If you’re looking for the best crappie rod, this buyer’s guide will help you find the perfect one for your needs!
We’ve compiled a list of the 5 best fishing rods for crappie fishing that are sure to make any fisherman happy. Whether it’s a premium pick or a budget option, we have something for everyone. Check out our buyer’s guide below to learn more about these products and what makes them so great!
After thoroughly reviewing the best crappie fishing rods from the top manufacturers, we picked the St. Croix Premier Spinning Rod as the best crappie rod on the market.
The classic styling of this rod combined with performance and value have made this rod a top choice amongst crappie fishermen.
You’ll never be disappointed with any of these rods—they’re all made from high-quality materials and designed to last through years of use. They also come with warranties just in case anything goes wrong during your time using them, as well as customer service lines if you need help fixing anything on your own. No matter which one you choose, we know you’ll love it!
Continue reading for details on all the best crappie fishing rods that made our list!
The Lew's Fishing Mr. Crappie 2 pc rod is a classic baitcasting set-up with an all carbon fiber blank that has been paired with Lew's quality guides and components to create a great casting experience.
Over the past 15 years, Sam Heaton has been one of the top crappie fisherman in America. He has won more tournaments than any other angler and this rod is the product of his experience on the water.
A crappie rod needs to be long, light, and sensitive. This rod from Berkley is one of the best crappie rods because it hits all these criteria perfectly.
The classic styling of this rod combined with performance and value have made this rod a top choice amongst crappie fishermen.
These rods are a premium pick that are made specifically for catching crappie. These are some of the most advanced rods on the market as they use extremely light carbon fiber grips, ALPS guide systems, and even construct the reel seat with yes carbon fiber.
Best Crappie Rods Reviewed
St. Croix Premier Spinning Rod
The classic styling of this spinning rod combined with performance and value has made this rod a top choice amongst crappie fishermen.
Made with top-of-the-line SCIII Carbon and Kigan Master Hands 3D guides, this St. Croix rod delivers excellent strength, sensitivity, and power.
There is a lot of truth in St. Croix’s motto of “Best Rods on Earth”. These rods have been manufactured in the US since 1948 and have a team of dedicated engineers and craftsmen that stand behind their products. Therefore, it was easy to look to the Premier rod as the best fishing rod for crapping fishing on the market. The Premier series from St. Croix is one of many crappie rods that are dependable and affordable and can be used for many crappie fishing scenarios.
This series is available in 38 different spinning models, so there is certainly a rod for every freshwater species you can think of.
Jenko Fishing Big T X Series Spinning Rod
These crappie rods are a premium pick that is made specifically for catching crappie. These spinning rods are some of the most advanced rods as they use extremely light carbon fiber grips, ALPS stainless steel guide systems, and even construct the reel seat with yes carbon fiber.
These rods are perfectly balanced and off extreme sensitivity. When using longer rods for jigging the rod often becomes “tip heavy” but Jenko has manufactured the solution to this problem by installing an integrated weight balance system into the butt of these rods. This crappie fishing rod comes with 1/3oz. weights to switch out in accordance with your jig and reel set up.
This fishing rod is truly advanced and sets the bar for other manufacturers to come up with similar models that will compete with this crappie rod.
Lew’s Fishing Mr Crappie Slab Daddy 2 Pc Fishing Rod
The Lew’s Fishing Mr. Crappie 2 pc fishing rod is one of the best crappie rods on the market. These crappie fishing rods are a classic baitcasting set-up with an all-carbon-fiber blank that has been paired with Lew’s stainless steel guides and components to create a great casting experience.
This fishing rod features a quick-change reel seat, so you can easily switch out reels quickly and easily. The construction of this rod is also extremely durable, which makes it a strong contender for the best crappie rod on the market.
This series features 10′ and 12′ options and is approved by Mr. Wally Marshall himself.
B’n’M Sam Heaton Super Sensitive 10-Feet 2 Piece Fishing Rod
Over the past 15 years, Sam Heaton has been one of the top crappie fishermen in America. He has won more tournaments than any other angler, and this crappie fishing rod is the product of his experience on the water.
This fishing rod features a full IM6 graphite blank that allows for sensitive handling as well as increased durability over similar models. This rod is a great combination of power and sensitivity that allows even the beginning angler to feel bites consistently.
This fishing rod is also endorsed by Sam Heaton which means it has already been tried out in professional situations and will hold up well over time.
Berkley C-Series Crappie Pro Spinning Rod
A crappie rod needs to be long, light, and sensitive. This spinning rod from Berkley is one of the best rods for crappie fishing because it hits all these criteria perfectly.
This rod features a spiral carbon fiber blank as well as an EVA grip for extreme comfort in any situation.
At 10′ this spinning rod can be used for throwing large swimbaits or pitching jigs but when paired with a light jig the sensitivity of this rod will allow you to pinpoint even light bites.
The reel seat is also made from high-quality carbon fiber and is extremely dependable over time. Berkley has been in business since 1887, so they are considered one of the best rod manufacturers in the world because of their longevity and commitment to quality.
Crappie Fishing Breakdown
Crappie are located in most freshwater lakes, rivers, and streams east of the Mississippi River and from about Texas to Montana in the west. You can get to them from shore, a dock, in a boat, or through the ice all year long, and the tasty panfish can really give you a fantastic meal of fresh fish. The best rod and reel combo can help you to land great-tasting crappie nearly anytime you head out to your favorite crappie fishing holes.
Crappie come in two species, black crappie, and white crappie, with black crappie being slightly larger. They generally share the same waters and even swim in the same schools. The only real differences are maximum size and slightly darker coloring around the gills for the black crappie.
A fully grown black crappie weighs about 3.3 pounds (1.5 kg), while an adult white crappie typically weighs about 2.8 pounds (1.27 kg). Good-sized crappie can rival a smallmouth bass or even a small largemouth bass in fighting ability when hooked. Therefore, you need to carefully consider your line and the best crappie rod and reel combination based on the kinds of fishing that you have in mind.
Crappie Fishing Techniques
Fisherman targets crappie in four general ways. The most common also is the most obvious – crappie fishing from shore or a dock. The gear used often is the same used for a wide variety of fish species, including largemouth bass. But even a shore-fishing specialist can fine-tune his or her fishing gear to get the best possible results.
- Long-Line Trolling with limited rods in use.
- Spider Rigging, which uses many rods.
- Jigging, which you do from directly above.
Longline trolling is how most people target lake trout and similar large freshwater species. Many crappie fishermen likewise use long-line trolling to catch crappie from longer distances and usually by passing over favorite fishing holes.
Spider rigging requires several rod and reel combos in use at the same time and is illegal in many states. You can do spider rigging in states that let licensed fishermen and women have more than two lines in the water at the same time. The idea is to present the bait or lures over a wider area and troll for crappie. It is especially useful in lakes that get murky and have low visibility.
Jigging is what you do when you anchor or otherwise stop the boat over a fishing hole and send down the bait or lure. Once the presentation is at the correct depth, you manipulate the hook and bait or lure to attract any nearby crappie or other species. Jigging is how ice fishermen catch crappie during the long and cold winter months.
Specs to Consider When Buying the Best Crappie Rod
Most people settle for generally light graphite crappie fishing rods with good sensitivity to help detect strikes. But you can find a wide range of rods and reels that could make it possible to create the ideal crappie rod and reel combination. The following are some primary factors to consider when choosing the rod.
The rod length will affect the sensitivity, casting distance, and general comfort. You need to get the right length to make your crappie efforts more successful.
All fishing rods resist bending to some extent, which helps you to land even bigger fish. Just how much that rod resists bending refers to the power level. You might want one that has a light or even ultra-light power so that you can detect panfish strikes.
Action is similar to rod power and mostly refers to how much the tip will bend during a strike. A light action will help you to detect crappie strikes better while also enabling you to set the hook without ripping it out of the crappie’s mouth.
The material used to make the fishing rod affects how it weighs, feels, and performs. The material also greatly impacts the price. A well-established maker of graphite rods, likely produces the perfect crappie rod for almost anyone’s needs.
You need to feel when fish are showing interest in your lure or bait – especially panfish. While crappie can be aggressive when hitting a lure or baited hook, they also can be very delicate about it. So a rod that has a good amount of flexibility that helps you to feel when a fish is nibbling on the hook or takes it whole. When you can feel a fish manipulating the bait, lure, or hook, you stand a better chance of setting the hook properly and landing the crappie.
Crappie fishing oftentimes means lots of casting and reeling. If you are having any good luck, you also will land a lot of fish. All of that casting, reeling, and hooking fish can put some wear and tear on the rod and reel. You need to ensure you purchase a good combo that can withstand.
The reel makes a big difference in casting distance, drag sensitivity, and keeping the line free from tangles so that you are catching crappie instead of untangling your fishing line. Crappie is unlikely to overpower your fishing gear, but a sizeable one could wind up hooked and give your reel a run for its money. You also might find bass, pike, and other larger species occasionally take your presentation and really make things fun on your end of the line.
The best crappie rod and reel combination should enable you to handle the surprisingly big fish while still handling the more normal-sized crappie with relative ease. A quality reel that can extend your casting range, reduce the potential for tangles, and has a fast-adjusting drag is a great tool when seeking out crappie. For most people, that means either a spinning reel or a spincast reel, but some do like a traditional baitcast rod and reel combination with crappie, too.
FAQs for Crappie Fishing
What kind of rod do you use for crappie?
A typical crappie rod generally measures between 5 and 6 feet in length, is made from relatively affordable but highly proven graphite, and provides a good feel while crappie fishing.
What is the best length for a crappie rod?
The best length is the one that enables you to put the lure or bait exactly where you want it, based on your typical fishing conditions. If you fish from shore and have overhead branches and other obstacles, a shorter rod of about 5 feet (1.52 m) or even 4.5 feet (1.37 m) in length would be in order. When the fishing is in the open from a boat or dock, then you can go with a longer rod of about 6 feet (1.83 m) or so to add to your casting range and give you more feel for detecting strikes.
What is the most sensitive crappie rod?
A new wave of fishing rods that combine the best of traditional graphite with Kevlar is proving to deliver outstanding sensitivity combined with exceptional strength.
What is the best line for crappie fishing?
Many popular manufacturers make excellent fishing lines that would work great for crappie fishing. Most experienced crappie fishermen and women prefer light monofilament lines between 2 and 4-pound test strength. That is a good range for landing almost any crappie that you might hook while still enabling you to handle big crappie, bass, and other larger species.
Can crappie see fishing line?
Whether crappie can see fishing lines might be impossible to answer, but anecdotal evidence firmly suggests line visibility does not affect crappie fishing. If crappie can see a fishing line, no evidence exists to propose the sight of a fishing line would discourage a strike on the bait or lure. Some line manufacturers specifically color their crappie-dedicated fishing lines to make it easier to see in murky water or while spider rigging.
What is the best crappie bait?
Crappie bait can vary greatly, but minnows are highly proven and readily available. Other live baits that commonly catch crappie include wax worms and earthworms.
The best fishing rod for crappie for you will depend on your specific needs. The most important factors are what type of reel you prefer (traditional baitcast or spinning) as well as how much line strength you need to cast out into open water. If you’re looking for some other tips, please reach out to us. We have years of experience in selecting rods that match up with your skill level and style, so we know which one is right for you! Now stop reading and use this map to find your next fishing hole and GO FISHING!