Different Types of Fishing Rods: Your Eight Options

By Richard | Fishing Advice

different types of fishing rods
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The changes brought on by technology have spared no industry, not even recreational fishing.

This is undoubtedly a good thing given how anglers are continually trying to find pieces of equipment that meet their unique ways of fishing.

One such equipment is the fishing rod, which, even today, remains one of the most popular methods for catching fish.

If before there was only one type of fishing rod, there are now different types of fishing rods that cater to the needs and preferences of enthusiasts and professionals alike.

Let’s take a look at the different kinds of rods available in the market today for you to learn which one to choose for your specific fishing adventures.

Different Types of Fishing Rods

Some rods are better suited for beginners, while others lean more towards the skills of experienced fishers.

Your choice can also depend on your style of fishing and the environment you’re fishing in.

1. Casting Rods

If you’re looking to fish with more accuracy, then the casting rod has more than got you covered.

It’s designed to allow you to attach baits accurately and fish precisely how you want to.

It comes in two types: the spin casting rod and the baitcasting rod.

Unlike most modern rods with eyes close to the top, the two categories of casting rods have smaller, non-uniformed-size eyes located in different parts of the reel. 

The baitcasting rod has eyes that are smaller and closer to the reel, resulting in the slightly different way the reels peel off the line.

On the other hand, the spin casting rod has a fore-figure trigger clasp and tiny eyes, with a slightly larger one situated near the reel to aid with spin casting reels. 

2. Fly Rods

These rods come in various shapes and sizes that were made specifically for fly fishing.

A fly fishing rod is flexible and allows you to shoot the line forward or pull it backward with ease. These rods are also of a lighter weight compared to most rods.

The fly rod’s size variation means you can fish pretty much anything from the smallest pond trouts to the bigger lake marlins or tunas.

This rod is also faster and easier to cast because it lacks a butt piece at the reel's end, which is a design that sets it apart from the rest of the pack.

It also has a specialized eye that keeps the angler from having to worry about tangles.

Some of the current models have a carbon fiber fly line, a material that adds strength and litheness.

3. Spinning Rods

This rod isn’t much different from the casting rod except that it is shorter and lighter.

It also has a larger eye that helps reduce the friction on the casting line.

Ranging from four to nine feet in length, with about four to nine eyes mounted on each rod, the spinning rod is definitely something you can tell apart from its counterparts.

However, the main difference lies in the way you'll use it.

Unlike casting rods, where the reels are situated right at the top during usage, you would need to suspend the spinning rod's reel underneath.

Doing so provides the fisher with a more natural and conducive way of fishing.

Of all the rods out there, this one is perhaps the best for beginners.

4. Ice Fishing Rods

The fact that these fishing rods are shorter allows you to take advantage of the lack of available space while fishing in the ice.

Like spinning rods, they range from 25 to 37 inches in length, but unlike the conventional spinning rods, the eyes mounted are fewer.

This reel-less fishing rod is considered one of the oldest rods sold in the market.

Instead of using a reel, it makes use of two hooks on opposing ends of the rod to make it easier for the fisher to wind the line on one end using his or her hand.

5. Trolling Rods

As far as recreational fishing goes, trolling is arguably where one can derive the most fun.

Used mainly on a moving boat, the trolling rod persuades fish to foray out into the open. It’s meant to capture bigger game fish like tuna and marlin.

Trolling rods have to be of considerable length and weight, with a fast-action build, because they mainly target larger fish types.

Spinning rods may function similarly to these rods, albeit with a little more accuracy, but anglers tend to prefer this one for catching the bigger game.

6. Sea Fishing Rods

As this rod’s name suggests, you will use this best in the ocean.

It comes in different varieties to suit the varying needs and preferences of fishers who are fishing on either boats or ships.

You’ll need a shorter rod for fishing on a boat and a longer one if you happen to be on a ship.

These rods have lines that are on the thicker and tougher side, with bigger tips and eyes.

They are also built with a keg to make capturing struggling fish easier.

In terms of size, the sea fishing rod is considered colossal compared to its counterparts, which is fitting given the colossal-sized fish it is meant to capture.

7. Surf Rods

Here’s yet another rod that’s great for sea fishing. Surf rods are long and sturdily built to manage the harshness of the sea.

While they can be considered as a category of sea rods, their popularity warrants their own distinction.

These rods are heavy sinkers and are great for casting baits at a distance.

They have really long kegs that allow for the two-handed throwing method.

Furthermore, they are considered as a more substantial and extended version of the spinning rod.

different types of fishing rods

8. Telescopic Rods

Telescopic rods are super compact. A lot of their compactness has to do with the fact that they can be extended to a considerable range.

When closed, they are a mere one to two feet in length but, when extended, can reach up to twenty feet.

Some rods are eyeless but are built with specialized parts that function as “eyes”.

A number of telescopic rods may bear a liking to spinning rods with the way they extend and bend at the tip.

It’s these qualities that make casting them at sea easier.

These rods are most popular with surf fishers because of their easy storing and folding capabilities.

FAQs

Whether you’re looking to buy a fishing rod or simply want to know more about them, this section will answer the questions on your mind.

1. How Many Types of Rods Are There?

Based on our list, there are eight different types of rods classified mainly based on the user’s needs and preferences.

We have the casting rod, fly rod, spinning rod, sea fishing rod, surf rod, telescopic rod, trolling rod, and ice fishing rod.

While most of these rods are built for a particular style of fishing and environment, there are those, like spinning rods, that are for all-around fishing and are suited for beginners and experts alike.

2. What Type of Fishing Rod Is Best?

The best fishing rod for you ultimately boils down to your specific needs and preferences.

Ask yourself: What type of fishing am I into? What are the conditions of the environment I want to fish in? Am I still a beginner?

Before you select a fishing rod, you may need to answer these and other questions.

If you’re leaning towards fly fishing, then the best rod for you will undoubtedly be a fly fishing rod.

If fishing in the ocean, on a moving boat, excites you most, then a sea fishing rod or trolling rod would be a great choice.

Once you figure out what you want and do your research, it’ll be easy to find out what the most suitable rod is for you.

3. How Do I Choose a Rod Action?

When choosing a rod action, it’s essential to consider the type of baits you plan to use.

If you’re using heavier baits, then a rod with a faster action would be more effective.

On the other hand, if you’re casting lighter baits, then a rod with a slower, lighter action would suit you better.

For baits that are somewhere in the middle, we also have a classification known as medium action.

It’s important to get this right because the rod action also influences how well you’re able to fight a hooked fish.

Final Thoughts

It’s vital to choose a fishing rod that suits your purpose. It has to meet your specific needs and preferences for a particular style of fishing, whether professional or amateur.

There are eight different types of fishing rods, including specialized rods with functions meant only for certain methods of fishing, like fly fishing rods and ice fishing rods.

Others can be applied to different styles of fishing, such as the casting and spinning rods.

If you’re a beginner who is still undecided about what to choose yet can’t wait to get into fishing, choose a spinning rod.

It’s an all-around rod that works well for beginners and experts alike.

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