Best Catfish Rods 2023 – The Best Rods For Catfish (Review & Guide)

Catfish is one of the popular types of fish for being tasty panfish. They are strong, runs like a tiger, and are delicious when cooked. Since catfishes are tough to catch with regular fishing rods, you need special types of catfish rods to catch them. Our primary target of this post is to share the rod that is suitable to catch catfishes. Many anglers love to catch catfishes for entertainment, but most newbies fail at one thing; choosing the best rods for catching catfish. Unlike most fishes, catfish will fight hard, and they will try their best to escape. That’s why you’ll need a rod that’s capable of holding it and allowing you to stow that goddamn enormous catfish in your fish cooler.

Best Catfish Rods 2023

Ugly Stik Catfish Spinning Combo

A lot of angler loves the Ugly Stik series from Shakespeare. If you are into catfishing, you will love this one too. This ugly stik catfish spinning combo is specifically made for catching catfishes. The clear tip offers great sensibility with high accuracy. The tough construction of this catfish rod provides better durability and helps you with stainless steel guides. The only thing you can complain about this rod is it’s a one-piece design. However, you need to remember that you are getting a combo at a very reasonable price.

Best catfish rod and reel combo

Notable Features:

  • Tough construction and design offer high-durability
  • One-piece stainless steel guides
  • Competitive price
  • Clear tip used
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Berkley Big Game Casting Fishing Rod

Berkley is a household name when it comes to fishing rods. Big Gam Casting rods by Berkley has been used by thousands of anglers to catch big monster catfishes. As the name suggests, the Big Game series rods are designed to catch big fishes. Berkley Big Game casting rod uses a blank fiberglass blank construction, making it great to use to catch catfishes.

You will find stainless steel guide frames with aluminum oxide inserts. This particular model is 7″ long and has a medium-heavy cast action. Full rubberized shrink-wrapped handles ensure that you can hold on to them with comfort. You can tell from the picture that this is a two-piece catfishing rod, making it easy to transport. One thing that I can assure you is that the value you would get for the price is high.

Notable Features:

  • Great value for the price
  • Fiberglass blank construction
  • The stainless steel guide frame has aluminum oxide inserts
  • Full rubberized shrink wrapped handles offer great comfort
  • Medium-heavy action
  • 7″ long
  • Two-pieces design
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Berkley Big Game Spinning Fishing Rod

Berkley’s big game spinning fishing rod is one of the most popular catfishing rods out there that can handle a lot of different types of fish species. Pure Fish, the manufacturer of this catfishing rod, claims this series to be best used for big fish. Big Game spinning rod uses black, white, and red colors to create a stunning rod.

It comes with a strong tubular fiberglass blank construction, x-veil high modulus blank, stainless steel guide frame with titanium oxide inserts, TAC split full EVA handles, and more. The EVA handles are quite comfortable, and just make it easy to use the catfish rod.

This catfish rod comes with a moderate fast rod action and has a row power of medium-heavy. It is 8″ long and comes in two pieces. Since it is designed to tackle big fish, we can recommend this fishing rod for catching catfish.

Rod Blank: Tubular Fiberglass
Rod Action: Moderate Fast
Rod Power: Medium-Heavy
Line Rating: 12-30lb
Lure Rating: 1-4
Number of guides with tip: 6

Notable Features:

  • X-veil high modulus blank
  • Available in different packages
  • Fenwick custom ergonomic reel seat
  • EVA & TAC split grip handle provides great comfort
  • Available in black, white, and red color
  • 8″ medium heavy 2PC
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Abu Garcia Catfish Commando Cast Combo

Abu Garcia Catfish Commando Cast Combo

Abu Garcia is a popular fishing rod and reel manufacturer founded in Sweden. This catfishing rod comes with stainless steel ball-bearing to provide a much smoother operation when in use. Unlike most traditional catfishing rods, this one comes with an ergonomic design, which can be unpleasant if you are into regular rods only. Equipped with a Carbon Matrix Hybrid Drag system, you will have a smooth and reliable drag performance.

Abu Garcia used durable composite blank construction to make this catfish rod. Catfish commando combo comes with lots of other features like the synchronized level wind system which improves the line lay and stability. The high-density EVA used provides an amazing sensitivity with high durability. Since this is designed for catfishes only, serious catfish anglers would love its performance.

Notable Features:

  • Carbon Matrix hybrid drag system offers smoother and more reliable drag performance
  • Consistent brake pressure with the 6-pin centrifugal brake
  • Smooth operation, thanks to the two stainless steel ball-bearing
  • Competitive price for a combo
  • Durable composite blank construction to handle big catfishes
  • Ergonomic design with a compact bent handle
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Fire Stik 7’6″ Catfish Casting Rod | Casting Fishing Striper

Are you looking for a catfish casting rod that won’t disappoint you? Fire Stik’s 7’6″ catfish rod is designed to be beautiful and strong at the same time. This medium-heavy catfish rod has a length of 7’6″. It uses a two-piece design to make it travel-friendly. Rock-solid E-Glass and Graphite composite construction is used to make the blank of the rod. This composite construction ensures that this catfish pole is lightweight but strong enough to pull big fish from the water. According to the manufacturer, this catfish rod can handle a 40lb flathead catfish with ease. There are not many catfish rods at such low prices to tackle that type of big fish. Considering all the features, I can confirm that this is one of the toughest catfish rods on the market.

Notable Features:

  • 7’6″ long
  • Stylish design
  • Non-Ceramic & never-fail stainless guides
  • IM7 graphite
  • 304 solid stainless line guides
  • Medium-heavy action
  • Two-piece design
  • E-Glass and graphite
  • Lure weight: 1-5 oz
  • Line Weight: 20-40 lb
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BnM Silver at Magnum Cast Rod MAG75Cn

If you are looking for a one-piece catfish rod for sale, you need to check BnM’s Silver Cat. Unlike most other catfish rods, this one comes with a one-piece design. It is 7.5ft long with nine stainless steel guides to hold the line. 90% carbon and 10% fiberglass construction ensures high durability. Also, the aluminum reel seat ensures high durability. You will find the traditional cork handle in this catfish pole. BnM claims that this catfish pole was designed to be their pro staff for catching the monster fishes.

Notable Features:

  • 90% carbon and 10% fiberglass
  • Extra-long cork handles
  • Stainless steel guides
  • Aluminum reel seat
  • Nine guides
  • Made to catch big fishes
  • 50 lb test line capacity
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Rippin Lips Super Cat Casting Rod

Rippin Lips Super Cat Casting Rod

Famous John Jamison designs this rod for catfish. Super Cat casting rod is a great rod from the SuperCat series with a great design and build quality. Unlike most catfish rods, this one ditched E-glass and used S-glass blanks fiberglass to keep it lightweight and stronger. Since E-glass was intended for non-fishing purposes, S-Glass is solely designed for fishing rods only.

This rod is made of one part, which might drive away people who love things that take less space. However, other features with a decent price are good to make the decision on it. The custom EVA split grip handle can let you fight big catfishes with the right balance. Considering all the features, this is one of the best catfish rods on the market.

Notable Features:

  • High-quality raw materials used
  • Lightweight and Durable S-Glass blanks
  • Split grip design used for bump casting
  • Reasonable pricing
  • Medium-heavy casting
  • Able to handle big catfishes
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219087 Okuma Battle Cat 2pc – Heavy Casting Rod

This is undoubtedly one of the best catfish rods you can find on the market. Okuma Battle Cat is a heavy casting rod mainly used for catfishing. Okuma Battle Cat rod is made of durable E-Glass rod blank (construction) with high-quality materials. For better grip and comfort, it uses EVA Foregrip which helps when you are fighting big catfishes.

The two-piece blank construction allows it to store easily with less space. There are other features like the Fluorescent wrapped indicator tip, stainless steel guides, stainless steel hook, and mode. If you love fishing at the night, the Fluorescent wrapped indicator tip will let you have improved visibility at night. The length of the rod is 7 foot 6 inches while the line weight is 15-60lbs.

Notable Features:

  • Competitive price
  • Extremely durable E-Glass rod blank construction
  • The Cork butt section helps lessen binding when fishing in rod holders
  • Graphite Pipe reel seat used
  • 2 piece blank design for easy transportation and maintenance
  • Fluorescent wrapped indicator tip helps fishing at night
  • Heavy action
  • Stainless steel guides
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Shakespeare Wild Cat Spinning Rod

Shakespeare Wild Cat Spinning Rod

Shakespeare Wild Cat spinning rod is designed to catch monster catfishes. This catfishing rod comes with a 7″ length with high-quality materials. The two-piece design helps most users to transport them easily with less storage. The high-strength 2-piece tubular glass blanks offer a tough feel to the user. Also, the rod power of Shakespeare’s Wild Cat is medium-heavy.

The comfortable EVA handles come very handy when you are catching that big catfish. Packed with lots of features, a lot of newbies use this rod for its low price. In a nutshell, this is the best cheap catfish rod you can find on the market.

Notable Features:

  • Two-piece design to save space and easy transportation
  • Comfortable EVA handles
  • Medium-heavy rod power
  • Extremely cheap
  • The orange tip is used for better visibility
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How To Choose The Best Catfish Rods?

Choosing the right kind of rod for catfish can be a difficult decision, but this helpful guide will help you to land the best catfish rods if you read and act carefully. However, the fishing rods we mentioned above are ready to go if you don’t want to read the guide.

Catfish Species

Yes, you need to know the types of catfish you want to catch. Otherwise, it would be tough to land the perfect rod for you. Some catfish acts differently than other species, and they need different types of rod for more easy and quick operation. Let’s assume you are after channel catfishes. In that case, the best catfish rod will have the medium power to allow for finesse and technique implementation. On the other hand, if you are into catching flathead or the big channel catfishes, the best catfish rod will be the one with medium-heavy or heavy power.

Graphite Rod

Graphite rods are usually stronger and more sensitive than fiberglass fishing rods. It can help you fight a big catfish with a great amount of sensitivity. Due to the high sensitivity, you will even feel small to little nibbling of catfish on your bait.

Fiberglass Blank

A lot of fishing rod comes with a blank made of E-Glass fiberglass, but we prefer S-Glass over E-Glass. The reason is pretty simple: S-Glass is better than E-Glass. Unlike E-Glass fiberglass, the S-Glass is primarily made for use in the fishing rod. S-Glass blanks are lightweight and stronger.

Rod Length and flexibility

Most catfish anglers would prefer a 7-9 feet rod in length. This is a standard for most anglers, but it might change on the fishing spot and technique. Assume you are fishing from trail races or the location requires you to have a longer rod. In such cases, the best catfish rod might have a length of 12-14 feet. If you are using a longer catfish rod, it will offer you a longer and more accurate cast. That’s why some catfish anglers love longer rods over shorter ones. There are other benefits of longer rods like the leverage you have against the fish. The extra length gives you the ability to battle a fish when you are landing it in your fishing net or on the ground.

However, if you are into kayaking or boating, a shorter catfish rod will be more beneficial. Since you can move back and forth with the water vessel, it is not required to have longer casts. Thus, it is up to you now to choose the length of your catfish rod.

Handle Length

Just like the rod length, the longer the handle is, the better you feel when fighting with a monster catfish. A larger handle allows you to have a better bargain ability to handle a large catfish. It works as additional leverage for fighting with a large fish. Besides that, a longer handle offers a better grip. You will feel more comfortable when holding a catfish rod with a long handle attached to a rod holder. Your hand won’t slip, and you will have a more enjoyable fishing experience.


The rod action will determine the flexibility of the rod. Assume you choose a catfish rod with slow action power, your rod will have higher flexibility. On the other side, if your catfish rod comes with fast action, it will flex on the tip of the rod. More on rod action in the next paragraph.

Rod Action

While choosing the best catfish rods, you have to be clear about the rod action. It means where the majority of the bend will happen from the rod to the tip. If you are using a large or medium-sized catfish rod, it is better to choose a faster rod action. The faster the action is, the farther your rod will bend from the handle. It also comes in handy when you are trying to catch larger catfishes. However, if you are trying to catch catfish from a kayak or a boat, it is wise to choose a small or medium-sized catfish rod with medium rod action.

Key takeaways from rod action

  1. Medium rod action is better for catching small to mid-sized catfishes
  2. Faster rod action is better to catch large catfishes
  3. Slow action means the bend will happen on the 2/3 to 3/4 of the rod
  4. Medium action rods will see a bend on the 1/2 or close to the middle of the rod
  5. Fast action rod power causes a bend on the tip (1/4 to 1/3) of the rod.
  6. If you are fishing from a kayak, canoe, or from a boat, it is better to choose a small or medium-sized catfish rod with medium rod action

Final Verdict

I hope this article will help you to choose the best catfish rods for your next journey. Since most of the mentioned catfish rods are cheap or reasonably priced, most anglers won’t find them tough to buy. If you clearly followed the article, you will have the necessary pieces of information to choose the one for you. However, if you are still struggling to decide, I would suggest you choose the Rippin Lips Super Cat Casting Rod for its reasonable price and features. If you don’t want to break but still want to enjoy the party, you can check the Shakespeare Wild Cat Casting Rod. If you are looking for a catfish rod and reel combo, check the Ugly Stik Catfish Spinning Combo and Abu Garcia Catfish Commando Cast Combo. You can leave comments with your favorite catfish rods if you want.

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Afsar is an avid kayak blogger born near the coast. He has a passion for kayaking and started as a child. He has paddled in various conditions and locations and promotes responsible kayaking. Afsar's blog is widely read, and they are a respected voice in the kayaking community, offering valuable content on kayaking trips, gear, tips, and tricks. Afsar collaborates with other bloggers and brands and continues to inspire others through their writing and social media.

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