Best Salmon Fishing Rod | Steelhead Poles Reviewed [2019]

Salmon fishing is a great offshoot of typical, general fishing, and has the bonus of offering an extra tasty result if you are successful! The main issue is that these fish can be tricky to get your hands on, and it is best to have the skills and know-how from traditional fishing before you attempt to move on to salmon.

Another factor which can make or break your salmon experience is, of course, the equipment you use, and that is where we can be a big help. What constitutes the best salmon fishing rod is a personal choice, but there are a few top picks that really stand out from the crowd and can be an excellent choice for both experienced anglers and those looking to start a new hobby.

 

 

Our Top Pick

Of all the rods we reviewed, the ultimate option was the Lamiglas Kenai Kwik. Named after the infamous Kenai king salmon of Alaska, this rod is sure to catch your dinner with its durable construction and top performance. We’ve reviewed it more in-depth below.

 

 

Review of the Top Products

Lamiglas Kenai Kwik

This offering from Lamiglas has earned its place as the best salmon fishing rod, and it is easy to see why. The quality is of the highest standard, with some top components and handcrafted equipment coming together to create an exceptional fishing experience. It is super durable, lightweight, and flexible while maintaining high power and moderate action— a deadly yet effective combination.

 

Key Features

  • Available in 8′ to 10’6” sizes
  • Heavy action
  • Constructed with the highest quality components
  • Pacific Bay Deep Press guides
  • Handcrafted

 

What I Like

This option has outstanding castability, and the potential to reach further and catch a better quality of fish. It blends power and action to create a very accurate line, and this is exactly what you need when it comes to the art of catching salmon.

 

What I Don’t Like

It is tough to find anything to criticize about this rod; it honestly ticks every box and succeeds in offering excellent quality. The only negative is that it may be slightly expensive compared to other models.

 

 

Pros

  • Easy to cast and has a brilliant range
  • The materials used are all high quality
  • Very durable and built to last

 

Cons

  • Slightly expensive compared to other options

 

For anyone serious about honing their skills in the sport of salmon fishing, this should be a top choice. It offers all you could ask for and combines quality materials with a range of factors to produce a very high end and top-quality product.

 

Overall Rating: 10/10

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

Ugly Stik Elite Rod

Ugly Stik is a name with a great reputation in the world of fishing equipment, and this Elite rod is no exception. It offers 35 percent more graphite, and this can be seen in the feel and performance of the rod— it feels far stronger and more durable than other models. The power is obvious from the first time you handle the rod, and the overall experience is one of high quality for a bargain price— everyone is happy!

 

Key Features

  • Available in 4’6″ to 7’6″ sizes
  • Durable blank construction with a combination of fiberglass and graphite
  • Ugly Tuff guides
  • Cork handles help ensure comfort

 

What I Like

This rod is designed for beginners, and this is clear in the construction. It is super easy to set up and use, and the lower price means it is more accessible to a variety of different fishing fans, allowing anyone to give it a try!

 

What I Don’t Like

The parts do not fit together perfectly, and this does become obvious if the rod is put under pressure or strain when it tends to rattle.

 

Pros

  • Perfect match for beginners
  • Good construction with high-quality parts
  • Very affordable

 

Cons

  • Not very long; this limits the castability
  • Components fail to fit together correctly

 

This rod is an excellent offering for beginners and is an affordable way into the world of salmon fishing. Though there are some issues, it is hard to complain when we consider the affordable budget price.

 

Overall Rating: 8/10

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

KastKing Krome

KastKing is another familiar name in our search for the best salmon fishing rod, and again, it is a brand with a great reputation. High carbon helps to ensure strength and durability, which is obvious even from the handling. This is combined with high sensitivity and power, coming together to create an overall experience of strength and flexibility.

 

Key Features

  • Available in 7’6″ to 10′ sizes
  • Choose your action: medium-heavy to heavy
  • Toray IM8 High Carbon blank and handle
  • Range of different style options available

 

What I Like

This option is a great combination of everything you need to create and build a top-quality salmon rod; strength, sensitivity, flexibility, and quality materials. It is also designed to maximize durability to create significant value.

 

What I Don’t Like

It is unlikely that this rod would be able to tackle the largest fish, and there is a high risk it would snap or break.

 

 

Pros

  • High Carbon Blanks
  • Durable Carbon Fiber Handles
  • Lots of options available
  • Designed for durability

 

Cons

  • Unlikely to be suitable for larger or heavier fish

 

This rod is a top-quality option for salmon-fishers and offers a real investment at a top-quality price – perfect for experienced and new anglers alike!

 

Overall rating: 9/10

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

Lamiglas X-11

When it comes to the best salmon steelhead spinning rods, this is a reliable choice that offers a huge range of benefits. Durability and sensitivity combine to create a rod which is worth every penny of its modest price. The lightweight finish means it is super portable and compact and can be stored and taken with you whenever the urge to fish strikes. It is also perfect for the challenge of salmon fishing.

 

Key Features

  • Specialized for steelhead and salmon fishing
  • Available in 7’9” to 10’6” sizes
  • Very high-quality construction
  • Stainless-steel guides
  • One-year warranty

 

What I Like

This rod has a stunning finish, which helps it to stand out from the crowd, and this is definitely one of the top factors for me. The inclusion of a one-year warranty is also a bonus and means you can make your purchase with full confidence and peace of mind.

 

What I Don’t Like

The eyelets are very small and tend to crack. This makes the rod very hard to use, and you may end up having to discard the whole thing, which is a terrible waste of money and resources.

 

Pros

  • Great premium built-in quality
  • Lightweight
  • One year of warranty included as standard

 

Cons

  • Eyelets are quite small, and this can lead to problems down the line

 

This is a stunning example of a salmon pole and would be a good investment for those just getting started and looking to get some practice to improve their skills and confidence.

 

Overall Rating: 8/10

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

TICA HLHB

Next on our list of challengers for the title of best fishing pole for salmon is the HLHB from TICA. This rod is a truly great addition to any fishing collection and offers superb performance, which is combined with longevity and durability not often seen at this level. With different sizes, powers, and actions available, you are sure to find something which is a perfect match and will leave you on your way to fishing victory!

 

Key Features

  • Both casting and spinning options available
  • Made from high modulus flexible graphite material
  • Graphite APS reel and FUJI guides
  • Durable cork handle

 

What I Like

This rod is super comfortable and will be ideal for those at any level and experience. It is super lightweight, which helps to make it much easier to handle, but still has the sturdiness and durability to inspire confidence that it is here to get the job done!

 

What I Don’t Like

This rod tends to have a limited shelf life, and breaks or snaps after a few uses. This is frustrating and feels like a waste of money.

 

Pros

  • Sensitive enough to grab a bite
  • Durable and sturdy construction
  • Lightweight
  • Various options available

 

Cons

  • Tends to break quite easily
  • The guides are quite poor quality

 

This rod could be a great choice for new anglers who are looking to hone and practice their skills, or as a spare set for those who are experienced.

 

Overall Rating: 8/10

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

OKUMA SST

Time for another well-known name! Okuma is well known in the industry for their high-quality fishing reels, and it only makes sense that their rods would boast the same high quality. They are a great choice for beginners thanks to their construction from high-quality graphite which creates a long-lasting and durable finish. Even better, there is a one-year manufacturer warranty included to give you the peace of mind you need to make a confident purchase!

 

Key Features

  • IM-8 graphite blank construction
  • Stainless-steel guides
  • Zirconium guide inserts to reduce friction
  • Premium comfort grips
  • One-year warranty

 

What I Like

The frame is super sturdy, and this does help to inspire confidence in the brand. Another key point is the comfort of the grips. They allow you to have total control of the rod without putting undue strain on your hands, and this is important if you are planning to fish for an extended period.

 

What I Don’t Like

This model does not offer quite as much sensitivity as other models which are available for a similar price tag, and this could mean you are missing out on the experience as well as some potential catches.

 

 

Pros

  • Premium grips are comfortable to use
  • Includes a one-year warranty for peace of mind
  • Strong and durable construction
  • A good beginner pick

 

Cons

  • Can lack sensitivity compared to competitors models

 

This model is a great choice if you are new to salmon fishing and offers decent quality at an affordable price.

 

Overall Rating: 7/10

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

St Croix Triumph

One of the top selling points of any St Croix model is the attention to detail—it’s handmade— and every aspect is focused on high-quality. This offering is a great option when you want the best salmon steelhead spinning rod, and offers some premium, top-quality material to combine strength, power, and sensitivity into one incredible package. Even better, it is designed to minimize corrosion as much as possible!

 

Key Features

  • SCII graphite blank
  • Black-framed hard aluminum-oxide guides
  • Good quality cork handle
  • Five-year warranty
  • Spinning rod

 

What I Like

The cork handle is a big plus point, as it adds to the comfort and also helps to withstand the test of time. The other major selling point for this model is, of course, the five-year warranty. Not only does this offer peace of mind to the customer, but it is a glowing endorsement from the brand of their confidence in the quality of their product.

 

What I Don’t Like

The reel seat tends to stick quite easily and can be challenging to rectify. This is likely to cause frustration for anglers, and especially beginners who may not have the skills and confidence to fix this.

 

Pros

  • Cork handle is super comfortable
  • Durable and built to last
  • Includes a five-year manufacturer warranty
  • Designed to reduce corrosion

 

Cons

  • Reel seat tends to stick, and this is frustrating

 

This is a convenient and versatile rod which could be an excellent choice for fishing fans of any age and experience level.

 

Overall Rating: 9/10

CLICK HERE TO VIEW ON AMAZON

 

Salmon Fishing Rod Buying Guide

From identifying the best salmon spinning rod to figuring out just which choice is the best fit, it can be a tricky decision to make. To help you narrow down your choices, we have put together a short guide to buying a salmon rod, which will help to save you precious time and money.

 

The Reel

Choosing the reel is an integral part of picking any rod, and can affect the rest of the equipment you choose. There are two basic kinds of reels:

 

  • Baitcasting reels are for more advanced anglers. They require physical manipulation of the spool— a skill that is often far too advanced for most beginners! To reflect this, they are often much more expensive and require a far heavier lure to function effectively. On the positive side, they do offer fantastic drag, as well as a far better line capacity.

 

  • Spinning/spin cast reels are far more suitable for beginners, as they require far less interaction on the part of the angler. These reels offer more line capacity and greater accuracy and can help the whole rod to run more smoothly and effectively. As a bonus, they do tend to be cheaper, and this makes them more likely to be on a beginner’s rod.

 

Remember that if you pick a baitcasting reel, you will need a baitcasting rod, and a spinning or spin cast reel will need a spinning rod.

 

 

Length

The length of the rod is another critical attribute to consider, as it can have a considerable impact on the way your rod behaves and works. There is a vast range of sizes available, but the basic premise is that shorter lengths will be able to cast shorter distances, while the opposite is obviously true for longer lengths.

A short length will also need a lighter lure and tend to be a better choice for getting your hands on some of the bigger fishes due to increased sensitivity. Longer lengths, on the other hand, are perfect for grabbing some smaller fish.

For salmon, you want to aim for a pole around 8 to 9 feet long in most cases, but the location you plan to fish in and the size of the salmon you’re fishing for will dictate this more than anything else.

 

Action

Action describes where the rod bends at when you have a fish on. Fast-action rods bend at the tip, while slow action-rods bend closer to the base. For salmon, you’d want a medium to fast action. Medium actions, in general, are great for a variety of fish species and are the best choice if you plan to use your pole for more than salmon.

 

Final Thoughts

Whether you are picking the best salmon steelhead spinning rods or entering the world of salmon fishing for the very first time, there is a lot of information to take on board and consider. By taking the time to do your research ahead of your purchase, you will save yourself a lot of valuable time and money.

Our top choice, the Lamiglas Kenai Kwik, is a great place to start. It offers a combination of flexibility and durability, as well as the accuracy, which is so crucial for catching this type of fish. Even if you are new to the sport, this is a rod which will help support you, and increase your chances of success As you practice your skills, your accuracy and victories will improve, and this is an excellent piece of equipment to help support you.

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