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It’s no secret that trout fishing is super popular these days. And I’ll be honest – trout are some of my favorite fish to go after, too.
Trout come in all shapes and sizes (brook trout are my favorite) and therefore, are well-suited both for novice and experienced anglers alike.
Trout will hide out in all places, from open water to small streams. They can be big or small, and there are all kinds of rods and lures on the market to go after them.
Knowing what kind of gear you need to tackle trout can be a challenge – especially if you plan on fishing for several different kinds of trout.
A good spinning rod is essential, no matter what kinds of trout you’re fishing for or in what environment.
New to trout fishing? Here are some tips on how to find the best spinning rod for trout – as well as our top picks.
Best Spinning Rod for Trout: Quick Breakdown & Recommendations
Last update on 2024-02-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Best Ultralight Spinning Rods For Trout
Last update on 2024-02-21 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
The 5 Best Spinning Rods for Trout
Here are the Top 5 Spinning Rods For Trout
St Croix Triumph Casting Rod – Best Overall
The dichotomy of spinning rods, this option for trout by St. Croix blends sensitivity with strength and power.
It is designed for the beginning angler and has a fast action with a medium to lightweight design. At 6’6”, it allows you to exert less power while reeling in your trout..
Its sensitivity lends itself well to newbies since you will be able to feel even the lightest nibble. If 6’6” is not ideal, the rod comes in two other sizes, too.
The premium cork handles offer a comfortable grip in all conditions, so you don’t have to worry about aching joints after a long day of fishing.
It has durable aluminum oxide guides and, made out of graphite, and is one of the most comfortable rods you’ll ever use.
It is backed by a manufacturer’s warranty and can be used with all kinds of bait for versatile fishing.
- Easy to cast long distances
- Graphite pole is sensitive and has aluminum oxide guides
- Cork handle is comfortable and durable
- Graphite is easily broken
Cadence CR7 Spinning Rod
The Cadence spinning rod is one of the most versatile and customizable rods you will find.
Made out of carbon with several stainless steel features, the rod is available in various lengths (6’10” tends to be one of the most popular).
With line weights varying between six and ten pounds, this rod is available in lengths of 5’10” to 7’6”. It can be adapted to most fishing areas and trout sizes as a result.
Lightweight and easy to use, the rod is made with graphite blanks and backed by stainless steel components. It has a comfortable split handle, constructed out of a blend of cork and EVA foam.
Sensitive and responsive, the rod is a one-piece design that has an impressive overall build quality. You won’t be disappointed!
- Variety of rod lengths are available
- The handle is made out of EVA foam and cork
- Multiple actions available
- One-piece construction only
Fenwicks Eagle Spinning Rod
At just five and a half feet, this spinning rod by Fenwick is one of the shortest you will find – making it a perfect option for trout.
You can use it in any environment without having to worry about it getting tangled on brush or debris. It has a unique candle made out of B2 burled cork.
This material looks and feels a lot like regular cork, but with added durability.
The rod itself is made out of strong, flexible graphite. It has stainless steel guides for a lightweight feel.
Another benefit of the stainless steel guides?
They lend themselves well to a lightweight rod but resist damage and corrosion. You can use this rod with saltwater fish species, too.
- Lightweight and corrosion-resistant
- Excellent tip sensitivity
- Great feel while casting and reeling
- Some users report that the joint comes easily apart
Ugly Stik GX2 Casting Rod
Ugly Stik is truly the name to know when it comes to casting rods, and this rod is no exception. The GX2 will help you set and break records when you’re out there fishing for trout.
Made out of a durable composite of fiberglass and graphite, this rod has sturdy one-piece stainless steel guides and EVA grips.
At six feet long, its light power combined with its heavy action makes it perfect for going after trout. It’s ideal for fishing in close quarters with lots of overhanging branches!
- A super clear tip makes it ultra-sensitive to the slightest motion
- Backed by a seven-year warranty
- Durable and comfortable EVA grips
- Flimsy reel seat
Shimano Stimula Spinning, Graphite Freshwater Spinning Rod
Made out of a blend of graphite and fiberglass, this rod blends durability and a lightweight feel, making it one of the best spinning rods for trout.
It has a durable reel seat and a custom-shaped, ergonomic cork handle. At seven feet long, it comes with medium power and a fast action with plenty of customization options available.
It even comes with a multi-purpose hook keeper and a one-year warranty!
The Shimano Stimula has an attractive aesthetic and is perfect for anglers wishing to cast a bit further.
It is backed by a one-year warranty, but likely, you won’t find that you’ll need to use it. It is a hard-hitting rod that is easy to use and equally just as strong.
- Can be used in saltwater too, as all elements are corrosion-resistant
- Comfortable to use
- Super fast action
- Power may be a bit too much for smaller trout
Buying Guide: How to Choose the Best Spinning Rod for Trout
Before you start shopping for your new spinning rod, consider where exactly you will be fishing. A stream? A river? A lake?
When you’re fishing on a small river or stream, you don’t necessarily need a seven-foot trout rod. But when you’re fishing on the open water, you’re going to want a rod that’s at least seven feet long.
Longer rods will give you more flex and leverage so that you can cast farther with ease. However, on a smaller body of water, this can be overkill.
You will not only have more rod than you know what to do with, but you’ll find that your rod gets caught easily in foliage and you’ll spend a large portion of your day just trying to get yourself untangled.
If you plan on fishing a stream or river, go for a rod that is just five to six feet in length. This will be easier to maneuver in tight areas.
Equal in importance to length in your buying decision is the material. You need to pay close attention to the materials out of which your rod is constructed.
Spinning rods made out of graphite tend to be faster and more lightweight – the perfect choice for trout fishing.
Graphite can be more sensitive, though, so you’ll need to do your best to maintain your rod and guard against damages.
Fiberglass is another option, as is a composite of graphite and fiberglass.
You’ll see “action” referred to quite frequently when you are shopping for trout rods – or fishing rods of any kind.
This refers to how well the rod bends when you apply pressure to its tip. It also determines the flex point of your rod.
While the exact action of your rod will be largely dependent on the kind of fishing you’re doing and how much sensitivity and power you need, you generally want a spinning rod with a fast action for trout.
Slow action rods flex at the lower portion of the rod, while fast action rods bend only at the tip. This means you’ll get maximum sensitivity when you’re going after trout.
You’ll have more accuracy, smoothness, and distance as a result.
Next, consider the recommended line weight for your spinning rod. This will be the recommended breaking strength of fishing lines that can be used.
With a spinning rod, it’s a recommendation and not a hard limit. Look for a spinning rod with 10-20 lb line weights for the best results.
Ultimately, the handle on your fishing rod is of less concern than many of the other factors on this list – but since it will impact your overall comfort, it’s still a feature to be considered.
In general, you’re going to want to choose a handle out of lightweight, comfortable materials like cork or foam.
This won’t have any impact on how well the rod casts or performs but can reduce hand strain and make your rod easier to handle, especially in wet weather.
Power refers to how strong your rod is. A heavier rod has more backbone, while a lighter rod will be more sensitive, enabling you to conduct more accurate casts.
Now, for trout, you’re probably going to want a light or ultralight spinning rod. This will eliminate the stress on your arm and can also make it easier for you to cast long distances.
All of the trout rods I’ve included on this list are light rods, except for the next section – I’ll give you some ideas for ultralight rods, too.
The Best Ultralight Spinning Rod for Trout Reviewed
If a light spinning rod is ideal for trout, then an ultralight spinning rod for trout is even better!
If you want to maximize your success on the water, you might want to take things one step further and consider these lighter picks.
Another super option as an ultralight spinning rod for trout is the KastKing Perigee. Available in lengths of 5’6” and 6’0”, this rod is made out of high-quality composite.
It has an ergonomic grip with its EVA foam handle. Plus, the line guides and reel seat are durable, too.
An attractive ultralight rod, it has a two-piece construction. This is one of my favorite features of this rod since you can take it apart and carry it with you wherever you need to go.
- Great for all-day use
- Durable composite graphite design
- Can be packed down into two separate pieces
- No lengths available greater than 6’0”
Ugly Stik Elite
Made out of a durable fiberglass and graphite composite, this ultralight spinning rod is perfect for trout.
It comes in at just 6’6” of length and can be broken down and packed separately in two pieces for maximum portability.
This is a great feature for all those backwoods anglers hiking into a secret honeyhole!
This rod combines all the benefits of fiberglass and graphite. While graphite can be easy to break, the fiberglass adds durability without cutting down on graphite’s lightweight nature.
The rod also has a long-lasting, comfortable cork handle and a clear tip design for ultimate sensitivity.
It has an excellent casting performance and is designed to be used around bush, trees, and other kinds of interference.
- Extremely durable
- Easy to use for beginning anglers
- Versatile enough for other types of fish
- Not ideal for larger species of fish at this weight
The Okuma Celilo is one of the most versatile ultralight spinning rods you will find. It’s available in lengths of 5’0” to 8’6”, all of which are equipped with super lightweight action.
It has a sturdy graphite construction for durability but also has aluminum oxide line guide inserts along with reel mounts that are made out of steel.
Equipped with a comfortable cork grip, this rod is lightweight and sensitive. It is best used in rivers and streams, though it’s not ideal for casting long distances.
That said, its sensitivity helps it to reign supreme when it comes to fishing around structure.
- Can be used with all kinds of ultralight line and tackle
- Super fast action makes it great for fishing trout
- Available in numerous lengths
- All-graphite construction makes it prone to damage
Do You Need a Special Spinning Rod for Trout Fishing?
Sure, trout fishing at its most basic is relatively simple. Trout will accept most kinds of bait, from artificial lures to maggots and everything in between.
However, it’s important to note that trout are easily scared. As a result, you need to minimize the impact that you have on the water – even the slightest ripple can scare this quickly-spooked fish away.
Make sure your rod and reel setup are as light as possible. A spinning rod is a good choice, since you’ll have to cast so much.
A spinning rod will also work best with a light line, which can increase your casting accuracy and will also be harder for the trout to see.
Therefore, a special spinning rod for trout isn’t just a luxury – it’s essential.
Knowing this, you’ll be well on your way to a successful day on the water. Just consider these best spinning rods for trout – as well as my buying guide – for stress-free shopping!