Hobbyists and experienced anglers will agree that ultralight fishing is just as rewarding as medium or heavy rod fishing (if not more).
The thrill and fun factor associated with ultralight fishing is perhaps unmatched by any other fishing style and requires a lot of practice to master.
This style of angling uses the strength of your arms and body to battle a thrashing larger fish.
This is not only more challenging but also helps hone your skills.
An ultralight spinning rod also requires anglers to hold their nerves and use brainpower and instincts when reeling in a larger fish.
If you are a newbie, hobbyist, or a keen angler wanting to try your hand at ultralight fishing for the sport you have come to the right place!
So, without further ado, here is a buying guide of the best ultralight spinning rod that you can buy for your next fishing escapade.
Here's What's In Store For You...
- Top 8 Ultralight Spinning Rods of 2022
- 1) Micro Lite Graphite Spinning Rod
- 2) St. Croix Premier Series Spinning Rod
- 3) Classic Trout Spinning, SR661 GL3
- 4) Okuma Celilo Graphite Lightweight Ultra Light Trout Rods
- 5) Berkley Lightning Rod Trout Rod
- 6) KastKing Perigee II Fishing Rod
- 7) Cadence Spinning Rod
- 8) Fenwick Eagle Spinning Fishing Rod
- Choosing Between The Top Ultralight Spinning Rods?
- Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
At a Glance
- Best Overall: Micro Lite Graphite Spinning Rod
- Best Premium Option: St. Croix Premier Series Spinning Rod
- Best Heavy Line-weight Option: Classic Trout Spinning, SR661 GL3
- Best Cheap Option: Okuma Celilo Graphite Lightweight Ultra Light Trout Rods
- Best All-Purpose Option: Berkley Lightning Rod Trout Rod
- Best Aesthetic Option: KastKing Perigee II Fishing Rods
- Best Guide Insert Quality Option: Cadence Spinning Rod
- Best Braided Line Option: Fenwick Eagle Spinning Fishing Rod
Top 8 Ultralight Spinning Rods of 2022
1) Micro Lite Graphite Spinning Rod
Bass Pro Micro Lite Spinning Rod is a two-piece fast action fishing rod.
At the core of the rod is a graphite blank that gives it a super sensitive and nimble feel.
The rod is best for small fish, shallow water fishing.
Available in several sizes ranging from 4’6” to 7’6”.
It is offered in three power options namely ultralight, light, and medium-light to choose from. Each option has its own weight ratings.
However, we are going to specifically focus on the ultralight six-and-a-half-foot, fast-action rod.
The rod offers extremely precise feedback, which is of importance when catching trout, panfish, crappies, and yellow perch.
- An affordable option for ultralight fishing
- Allows swift hooksets
- Precise Casting With 1/32 and ¼ oz lures.
- Lacks a hook keeper
- Some complaints about the quality of line guide
Bass Pro Micro Lite Graphite Spinning is on our list of best ultralight fishing rods because of its affordability and excellent performance.
It offers great reliability and amazing build quality for you to keep fishing day after day.
Constructed from IM6 graphite, the blank of this rod offers increased sensitivity that is essential when fishing small species.
The graphite gives it exceptional tensile strength, with people claiming to hook intermediate-size basses on it, without breaking the rod.
The graphite blank also allows you to cast the lure with relative ease, even if the lure is lightweight.
However, it is important to bear in mind that you cannot use this rod to muscle large fish species because it will not offer any maneuverability and break in a twist or two.
Just like every other decently priced fishing rod the quality of guides on this rod suffers, but let’s be honest, at the end of the day it is an ultralight fishing rod.
These are made for catching small, lightweight fish species, which do not cause much stress on the line.
Moreover, these inserts are made of polished stainless steel and offer decent quality and with eight guides the load gets equally distributed along the line which increases the longevity of the rod.
The rod is fixed with a continuous cork handle that provides an excellent grip for fishermen with gigantic hands.
The rugged cork handle is 13.4 inches in length which gives you a confident handling posture for hook sets when muscling with big fish.
The reel seat on Micro Lite is made from brass. It has a two-ring design to keep your reel secure, leaving no shakes or wobbling of the reel.
Being a two-piece rod, the Micro Lite offers lesser flexibility but this adds to the sturdiness, comes to your advantage, and gives you more control.
The two pieces are secured with a ferrule, which ensures that the two pieces are snug and the rod does not feel flimsy.
It is recommended to use a monofilament line with the Bass Pro Micro Lite Graphite Spinning Rod, to keep the guides from getting worn down.
2) St. Croix Premier Series Spinning Rod
St. Croix Premier Series Spinning Rods are a premium fishing rod option available to anglers.
The St. Croix Premier series spinning rods incorporate features from lower-end St. Croix’s but have improved line guides and reel seats.
The rod uses high-grade SCII graphite for the construction of its blank.
These rods are popular for being the first choice of anglers entering into the premium segment of fishing rods.
St. Croix Premier Series has a large range of offerings with multiple sizes and power options.
However, we are focusing on the ultralight offerings in the St. Croix Premier series. The ultralight
St. Croix Spinning Rods are known for their high degree of sensitivity and excellent castings.
- High Sensitivity To Twitches And Nibble
- Perfect and Precise Casting
- High-Quality Aluminum Oxide Guides
- Durable Handles
- A tad expensive
The St. Croix Premier Series Spinning Rods are considered to be the best offerings in the ultra-light category due to their durability, sensitivity, and construction from premium-grade material.
This series has cork handles and a black finish on its blanks which gives the rods a heftier look and they offer value for money in the long term.
6 or 6.6 feet size is the most common choice. It offers the best control and tackles for fishes such as walleye and pike.
The graphite structure ensures that the rod has strength, balance, and fast tip.
With a double flex coat, the rod can last for upwards of 5 years and in some cases even 15 years.
The ultralight action with a fast tip can handle line weights of around 2 – 6 lbs, with a lure weight range of 1/32 oz. to 3/16 oz.
The premium-grade guides on these rods are made from aluminum oxide, which keeps your lines from getting frayed.
Aluminum Oxide guides are known for their hardness, so you will never have to worry about damaging them.
At the lower end, you will be welcomed by a high-quality cork that encompasses the long split handle.
The Ultra Light Premier series is a two-piece rod and offers a great fishing experience in catching aggressive pickerel, crappie, and perch that can test the bend of the rod from time to time.
Premier series offers an amazing value for the money and gives tough competition to premium segment fishing rods.
Moreover, the premier series is best for anglers looking for excellent craftsmanship and those who want to own a piece of history.
3) Classic Trout Spinning, SR661 GL3
Classic Trout Spinning is one of the best ultralight spinning rods, produced by G. Loomis.
This fishing rod is an excellent example of craftsmanship and strict quality control.
Classic trout spinning rod is an expensive option as compared to other ultralight spinning rods but its fast action, greater sensitivity, and swift casting make it an exceptional rod.
With a short length, it is ideal for fishing in hollow creeks and streams.
The fishing rod has instant feedback just like you would want from any well-balanced ultralight rod.
- Sensitive To Slightest Take
- Perfect Casting
- Comfortable Handle
- Premium Guides
The G. Loomis Classic Trout Spinning is one of the eight best ultralight spinning rods.
Its blanks are made from high-quality graphite composite that provides a strong backbone to the rod.
Allowing you to cast, fight and tackle fishes at the upper end of the line weight.
With a line weight ranging from 2 to 6 pounds, you can easily muscle bigger fishes such as trout and it is also excellent for slab crappie and panfish.
The fast action of this spinning rod allows the casting of lures more efficiently even against the wind.
The tip can detect every nibble and twitch while allowing you to set the hook swiftly.
However, you should also be careful while handling and maintaining the rod. It can break if mishandled and neglected.
The classic trout spinning rod also sports a comfortable cork handle that allows superior grip.
Moreover, the guide quality is top-notch and keeps your line in perfect condition for the seasons to come.
This spinning rod is a low maintenance option with most users reporting reel seat replacement after years of use.
What makes this rod stand out is that it can handle 5 and 6 pounders without any issues.
As for the lure weight, the range starts from 1.5 grams and max out at 8 grams.
We recommend you to use 5 grams for spinners and 3.5- 4.5 grams if the currents are strong.
In conclusion, if you are looking for an ultra-light spinning rod with fast action that will last you years, you should go with G. Loomis Classic Trout Spinning.
Although it is on the higher end in terms of money, it will not leave you disappointed when it comes to your fishing endeavors.
4) Okuma Celilo Graphite Lightweight Ultra Light Trout Rods
The Okuma Celilo Series Ultra-Light Rods are best for fishing trout.
The graphite composite blanks and use of quality material in its construction ensure long life and reliability.
Moreover, Okuma Celilo offerings are cheap, making them an attractive option for people who are giving fishing a try.
These lightweight trout rods have high sensitivity, they also incorporate aluminum oxide inserts and stainless steel hooded reel seats.
The rear cork grips are comfortable and give an excellent grip.
As compared to other ultralight spinning rods, Okuma Celilo Ultra Light Rods offer the same tackle and fight maneuverability but at a significantly discounted price point.
- Cheap – Best For Entry Level
- Little Compromise On Quality
The Okuma Celilo Graphite Lightweight Ultra Light Trout Rod makes it to our top 8 best spinning rods because of several reasons.
The first is that it is ultra-light so even at 6 feet it will not strain your arms on a long fishing day.
Its high-quality graphite blank gives excellent sensitivity and responsiveness, allowing swift hook setting.
The fast action tip is also great for long casting distances.
The guide inserts on these are made of aluminum oxide and make them corrosion resistant, making them durable and reliable in the long term.
What makes it stand out is that Okuma Fishing has tried to ensure that they deliver the best spinning rod.
They have used stainless steel hooded reel seats that can handle the wear and tear from day-to-day use and remain unharmed from corrosion.
The cork handle grip is easy to hold and position, making the tackles a lot easier. The rod has a firm and sturdy backbone which allows it to withstand the weight of bigger trouts.
Although the rod is specifically designed for catching trout, it is good to go with small panfish and medium-size fish.
Anglers who like to battle with their catch will enjoy this rod a lot because of the way it reacts under stress.
And once you have gotten used to it, you will find it difficult to choose something other than this.
To summarize, Okuma Celilo Lightweight Ultralight trout rods are a good option for someone who does not want to invest large sums of money in a trout rod and has several other types of rods.
5) Berkley Lightning Rod Trout Rod
With the market flooded with ultralight spinning rods, Berkley Lightning Rod offers a combination of all the necessary features such as being lightweight, comfortable grip, durability, easy maneuverability, control, and power.
All of this while maintaining a budget-friendly price tag.
The Berkley is offered in a variety of sizes. It is a two-piece rod offering a well-rounded experience to anglers looking for a spinning rod.
- Value For Money
- Excellent sensitivity
- Top Quality
- Has plenty of backbone, eight guides, and a rubberized cork handle for additional comfort
- Not ideal for big fish
We recommend Berkley Lightning Rod as it has an amazing sensitivity to bites.
The rod can sense twitches and wobbles at the slightest movement which means that you never miss out on a possible catch even during summers when movements can be too subtle to detect.
The rod has a unique design trait that allows it to detect bites easily even before the fish falls for the hook and allows you to prevent premature hook sets that can cause loss of catches.
The rod sports a rubberized cork handle that gives a comforting feel to your hand.
One benefit of having a rubberized cork handle is that it will not crack or chip over the passage of time.
Although this will also cause the cork to get dirty very quickly you can clean it from time to time.
This rod is an amazing option for anglers that are looking for an all-purpose spinning rod that can survive the harsh wear and tear and abuse usually faced by rods.
Moreover, with such a low price you can get a Berkley Lightning Rod as a backup for your higher-end rods.
It is a well-balanced and sturdy rod that feels great in the hands, making your fishing experience amazing.
The rod’s lightweight nature is the reason why it has made it to our list.
In the long term, this rod offers great durability, and with regular use, you will find it to be a well-built rod that will maintain its structural integrity and strength.
The stainless steel guides with aluminum oxide inserts keep your line smooth for a long time before it gets frayed and you can expect the rod to hold up its quality for years to come.
6) KastKing Perigee II Fishing Rod
KastKing Perigee II fishing rods are an amazing ultralight spinning rods option for under 150 dollars.
These rods are available in spinning and spinning twin-tips.
These spinning trout rods are best known for their power transitioning systems that allow transitioning of power along the length of the rod.
They have computer-controlled wrapping that keeps the power flowing at a wide range of angles.
You can opt from a variety of power and action options plus you can choose if you want a one-piece or a two-piece rod.
- High Quality
The KastKing Perigee II Fishing Rods is among our top ultralight spinning rods.
The rod stands out for several reasons, number one being that the rod is made up of Toray 24-ton carbon matrix KastFlex blank technology.
That gives it power, strength, and accuracy.
Since the rod is made of a carbon matrix, it is extremely light and does not burden you while you wait for a catch.
The two-piece design offers the same sensitivity and feedback as a one-piece design making it a delight to use.
Another jaw-dropping feature of these rods is that they use Fuji O-Ring line guides, which provide increased casting distance and precision.
Moreover, their tuned graphite high-strength reel seats make the reels stay in place in case of a high-intensity battle.
The EVA grips on these spinning rods make them comfortable to hold for long durations and will not leave your hand hurting after a catch.
Plus they are covered with a non-slip material so you remain in control throughout the day.
In our opinion, the two-piece KastKing option is the best offering.
The connection between the two pieces is sturdy and the rod does not jiggle or wobble. Since it can cast a range of lures from light(1/8oz) to heavy lures it can be used to catch big fish as well.
Moreover, the trigger underneath the rod offers a resting/ cushioning to your hand.
To conclude, this rod offers a strong backbone for the hook set and a fast action tip for long casts.
The bare carbon fiber design makes it aesthetically pleasing.
KastKing has surely done a great job in offering affordable fishing gear with quality components and aesthetics.
7) Cadence Spinning Rod
Cadence Spinning Rods are designed with one thing in mind that is to offer a great product without being too expensive.
These spinning rods are best for ultralight fishing that requires the rod to have a strong backbone while being lightweight.
The rod also offers soft hooksets each time you work a lure into the water.
As compared to other rods on this list this Cadence Spinning Rod with a 5’6” size is shorter but more precise in small streams and creeks to catch trout.
The moderate-fast action combined with a shorter length and ultra-light power gives you excellent casting.
The casting distance and precision are enhanced and increase the probability of catching a fish.
- Excellent Sensitivity
- Comfortable Handles
- Robust Guides
- Insufficient Reel Seat Glue
When it comes to our list of best ultralight spinning rods, we make sure that these fishing rods are not only well-built but they offer the right combination of everything.
Cadence Spinning rod fulfills the criteria of being sensitive, lightweight, comfortable to handle, and has the right power.
The moderate-fast action offers a strong backbone to the rod and is a good option for muscling with big fish.
The rod more or less absorbs all the force exerted by the catch and keeps your line from getting stressed and frayed.
Ultra-High Quality 30-TON Carbon Fiber Blank makes it ideal for game fish including freshwater fish like bass, walleye, and trout as well as popular inshore species like redfish, speckled trout.
The CR5 Ultra Light is an exceptionally strong spinning rod that can be used for catching 5-6 pounders.
Although you will feel that it is difficult to control a fish of this weight.
The stainless steel guides are said to be more forgiving if you tend to bend and tackle the rod too much.
Cadence Spinning Rod stainless steel guides with SiC inserts that make the rod more smooth and durable, avoid line sticking into the guides, minimizes friction while enhancing sensitivity by transferring vibrations from the line through the guide to the rod and your hand.
The silicon carbide inserts make its guides invincible as compared to other options.
The cadence Spinning rod has an EVA foam handle of premium quality.
At 12 inches the handle is best for large hands and offers a comfortable grip and handling position.
In conclusion, the Cadence spinning rod is one of the best ultralight spinning rods out there and offers great value for money to the angler community.
8) Fenwick Eagle Spinning Fishing Rod
It is one of the best ultralight spinning rods available in the market.
The rod offers a comfortable handling position, interchangeable reels, durability, and good aesthetics.
This spinning rod sports a burled cork handle, has an olive-bronzed look and chromium-plated guide inserts, and a stainless steel blank.
The Fenwick Eagle Spinning Fishing Rod is extremely well balanced allowing better casting distance and rod action.
- Excellent Sensitivity
- Comfortable Handles
- Robust Guides
- Poor Packaging
Fenwick Eagle is on our list of the best spinning rod as it is an affordable option and offers great utility to anglers.
As compared to St. Croix, Fenwick is a significantly cheaper option with more or less the same degree of practicality and rod quality.
One of the most essential features of this rod is its cork handle which offers a warmer touch as compared to EVA handles such as those on KastKing Perigee and Cadence Spinning Rods.
The cork handle on the Fenwick Eagle offers more sensitive feedback because it allows the vibrations to spread out more evenly.
This makes it best for situations where sensitivity is important.
These rods have no problems pairing up with reels having interchangeable handles and thus accommodate every angler.
Another important feature of these rods is that they are extremely lightweight.
This allows you to fish with them for long hours without getting exhausted.
This also ensures that you can cast the rod on longer distances, which increases the chances of catching fish.
The use of modern technology while maintaining a traditional style allows Fenwick Spinning rods to have long-term durability and classic looks at the same time.
With Fenwick Eagle, you get the flexibility to cast light lures that too on long distances. This allows you to have a better chance of catching the fish.
These rods are best for trout, basses, walleyes, and salmon.
While most of the options on our list cannot handle tough braided lines, the Fenwick Eagle can do so.
The chromium-plated (SS304) guides can handle the stress applied by the braided line.
This makes the Fenwick stand out among other popular options.
It also allows you to have a more enhanced fishing experience since Fenwick Eagle Rods have a soft and sensitive tip that becomes highly receptive with braided lines.
The stainless steel blank and guides give longevity that is not offered by rods that are made of aluminum.
The earlier models from Fenwick were known to be fragile, with their tips snapping off very often.
People used to lose their catch at the last moment of the battle and leave them disappointed.
However, the company has addressed these snapping issues and the build quality of these rods has improved significantly.
In conclusion, Fenwick Eagle is a good option for new and experienced anglers.
The company offers bang for the buck and their rods are one of the best mid-budget fishing rods.
Choosing Between The Top Ultralight Spinning Rods?
Choosing between one of the above-mentioned ultralight rods can be confusing for you.
But you can start by making a list of essentials you want in your ultralight spinning rod.
The guide also offers you valuable detail regarding each rod.
You can take the following things into consideration when choosing a rod:
The rule of thumb for buying any fishing rod is to invest a decent amount to get the best quality product.
However, you should keep in mind that some brands offer great value for money.
Their rods are at par with the top brands, you just need to do your research right.
Once you have bought one of the above-mentioned ultralight spinning rods you should practice your tackle regularly.
You should also be willing to fail a couple of times before you catch your first fish.
Remember to have fun during your journey to becoming an expert angler!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Why Fish With an Ultralight Rod?
UltraLight rod fishing has a higher fun factor as compared to the medium or heavy spin rod. When fishing with an ultra-light rod your objective is to enjoy. You are not competing with anyone or trying to maximize your catch, you are there to have fun. Moreover, ultralight offers a more indulging experience even with smaller fishes. Ultralight rods will require you to tackle and muscle with 2 pounders. You will have a real battle before you can secure the catch.
What Are Ultralight Fishing Rods Good For?
Ultralight Spinning Rods are best for catching small fish species in shallow water bodies. The most common of these species are trout, panfish, crappie, yellow perch, bluegills. And common fishing spots for using these rods are creeks, ponds, streams, and shallow estuaries.
What Is The Best Length For An Ultralight Rod?
The most common length for an ultralight rod is 5 feet or 6 feet but it can range anywhere from 4 and a half feet to 7 feet. However, 5 feet and 6 feet long ultralight rods offer the most precise casting for lightweight lures.
Can an Ultralight Rod Catch Big Fish?
Although you can catch large fish on ultralight gear, you will struggle to have full control over the catch. And if the catch is over the rated weight capacity of the rod, you might even snap the tip.
What Should You Consider When Buying An Ultralight Spinning Rod?
The best ultralight rod will have the right amount of action, power, length, and quality. The action of a rod describes the length at which it will begin to bend when the load is applied. A fast-action rod is mostly stiff and only bends at the tip. The power of the rod describes the force required to bend the rod. An ultralight spinning rod will bend under normal loads, therefore they have a higher sensitivity to smaller loads. The length of a spinning rod affects its casting accuracy, the shorter the length, the higher the accuracy of cast. The quality of components is also an important consideration because they help in determining the durability, reliability, and comfort of the rod.