Fishing rods in the $40-70 range are the sweet spot for most anglers. Of course, we’d all love to start out with $200 rods, but it isn’t usually practical.
Especially if you want to use specific rods for different fishing tactics, it’s easier to start out on the lower end. For me, $25 combos left a lot to be desired, so I worked up to rods around $50 and as high as 70 or 75. I found plenty of rods in that range that did what I needed them to do, and that allowed me to build a bass fishing, coastal fishing arsenal with multiple setups.
Having used and abused a lot of rods, I figured I’d share a few examples of those here.
Ugly Stik GX2 By Shakespeare
The Ugly Stik had to make the list, of course. This rod has hauled in more fish than I can count. I’ve never had one fail.
I’ve done some ridiculous things to these rods and I swear I could almost hear the rod laughing at my attempts to break it.
You want to have at least one workhorse rod you can throw in the truck bed without a care, and this is it. It won’t give you as much precision as some of the other rods, but it makes up for it in strength and grit. It’s usually $35~$45 for most sizes – see the reviews and links there for current pricing.
KastKing manufactures all Perigee II rods for power, durability, and accuracy. They come in one-piece and two-piece setups. The Twin-Tip design features Toray 24-ton carbon matrix KastFlex technology blanks. These fishing rods also include two tips you can swap out. You get 2 rods in 1, since you can switch it up with the tip. Choose between two combos – Medium and medium heavy, or medium with medium light. If that’s not value, I don’t know what is. Also, these come with a lifetime warranty. Most sizes run between $60-70, check the reviews and links there for pricing: