If you’ve read anything of mine over the years, I hope you’ve realized my concerted efforts to avoid gushing about products. I think there’s a lot of hyperbole out there these days and I do my very best to provide honest and down-to-earth feedback on all the products I test. I just typed those two sentences for a very specific reason because I’m about to brag on this rod a little bit. With all of the products we test each year, it’s fairly rare that something legitimately blows me away. It’s just the law of averages, I reckon.
I have been testing the St. Croix Legend Tournament Bass Spinning Rod for the last few months and it’s one of the finest spinning rods I’ve ever put in my hands. I’ve had the opportunity to try rods in every price point imaginable and this particular rod is an absolutely beautiful creation. I know that might make some folks roll their eyes but you can ask my colleagues and fishing buddies… I’ve been blabbing about this rod ever since my first fishing trip with it.
Hang with me for a minute or two while I highlight my favorite aspects of this rod. It’s one you certainly want to keep an eye on.
There are a lot of complicated and expansive terms and design processes behind the St. Croix Legend Tournament Bass Spinning Rod. I thought for a few minutes about how to tackle all of that terminology and to be totally honest with you, I don’t want to get lost in all of that. While important to some, I think it’s most important I spend your time discussing the real-world applications and my experiences with it.
Throughout my testing, I’ve been incredibly impressed by the balance of this rod. Before I put a reel on it, I immediately told my wife it was one of the lightest rods I’ve ever held in my hands; having tested hundreds of rods throughout my career, that means something. I was fairly shocked when I first put this rod in my hands.
After I put a reel on it, it remained super lightweight and most notably, it was wonderfully balanced. I have fished a lot of different baits on this rod such as shaky heads, ned rigs, finesse jerkbaits and weightless worms and have been totally impressed with each application. It’s comfortable to fish with throughout an entire day and you won’t notice any undue fatigue after a long day of bass fishing.
Impressive bite detection
There are very few rods I can remember that have been this sensitive throughout my testing. You can feel every movement of your bait and perhaps most importantly, very subtle changes in bottom composition. When the barometric pressure gets high and the bass fishing gets tough, this rod has been a major go-to for me as it allows me to feel the most subtle bites quickly which gives me time to quickly set the hook and get the bass in the boat.
If I’m fishing a bit deeper, I can easily feel when a muck-covered bottom transitions into a small shell bed or even diminutive gravel spots. As I’m sure you know, those small irregularities can make an enormous difference and hold a lot of bass. If you’re not using a sensitive rod, you’ll likely fish right over them.
Comfortable and high-quality cork
Not only does this multi-colored cork scheme look pretty dang cool but it’s also super soft and feels great in your hands. After a few months of hard testing, it seems to resist staining quite well, which can be an issue with lesser-quality cork grips. I’ve also liked that it doesn’t stain your white t-shirts. That might sound a little strange to some but if you have a good day of fishing with a lot of hooksets, the butt of a lot of low-quality cork-gripped rods will stain your light-colored shirts and it’s a pain to get out. I have not had that issue with this rod and I don’t expect it to be a problem at all.
I’m very certain that the folks at St. Croix understand more about line guide spacing than I do, so I’m not even going to pretend to be some sort of smart guy about it. I do know, however, that a lot of the spinning rods I’ve tested have had line guides that, in my opinion, are too close together which has resulted in major line management issues. On a hard cast, the line would slap against the blank which would result in horrible casting distance and in many instances, it would wrap around the actual guide and cause terrible line twist after a few hours.
The St. Croix Legend Tournament Bass Spinning Rod has allowed me to make some very impressive casts in regards to both distance and accuracy. Whether you want to skip a weightless wacky rig underneath a boat dock or bomb a small jerkbait on a windy day, you’ll notice almost zero line slap with this rod and excellent distance. With all that being said, this is one of the best-casting spinning rods I’ve tested in my career.
I never have been a gear snob because I totally understand how it is to fish with lower-end bass fishing gear. There is absolutely nothing wrong with it and I’ve spent decades doing just that. I also understand how hard we all work to support our families, pay bills and put gas in our trucks.
If you’re able to save up a little coin and buy one of these rods, I’m absolutely certain it will remain in your lineup for many years to come. As I said, I rarely brag about products to folks and this rod line has been a very rare exception. I’m afraid it might have spoiled me, but that’s a risk I’m willing to take.
Find a reel to match it up with in our Best Spinning Reels guide.
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