Expert Anglers Guide To Finding The Best Bass Fishing Rod

You never want to be cheap when it comes to a good bass fishing rod. That's why Anglers Harbor has put together a few tips on what to look for in the best fishing rod for bass and a few reviews to help you start shopping.

Having a quality fishing rod that is both durable and sensitive is really important so you don’t have to worry about your rod snapping. You also want to be able to have a good feel for what’s on your line.

Best Fishing Rod for Bass Buying Guide

Rod Length

When shopping for a new bass fishing rod, you will find that most rods are somewhere between six and eight feet long.

The rule is the longer the rod, the longer the distance you will be able to cast. This is a good rod to have when fishing off a wide open area so you can cast out further.

With a short rod, you will not have the distance, but you will have more control and accuracy. If you plan to fish from a kayak or off a dock, having a shorter rod will work better.

Rod Handle Types

Cork Handles – A cork handle will usually have a good amount of grip and feel lighter than a wood handle. They tend to be more sensitive which makes it easier to feel bites on your line.

EVA Foam Handles – With an EVA foam handle, you tend to get a pretty comfortable grip. If you have an EVA foam handle on a blank rod well, it should last you a very long time.

Wood Handles – Wood handles tend to be the most attractive, but they give you less of a grip, especially when they become wet. They can also feel colder in colder temperatures and tend to get damaged faster. However, if they are well-made and seasoned, they can last longer than a cork rod handle.

Rod Types

Baitcasting Rods

The most common rod in the bass fishing world is the casting or also called baitcasting rod. Since it is able to handle big lures and heavy line, this is the best type of rod to use in power fishing and heavy cover situations.

Most bass fishing is done with baitcasting equipment and you wouldn’t be able to do certain techniques like topwater slop, deep cranking, and flipping otherwise.

You will also find that most bass fishing situations need stouter equipment and heavier line to use the lure efficiently and catch the fish that a spinning rod just can’t provide.

Those new to bass fishing might find casting reels a little daunting, mainly because of the dread of getting a birds nest, but without one, your success at catching bass drops immensely.

Once an angler learns how comfortable and easy a casting rod is to use, it will become a vital part of the bass fishing arsenal.

Spinning Rods

Even though baitcasting rods do take on the brunt of the work when bass fishing, spinning rods do have their place.

Certain situations require a spinning rod including specific techniques like topwaters, micro cranks, and skipping tubes under docks that require more of a finesse-type technique.

You get a light line with a spinning rod so you can use smaller baits that are good for open water situations that are far away from heavy cover. Basically, spinning rods are good for a non-power fishing situation.

Materials

Graphite Rods – Also known as a carbon fiber rod, a graphite rod is usually more sensitive than a fiberglass rod. This means that when a fish bites, you will be able to feel it and react faster.

However, because of the high sensitivity, it can also make you perform a hookset too soon giving the fish the opportunity to get away before it bites the bait properly.

Graphite rods are also more lightweight but not as strong as a fiberglass rod. They can also be used by anyone and are often used less by experienced anglers and more by those just starting out.

Fiberglass Rods – Usually a little heavier than a graphite rod, a fiberglass rod is a good choice for catching large fish.

They aren’t as sensitive as a graphite rod, but for those that are experienced at bass fishing, will know what’s a real bite and what’s not.

This is a rod that is used more by experienced anglers, particularly those that are looking to catching heavier and larger fish.

One Piece vs. Two Pieces

Two or three piece rods have better portability and can be taken apart to fit into a small space if necessary. This makes it easy to carry them from place to place or to put them in your car.

If you don’t have to worry about portability, a single piece rod is usually the better way to go if you want more control and sensitivity.

Rod Power and Action

Power – Categorized as either light, medium, or heavy, power can also be listed as a combination of the two as in medium/heavy.

This basically tells you how flexible a rod is so a heavy power rod will have less flexibility than a light or medium power rod. So, if you want to catch a larger fish like in bass fishing, you will need a heavy power rod. 

Action – The rod action tells you how far your rod will start to bend under pressure from the tip.

Categorized as slow, moderate, fast, or extra fast, you will find that a fast action rod is best for heavy baits as the rod will bend more aggressively closer to the tip while a slow action rod is good for light baits where the rod will only bend a little across more of the rod.

Rod Guides

An important part of a rod design, quality rod guides will help to guarantee that you have long cast with less friction in line.

With the right guide placement, your rod can help spread out the stress that is applied to the blank when you are fighting a bass.

Either titanium or ceramic rod guides will do a great job and are the best quality when you are choosing a new rod.

Best Bass Fishing Rod Reviews

Okuma's Tournament Rod Review

If you are looking for a good-quality fishing rod, the Okuma’s Tournament Rod is worth looking at.

Constructed with IM8 rod blanks, this rod features guide frames made of stainless steel that gives your line fluid movement.

Featuring a Fuji DPS carbon reel seat, this is a very responsive rod. You also can choose between split or full grips depending on your preferences.

Plus, the guide inserts are made of zirconium allowing you to use braided line, and it has a lifetime warranty.

PROS

CONS

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    Can get either split or full grips
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    Easy movement of your fishing line
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    Very responsive and uses a high-quality rod blank
  • A little on the stiff side
  • Might be less sensitive than its competitors

St. Croix Bass X Review

With tons of features, the St. Croix Bass X is another high-quality fishing rod. Constructed of premium SCII graphite, this is a very sensitive and durable rod.

The Bass X also includes oxide guides made of hard aluminum and black frames that provide a even track for your line to slide along.

It also features a black hood and a Fuji ECS reel seat. And it has additional durability with a double layer of flex coat pure finish that also gives it a sleek appearance.

Made with premium components and quality SCII graphite blanks, the Bass X feel as a good as they look.

PROS

CONS

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    Very strong and very sensitive
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    Features two protective coatings of finish
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    Comes with a easy and smooth guide for fishing line
  • Can take a while to get used to the sensitivity

JOHNCOO Carbon Baitcasting Rod Review

For a little different design, the JOHNCOO Carbon Baitcasting Rod is not only solid and strong but also structurally sound.

In comparison to its competitors, the JOHNCOO has incredible strength but also features tons of sensitivity letting you have a good sense of what is on your fishing line.

This lightweight rod also has an ergonomic EVA handle that is easy to handle for long period of time without getting fatigued.

Measuring 7 feet long, the JOHNCOO Carbon Baitcasting Rod features an improved solid carbon fiber construction that gives you the most strength while retaining sensitivity.

Plus, the high-density EVA provides improved sensitivity and durability which adds to your control and overall fishing comfort. This is a nice lightweight rod that is also incredibly strong to catch any weight bass.

PROS

CONS

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    Minimal fatigue with the special handle design
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    Structurally sound with a high level of sensitivity
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    Lightweight, but strong
  • Not for anglers looking for a premium rod

Lew's Casting Rod Review

If you are looking for a very durable rod, the Lew’s Casting Rod is constructed of modulus graphite that is top-grade.

You get a great mix of sensitivity and balance as you are catching, plus you get multi-layered blanks for additional durability.

The setup of the rod includes line inserts made of titanium oxide that let you line glide smoothly, plus it has skeletal reel seats that are soft touch so they don’t have any edges for less hand irritation.

You also won’t have any fatigue with the comfortable grip of the Winn Split Grip handles on the Lew’s Casting Rod that is perfect for any type of weather condition and gives you maximum feel and grip.

Thanks to the Advanced Performance Technology (APT) used to make the modulus graphite blanks, it is also lightweight and sensitive.

Plus, the titanium oxide guides are placed precisely for the best positioning to give you durability, performance, and casting.

PROS

CONS

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    A durable and well-made rod that is multi-layered
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    Great mix of sensitivity and strength
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    Comfortable and great handling control
  • A little on the expensive side

Ugly Stik Elite Spinning Rod Review

For medium fishing power, the Ugly Stik Elite features a rod length of 6 feet and five reel bearings.

It has a line capacity of 110/8 140/6 and 190/4 and features a very limber and flexible pole giving you a very sensitive and sturdy fishing rod.

This is a reel and rod combo that works seamlessly together, plus it is easy to travel with due to use ideal size for portability.

It does have a little more weight to it from the extra 35 percent graphite that it uses but that helps it to maintain its toughness for additional durability. Constructed of premium cork, it has an improved grip for better feel and looks.

PROS

CONS

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    Lightweight but very durable rod
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    Nice feeling with good sensitivity
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    Budget-friendly
  • Has very soft tip action
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    Guides aren’t very good

Best Bass Fishing Rod Review Conclusion

The winner of the Best Bass Fishing Rod is the JOHNCOO Carbon Baitcasting Fishing Rod. Even though it has a little different design, it is a very solid and strong rod that features incredible amounts of strength. Plus, it has a lot of sensitivity so you always know what’s on your line.

The ergonomic EVA handle makes this lightweight rod easy to handle for long period of time without getting fatigued.

It also features an enhanced solid carbon fiber construction that gives you the most strength while retaining sensitivity making this is a nice lightweight rod that is also incredibly strong to catch any weight bass.

The definite winner of the Best Bass Fishing Rod roundup is the JOHNCOO Carbon Baitcasting Fishing Rod hands down.

Also if your new and want to get up to speed of what bass fishing is all about, be sure to learn more in our bass fishing guide.

Don’t do bass fishing? Don’t worry we got you covered, check out our catfish fishing and trout fishing rod reviews!


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