Surf fishing is one of the most exciting hobby sports nowadays. For you to be the best at it, you have to have a good balance of technique, equipment, and a bit of luck.
While we can't do much about luck, having the best surf fishing rods at your disposal will help improve your technique as well as increase your enjoyment while doing it.
The rods in this review range from the most acclaimed to the best value for money. So, if you are looking around for your next fishing rod, it might be included as one of the products here.
Comparison of Best Surf Fishing Rods
Okuma Fishing Tackle CSX
OKUMA FISHING TACKLE
Penn Prevail & Prevail
Tica UGSA Series Surf
Fiblink Surf Spinning
Okuma's Solaris Surf
OKUMA FISHING TACKLE
Shimano Tiralejo 2-Piece
Shakespeare Ugly Stik
St Croix Triumph Surf
Hurricane Bluefin Spinning
Daiwa Emcast Surf Rod
10 Best Surf Fishing Rods Reviews
You can never guess what you will hook next, which is why it is crucial to have a reliable surf fishing rod. The rods in this review will provide ample strength to keep you from losing your catch. These come in different price ranges that will fit most budgets.
1. Okuma Fishing Tackle CSX-S-1102MH
If you're a beginner and want to take up surf fishing for a hobby, then one of the best tips you can be given is to get a lightweight fishing rod. Because if you are fishing for an extended length of time, you don't want the weight of the rod to bear on you, let alone add weight to it when you're fighting what you caught.
This rod is a surprisingly light instrument, thanks to the combination of materials that were used to build it. It features 30-ton fiber blanks at the core and 316-grade stainless steel guide frame with Zirconium inserts, which gives plenty of strength and durability as well.
Having a stainless steel construction also helps keep it from corrosion caused by weather and especially seawater. It is a reliable rod in any body of water.
The small diameter inserts help create a guide system that aids in the quick transition of loops coming off the spinning reel to the straight running line to help you land that catch as fast and efficiently as possible.
For a comfortable control, it has a non-slip rubber shrink tube handle that boasts a tapered rear grip. This is one of the best saltwater surf fishing rods in the market today.
2. PENN Prevail II Surf Spinning Fishing Rod
PENN is well known for producing high quality and top surf fishing rods in the market. Their rods have been used by experienced and professional fishers, which makes them also perfect for novices and beginners.
This fishing rod is made from graphite and fiberglass materials that provide extreme durability, added pulling power, and reliability. Graphite also provides the sensitivity you need to quickly hook your catch.
It is equipped with the PENN Dura-Guides, which are one-piece stainless steel construction. These do not have any inserts which are prone to pop out. They are great for both mono and braided lines.
The grips have ergonomic WINN grips that are comfortable and help control your rod in any situation. You will also have a firm grip on the rod even in wet conditions, thanks to the shrink tube rubber handle.
You will be impressed with this rod because it offers a medium-heavy rod power that allows it to bend quite significantly. This will allow you to accommodate a range of lure weights and line tests. It also has a moderate-fast rod action, which is indicative of the good quality build of this surf fishing rod.
The length of this rod allows for a longer casting distance. To maximize it, use the appropriate weight bait from 4 to 8 oz.
3. Tica UGSA Series Surf Spinning Fishing Rod
Enjoying and having a good time while fishing helps to improve your skills as well as enhance your experience every time. This is a great addition to the arsenal of any surfcaster with its high efficiency features TC3 graphite, and Fuji Hardloy ring guides, which make this a great value surf fishing rod.
Specifically, it is constructed with a high modulus TC3 graphite material, which is a well-known rod material for distance throwing. The Fuji Hardloy, on the other hand, reduces the amount of heat generated when the line rubs against it, which, in turn, preserves the line and keeps it from fraying and breaking.
That amount of detail in the overall construction of this rod emphasizes that this is meant to be used for any type of fishing situation. Whether you want to land the largest fish of your life or training to understand the movement of the waves, this rod will help you out.
It is designed to help any fisher, especially in saltwater conditions. The materials used for this are guaranteed not to get any corrosion or break due to the harsh conditions of the sea.
The lightweight feature makes it an ideal fishing rod for both hobbyists and professionals. You can fit most types of reels in this rod so that you can immediately use it and enjoy the benefits of using a good fishing rod.
4. Fiblink Surf Spinning Fishing Rod 2-Piece
You want a fishing rod that will allow you to feel out your catch so that you can adjust your strategy accordingly. With a rod like this one, you will be hard-pressed not to bring this anywhere because of the sensitivity and the way it helps you “see” the fish before actually reeling it.
With the carbon fiber construction, this will be a durable and reliable fishing rod, whether you're honing your skills or fishing for your dinner. It can be used on any type of scenario but will perform exceptionally well on boats.
The guides are made from a combination of stainless steel and ceramic. This allows for a smooth and durable component that protects your line from any fraying or breaking. You can use both braided and mono lines on this rod without any problems.
A durable and non-slip rubber shrink tube is used for the handle. Whether you’re right or left-handed, this will give you a firm grip on the fishing rod in any weather condition.
Another feature you will appreciate when using this fishing rod is the lightweight construction, which can help you fish for longer periods. This will decrease the chance of fatigue, especially if you're fighting for the best fish of your life.
Also, this will be a great beginner and "beater" rod because of its price. You will get more out of the price, though, because this will perform better than you expect it to.
5. Okuma's Solaris Surf Fishing Rod
These rods are designed for those who are passionate about the art of surf fishing. This is why these are among the top surf fishing rods nowadays.
IM6 graphite is used to construct these, which allow them to be strong and versatile for any fishing condition. The rod itself is proven to be tough. It is able to fight strong and heavy fish because of the flexibility and durability of the graphite material.
It has a non-slip cork wrap on the butt and fore grips that allow the user complete control over the rod. This is essential in catching fish in any weather situation. Additionally, it is equipped with EVA grips at the reel seat, which adds comfort during long battles with your catch.
The guide frames are double footed and made with stainless steel that makes them durable and long-lasting. They have aluminum oxide inserts that keep heat from building up when the line is rubbing on them. This helps protect the line from fraying or breaking.
Among the most lauded features of this rod is the sensitivity. It will react to bites and will signal that it’s time to reel it in.
6. Shimano Tiralejo 2-Piece Surf
Shimano builds these surf fishing rods with C4S, which means it uses carbon (C), 4 layers, and a slit carbon tape to build it. With all that said, to the layperson, that just means it has a significantly comparable strength to the best fishing rods out there.
But it is not just tough, it also has a strong recovery rate which helps for a further cast distance and manages heavy loads. That also makes this the best surf fishing spinning rods for beginners.
It has 7 guides, all made from Fuji stainless K frame with Alconite insert that prevents the line from fraying or breaking when reeling.
If you've been wondering what "tira lejo" means, it's Spanish for "to throw," which is what this rod is meant for. Many reviewers swear by how simply and far they cast off with this rod.
The materials and the length of this rod help to cast farther and get your bait to longer distances, which is a good characteristic for surfcasters since you don't have a lot of space to move around.
This has a moderate-fast action and a medium-heavy power, which means you can land almost any fish you catch in the surf without worrying about it breaking while reeling.
Another thing you will love about this rod is the weight. It weighs about 15.2 oz, which is a good weight for all-day fishing.
7. Shakespeare Ugly Stik Bigwater Spinning Rod
Don’t be fooled by the name of this brand. It is a beloved brand that has been used by professionals and passionate surf casters around the world. Also, it has given hobbyists and professionals the gnarliest fight and helped land the catch without breaking.
This is made from a combination of graphite and fiberglass, which makes it both strong, flexible, and sensitive. All these factors help in understanding how to strategize to catch the fish most effectively.
It is equipped with the Ugly Tuff—their patented one-piece stainless steel guide. These are made to reduce the risk of insert pop-outs, which can be dangerous and can break your line and rod altogether. The construction is also designed to be durable so that it will not break in any circumstances.
Additionally, it has its Clear Tip, which is an innovation that adds strength and gives extra sensitivity that will help you identify even the slightest nibble on your bait.
You can be sure that this rod will not slip, thanks to the EVA grip that is not just anti-slip, but durable as well. With these grips, you can fish in any weather and condition without worrying about losing grip or control.
When surfcasting, you can expect this rod to help you launch your bait as far as you can. The combination of materials and length makes this the best surf fishing rod for beginners.
8. St Croix Triumph Surf Spinning Rod
Made from premium graphite, this will be a joy to use for those who want a lightweight and durable rod. Without spending a fortune, you will have a high-performance rod that will surely give you a great fishing time.
The custom cork handle is going to give you firm and stable control over the rod. It will also provide a comfortable grip even with a long battle with your catch. It is also slim enough to accommodate most hand sizes.
Moreover, it is equipped with aluminum oxide guides. These are lightweight and durable. They also reduce the amount of heat produced by friction and rubbing, which is important in preserving your line from fraying and breaking.
You can bet that this rod will be sensitive enough to detect nibbles from 1-pound fishes up to the 15-pounder or more. This will enable you to land that fish with no problem.
When casting, the construction and rigidness of the rod will enable you to throw your cast for a long-distance as well as give you the ability to fight large fishes without worrying about breaking the rod.
This is one of the best surf fishing travel rods available. It comes in four pieces so you can easily store it in your duffle bag or your luggage.
9. Hurricane Bluefin Spinning Surf Rod
You don’t need to spend big amount if you just want to have a feel of surf fishing as a hobby. These are the best rated surf fishing rods if you want a great fishing rod without having to spend too much.
This is built for great performance in any turf. It is built from an E-glass rod blank, which has excellent action that will give any surf caster a great and inspiring time. These types of rods are not just beautiful, they also perform great.
More so, it has a medium-heavy action that allows it to fight most fish sizes and keep you from the worry of it breaking any time soon. You will also have a firm grasp of this rod all the time, thanks to the cork wrap on the handle. It will have a non-slip surface, no matter the weather.
The guides on this rod are made from aluminum oxide. These reduce the overall weight of the rod and will keep you from being strained when fishing for a long time.
Its reel seat is made from graphite and cushioned with stainless steel for great durability and stability whenever you need it. The length of this rod is 8’ which may seem to fall short of the standard, but we found that this performs just as well, if not better than the longer counterparts.
10. Daiwa Emcast Surf Rod
This is a lesser-known brand, but it is nothing that you should dismiss immediately. It is something you should consider because it will be a great addition to your arsenal.
You can use this as your beater rod and expect it to work well in any type of situation. Thanks to the graphite construction, this lightweight rod has great sensitivity and durability that will help you land that fish and give you a good time.
Graphite blanks are among the most favorite fishing rod materials as it provides an ample amount of strength, flex, and sensitivity, all of which are factors for catching a fish.
The handle is made from a durable EVA grip, which will provide you plenty of control and comfort in any weather. If you have sweaty palms, these will be great as it will still have a good grip even when it gets wet.
It also has aluminum oxide guides that are durable and lightweight. Aluminum is a great material for guides because it reduces heat generated by friction, thus preserving your line from fraying or breaking unintentionally. They are also resistant to corrosion caused by saltwater.
This surf fishing rod also has an ergonomic reel seat design with a stainless hooded seat that gives the user great comfort. So, if you’re fighting the fish, you will still have good comfort and assurance that you won’t wear out before the fish does.
Things to Consider Before Buying
If you’re in the market as a first-time buyer, then rest assured that most fishing rods available today are of great quality. And you will also be sure that these will improve in the future, thanks to innovation and the discovery of great materials.
But to help you get the best surf fishing rods for the money, here are some things you should consider. This guide will help you choose the right rod for you.
Length of the Rod
Most people prefer rods that are 9 or 10 feet. These are the standard lengths mostly because of the versatility. If you’re a complete beginner, it is best to start at these lengths.
You also want to have a durable rod that will have a good amount of flex. So, a rod with a graphite composite with fiberglass will be a great choice for you.
These materials make the rod sturdy and extremely flexible, which is ideal for saltwater fishing.
While it seems like a small matter, but if you're fishing for a long time, you will begin to feel the weight of the rod. And if you have a heavy rod, it will quickly add to your fatigue and lessen your endurance and, eventually, your enjoyment.
A fishing rod is a simple tool that has simple components. You won't see a lot of innovation when it comes to handle-shapes, which is why the materials used on the handle are things you should consider.
You want something that will offer non-slip features as well as comfort grips.
This is where your reel will be installed. You should make sure that this is not made from a material that will degrade over time. If that is so, it will make your reel come loose, and that's one of the biggest problems you can have on a fishing rod. It will deem the rod useless if that happens.
The ability to bend under pressure is called rod action. This is among the top things you should look for because having a good rod action will also prevent your rod from breaking.
Rod action also affects your fishing technique, how you set the hook, and how far you can cast. Fast action is ideal for single hooks and vice versa. As a beginner, it is a good idea to start with a medium action so that you can get a feel of what you prefer, the more experience you gain. Lets take a look at our post on telescopic fishing rods with buyers guide.
If you’ve heard of medium-heavy, this refers to the rod power. That, in particular, is a good common ground and will offer versatility when it comes to the pulling power of the rod. It is great for a wide variety of fish species, skill level, and technique.
A beginner will appreciate that power, but there are still other options available.
Yes, you have to take into consideration what you want to catch before buying a fishing rod. This will allow you to narrow down what you want in a rod.
If you’re eyeing for larger species of fish, then you know you should have a rod that can withstand long hours of pressure and keep you from feeling too fatigued after an intense battle.
But as a rule of thumb, for a beginner, you have to start small and gradually work your way up as you develop your skill and technique.
If you don't live near the beach or any body of water you can fish from, then you have to put this among your top priorities. You don't want to travel with a long rod sticking out of the window of your car, where it can be damaged accidentally.
Just remember to lock the pieces properly if you’re going for a two- or four-piece design for safety when casting.
You can easily find a rod worth less than $50 just as much as upwards of $500 in best surf fishing rods reviews. There are plenty of options for the price range nowadays.
Budget-friendly surf fishing rods have lesser components than expensive ones, but it doesn't necessarily mean they have lower quality. It is a good idea to go with something fairly priced as a beginner so that you can save a little as well as get a great rod as well.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need a fishing license?
Some government bodies will provide fishing licenses. But most of the time, these are not required.
How do I maintain my surf fishing rod?
Here are some tips in brief. Don’t store the rod at high temperature for a long time. Don’t use a lure heavier than recommended. Rinse and clean your rod after using it. When storing, hang it on its case. Check our post on cleaning and maintaining a fishing rod and reel.
When is the best time to fish?
While there is no exact ideal time for fishing, the generally accepted time is mornings and dusk.
Can I use the saltwater surf fishing rod on freshwater?
Yes, but it may be cumbersome to use a long rod on bodies of freshwater. That aside, these work as good as any fishing rods. Freshwater rods will also work on the surf.
What’s a good tip when casting?
Use your wrist when casting. This will help create a whiplash which will, in turn, provide a longer distance for your bait.
These are the best surf fishing rods in the market today with different price ranges and features. Taking up fishing as a hobby is fun and a great way to relax as well as bond with your family and friends.