Knowing what bass fishing rod you need might seem overwhelming at first. So let's break down rods and share some good articles and videos on using fishing rods for bass to serve as your guide for bass fishing rods.
The fishing rod, or fishing pole as same may refer to it, serves many functions. You can throw a 1/4-ounce fishing lure only so far by hand. So one of the primary functions of a rod is to catapult your bait farther to tempt the bass without spooking them by being too close.
The other functions a rod serves include hooking a bass when it bites a bait, transmitting that bite to your hand so you can feel when a fish is on your hook and helping you play down the bass and tire him out so you can land him without running the risk of breaking your line or burning your hands trying to hold the line during the fight.
Essentially a rod consists of a hollow core of graphite, glass or other composite material called a blank. Metallic guides with usually ceramic or titanium inserts are wound onto the rod blanks at specific intervals to not only send the line orderly from from the reel into the water but also handle the line as you retrieve and fight fish along the rod blank. Every rod will have a handle usually made out of EVA foam or cork. It will also have a reel seat that allows you to attach a reel by inserting the reel foot into the reel seat grove and then screwing down a foregrip to lock the reel into place.
Understanding rod terminology
We created a simple guide to understanding a fishing rod that explains the differences in the terms of a rod including taper, length, action and power. All of these factors determine if a rod is better suited for one technique or another and should be matched with a certain pound-test of line and weight of lure.
After you've read our rod terminology piece, there are some things to consider about rod selection.
Rod action and power dictate selection for technique
There seems like an endless list of possible configurations when it comes to length, action, power, taper and modulus in a rod. But really you can simplify your approach a lot. Essentially you need backbone (or power) on your rod to drive a hook into a fish. You need taper and action to be able to cast a lure farther.
So a rod for close up flipping and pitching baits to nearby targets doesn't need a lot of action but it needs a lot of power to set the hook hard, turn a fish fast away from cover and horse them out into open water.
Conversely if a crankbait rod is too stiff, it will make casting the crank bait difficult. When a fish surges, the hooks could pull free if the rod doesn't flex and bend enough. So a medium action rod gives you greater casting distance and will bow to a hard fighting bass that might be hooked awkwardly on a treble hook lure.
A simple 6 rod and reel system
We compiled a few suggestions to help you put together some combinations of rods and reels. We basically settled on a 6-rod-reel bass-fishing system to cover the most common situations in bass fishing. Just enough to cover a lot of bases without having to retie constantly to cover water efficiently or feel like you're out matched or fighting to make a combo work for a certain lure.
First read our suggestions for 6 rod types you need for bass fishing.
Then read the 6 reels we recommend for bass fishing piece.
Once understanding the ins and outs of bass fishing rods, anglers will want to protect their investments. Here is a short article on 3 easy ways to make your investment in bass fishing rods last longer.
Finally if you still have questions about specific rods, check out our many rod reviews to see if we have some information on a specific rod you're considering. You might also like our Rod and Reel Matrix for keeping up with your rods and reels if you start to accumulate a lot of combos as you get more into bass fishing.