14 Best Trout Fishing Rods – Our Top Picks For 2024

Best Trout Fishing Rods

Welcome to our reviews of the Best Trout Fishing Rods!

If you’re looking for a new trout rod, you’re in the right place. A quality rod is essential for a successful trout fishing trip. So we have reviewed some of the top-rated rods on the market to find you the right rod for your needs.

If you are in a hurry: Ugly Stik Elite is the Best Trout Rod as per our reviews.

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Ugly Stik Elite Spinning Rod
  • UGLY STIK 7’ ELITE SPINNING ROD: 35% more graphite than...
  • 2-6LB LINE RATING, ULTRA LIGHT POWER, MEDIUM FAST ACTION:...
  • DURABLE CONSTRUCTION: Constructed from graphite and...

Last update on 2024-05-17 / Paid links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Now, let us move on to our in-depth reviews.

Top 14 Best Trout Fishing Rods

Here is our pick of the top 14 trout rods…

  1. Ugly Stik Elite – Best Overall
  2. Fenwick Eagle – Alternative/ Runnerup
  3. KastKing Perigee II – Best Value
  4. Cadence CR5 – Best Strength
  5. Daiwa Minispin – Best Ultralight
  6. Ugly Stik GX2 – Best Warranty (7 Years)
  7. Berkley Lightning – Best 2-Piece Rod
  8. Sougayilang – Rod and Reel Combo
  9. Plusinno – Best Spinning Combo
  10. Okuma Voyager – Best Travel Kit
  11. Daiwa Megaforce – Best Telescopic
  12. St. Croix Trout Rod – Premier Option
  13. Okuma Celilo – Budget Pick
  14. Shakespeare Micro – Best Cheap

1. Ugly Stik Elite

Shakespeare Ugly Stik 7’ Elite Spinning...

Ugly Stik Elite is one of the best fishing rods for trout as per our reviews. True to its name, it has a very elite construction that uses more graphite than other Ugly Stik rods. The build quality, performance, and 7-year warranty make us feel very confident about our recommendation. So let us tell you about our experience using this rod.

We chose the 6’6″ ultralight rod for our tests as it comes with medium-fast action and a 2-6 lb line rating. Usually, we pick a 6′ rod for targeting smaller trout or a 7′ rod if we plan to catch bigger ones. So 6’6″ size is a middle of the road option that should offer a balance between power and control.

We used this rod over a couple of fishing trips and caught several trout. The light weight of the rod let us cast without any fatigue. We were able to throw more often without worrying about tiring ourselves out. The medium-fast action let us control the rod better while setting the hook and reeling in our catch.

The Clear Tip design improves the strength. The Ugly Tuff one-piece guides add to the durability. The reel seat with cushioned stainless steel hoods holds your reel securely. The cork handles feel comfortable in your hands even if you have to cast all day.

2. Fenwick Eagle

Fenwick Eagle Spinning Fishing Rod, Brown, 6'...

Fenwick Eagle is a favorite amongst fishermen all around the world. It uses high-quality material for top performance, reliability, and durability.

The 24-ton graphite construction provides flexibility and sensitivity. The stainless steel guides increase sensitivity even more. The aluminum oxide inserts reduce friction to make the long-distance casts smooth. The cork handle and premium TAC grips make it comfortable for long hours of fishing.

Fenwick Eagle comes as a one-piece or a two-piece option in many different sizes from 5’ to 8’. The 6′ power fast-action one is the best rod for trout. You can use it for throwing light lures and drifting baits like grasshoppers and worms.

3. KastKing Perigee II

KastKing Perigee II Fishing Rods, Spinning...

KastKing Perigee II comes in many different options from 4’6” to 7’4″. The models range from ultralight to heavy power. There is also an option to pick a casting rod.

The 6′ ultralight spinning rod is an all-around length for trout fishing. You can pick one of the short rods if you are targeting really small fish. While the 7′ medium power rod can handle even the biggest trout.

But KastKing Perigee II rods perform just as well when fishing for many other species. You can use these rods for catching crappie, smallmouth bass, and panfish.

These rods use many premium components that improve strength and sensitivity. The graphite reel seats and Fuji O-Ring line guides help in improving durability. The handle uses high-density EVA grips for comfort and ease of use. Even the smallest rods are strong and sturdy.

The hybrid spigot joints make it easy to set up the rod and allow for easy storage and travel. Starting at just 2.5 ounces, these rods are great for different fishing techniques.

4. Cadence CR5

Cadence Fishing CR5 Spinning Rods | 30 Ton...

You will love Cadence CR5 if you like using lightweight and sensitive rods. I was very impressed by the Cadence CR5 rod on my recent trout fishing trip.

The 7′ ultralight rod is built with 30-ton carbon fiber that provides excellent sensitivity to the rod. The stainless steel guides also help improve sensitivity by transferring vibrations from the line to your hand. You can feel even the slightest bites and nibbles.

Cadence CR5 is an excellent pick for freshwater fishing. It is so strong that you can land fish even in fast-flowing streams or rivers. I didn’t have any hassles using this rod to catch fish from small brook trout to big rainbow trout.

The guides help you throw even long casts with ease as you don’t need to worry about line friction. You will also love the 2-piece design that makes the rod travel-friendly to fit in your car trunk. But despite it being a 2-piece rod, you get the feel of a one-piece rod when you are fishing.

5. Daiwa Minispin

Daiwa Mini System Minispin Ultralight...

Daiwa Minispin is the best ultralight spinning rod for trout as per our reviews. It comes in a five-piece design. You just need to align and attach the five pieces and you’re all set to cast. The rod is 4.5 feet long when fully constructed.

The carbon fiber rods are very strong yet they’re flexible enough to get you that great catch. The rod comes with a matching ultralight reel. The reel includes a multi-disc drag system, GyroSpin balancing, and a Twist Buster for twist reduction.

Thanks to the 5.1:1 gear ratio, the reel is so smooth and powerful that you can easily pull out fish up to 8 lbs. The reel feels sturdy and solid even when fish put up a fight.

Daiwa Minispin comes in its own compact hard case with built-in tackle compartments. When you’re done fishing, you can easily fit the rod and reel inside the case.

6. Ugly Stik GX2

Ugly Stik 6’ GX2 Spinning Rod, Three Piece...

Shakespeare Ugly Stik GX2 spinning rod is so unique, innovative, and powerful that it is unlike many of its competitors on the market.

The two-piece rod uses the right combination of graphite and fiberglass for a well-balanced feel. The Clear Tip design and stainless steel guides make it very responsive, which is a must for trout fishing.

It comes with a comfortable handle that fits right into your hand due to its flawless design. The EVA grip is a boon when you are out on long fishing trips.

If you are planning to target small trout, then go for the 6′ light power fast-action rod. It is easy to use, lightweight, and portable. give up on you easily. It is one of the top-rated, long-lasting, and efficient rods, that will just not give up.

7. Berkley Lightning

Berkley 7’ Lightning Rod Trout Rod, Two...

Berkley Lightning is an excellent pick if you want to use light lines and lures for trout fishing. It is perfect for lightning-fast hook sets thanks to its sensitivity and strength.

The 2-piece rod comes in three different sizes. The 6’6” ultralight fast action rod comes with a line rating of 8-17 lbs. It is so well-balanced and versatile that you can use it for different fishing techniques.

The 24-ton graphite blank gives you enough strength to battle any size trout. The aluminum oxide inserts on the stainless steel guides prevent corrosion. Also, this combination makes for a smooth and easy experience when casting. Being able to cast long distances gives you many more options when trying to find fish.

The double-locking reel seat makes sure that your reel is always stable. The rubber cork handle adds balance and stability while providing great comfort. Easy to set up, the Berkley Lightning is becoming popular amongst fishermen.

8. Sougayilang Fishing Combo

Sougayilang Fishing Rod Combos with...

Sougayilang is the best trout fishing rod and reel combo on the market. It comes with a telescopic rod, a spinning reel, and a carrier bag. It also includes a few fishing lures, a fishing line, and some accessories.

The rod is well-designed, balanced, and sensitive. It uses fiberglass and carbon fiber making it a sensitive and light rod. It is so easy to use, control, and maneuver that you will find it easy to handle even toward the end of your fishing day.

The rod comes with stainless steel guides with ceramic inserts. The reel seat is made of corrosion-resistant aluminum. It is one of the top-rated fishing kits that is built to last. You can be sure that it will last you a long time.

You can easily transport this kit from one place to another in a car trunk, backpack, or boat hatch. It strikes the perfect balance between design, performance, and portability.

9. Plusinno Spinning Combo

PLUSINNO Telescopic Fishing Rod Reel Combos...

The Plusinno is the best trout spinning combo on the market. It comes with a spinning rod, a fishing reel, a fishing line, and various lures. The combo also includes fishing hooks, some accessories, and a carrier bag. It is so portable that you will never worry about carrying your trout spinning rod around ever again.

Plusinno is a popular high-quality rod suitable for anglers of all skill levels. It is very easy to use and control, which is a huge benefit for beginners. It comes in different sizes so you can pick one that suits your fishing needs.

The rod uses a combination of carbon fiber and fiberglass for sensitivity and power. It is a powerful rod that you can use to catch even big fish. Yet it is so sensitive that you can feel even the tiniest of fish bites.

Most people find this rod a very good fit for their hands. You will love the EVA foregrip. It allows you to hold the rod for long hours without feeling tired.

10. Okuma Voyager

Okuma Voyager Spinning Freshwater Travel Kit,...

Okuma Voyager is a travel fishing kit that includes a 6′ five-piece rod, a size 20 spinning reel, and a small tackle box. It all folds up into a handy case for traveling and on-the-go fishing expeditions.

You don’t need much gear for light tackle fishing but Okuma put in a lot of research while designing this kit. It considered weight and portability while keeping in mind the needs of freshwater anglers.

The kit includes a spinning rod with ceramic guide inserts and durable reel seats. The cork grip handle fits comfortably in your hand. The size 20 spinning real has an efficient ball-bearing system. This allows for a balance of flexibility, power, and senstivity.

The setup is quite versatile and flexible to keep up with a vast variety and size of fish. From trout to bluegill or even bass. But if you are planning to target Salmon, then check out some of the top salmon fishing rods to help you choose one.

Okuma Voyager spares you the hassle of buying each piece of fishing gear separately. It takes up minimal space. You can store it in its own custom, soft-sided carry case included in the package.

11. Daiwa Megaforce

Daiwa Megaforce Tele Spin, 7.87 Feet,...

Daiwa Megaforce is a telescopic rod that is almost 8 feet when fully extended. Yet the closed length is only 27.16 inches. So the ease of use combined with portability makes it one of the top spinning rods for trout.

The fast-action rod is lightweight and sturdy. The cut-proof aluminum oxide guides will not wear down with frequent usage. It is resistant to corrosion so will not have to replace it anytime soon.

The reel seat is authentic and holds on the reel. The soft cork handle feels great on your hands even after fishing for hours.

12. St. Croix Trout Rod

St. Croix Rods Trout Series Spinning Rod,...

St. Croix Trout Series is specially designed to meet the needs of trout anglers. Whether you like fishing in small streams or big lakes, St. Croix Trout Rods come in sizes from 4’10” to 7′.

This is truly the best spinning rod for trout as it is built with a combination of premium SCII and SCVI graphite. The SCII graphite construction makes it a strong yet light rod.

The SCVI reinforcements give the rod enough backbone to set the hook on a big trout. The Sea Guide Atlas Guides and Sea Guide NPS reel seats improve the durability of the rod.

This two-piece rod comes with a premium EVA handle, and flex coat slow cure finish. A great experience backed by a 5-year warranty makes the St. Croix Rods a favorite amongst fishermen.

13. Okuma Celilo

okuma Celilo Graphite Lightweight Ultra Light...

Okuma Celilo is the best budget spinning rod for trout due to its proven performance and reliability. It uses the highest quality materials yet comes at a very affordable price.

The graphite blank makes the rod powerful and sturdy. Aluminum guide inserts enhance performance by allowing a heightened level of sensitivity. It can handle line weights ranging from 2-6 lbs.

The stainless steel hooded real seats help with the sturdiness of the rod. The cork grip provides balance, and stability when a fish is on the line.

This ultralight spinning rod has everything you need for a big catch. It is so smooth while retrieving that it guarantees a high level of performance.

14. Shakespeare Micro

Shakespeare Micro Series Spinning Rod ,...

Shakespeare Micro is one of the most budget-friendly rods on the market. Price combined with portability gets it a place amongst the top rods on this list.

The rod uses a graphite composite construction that makes it light and sensitive. The reel seat with cushioned hoods and stainless steel guides with stainless steel inserts make it durable.

The handle comes wrapped in cork so that your grip remains comfortable. This fast-action rod will impress you with its efficiency.

If you are after affordability and portability, then we recommend you go for Shakespeare Micro. It is so portable, you can change your fishing spots as often as you desire. You can carry it anywhere without any worry.

How to Choose a Trout Fishing Rod

You can purchase a rod by heading to the local tackle store and picking the one on sale. This will put a rod in your hands and get you off fishing, but is it the right option for your style?

There are many factors that you should consider before buying a rod. We will help you understand these factors so that you can pick the Best Trout Rod as per your specific needs.

Fishermen always want to increase the hook-up rate to have a better chance of landing more fish. So if you learn about construction, weight, action, and length it will help you make the right choice.

 

Material and Construction

The construction of fishing poles has evolved from bamboo poles to the fiberglass and graphite rods we see today.

Graphite is more expensive than fiberglass but it offers much more. It makes the rods much stronger yet lightweight and sensitive. The increased sensitivity is very important for trout fishing.

Most of the best trout rods use different types of graphite as it holds up well when fighting the fish.

Rod Length

Every fisherman has their own preference based on the fishing location and technique. But rods that are 6 to 8 feet long seem to be most favored by trout fishermen.

When searching for a trout rod it is necessary to take the length into account. The length of the rod impacts control, casting distance, accuracy, and ability to play a fish that’s hooked.

The location where you plan to fish can help you determine the length of your rod. If you are fishing in a small stream, then short rods will be great.

A shorter rod will allow you to cast your line right into the areas you need. But if you are fishing in a larger and open stream, a longer rod will help you cast further.

Rod Power

The rod power is basically how much force it takes to bend the rod. It is usually categorized as, heavy, medium, light, and ultralight. As trout fish are generally smaller in size, you should pick a light or ultralight power rod. It will allow you to cast lighter lures further and also help you handle the fish better when it leaps out of the water.

An ultralight rod will allow you to cast lures further. Trout love to jump out of the water to attempt to dislodge the fish hook. But a lightweight rod can help you counter that.

Angling the fish rather than the skull dragging it into the net is much more technically sound. A light or ultralight rod allows you to execute the angling technique better.

Rod Action

The action of a rod is where the rod bends when you apply force to it. Rod action options are generally classified as extra-fast, fast, moderate fast, slow, etc. An extra-fast action rod will bend near the tip. While a slow-action rod will bend near the handle.

The action determines the sensitivity of a rod. As trout bite is generally very weak, you should pick an extra-fast or fast-action rod so that you can feel even small nibbles.

Sensitivity

Sensitivity is a big factor in trout fishing. So it is important to learn about the action and the line guides. Quality line guides are as important as the material and construction of the rod.

The line guides influence how well the rod can cast, as well as being able to feel when you’ve landed a fish. There are different types of inserts on the guides, like aluminum or stainless steel.

Balance

Stability is a must when trout fishing so you must understand what makes a rod sturdy and balanced.

Every fisherman should test out the different grips that come on the rods to see how it feels. Both the cork and the foam grip have their benefits and will get the job done. Each fisherman has their own take on what feels comfortable to them.

Reflective Coating

Another key factor to be aware of when trout fishing is the reflective coating on the rod. If you are fishing on a clear sunny day, the reflection can spook the fish, giving up your location.

Some fishermen sand off the coating on their expensive fishing rods. Luckily, most rod manufacturers sell matt finish, rather than high gloss rods. Having the right finish on your rod will keep your location secret and help you land more fish.

Price and Warranty

When shopping for a rod, it is important to consider price and warranty. Since there are many different brands and series, trout rods come in wide ranges.

Prices can range anywhere from $30-60, all the way up to several hundred. Warranty doesn’t come with every brand but is usually offered from 1 to 5 years.

When considering price and warranty you should consider how much you will be using the rod. The kinds of places you will be fishing and for what size fish, also play a big role in deciding how much you need to spend.

A 5-year warranty is ideal for you if you are a regular fisherman or if expensive rods suit your style.

You can check out our pick of the Best Spinning Reel Under 100 if you need a new reel on a budget.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Type of Rod is Best for Trout Fishing?

There are so many different types of rods out there, but there are some that stand out above the rest. A trout rod should be strong enough to resist a fish’s powerful strikes. Yet it should be sensitive enough to detect the slightest nibbles on your bait. It should also be light enough to cast quickly and with precision.

If you’re a beginner, I’d recommend choosing a spinning rod with a line weight of around 10-18 lbs. This will give you enough power for most situations and not too much slack on your line for the smaller fish.

The length of the rod is also important. A 6′ rod is good for shorter distances, while anything over 7′ is suitable for larger bodies of water.

Most trout fishermen swear by a 6′ ultralight spinning rod. But the best way to determine which rod is right for you is to go out and try them.

If you want to purchase a baitcasting rod, you can read the baitcasting rods buying guide to help you pick one.

Do You Need a Special Rod for Trout Fishing?

I’ve heard of people who have been fishing for decades with the same rods they’ve used for 40 years. But all rods are not created equal.

There are several things to consider before buying a new rod. The first is the size of the fish you’re going to catch. A bigger fish will need a larger rod as well as a heavier tackle.

The next important part is to choose a rod that has the correct balance of power and sensitivity. You need a rod that is sensitive enough to feel the bite, but strong enough to fight the fish.

I’ve had the pleasure of fishing with some really awesome rods. I’ve used most types of rods out there and have been happy with many of them.

But you must choose a rod for your specific needs. If you want to catch trout, the most ideal rod for you is a 6′ to 7′ ultralight or light rod with fast action. You can check out some of the top ultralight fishing rods if you need more options.

How to Rig up Your Trout Rod?

Now that you’ve got a good rod, you’ll need to set it up to get the most out of your fishing experience. If you’re a beginner, you might have a hard time figuring out how to rig up your rod.

I’m going to give you a quick tutorial on how to rig up your rod. Rigging up a rod is not a difficult task. All you need is a high-quality rod, a reel, some tackle, and some line.

Here are the 3 steps to attach the reel to the rod and insert the line into the reel.

  1. First, attach the reel to the rod. Open up the reel, pull out the spool, and put it on top of the rod. Attach the reel in such a way that it can be easily removed from the rod.
  2. Next, load your spool with the appropriate line. For loading the line, you need to take the end of the line and insert it into the top of the spool.
  3. Last, you need to attach the line to the rod by winding it through the reel seat and threading it through the guides. Now you are ready to attach a lure or bait and cast your line into the water!

It doesn’t matter whether you’re a novice or a seasoned angler, you can use these tips to rig up your rod in no time! You can check out our reviews of the Best Trout Spinning Reels if you need a new reel for your rig.

Editor’s Choice

All the rods on our list will get the job done when it comes to trout fishing. But, Shakespeare GX2 stood out as the Best Trout Fishing Rod during our reviews. It is an all-around rod with a fiberglass and graphite blank.

St. Croix Trout Rod is next on our list. The combination of SCVI and SCII carbon fiber set this rod apart. The sensitivity, power, and stability of the rod are second to none.

Choosing the right rod for trout fishing can make your fishing experience worthwhile. You should look for ease of use, effectiveness, and build quality when buying a new rod. Buying one of the top-rated rods can make a great difference to your fishing experience.

We hope you like our pick of the Best Trout Fishing Rods. If you would like us to review any other spinning rods for trout fishing then let us know. We will include it in our next update.