The two primary tools in bass fishing are a baitcast and a spinning rod and reel setup. They both have plusses and minuses, but a well-rounded angler should be comfortable with them. Baitcast rods, in general, come in many more options, while spinning rods are more of a do-it-all, and some models can fish many different techniques.
Because of this, picking the right spinning rod comes down to finding one that fits your budget and fishing style. Here's a rundown of a few rods in several price ranges worth looking into when purchasing your next spinning rod.
Choosing The Right Length And Power
Finding the right length is a significant consideration when choosing your next spinning rod. One of the most common lengths and a good starting point is 7 feet long. A rod this length can do it all, and if you were to choose just one size, this is where to start.
If you expand your arsenal with other spinning rods, going shorter or longer can have some benefits. A shorter rod, around 6-foot, 6-inch, will allow you to make casts and skips in tight areas around trees a lot easier. A shorter rod, even six inches shorter, can also help when you are dropping to fish that you see on your screen as it will be that much closer to your transducer, giving you a better chance of getting your bait exactly to a fish underneath the boat and in view of your sonar.
On the other hand, longer rods also have benefits. Two of the biggest reasons for picking a 7-foot, 4-inch, or longer rod is to get a more extended cast. Those extra inches help with casting distance, and longer rods also help fight big, hard-fighting fish like open-water smallmouth.
Spinning rods are for finesse fishing and are lighter in power than baitcast rods. There are exceptions, but a standard spinning rod is a medium that can fish almost any technique. If you are only to get one, get a medium. On the other hand, some prefer a medium-light for some techniques, and this rod power has a definite place in bass fishing with lighter lines and lures. There are also times when a medium-heavy would be a good option, such as fishing slightly heavier baits or fishing waters known for giant bass.
For around $100, you can get an excellent quality fishing rod. All major brands have rods in this price range that are light, sensitive, and can do whatever you need in bass fishing.
Daiwa Tatula XT: The Daiwa Tatula name includes a host of different rods and reels at different prices, but the XT line is made with your budget in mind. The rods retail for $99, look great, and are built with a very light and strong graphite blank. The 7-foot medium is a great rod that can fish all sorts of techniques on spinning rods.
Abu Garcia Veritas PLX: The white Abu Garcia lineup has gone through several generations, but they've always been considered one of the best rods you can get for around $100. They now retail for $120 but are still an excellent value, and they still feature lightweight rod blanks that are also very sensitive and durable. Several in the lineup would be a good choice, starting with the 7-foot medium and medium-light models.
In today's world, a mid-priced bass rod will set you back around $150 to $175. This is the sweet spot for many rod manufacturers; they all produce great rods with excellent components in this price range. The lower you spend, the fewer rod technologies and slightly less quality. Spending a little more for a rod in this range will get you a much lighter and more sensitive rod.
Phenix Feather and M1: These start around $150 to $170, look great, and are very lightweight and sensitive. The rods have unique reel seats, are very balanced, and have a great warranty program if you ever break one. Their powers tend to run a little lighter than other brands, so a medium is more like a medium light for other brands, and the 7-foot, 1-inch medium is a great finesse rod that can handle many techniques.
Fenwick Elite Bass: The Fenwick brand has been around for many years and has undergone a resurgence in the past few years with many great new rods. The Elite Bass series is dialed in for bass fishermen with excellent guides and components, and the price is just under $170 and well worth it.
Higher priced rods
If you want to spend a little more, many good options exist. For around $300, you can get an exceptional rod that will last decades. These two are proven rods that will do you right.
Shimano Expride B:The Shimano Expride series are excellent rods with many features borrowed from the JDM (Japanese domestic market), with great styling and unique looks. Aside from the aesthetics, they are well-balanced, extraordinarily lightweight, and sensitive. The 6-foot, 10-inch medium light is a superb drop-shot rod.
G.Loomis IMX Pro: The G.Loomis name has been at the top of mind for those looking for great rods for decades. The IMX Pro retail price starts at $380, and they have several great spinning models to choose from that are light, balanced, and built to last. Going up even higher in the price category are the GLX and NRX, which take the quality up even further. No matter what rod you choose from G. Loomis, you'll be satisfied as they are top-quality.
Picking the right spinning rod first comes down to budget, but brands have plenty of options. The rod lines and brands listed here are all proven, and each makes an excellent fishing rod.
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