Boat Safe is a community supported site. We may earn commission from links on this page, but we have confidence in all recommended products.
Ah, the life of an angler. Who doesn’t revel in the feeling of sitting on the waves at dusk or dawn, watching the different fish species crest the surface? Even a well-poised fishing trip can take a turn for the worse if you lack ideal equipment.
As any expert understands, one of the most essential tools in your arsenal is a spinning rod. It plays a key role in the overall fishing experience and must be carefully selected based on the type of fishing you plan to do.
However, with the wealth of options that have littered the market, choosing the best spinning rod for you only breeds immense uncertainty.
Therefore, to make the selection process easier, we’ve rounded up top-ranked 10 spinning rods based on their features, ease of use, and overall quality. You’re assured of the best bang for your buck. Read on!
Courtesy of Shakespeare, these spinning rods are a preferred option for a multitude of anglers because of their flexible, sensitive, sturdy, durable, lightweight, and stiff construction. These fishing rods provide incredible action and can withstand a lot of abuse without getting damaged.
What sets the Ugly Stik GX2 apart from the pack is that it has a spinning reel already attached, saving you the hassle of creating a properly balanced outfit from scratch. Simply add an appropriate fishing line, and you’re good to go.
Moreover, the fishing rod has a composite construction that gives you the best of both worlds in terms of fiberglass and graphite. As a result, this gives the GX2 its sensitive, strong, flexible, and hardwearing attributes. You’ll have no issues detecting action with this spinning rod.
The Ugly Stik GX2 has a comfortable handle that is lightweight with an EVA grip, allowing you to hold the rod for hours on end without experiencing hand fatigue. Additionally, the 4-foot 8-inch rod has a 2-piece design that enhances portability convenience.
The attached reel construction is also long-lasting and of top-notch quality. It features an anodized aluminum spool with three ball bearings, a single-way clutch, oversized bail wire, gear ratio of 5:2:1, and immediate anti-reverse bearing.
Comfortable, firm, and lightweight EVA grip
Amazing value and price
Complete reel and rod setup, ready to use
Perfect for beginners and experienced anglers alike
Different power options and length variations to select from
Sensitive, durable, sturdy, and lightweight hybrid composite rod construction
If you want to see what it looks like when a company really knows their stuff, check out Loomis. The E6X spinning rod is next level quality. Just check out how the blank is designed and compare it to some cheaper rods. Loomis uses a multi-taper design. They focus on bolstering the parts of the rod that experience the most stress. In addition, they can slim down parts that don’t need extra material. The result is the best possible strength and power distribution. At the same time, you’re cutting back on excess material and weight. So you really get more out of less. The performance is where it all shines through. This rod is great for casting but tough and sensitive at the same time.
How unique is the way Loomis designs their rods? They had to custom build a rolling table to manufacture them the way they do. No other rod maker produces them this way. The end result is amazing precision that you really have to experience for yourself.
The handle is cork and feels comfortable but firm in your grasp. The sensitivity is surprising. You’re not likely to find many rods that do it better. The rod features eight single-foot Fuji aluminum oxide guides. There’s also a rear-locking Fuji reel seat.
The only real downside to the Loomis rods are the price. That’s not to say these aren’t great rods, but the price tag can be steep. A lot of anglers are willing to sacrifice a tiny bit of smoothness or sensitivity to shave off a lot of money.
When it comes to fishing rods, Shakespeare understands what angles require for thrilling and successful fishing experiences depending on their type of tackle and target species. Their micro spinning rods are quality rods designed for Ultralight fishing.
Therefore, if you intend to use lighter lures and lines for small caches such as trout, crappie, bream, and pan-fish in clean and open water bodies, the Shakespeare Micro is the best spinning rod for you.
As is the case with the Ugly Stik mentioned earlier, this unit constitutes a graphite composite construction that makes it sturdy, lightweight, and responsive, rolled into one. Furthermore, the fishing line inserts and guides are built from durable stainless steel.
Shakespeare Micro is available in varying lengths of 4.6 to 7.6 ft along with light to Ultralight power. The variations are based on the distance you require to cast coupled with the size of fish you want to catch.
Although the shortest 4.6 feet rod length has a single-piece construction, the other options have a 2-piece construction for convenient portability. Regarding the reel attachment, the Shakespeare Micro spinning rod is equipped with cushioned hoods and a generic reel seat.
For reduced friction and ensuring the line flows smoothly, this spinning rod features stainless steel guides and inserts. Furthermore, the full cork handles guarantee comfortable handling in all angling conditions.
Are you on the quest for a fast-action and budget-friendly spinning rod? Then Shimano Solora is right up your alley.
Offering one of the most ideal 2-piece rods at an attractive price tag, it suits novices seeking a quality product as well as seasoned anglers in a bid for a 2-piece backup option that’s easily transportable.
Shimano Solora features not only durable construction but also excellent quality. Therefore, it’s no surprise that the rod blank is constructed from aero glass that makes it thick and strong but a tad bit heavier than its rivals.
The line flows smoothly through reinforced aluminum oxide guides, whereas the reel safely sits on the firm locking graphite reel seat.
For ease of transportation, the 2-piece rod can be dismantled to a portable size of packing. The rear grip handles provide a secure and comfortable hold in your hand, making it comfortable to cast with for hours on end.
As one of the fast-action rods, you can expect the Shimano Solora to have greater sensitivity, deliver impressive casting distance, and be stiff.
With a medium power rating, this rod is a versatile angling pole as its line capacity is 6 lbs and 14 yards. Length variations range from 7ft, 5.6ft, and 6ft to 6.6ft. You can take your pick from the rod that will provide your desired casting distance.
If you’re on a tight budget and seeking a top-quality spinning rod at an affordable cost, the Cadence CR5-30 is your holy grail. As a well-built product, it features premium materials and components.
For instance, blanks are made of 30-ton carbon or graphite fibers, making the rod sensitive and impressively lightweight.
Additionally, the stainless steel guides equipped with SIC inserts allows the line to flow smoothly. Thirdly, the ergonomic Fuji reel seat elevates the performance and durability of the Cadence CR5-30.
Two-piece and one-piece rods are available to suit both preferences. Moreover, the handles are constructed from top-grade EVA and cork with full grip and split grip variations designed to maximize comfort and performance for a boatload of fishing scenarios.
With its premium components and materials, you’re assured of nothing less than excellent performance on the water. You’ll also be impressed by how balanced, comfortable, and lightweight this pole feels in your hand. It delivers crisp action and smoothly casts great distances.
Although it’s adequately flexible while under a load, it has a backbone with the uncanny ability to handle a good fight. The lengths vary from 4ft 8inches to 7 feet and medium-heavy to Ultralight power. Moreover, the actions include fast and moderate.
Durable and excellent quality reel seats and guides
Ergonomic, top quality handle
Well-balanced and lightweight
Comes in varying power combinations, actions, and lengths
Casts far distances
Fuji grip components and SIC guides
Rod gets loose and twists after a few casts
The rod is susceptible to snapping when hauling heavy-weighted fish
As a top-rated and spinning rod with a sophisticated design, the Entsport E-Series Sirius is durable, sturdy, and constructed for catching saltwater and freshwater fish to eat. With medium powers and length, it’s an ideal pole for anyone learning how to fish.
Courtesy of the structurally modified graphite blank construction, the Entsport E-Series Sirius delivers incredible sensitivity coupled with increased tensile strength while being lightweight and easy to angle with.
To make sure the reel attachment remains safely in place regardless of the duration and conditions of use, this spinning rod has a modified reel seat with a cushioned and screw-down stainless steel hood. Furthermore, it’s ergonomically crafted to permit direct contact with your fingers.
Anti-corrosive, properly-placed, and long-lasting inserts and guides guarantee diminished friction with smooth line flow. The EVA and high-density handle provide a comfortable and lightweight grip, significantly contributing to the rod’s longevity and sensitivity.
The handle feels firm and comfortable when casting and guarantees that you won’t tire after handling the Entsport E-Series Sirius all day. The 2-piece construction makes it a walk in the park to travel with, even if you have to trek or hike for hours on end while carrying the rod.
Another excellent feature of this pole is that it has a multi-purpose hook holder that adds to its convenience. As a 7-foot spinning rod with medium, moderately heavy, and light powers, the Entsport E-Series Sirius has a line capacity of 8 to 20 pounds and a lure weight of 8g to 25g.
Suitable for freshwater and saltwater use
Easily transportable two-piece construction
It comes properly packaged in a protective bag
Versatile with medium strength and powers
Comes with a hook keeper
Highly sensitive and responsive
The reel lacks a slit, which means metal scraps against metal, wearing it out faster
If you’re on the quest for a premium spinning rod designed to withstand the abuse caused by inshore saltwater, then the St. Croix Mojo wraps up your search.
Not only does its elegant finish make this rod a joy to own, but also its excellent performance is one for the books, making fishing excursions exhilarating and successful.
The rod’s blank is built from graphite, making it impressively sensitive, strong, lightweight, and long-lasting. It features rigid aluminum oxide guides enclosed by 316-grade stainless steel frames to make sure the line flows smoothly and prevent corrosion caused by saltwater.
Top-notch Fuji seats make keep the reel securely in place when fighting aggressive fish. The handle is equipped with tactile cork grips that make it comfortable and easy for the rod to cast and fight fish for prolonged durations in all weather conditions.
St. Croix Mojo spinning rod is available in lengths of 7 ft and 7 ft 6 inches. You can also choose between medium-heavy and medium-light powers, which implies it’s versatile and allows you to cast a great distance.
For solid performance at a good price, KastKing scores big with the Perigree II. The rods are designed with what they call Toray 24-ton carbon matrix KastFlex blank technology. Those are a lot of words that don’t mean much to you and me as anglers. But the basic translation is that the blank is tough but sensitive.
Fuji O-ring line guides are top of the line. The grips are EVA and very durable.The aforementioned carbon fiber translates to superior sensitivity. The reel seat is graphite and made to last. There’s a lot to love about what KastKing has done here.
They’ve employed something called the twin-tip system. This allows power to be transferred down the rod to the middle and backbone. Even the gentlest bites will translate to your hand so you can feel it.
KastKing offers a whopping 29 different sizes for this rod if you include baitcasting rods. There’s really something to meet any angler’s needs. That ranges from old pros all the way to kids picking up a rod for the first time.
For the longer 2-piece rods, KastKing has a hybrid spigot system. That ensures sensitivity isn’t lost in the joint. You get spare tips and one of the lightest rods you can buy for the price. There’s also a solid warranty to repair or replace the rod should it break due to manufacturing error. But they also have another warranty. This one is for If the rod breaks for any reason at all, even if it’s your fault. You can get a new one for half price. That seems like a decent deal.
Fenwick is a pioneer in the world of spinning rods. It’s nearly impossible to imagine a world without graphite rods today. Know why? Fenwick. They produced the very first graphite rods back in the day and they were the HMG line. So this rod isn’t just solid and reliable, it’s an entire legacy.
So how tough is a Fenwick rod? The company offers a lifetime warranty. Not a lot of companies stand behind a product like that. But of course, they put their money where their mouth is. The AAA full grip cork handle is comfortable and solid. The Fuji guides feature aconite inserts and stainless steel frames. And the blank itself is wound with carbon thread. This stuff is super tough and greatly bolsters the overall strength of the rod.
The rods are lightweight and have a very natural feeling. They come in a variety of length and actions. Start at the 6 foot medium action or head right to the 7’6” light action. The handles are slimmed down compared to many others. It’s narrow but still feels solid and secure. Depending on the size you’re looking at 1 piece or 2 pieces. The alien reel seat has a positive lock design. You should have no issues attaching any reel to the rod.
Sensitivity with the Fenwick is high. It may not be the best out there, but it’s no slouch. If you’re out in a canoe pulling in smallmouth bass, you’re going to be happy. Casting is as smooth as you could ask for. Paired with the right reel you’ll have a powerful combo for taking on bass, or anything else.
The Shimano Zodias is another solid entry from Shimano. This label has been around for a while but Shimano keeps improving it. New models of the Zodias are over 30% more sensitive than older ones. Keep that in mind if you’re out shopping for one. An older model may not be up to par with new ones.
The bumped up sensitivity is thanks to a top notch Carbon Monocoque grip. You’ll feel every tiny tug on the line. The hollow structure is what ensures you don’t miss a beat.
The reel seat is Ci4+. You may recognize Ci4 from one of Shimano’s best reels as well. It’s a carbon infused metal that is designed to be both stronger and lighter than similar materials. The Ci4+ is 2.5 times tougher than the Ci4 was. That means even more weight reduction but increased sensitivity.
Shimano uses what they call High Power X-construction. That means the blank has diagonally wrapped carbon tape down the entire length. The size of the tape and how its wrapped is actually adjusted based on the rod and fishing style. So if you’re getting a bass fishing rod it’s going to have a different X-construction than another. It’s a cool concept that helps give an edge in terms of twist resistance and strength. According to Shimano it also helps transfer energy through the rod. This is to help boost accuracy and distance. It’s hard to argue with the results, though. This is a solid rod that offers the best of everything you want.
The price point can get a little steep, but the quality is there. There are several versions of the Zodias that you can buy. They range from light, medium light, medium, heavy and so on. As we said, they tailor the rod to the fishing you’ll be doing. The price adjusts based on that.
If you love a good spinning reel and a solid drop shot, give this rod a try. It’s light enough and powerful enough to make short work of any bass you may be on the hunt for.
Strong and durable rod
Tailoring system for X-construction means it limits some versatility
Buyer’s Guide: How to Choose the Best Spinning Rod
To ensure you select a spinning pole that best suits your needs, consider the following characteristics.
It determines the type of control you have when fighting fish or casting coupled with casting distance you can accomplish with it. To know the ideal length to purchase, think about where you’ll be casting from, the type of bait you intend to use, and the casting distance.
Longer spinning rods have a faster tip speed, enabling them to cast farther, thereby covering a broader area of water. Moreover, they are excellent shock absorbers when fighting bigger fish, preventing the line from breaking.
If your goal is surf fishing, angling in large, open water bodies, or using bigger baits to target larger fish, a long spinning rod is your holy grail.
Although shorter spinning rods deliver improved control and accuracy when casting, they only cast medium to short distances.
Additionally, they provide better maneuverability and leverage where there’s heavy vegetation. If you’ll be fishing from a canoe or boat, casting medium to small lures, or precision is your goal, a short pole is right up your alley.
It indicates the spinning rod’s strength and the amount of weight its tip can withstand without breaking. Bearing that in mind, the ideal weight is based on the lure and line weights, the type of angling you intend to do, and the size of the fish.
If you’re targeting large and heavy fish, embarking on offshore trolling, using heavier lure weights, hauling fish from heavy surf fishing, and deep-sea fishing, a weighty rod with the uncanny ability to comfortably handle these tasks is your best bet.
If you’re fishing in open and clear water, fighting small fish such as pan-fish, or casting lighter baits and lines, you’ll need light or Ultralight rod weights. These are built to handle between 2 lbs and 6 lbs of line and 1/32 ounce of lure weights.
Medium weight spinning rods exude versatility and can handle a vast assortment of larger and smaller fish, lure and line weights, and moderate to light cover. Comfort and longevity are essential aspects to factor into the weight.
Although heavier spinning rods have superior durability and strength, it can be tiring to use them all day. Contrarily, light or Ultralight rods allow you to comfortably fish for hours without fatigue setting in. However, light rods are more susceptible to snapping as they are thin and light.
It describes how a spinning rod bends when there’s a load attached to its tip. Action entails how quickly the rod recovers upon removing the weight and where it bends. It impacts the types of angling scenarios it’s best-suited for and the casting speed. There are slow, relatively fast, medium, and fast-action spinning rods.
The overly fast options are the sturdiest, only bending at the tip, whereas the fast-action counterparts bend at the top-third of the blank.
They are not only sensitive but also transmit the slightest strikes and bites. Moreover, fast-action rods cast long distances and store immense power at the tip. They also generate fast hook-sets and are popularly used for trolling and jigging.
Medium action rods bend at the top half of the rod, stretching towards the center. They also have a moderate amount of flex, backbone, and sensitivity to properly set hooks and curb treble hooks from pulling out. Medium action rods come in handy for casting lighter lures at a further distance and mid-weight crank-baits.
Spinning rods are the Holy Grail for a multitude of anglers due to the fairly low learning curve, simplicity, and versatility they usher in.
The best spinning rod is the make-or-break of your fishing trip, so ensure you select an option that will allow you to get the most out of your experience.
Whether you’re a top-notch finesse angler or still learning the ropes, an excellent spinning rod such as the ones reviewed above is a worthwhile investment.
My grandfather first took me fishing when I was too young to actually hold up a rod on my own. As an avid camper, hiker, and nature enthusiast I'm always looking for a new adventure.
Established in 1998, BoatSafe is your independent guide into the world of boating, fishing, and watersports. We provide expert insights and detailed guides to help you find products tailored to your needs and budget.
Address: 4021 West Walnut Street. Rogers, AR 72756