Top 7 Best Walleye Rods Reviewed

Best Walleye Rods

Walleyes are known for their delicate bites but can grow quite large, up to 20 pounds. To catch them successfully, you need a walleye rod that is both sensitive and strong enough to handle big catches. Additionally, it should be lightweight to prevent fatigue during long fishing sessions. Considering these factors, I have selected the top 7 rods for walleye fishing.

For those who enjoy both jigging and trolling, the St Croix Legend Tournament Walleye rod is a perfect choice. It is versatile enough to handle both fishing styles effectively.

However, if you prefer either jigging or trolling and want a more affordable option, feel free to explore the specific rods suited for your preferred fishing style.


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Top 7 Best Walleye Rods

PRODUCTS
FEATURES
ūüŹÜ EDITOR‚ÄôS PICK
  • Blank Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Guides: Fuji Alconite
  • Handle Material: Cork
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‚̧ԳŹ Most Reviewed
  • Blank Material: Composite
  • Guides: Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Cork
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  • Blank Material: Graphite
  • Guides: Titanium
  • Handle Material: EVA Foam
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‚ėÖ BUDGET PICK
  • Blank Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Guides: Aluminum Oxide
  • Handle Material: Cork
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‚ėÖ BUDGET PICK
  • Blank Material: Graphite
  • Guides: Fuji Alconite
  • Handle Material: Cork
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‚ėÖ BUDGET PICK
  • Blank Material: Composite
  • Guides: Fuji
  • Handle Material: Cork
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‚ėÖ BUDGET PICK
  • Blank Material: Carbon Fiber
  • Guides: Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material: Cork + EVA Foam
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OUR EDITOR’S Pick
St Croix Legend Tournament Walleye Spinning 
  • Durable Aluminum Body
  • Versatile Sling Mounts
  • Inline Bolt System

1. St Croix Legend Tournament Walleye Spinning 

St Croix Legend Tournament Walleye Spinning
Features:
  • Blank Material:¬†Carbon Fiber
  • Guides:¬†Fuji Alconite
  • Handle Material:¬†Cork
  • Action:¬†Ranges from Moderate to Extra Fast
  • Warranty Period:¬†15 Years

The St Croix Legend Tournament Walleye Spinning Rod stands out as the top choice among all the rods. It is handcrafted to be the strongest, lightest, and most sensitive rod available, while also being exceptionally durable. This makes it suitable for various fishing techniques, including jigging and trolling. Additionally, it features a hook-keeper for added convenience.

Much of its excellence can be attributed to St Croix’s industry-leading technology. With over 70 years of experience, St Croix has developed three patented technologies exclusively for their rods: Integrated Poly Curve (IPC), Advanced Reinforcing Technology (ART), and Fortified Resin System (FRS). These technologies significantly enhance the rod’s strength, sensitivity, and durability, setting it apart from other brands.

The remarkable strength and sensitivity of the St Croix Legend make it suitable for both jigging and trolling, while still being capable of handling larger fish like bass.

When it comes to longevity, the rod’s components speak for themselves. The Fuji alconite guides are known for their durability, and the cork handle has a natural lifespan of over 50 years. In other words, the St Croix Legend is built to last for many years of fishing enjoyment.

Furthermore, the rod is equipped with a Kigan hook-keeper, which protects it during transportation and storage, adding even more value to its design.

The only drawback of this walleye rod is its price, which is higher than any other rod on the list by over a hundred dollars. However, considering its versatility as a jigging and trolling rod combined, it can save you money compared to purchasing separate rods for each technique. Additionally, it comes with a 15-year warranty, providing added assurance.

Overall, the St Croix Legend Tournament Walleye Spinning Rod offers unmatched strength, sensitivity, and durability, making it an exceptional investment for serious anglers.

2. Ugly Stik Elite Spincast

Ugly Stik Elite Spincast
Features:
  • Blank Material:¬†Composite
  • Guides:¬†Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material:¬†Cork
  • Action:¬†Moderate Fast
  • Warranty Period:¬†7 Years

Trolling rods need to be long and strong, just like the Ugly Stik Elite Spincast Rod. It has qualities like being strong, lightweight, sensitive, and durable, making it great for trolling walleyes.

Ugly Stik is famous for making unbreakable rods using their special Ugly Tech Construction. This technology makes the Ugly Stik Elite Spincast Rod tough and capable of handling large walleyes and even big bass.

Even though it’s strong, it’s also sensitive enough to feel when a walleye bites. This is because it combines fiberglass and graphite, which makes it both sturdy and sensitive.

The rod has stainless steel guides and a cork handle, which are durable materials that will last a long time.

The most important thing is that it’s long enough for trolling. It measures 8.5 feet, which is great for trolling in deep water.

It’s not perfect though, as it is a bit heavier than the previous rods due to the fiberglass. But it’s still light enough to use comfortably.

All in all, the Ugly Stik Elite Spincast Rod is an excellent choice for trolling walleyes.

3. Fenwick Elite Tech Walleye Spinning

Fenwick Elite Tech Walleye Spinning
Features:
  • Blank Material:¬†Graphite
  • Guides:¬†Titanium
  • Handle Material:¬†EVA Foam
  • Action:¬†Ranges from Fast to Extra Fast
  • Warranty Period:¬†1 Year

The Fenwick Elite Tech Walleye is a rod designed specifically for walleye fishing, and it can be used for both jigging and trolling.

For walleyes, it’s important to have a fast-action rod that is specifically designed for their fishing style. The Fenwick Elite Tech Walleye is a great choice in this regard. It also features titanium guides, which are more durable and corrosion-resistant compared to other materials like alconite.

While the St Croix Legend may be expensive, the Fenwick Elite Tech offers a more budget-friendly option. Choose the fast action and medium power option, and you’ll have a great rod with the Fenwick Elite Tech Walleye.

4. St Croix Eyecon Spinning

St Croix Eyecon Spinning
Features:
  • Blank Material:¬†Carbon Fiber
  • Guides:¬†Aluminum Oxide
  • Handle Material:¬†Cork
  • Action:¬†Ranges from Moderate to Extra Fast
  • Warranty Period:¬†5 Years

If you prefer jigging over trolling, then the St Croix Eyecon Spinning Rod is the ideal choice for you. It offers the same qualities as the St Croix Legend, such as strength, lightness, sensitivity, and durability. It even comes with a Kigan hook-keeper.

The St Croix Eyecon is slightly heavier and not as tough as the St Croix Legend, but it can still handle big walleyes thanks to the FRS technology used in its construction.

When it comes to sensitivity, the St Croix Eyecon excels. It is made with SCII carbon fiber, which is more sensitive and lighter than regular rods. This allows you to make effortless casts all day and feel even the slightest bites from walleyes.

The components of the rod, such as the aluminum oxide guides and cork handle, ensure its durability and longevity.

One thing to note is that the reviews on the product page may not be trustworthy. Some competitors may be trying to defame the product with false claims. For example, there were claims of the rod having a “Made in China” label, which is impossible since St Croix manufactures all their rods in the USA. So, it’s best not to rely solely on those reviews.

Overall, the St Croix Eyecon is a perfect jigging rod that is lightweight, sensitive, strong, and durable. Most importantly, it is affordable, making it an excellent choice for walleye fishing.

5. Tica WMVA Casting

Tica WMVA Casting
Features:
  • Blank Material:¬†Graphite
  • Guides:¬†Fuji Alconite
  • Handle Material:¬†Cork
  • Action:¬†Ranges from Fast to Extra Fast
  • Warranty Period:¬†1 Year

The Tica WMVA Casting Rod is a budget-friendly option for those who want to troll for walleyes. While it may not have all the premium features, it still meets the basic requirements for trolling walleyes.

The rod is rated as heavy power, which means it can handle larger walleyes. It is constructed with a composite rod blank, combining fiberglass for toughness and high-density graphite for sensitivity. This allows you to detect even the subtle bites of walleyes. However, it’s worth noting that the length of 7.58 ft is slightly shorter than optimal for trolling.

While there are better trolling rods available, the Tica WMVA Casting Rod offers a more affordable option. If you’re looking for a budget-friendly walleye trolling rod, this one is worth considering.

6. KastKing WideEye Walleye

KastKing WideEye Walleye
Features:
  • Blank Material:¬†Composite
  • Guides:¬†Fuji
  • Handle Material:¬†Cork
  • Action:¬†Ranges from Moderate to Extra Fast
  • Warranty Period:¬†Limited Lifetime

If the St Croix Eyecon is out of your budget range, the Kastking WideEye Walleye is a great alternative for jigging. While it may not have the advanced technology of the St Croix rod, it still offers good performance.

To compensate for the lack of St Croix’s technology, KastKing has included fiberglass in the construction of the WideEye Walleye. This provides added strength, although it may be slightly weaker compared to the St Croix rod. In terms of durability, the Fuji guides and cork handles are reliable choices. When it comes to sensitivity, they are on par with each other.

Considering the price difference of about $50, it’s understandable that the KastKing WideEye Walleye may be slightly weaker. However, it is still sensitive and strong enough to handle a wide range of walleyes and is suitable for jigging. It offers good value for those who want a more affordable option.

7. Cadence CR5 Spinning

Cadence CR5 Spinning
Features:
  • Blank Material:¬†Carbon Fiber
  • Guides:¬†Stainless Steel
  • Handle Material:¬†Cork + EVA Foam
  • Action:¬†Ranges from Moderate to Fast
  • Warranty Period:¬†1 Year

When I first came across the Cadence CR5 Spinning Rod, I was skeptical because of its low price. However, after giving it a try, I was pleasantly surprised by its performance.

The rod proved to be strong, sensitive, and lightweight. The carbon fiber blank provided sufficient strength and sensitivity for walleye fishing, and the rod felt comparable to higher-priced models in terms of its lightness.

However, I did encounter an issue with its durability. After a few uses, the tip of the rod broke off, and I had to request a replacement. This is something to keep in mind, considering the lower price point of the rod.

Overall, I would recommend the Cadence CR5 Spinning Rod to those who are looking to start walleye fishing on a tight budget. It offers decent performance at an affordable price, although durability may be a concern.

Different Types Of Walleye Rods

You can jig, troll, or let your bait sit when you’re targeting walleyes. These different fishing techniques give rise to different types of walleye rods.

Spinning

The first type of rod is the spinning rod.

Spinning rods are known for being easy to use. With a spinning rod, you simply cast your bait and let it sit. It’s considered the simplest fishing style.

It’s important to note that jigging rods are also a type of spinning rod. However, I’ve separated them here because they represent a different fishing style.

Jigging

The second type of rod is the jigging rod.

A jigging rod, as the name implies, is specifically designed for jigging.

When jigging, you want your rod to have snappy, clean, and precise movements. This means that a walleye jigging rod should have a faster action, preferably moderate-fast or faster.

Since jigging involves continuous movements, it’s important for the rod to be light so that your arm doesn’t get tired quickly.

Jigging rods are typically shorter in length because there is no need for an exceptionally long rod.

If you start to feel tired while jigging, you can always stop and let the bait rest. In other words, a jigging rod can also be used for regular spinning fishing.

Trolling

The third and final type is the trolling rod. Trolling rods are specifically designed for trolling.

When trolling, you’ll be pulling heavier baits and lures behind your boat, which creates water resistance on your line. As a result, your walleye fishing rod needs to be stronger to handle this added pressure.

Trolling rods are typically longer, as longer rods make it easier to fight and reel in fish, especially in deeper water.

Since there will be water resistance affecting your line, it’s not necessary to have an extremely sensitive walleye rod. I personally recommend using a rod with moderate action for trolling.

Materials For Walleye Rods

When it comes to your rod blank material, some materials are more sensitive, and others are tougher.

Here’s the complete list of fishing rod materials.

Graphite (AKA Carbon Fiber)

Graphite is sometimes also called carbon fiber. Graphite is used in fishing rods as it’s the most sensitive and light. But it’s also the most expensive. Duh.

Fiberglass

Fiberglass is used when you need a rod to be tough. It’s tougher than graphite and cheaper, but also heavier and less sensitive.

Composite

Composite is a combination of graphite and fiberglass.

As you might guess, your rod won’t be the most sensitive, or the toughest. Instead, you’ll have a mix of all the qualities. Essentially, you’ll have a sensitive, tough, and light rod.

How To Choose The Right Walleye Rod

By now, I’m guessing you already have your eye on one of the awesome walleye rods on this list.

In that case, chances are, you’re also wondering what length, power, and action you should get.

That’s why I included this section to help you choose the right option.

Length

For spinning and jigging rods, a length between 5-7 ft is recommended. Shorter rods are lighter and easier to jig with. For trolling, a longer rod in the range of 10-11 ft is ideal, as it provides better leverage in deeper waters. However, the Ugly Stik Elite Spincast, despite being 8.5 ft, is still suitable for trolling due to its design.

Power

The power of the rod depends on your fishing style. For spinning and jigging, a medium power rod is recommended to handle a range of walleye sizes. If you also plan to target larger fish like bass, you can opt for a medium-heavy or heavy power rod. For trolling, you’ll need a slightly stiffer rod to handle water resistance. Medium-heavy or heavy power rods are commonly used, but you can go up to extra-heavy if desired.

Action

Spinning and jigging rods require extra sensitivity to feel the soft bites of walleye. A fast or extra-fast action rod is recommended. For trolling, you need less sensitivity, so a moderate-fast or fast-action rod will suffice.

Consider your fishing style and target species when selecting the length, power, and action of your walleye rod.

Final Verdict

Having the right walleye fishing rod is crucial for successfully catching walleyes. Each rod on this list is capable of handling walleyes and detecting their bites effectively, making it a matter of personal preference.

If you’re undecided, the St Croix Legend Tournament Walleye stands out as a top choice. It offers exceptional strength, lightness, sensitivity, and durability.

Wishing you the best of luck on your next walleye fishing adventure!

P.S. If you’re in need of other fishing gear, be sure to check out our list¬†of the best fishing gear on the market.