There is no doubt about it... Gearing up with a decent spinning rod is a must if you want to catch that next prize fish.

Why do you need a separate rod for spinning I hear you ask...

Honestly, you don't really need one but it sure makes a big difference on the day. 

I have gone spinning with a fly rod, a beach-caster rod and carp rods and have had some luck. The reality is though if you are serious about spinning then you need to get setup properly.

One great thing about spinning rods is their price point. It's relatively cheap to get yourself a great rod for small money. I should know. If I brought home another expensive rod to add to the collection I probably would have ended up sleeping in the car...

So what should you look for in a spinning rod anyway. Let's explain below and give you our top 3 in this spinning rods review.

If you don't have the time to read all the research and info we provided then just check out our 3 favourite rods in the chart below.

Ugly Stik Elite

Premium cork handles

Durable Ugly Tuff guides

Ugly Stik Clear Tip design

Legendary toughness

Shimano Solora

Shimano Solora 2 Piece Spinning Rod

Medium power, fast action spinning rods with durable aeroglass blank construction

Solid locking graphite reel seat with reinforced aluminium guides

Okuma Celilo

power pro braided line

Stainless steel hooded reel seats

Great feel and sensitive action with lures

Awesome Trout spinning rod

Not all spinning rods are equal.

You could spend an age looking for a new spinning rod. In our quest for the best spinning rod we looked at many different models, action, weight and size. Because we were constrained by budget we looked at spinning rods under $50 or within reason. 

One thing you need to consider is your target prey. Are you fishing for trout with light tackle or maybe crappie or bass. Whichever fish you are after make sure you are always prepared for something bigger taking a fancy to your lure.

Best Spinning Rod - Our Top 3.

As mentioned earlier there are any number of options when it comes to spinning rods so we did our homework, plenty of research, testing and some expert reviews to bring you what we feel are the top three spinning rod options available today.

Shimano Solora Spinning Rod - Best Spinning rod under $50

If we really had to pick our favorite rod in this group it would have to be the Shimano Solora.

best spinning rod

So what makes this our top choice:

It's very hard to pass up on a Shimano rod or reel as their gear is superb and lasts forever. This rod is no exception. We looked at the 7 foot medium rod as we are always chasing trout and now and again you can hook into a decent sized fish.

​This spinning rod is super sensitive but feels strong and light in your hands. No fear of tiring out if you are fishing for the full day with this little beauty.

The cork handle is  comfortable ​and provides plenty of grip even when wet. Just give it a wipe down when you are packing up and it will last you.

As mentioned above we love trout fishing and this rod is ideal. You can really feel the lure in the water and know exactly what is going on at all times. Hook into a decent fish and the quality really starts to shine through. 

  • Durable aeroglass construction rod blank
  • Reinforced aluminum oxide guides
  • Solid locking graphite reel seat
  • Comfortable cork handles
  • Graphite reel seat
  • Medium Power Fast Action
  • 6 Pound Test 14 yards
  • 2 Piece

Overall this is a great spinning rod at a price thats hard to beat.

SHIMANO SOLORA SPINNING ROD


Ugly Stik Elite Spinning Rod - Very Close Second

Anybody who has ever fished will know the name Ugly Stik. Shakespeare have been building superior quality fishing rods under this brand for years and most people you talk to have owned one at one stage or another.

best spinning rod

I have fished with beach casters by Ugly Stik but had never tried spinning on one of their lighter rods. There was always guys telling you they could bend their rods in half and they still wouldn't break - don't try this though...

The Elite spinning rod is a great addition to any collection and while it may be a bit more pricey compared to the Shimano above it is one superb rod.

So what features do you get for your money:

  • 35% more graphite than Ugly Stik GX2 for a lighter weight rod
  • Premium cork handles
  • Ugly Tuff guides for added durability
  • Ugly Stik Clear Tip design
  • Legendary toughness you've come to expect from Ugly Stik

If you are looking for a sensitive rod but also a rod with a strong backbone that will not let you down then this is the rod for you. The Ugly Stik is probably the best spinning rod for bass because of it's extra strength and durability. I like to think of it as a solid multi purpose rod you can rely on. Check out the video below for more info on this great spinning rod.

UGLY STIK ELITE SPINNING ROD


Okuma Celilo Graphite Spinning Rod

The Okuma Celilo is a nice light and very sensitive spinning rod and is a beauty if you are into your lure fishing. Pair this rod up with something like the Okuma Avenger and you will have an ultra light but excellent setup.

  • Made using the highest quality materials
  • Tested for reliability and quality
  • Used by professionals worldwide
  • Sensitive Graphite Blank Construction
  • Aluminum Oxide Guide Inserts
  • Stainless Steel Hooded Reel Seats
  • Quality Grade Fore and Rear Cork Grips
  • 8'6'' Ultra Light action 2-6lb line rating

When I'm out trout fishing I always like to use light gear. Some of the waters I fish carry plenty of smallish trout and with this setup every fish is great sport. Hook into something more substantial and you have nothing to worry about. 

This strong light rod is a great all rounder and once you are not trying to lift huge fish straight out of the water you will have nothing to worry about -  you should be using a net anyways or unhooking the fish in the water for release back into the wild.​

OKUMA CELILO SPINNING ROD


How To Use A Spinning Rod And Reel 

We fish all types of gear but one of our favorite methods of fishing is with spinning gear, especially light gear.

We use spinning rods mainly because of the lures we use. The majority of lures are small and very light so you need a very sensitive and light action rod to cast these out accurately towards the fish. 

When it comes to fishing line for our spinning setup we use a mono backing on all our reels, followed by 100 yards or so of braided fishing line, topped off with a fluorocarbon leader to the lure.

We nearly always use the improved clinch knot to attach our lures to the leader. Why, because it's a really quick knot to tie and is super strong. Below is a quick diagram to show you how to tie this particular knot.

improved clinch knot

Braid line is by far the beat for spinning because the line does not twist in any way which can be a complete disaster using normal mono line as you end up with plenty of tangles.

Braided line has dropped significantly in price over the last few years and is definitely worth the investment if you are serious about catching fish consistently.

​How to cast a spinning rod

First up lets look at the grip. I always fish with the rod in my right hand and tend to hold the handle with the reel neck between my last and second last fingers. This gives me a firm grip, great control and easy access to the bail arm on my reel.

When you go to cast make sure the bail arm is in the right place - facing up and open or else it will snap shut while you cast and your beautiful lure will fly off into the distance without any line attached to it because you snapped it off, or else it will plonk into the water two feet in front of you.

Once you have everything ready for a cast then you need to grip the bottom section of the handle with you other hand. This is where you get the power from.

Yep, sure you can cast with one hand but for accuracy and distance casting you are going to want to use both hands. I find this method gives me much better tip speed when casting (remember you are using light lures) so need this additional power to get them into position in the water.

When you cast you lure or spinner into the water you need to be ready... As soon as the lure hits the water you need to bring your hand (the one on the butt of the rod) up and close the bail arm straight away and start reeling in. This saves lots of time and keeps your line tidy in the water.

Last thing you want to be doing is reeling in slack line before your lure starts working in the water - fish will already be gone while you are messing about.​

​Spinning in Shallow Waters

One thing you will learn the hard way is where to keep your rod tip when you are spinning. When I started out I always though you should have to top of the rod just above the waters surface - not sure why but I must have seen somebody do it at one stage.

The best position for you rod is up high enough to keep the line out of the water as much as possible. If your line hits the water then it will scare the fish. Scare one fish then you scare them all away...


Summary

That's it for this review on the best spinning rod options. We hope you found it useful and can now make an informed decision when you buy a rod for your next fishing adventure.

Tight lines and happy fishing.

2 Comments

  1. Been using an ugly stik for quite a while – unbeatable rod.

  2. Thanks Copa,

    It was a very close second in our best spinning rods review.

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