long carry down the beach or pier.

Pros

  • Graphite construction
  • Titanium alloy line guides
  • Excellent strength to weight ration

Cons

  • More expensive than some other bait casting rods
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

No products found.

PLUSINNO Telescopic Fishing Rod Retractable Fishing Pole Rod

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PLUSINNO Telescopic Fishing Rod Retractable Fishing Pole Rod Saltwater...
  • 🎣 Perfect elasticity, high density Carbon fiber mixed with fiberglass make your fishing pole hard & durable.
  • 🎣 Aluminum Oxide Guide Inserts; Closed Length: 40 cm 15.75 inch. Opened Length: 1.8 M 5.91 Ft; Section: 6; Top...
  • 🎣 Stainless Steel Hooded Reel Seats is anti-seawater corrosion; EVA Fore Grip for comfort. attractive design,...

Features

​Plusinno’s telescoping fishing rod is a great choice for anglers on the go who are also looking for a good deal. This rod packs down to just over a foot in length and is made from carbon fiber blended with fiberglass. It’s ultralight, but with aluminum oxide line guides and an EVA reel guides it’s also super strong.

Pros

  • Telescoping and packable
  • Carbon fiber construction
  • Strong enough for multiple kinds of fish

Cons

  • More expensive than some other bait casting rods
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

Daiwa Tatula Casting Rod

Daiwa TXT701MHFB Tatula XT Bass Casting Rod, 7' Length, 1Piece Rod,...
  • High Volume fiber (hvf) high modulus carbon graphite construction
  • x45 bias graphite construction for zero blank twist
  • Fuji aluminum oxide guides

Features

​Daiwa’s Tatula casting is a great choice for experienced anglers who demand high-quality features and top performance. This rod is made with Daiwa’s proprietary Super Volume Fiber graphite. It’s a material that is exceptionally strong, but also super light and very responsive to strikes. This is a bias graphite fiber, so you won’t need to worry about twist memory either. Along with this high-end graphite the line guides are made of Fuji alconite rings.

Pros

  • Super strong and light
  • Graphite construction.
  • Alconite rings
  • No bend memory

Cons

  • Expensive
  • May have more features than some anglers need
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

UglyStik Elite Casting Fishing Rod

Ugly Stik Elite Casting Rod
  • Premium cork grips with logo etched into handle
  • Handle type A
  • Ugly Tuff guides

Features

​The Elite casting rod from UglyStik is similar to their spinning rod but oriented for bait casting. It features the same reinforced tip and Ugly Tuff line guides as well as a premium EVA molded reel guide.

Pros

  • Reinforced tip
  • Good value
  • Ugly Tuff line guides

Cons

  • Higher cost but lacking some features of competing rods
  • ​​Price
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

​This rod features a one-year limited warranty.   

UglyStik GX2 Spinning Rod

Ugly Stik GX2 Spinning Rod
  • Strong, yet balanced graphite and fiberglass construction
  • Durable Ugly Tuff one piece stainless steel guides
  • Clear Tip design for strength and sensitivity

Features

​The GX2 spinning rod from UglyStik provides excellent strength, but also high-level sensitivity. It’s made of carbon fiber and fiberglass and features UglyStik’s proprietary UglyTuff line guides. These are single rings made of aluminum that are guaranteed not to break under the strain of a big fish. It’s also a one-piece construction for even more strength and durability over time.

Pros

  • Carbon and fiberglass construction  
  • UglyTuff line guide rings
  • Single piece construction
  • Excellent warranty

Cons

  • Less packable than multi-piece rods
  • ​​Where to Buy
  • ​WARRANTY

The Verdict

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For any angler, the best choice in a fishing rod will be one that meets their specific needs. A trout fisher working small mountain streams, for example, will probably choose a different rod than surfcasting fishermen who need to throw large chunks of bait a long distance. With that being said, our top overall choice is the UglyStik Elite spin casting rod.

This rod may be on the light side for someone who needs a big and powerful rod most of the time, but it’s super versatile. If your primary use focuses on small and medium fish, this rod has you covered. From bass on a Southern lake to pike in the Midwest, this rod can do a bit of everything, and it’s got the quality and toughness to back it up.

Part of what we love about this rod is its superior sensitivity. UglyStik’s proprietary clear top makes for a rod that can take a beating but also let you know when it’s time to set the hook on a finicky fish. This feature, coupled with their UglyTough single-piece line guides, makes this a dependable rod that you can take out in search of sunfish in the town lake or chain pickerel on a mountain lake.

WIth a reasonable price, excellent features and a solid warranty, we think the UglyStik Elite spin casting rod is an excellent choice for a wide range of anglers.

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