The best jig rod has a medium/heavy power with a casting setup to provide a little more strength when battling big bass in the weeds. This bass fishing style is quite different from the finesse action you’d experience when drop shotting or throwing wacky worms around structure.
Having a dedicated jig rod setup is an important part of having success with this fishing technique. I don’t know if it’s the decades of experience or hours of research, but I think I know a thing or two about jigging, and by the end of this guide, you will too!
Our Reviews Of The Best Jig Rods For Bass
Okuma Cedros E-Glass
When you’re jigging for bass, you need a rod with a lot of backbone, and this is the one. The Okuma is a dedicated jigging rod built specifically for this purpose, so it has a lot of power, pulling strength, and durability.
Dobyns Rods Fury Series Casting Rod
Here’s another powerful jigging rod from Dobyns Rods. This rod is incredibly sensitive because of the high modulus graphite. The material also makes the rod durable, and best of all, you can use this one for a variety of purposes. Throw a Texas rig on there, and you can fish worms around the weeds, you can also toss crankbaits down around the rocks.
St. Croix Mojo Bass Casting Rod
If you can find a great rod, sometimes it doesn’t need to be a jigging rod to get the job done. This St. Croix rod uses the best materials, it has the right power, optimal length, and it’s got a nice long and strong handle for cranking. So, why buy a jigging rod when you have all the components of one right here?
Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Rod
This rod is a crowd-pleaser because of how affordable it is, but what you don’t realize is that you’re actually getting a pretty great rod for less than $100. It features the O-seat, which helps reduce fatigue when you’re battling a large fish. Plus, the rod uses great materials overall, which improves sensitivity and increases cranking power.
Choosing The Right Jig Fishing Rod
Fishing certain times of the year can yield certain results. For example, finesse angling is especially popular in the spring when bass move into the shallow water to nest. What happens in the dead of summer when the average daily high is somewhere around 90 degrees?
Bass move into deeper water. To get them in that water, you need to deploy a deep water fishing strategy like jigging and cranking. Now, you can use any rod you want for jigging, but if you’re serious about this fishing technique and you use it a lot, you might want to get a dedicated jigging rod.
Best of all, when you pair your jig rod with a weedless jig, and you throw it around stumps, trees, and grass – you’re in for a treat. You’ll find the bass that are hiding out, and when that happens, you need a rod with enough power and backbone to get that fish back to the boat.
Let’s talk now about some of the factors I keep in mind when shopping for the best jig rod:
Action is unique when talking about jigging because you need the best of both worlds, and that’s why exclusive jigging rods are important. Action refers to the location on the blank where the rod bends.
Fast action rods only bend at the tip, which allows you to feel every nibble because the tip will bend, but the rest of the blank is stiff. That will transfer all of the disturbance to your hands, and that’s how you know you have a fish on.
Slow action rods bend down further with some bending 75% of the rod blank. This works well in some situations but not with finesse angling or jigging. With these rods, you can’t feel the nibbles as much because the rod isn’t transferring the movement to your hands since the rod is taking the brunt of it.
Ideally, jigging requires a fast action rod because you need that sensitivity, but you also need to make sure that the rod you buy has strength and backbone too. Many fast action rods are lightweight and intended for panfish and others that don’t put up much of a fight.
Many people confuse power and action, but they’re two different things. Power refers to how much force is needed to bend the rod. When you combine these two, it tells you a lot about how the rod will behave when you have a fish.
Jigging requires a lot of power because you’ll be able to get a better hookset, and you need plenty of backbone to take control of the fish during the fight.
Let’s say you have a light power rod, what would happen is the rod would bend almost immediately when the fish applies some pressure; as a result, it would make it very hard to set the hook, and you also run the risk of losing your lure because the fish is in control.
You want to be somewhere between 6’5” and 7’5”. I think anything bigger than this is unnecessary, and some anglers will swear that you need an eight-foot rod for jigging, but I disagree. Some of the rods reviewed in this guide are even less than six feet, and sometimes, that’s okay.
When you have an extra-long rod, it helps with flipping jigs, and it also gives you more surface area to control when you’re battling a larger fish than you bargained for.
Jigging rods are always capable of holding heavier line than your standard rod. It’s important to know what weight you need so you can make sure the rod you choose is rated for a line that heavy. Some of the rods reviewed in this guide go as high as 120lb test, which is for deep-sea fishing.
Also important is the lure weight, so just keep in mind where you plan on fishing. If you’re scoping out the crisp ocean water and planning to rent a boat, then you’ll need something that can handle a large fish, just in case.
If you’re jigging around small ponds and lakes with hair jigs and other lightweights, you’ll want a lighter line.
Guides are important because they’re preventing your rod from going all over the place when you’re battling a fish. They need to limit friction and not provide any obstruction to the line when you’re casting. This is made possible through the use of smooth materials like ceramic and stainless steel in the rod guides.
When the guides cause friction on the line, it causes it to tear, and it also interferes with your cast because that extra resistance reduces your casting distance.
One great way to tell if your guides are any good is to place your line through the guide and saw it back and forth. If the line breaks, move onto the next one.
Probably one of the most important buying factors when shopping for any fishing rod is the material of the rod itself. There are three primary types of material used in the construction of rod blanks. Each of them has its own set of pros and cons, so let’s take a look at them.
Graphite – This material is highly sensitive because it’s stiff and ultra-light. If you can find a rod using high modulus graphite, it will be even more sensitive and durable. This rod material is a great choice when jigging for bass.
Fiberglass – Fiberglass is heavy and more affordable than graphite, but it’s often very strong. Everyone should have a fiberglass rod because they’re durable and a pretty good “daily driver.”
Carbon Fiber – Carbon fiber is the most expensive material because it’s the stiffest, lightest, and strongest material used in creating rod blanks. It’s also a solid choice for jigging, and you can often find hybrid mixes of these materials that increase the strength and sensitivity without increasing the budget too much.
The handle will play a major role in determining your comfort, but when we’re talking about jigging, the handle is a bit more important. This area of the rod is where you’ll grab on for dear life when you’re pulling in a much larger bass than you bargained for. It needs to be the right material, and you generally have two choices.
- EVA foam
EVA is becoming more popular because it’s usually more comfortable, it lasts longer, and it feels cooler on hot days.
What is a Jigging Rod?
If you’re still unsure of what a jigging rod even is, no need to panic. These rods are simple to understand. They’re specialized rods intended to help with metal lures that create a stop and go “jerking” motion.
Much of the time, jigging rods are short and lightweight, but they have a lot of power behind them to help with battling large fish.
These rods feature tough line guides, secure reel seat locks, and comfortable grips with a large butt to accommodate the extra pulling.
How to Fish a Jig
So, what if you don’t even understand how to use a jigging rod? That’s fine because I’m covering it all in this guide. You have a few different strategies with jigging.
Pitching a jig works when something is hanging over the water, and you’re trying to get under it. You’ll use a sidearm cast in the direction of the overhanging tree or dock. This strategy helps you cast accurately up to 20 feet away.
Flipping is an even more precise strategy when you know exactly where you need to get that jig. The main difference between pitching and flipping is distance. Flipping a jig requires you to release your line enough to reach your target and swing the lure back and forth, casting towards the destination.
Swimming jigs is simple. All you need to do is cast parallel to weed beds and start working your jig using a stop and go method. Each time you start again, that’s when you’re most likely to trigger a strike.
Honestly, you don’t need a jigging rod to jig, but it helps. These rods don’t have anything special that you can’t find on a typical bass rod. The only difference is that they’re designed specifically for this fishing technique. If you can manage to find a rod that is a perfect medium-heavy, around seven feet in length, and it has a large butt, then you might have a jig rod, and you didn’t even know it.
Yes, so ideally, a jig rod is meant to catch larger fish. These rods have a lot more pulling power, and they’re built to handle heavier tackle so, where do the larger fish hang out? Generally, you’ll find larger bass towards the bottom, and that’s where these rods come in handy.
You’ll want to use a casting reel when jigging because they offer the most control and power, which is what you need. Spinning reels are geared more towards light tackle and finesse angling while casting reels have a bit more strength behind them. Most jigging rods are set up very similar to casting rods for this purpose.
You don’t need one per se, but I would recommend using one whenever possible. Many anglers will fish jigs using a weedless skirt, which helps keep the weeds off the hook. Jigs don’t have much of a presentation, to begin with, so it’s up to the angler to control the appearance and action of the lure. If it’s running through heavy cover with weeds all over it, chances are nothing will bite it.
Have you decided on the best jig rod yet? Remember that most of these come with extensive warranties, so that’s basically an invitation to try it before you buy it. (I mean, you still have to buy it – but you get it)
The best jigging rod will combine elements of strength, power, sensitivity, and casting control. All of the options recommended above contain all of these features and then some.
Jigging is a fun fishing technique that dates back a long time; it’s great for beginners as well because of the simplicity of some of the methods. Whether you’re a seasoned angler or still wet behind the ears, one of these jigging rods will help you catch more bass out on the water.
Good luck out there!