BEST FISHING ROD BRANDS: Top 27 Brands to Check Out (Updated!)

best fishing rod brands for saltwater

In the fishing world, a lot of emphasis is placed on lures and boats, but it is the fishing rod and reel that do the majority of the work. Rods are now manufactured of cutting-edge materials that allow them to last a lifetime, handle a larger range of fish, and endure a hammering. The best fishing rod brands for beginners, on the other hand, are not only high-tech but also affordable and designed by anglers for anglers. Let’s see the best fishing rod brands for saltwater you should try out on your next fishing spree.

Fishing Rod Brands

St Croix

For over 70 years St Croix has been in the industry making fishing rod gears and apparel for Fishermen. With a gritty determination, St. Croix built the most advanced fishing rod facility in the world and with it, a world-class brand that has earned the respect and admiration of anglers around the planet.

You can rest assured that all rods at St. Croix rod were handcrafted, from start to finish, by passionate and talented members of the St. Croix team. The Company offers fish, ice fishing, and saltwater rods. Today, the company offers 600 types of rods for freshwater and saltwater fishing.

Shakespeare 

The Shakespeare Company is a subsidiary of Pure Fishing which manufactures fishing equipment. It was founded by William Shakespeare, Jr. in Kalamazoo, Michigan in 1897. It was later moved to Columbia, South Carolina in 1970. Since 1897, Shakespeare has been the leader in quality, affordable fishing tackle.

Their inspiration comes from 115 years of passion and experience. From Ugly Stik to Catch More Fish kits, to the best-in-class line of licensed kid’s products. Shakespeare offers something for the whole family and all levels of experience. Shakespeare’s objective is simple to Make fishing easy and enjoyable.

Penn

Otto Henze left Ocean City Reels and started his own fishing reel company in 1932, called Penn Fishing Tackle Manufacturing Company. The company’s first recorded sale occurred in February 1933 to the Miller Auto Supply Company of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Miller purchased one of each Penn reel.

In 1936, PENN introduced its most famous reel, the “Senator.” It was a revolutionary new reel capable of challenging the biggest, most powerful game fish.

Daiwa

From its very first days as a company back in 1958 Daiwa has used innovation in technology to write a history rich with success. Though Daiwa reels may not be the choice for every angler, they deserve our appreciation. Their constant presence at the forefront of fishing technology has shaped industry standards as we know them today.

Daiwa Reels The fishing world became fully aware of Daiwa in 1968 when they came out with the open face reel. This was the first spin reel that didn’t keep the line enclosed inside a cover. It seems obvious now but at that time it was completely unheard of in reel manufacturing. It allowed both easy inspection and replacement of the line.

Today Daiwa packs its latest technology into powerful reels like the Saltiga DogFight. The DogFight is made to handle corrosive saltwater conditions and some of the toughest fish known to inhabit the ocean. You can also find sophisticated technology and incredible value in many of Daiwa’s less expensive models. Daiwa has left a tremendous mark on the sportfishing industry. By taking the lead in innovation they helped create the very idea of what a fishing reel should be today. Daiwa is the definition of branding and is perhaps the most popular name in fishing across the world today.

Abu Garcia 

ABU Garcia, originally AB Urfabriken, then ABU Svängsta, is a fishing reel and fishing equipment company founded in Sweden and is now owned by Pure Fishing of the United States.

Its influence on the sportfishing community is unmatched. The company remains firmly committed to maintaining its industry leadership position by providing anglers everywhere with the highest quality, most innovative products.

Shimano

The Shimano fishing brand is without question one of the leaders in the fishing market. From fishing rods to reels all the way to lures, it feels like the brand has ruled the industry forever. From 1970 to now, Shimano has given the fishing world spectacular refinements for all their reels. Including the newer X-concepts like X-Shield and X-Protect or power braking like I-DC4. Spinning enthusiasts rave about the MGL rotor and Silent Drive. What isn’t there to like about a company is relentless in introducing new advancements.

In fact, Shimano fishing has made over 100 types of reels. With over 76 current series (with many models in each series). Shimano ensures superior quality reels for use in freshwater, saltwater, or both. With so much thought and care put into their products, it makes sense that anglers trust Shimano.

Fenwick

Fenwick is named after a lake in Kent, Washington where 5 Seattle businessmen founded the company in 1952. He was an early pioneer in the use of fiberglass blanks to create fishing rods that were corrosive and resistant to saltwater and that quickly replaced metal and traditional wood and bamboo fishing rods for their durability and ease of maintenance.

Fenwick was purchased by Phil Clock and moved to Westminster, California in 1968 and focused on the fishing rod needs of Bass fishermen.

Fenwick was the first to market with an all graphite fishing rod in 1973

Both Fenwick’s fiberglass and graphite fishing rods led fishermen to innovate new ways to fish using the unique material properties of Fenwick fishing rods.

Orvis

Orvis is an American family-owned retail and mail-orders business specializing in fly fishing, hunting, and sporting goods. Founded in Manchester, Vermont, in 1856 by Charles F. Orvis to sell fishing tackle, it is the oldest mail-order retailer in the United States.

Good Fishing Rod Brands

  • Shakespeare Ugly Stik GX2 1-Piece Fishing Rod and Spinning Reel Combo, 7 Feet
  • Shimano Solara Fishing Rod

The Japanese love bass fishing and Shimano has made a damn fine rod for many years. Shimano’s Solara is a good alternative to Shakespeare’s Ugly Stik. Its two-piece construction helps with travel, and at twenty bucks, it’s a perfect beginner’s rod. 

  • Ugly Stik Elite Spinning Rod 6’6″

Take the Ugly Stik GX2’s toughness, build quality, and low price—and then swap in a cork handle and more graphite for an extra feel. You have the Elite, which costs just a little more than the GX2 and proves Ugly Stik’s dominance of the market. 

  • Fenwick AETOS Fly Fishing Rod – 7ft 3wt

Fenwick’s been around since 1952; they were the first company to make an all-graphite rod. Their Aetos is an affordable fly rod option that outperforms its competition, with a fast-action blank that’s great for learning to cast. The five-weight is perfect for a variety of species, from trout to bass, and it’s got a lifetime warranty. 

  • St. Croix TRS70MF Triumph Graphite Spinning Fishing Rod with Cork Handle, 7-feet

When you’re ready for an upgrade, St. Croix offers some good options. Their rods are made in the US, and they have a great track record of quality. The Triumph is their top-selling graphite rod and comes in a variety of sizes.

Vintage Fishing Rod Brands

“Vintage is a polite way of saying old, and it implies that because an item is ‘vintage,’ it has secret values built-in that allude to the age element.” Vintage rods are defined as any rod manufactured between the 1940s and the 1980s.
There are numerous places where you can find historic poles to add to your collection.
Some of the top vintage rod manufacturers to look out for are:

  • Lyle Dickerson
  • H.L. Leonard
  • Charlie Jenkins
  • Winston
  • Phillipson
  • Wright and McGill
  • Goodwin Granger
  • Thomas and Thomas
  • Hardy Brothers
  • Lancaster
  • Chubb
  • Walton Powell
  • Charles F. Orvis
  • Homer Jennings
  • Mike Clark
  • Heddon

Of course, there are plenty more great rod makers from the vintage days, but this should give you a good start if you’re new to collecting new, old, vintage, and antique fishing tackle.

Best Fishing Rod Brands for Saltwater

Saltwater fishing is vastly different from most other forms of angling. It requires tackle that can hold up against the largest trophy game fish, and withstand any potential corrosion caused by saltwater. There are a number of brands that make rods for saltwater use, but only a select few are capable of performing at a level that’s satisfactory for the most skilled anglers. So, below is a list of the best saltwater fishing rod brands.

St Croix 

St. Croix is among the top brands in the industry when it comes to saltwater fishing rods for many reasons. Their rod quality is almost unmatched and the St. Croix Avid Inshore saltwater spinning rod is one of the best on the market right now.

Shimano

For more than 80 years, Shimano has succeeded as one of the best saltwater fishing rod brands for anglers. Shimano’s products have gained popularity and recognition for their craftsmanship all over the world. The company focus on perfect engineering. Coupled with innovation and new design, Shimano brings reliable and well-made fish rods to every fishing lover.

When it comes to rods, Shimano offers different types from saltwater to freshwater and jigging. With over 20 products for saltwater fishing, there is no way you can’t find a matchy rod for your hobby.

Okiaya

Okiaya is a new and young fishing gear manufacturer founded by Christopher Christian in 2010. He first started with a small online wholesale that offered high-quality and budget-friendly fishing gear. Over time, the small wholesale has turned into Okiaya with thousands of products sold worldwide. What makes Okiaya stand out is its design. Emphasizing the value and exceptional quality, Okiaya’s products deliver users with durable and reliable products.

The company offers 26 types of rods in total, divided into 5 production lines including Black Venon, Blueline, Rebel Series, Sistana, Venon Pro.

PENN

Otto Henze, the founder of PENN Fishing Tackle Company, didn’t realize that he would make a world-renowned company. Over 75 years of production, Penn has gained the trust of millions of skilled fishermen in every corner of the world.

This company has always been the pioneer of modern reel design. With dedication, knowledge, passion, and most importantly resulting skills, Penn is the answer for every fishing problem. Penn offers two types of rods: spinning and casting. Their products are user-friendly and wallet-proof, making sure that you enjoy fishing without spending a fortune on the required gear.

Fiblink is a small manufacturer that produces powerful fishing gears. The company offers different travel fishing rods, which are suitable for recreational fishing lovers.

Fiblink concentrates on the lightweight and versatile design, allowing users to bring the robs everywhere. What’s more, most of Fiblink’s products are super affordable It’s indeed a great choice for fishermen on a budget.

Ugly Stick

Ugly Stick has been in business since 1897 and has always been a master in quality and durability. With 115 years of experience, Ugly Stick knows how to satisfy its customers from the tiniest details. The company is one of the rare manufacturers that offer licensed kid’s products, enhancing the whole family fishing experience.

The motto of Ugly Stick is simple: make fishing as enjoyable as possible. That’s why products from Ugly Stick always rank high for their user-friendliness and durability. Ugly Stick offers 3 choices of rods: Spinning rods, fly rods, and casting rods.

Okuma

Okuma has established itself as one of the more popular brands in the fishing industry and online shopping has opened the brand up to more purchases outside of Japan. The Okuma Longitude surf fishing rod is a solid product that is an all-around great fishing rod for saltwater use. Like many other Okuma rods, this one is crafted from graphite material and is strong enough to cast heavy rigs while also being highly sensitive.

Daiwa

Daiwa is well-known in the fishing industry as a top producer of fishing rods and other gear items. The Daiwa D-Wave rod and reel combo is a great choice for anglers of any skill level. This combo is a great value that can function as a multi-purpose saltwater setup that’s ideal for inshore or surf fishing.

Top Fishing Rod Brands

Rods are now manufactured of cutting-edge materials that allow them to last a lifetime, handle a larger range of fish, and endure a hammering. The best fishing rod brands, on the other hand, are not only high-tech but also affordable and designed by anglers for anglers. Here are the top ten fishing rod brands to buy before you go fishing.

Fenwick AETOS Fly Fishing Rod

Fenwick’s has been in business since 1952, and they were the first to produce an all-graphite rod. Their Aetos is a low-cost fly rod that surpasses the competition, with a fast-action blank that’s ideal for beginning to cast. The five-weight is ideal for a wide range of species, from trout to bass, and it comes with a lifetime warranty.

St. Croix TRS70MF Triumph Graphite Spinning Fishing Rod

When it comes to upgrading, St. Croix has some solid possibilities. Their rods are created in the United States, and they have a solid reputation for quality. The Triumph is their best-selling graphite rod, and it’s available in a range of sizes.

Abu Garcia – Zenon Reels


The new series of Abu Garcia Zenon reels weighs a mere 4.9 ounces, gaining the title of the world’s lightest spinning reel. Its 6.2:1 ratio, silky drag, and silent retrieve ensure the best in light-line finesse presentations. The Zenon’s robust magnesium body is ergonomically intended to provide optimal in-hand compatibility. Furthermore, its low-inertia silent rotors, along with an ultralight hybrid spool, aid in getting baits into and out of cover without alarming fish. abugarcia.com

Shimano Vanford

The new Vanford lineup replaces the Stradic series and is built on the same CI4+ body for a lightweight feel and rigidity. The Magnum Lite Rotor, which offers up to 48 percent less rotational inertia than typical rotor construction, is new. Premium internal components ensure a smooth spinning performance, while the Long Stroke Spool can deliver casts that are a country mile long. It contains 7-plus-1 bearings for maximum retrieval and is smooth and silky. Sizes range from 500 to 5000. Shimano.com

St. Croix – Legend Xtreme

The Legend Xtreme line, which is made in the United States, combines the finest of St. Croix technology into a single fishing rod, including a revolutionary manufacturing technique that employs resin to boost flex strength under heavy loads. The Legend Xtreme freshwater series now contains 11 rods—five spinning models and six casting models—in sizes ranging from 6-8 to 7-4, medium to heavy power, and Fast to X-Fast actions capable of effortlessly throwing 14 to 112 ounces. The Legend Xtreme series aids fishermen in a broader range of freshwater presentations and methods while infusing the greatest St. Croix performance you’ve come to expect. stcroixrods.com

Penn Battle III

The Penn Battle III is an excellent choice for saltwater fishermen searching for a strong reel that can handle backwater beasts with both ferocity and delicacy. This reel is durable, thanks to its exclusive CNC Gear technology and HT-100 Carbon Fiber Drag system. Its strong intestines and complete metal body, for which Penn is famous, are there for you to use, torture, and pit against the quantity of fish you intend to catch. Models range in size from 1000 to 10000 and can be used to finesse sleek seatrout or pull in hefty bluefin tuna.

Zebco Platinum Spincast 33

You, like every other angler on the planet, will be familiar with this reel. The Zebco spincast was most likely the first reel you learned to use. Zebco, on the other hand, has gone platinum this year. The 33 spincast now has an all-metal body, metal gears, four stainless steel bearings, and an instant anti-reverse clutch. Throw it about, get it wet, and keep the youngsters reeling in fish after fish without fear of it breaking down. I wouldn’t have gone through so many reels if I had this when I was a youngster. zebco.com; $40

Okuma Psycho Stick Bass Rods

This professional-grade bass fishing rod is made of 46-ton low resin carbon, which makes it lightweight and responsive. Even though it’s light, it’s reinforced throughout using Okuma’s UMR technology, giving it the strength and durability needed to reel in a big one. The Psycho Stick also features Fuji KW Concept guides, Fuji SiC inserts with deep pressed frames, a double locking screw to secure the reel firmly in place, and a SeaGuide injected carbon reel seat with no grip, allowing you to feel even the most minor impacts. It also comes with a limited lifetime warranty, so you can feel confident in putting this rod through its paces. Okumafishingusa.com

Shimano Trevala Px Series

Be wary of the big game. Shimano designed the Trevala series of rods especially fish jigs for behemoths in both deep and shallow water circumstances more than ten years ago when butterfly jigging became popular. The new Trevala PX re-design enhances the series by increasing core strength, incorporating a 45-degree X pattern on the exterior of the blank, and improving jigging functionality. Trevala PX rods are available in 14 castings and 14 spinning types, with lengths and powers ranging from 5-8 to 7-0, L to XXH. There’s a Trevala PX rod for any species you’re after, whether it’s goliath grouper, bluefin tuna, or amberjacks.

Daiwa Tatula TWS 300

Look no farther than Daiwa’s Tatula TWS 300 if you enjoy throwing big baits at big bass. This sort of fishing reel now fits comfortably in the palm of your hand, allowing you to wing big swimbaits for hours on end without tiring. TWS is an abbreviation for “T-Wing System.” It allows you to cast longer, stronger, and more accurately whether skipping baits or casting against the wind. It also allows you to pull the reel out of gear for reduced resistance on the line, allowing you to cast farther and drop lures into previously inaccessible areas. A wide, 110mm handle with huge rubber knobs allows you to operate big bass baits like deep-diving crankbaits and gigantic swimbaits with perfect presentations, allowing your lure to swim precisely the way it was designed to. Daiwa.com9l.

Best Fishing Rods FAQs

What is the most common fishing rod?

Spinning rods are the most prevalent type of rod used by anglers of all skill levels. The rod is paired with a spinning reel, making it an extremely versatile rod and reel combo appropriate for lure casting and bait fishing.

What is a good all round fishing rod?

We interviewed experts and spent more than 80 hours testing spinning rods and reels before deciding that the Ugly Stik GX2 rod combined with the Daiwa BG spinning reel makes the greatest all-around fishing outfit without breaking the bank.

What is the most expensive fishing rod?

The Oyster Bamboo Fly Rod is the most expensive fishing rod on the market, with a starting price of $4,600. It’s partly due to the fact that each sample is created after a client makes a purchase. It is the world’s only bamboo fly rod made by a producer who hand engraves his rods.

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