Looking for a new fishing rod for shallow saltwater fishing? Then you’ll need one of the best inshore spinning rods. We’ve put together a list of the top ten rods available to help you decide which one is for you. For newer anglers, or anyone seeking a little more information, the Buyer’s Guide below explains the benefits of a dedicated inshore rod, the relevant features and functions to look for. There are also some frequently asked questions about inshore rods like which size to choose. Our reviews detail rod lengths, power, action, weight and which lines are compatible with each product. And we list the pros and cons to help you decide which inshore rod is the best buy for you.
BEST INSHORE SPINNING RODS IN 2023
ALL THE INSHORE SPINNING RODS THAT WE TESTED
ENTSPORT E Series Phantom Fishing Rod
Fashioned out of high-def glass fiber, and boasting a unique colorful look of the tip, the Phantom inshore spinning rod is also detailed with a stainless steel screw joint on the connection, ensuring ultimate safety and accuracy.
Smooth line flow is made possible thanks to the 5+1 stainless steel guide and ceramic inserts, also making sure friction is out of the picture.
Featuring EVA handle for the ultimate positioning and maneuvering of the inshore spinning rod, providing comfort and elevating the control rate, at the same time.
POWER: Medium Heavy
COMPATIBLE LINES: Braided
- 1-year warranty
- 30-day money-back guarantee
- Carbon blank construction
- Some might not like the color
UGLY STIK Tiger Elite
The Tiger Elite inshore spinning rod constantly finds its way onto top ten lists for being such a reliable and well-performing model, proving itself as one of the best saltwater inshore spinning rods of 2023.
Ugly Stiks have a reputation for being tough as nails, as the unique combination of graphite and fiberglass forms incredibly strong tools. While the Tiger Elite still utilizes the same combo, it possesses even better tech that allows the rod to maintain the same durability, but with a lighter and thinner blank.
Anglers that tire easily can find peace with the Tiger Elite due to its balanced structure and impressively minimal weight.
LENGTH: 6’6″ and 7′
POWER: Medium to heavy
COMPATIBLE LINES: Braided and monofilament lines
- Lightweight and thin blank
- Stainless steel line guides
- Impressive durability and power
- Well-designed EVA handle
- Lacks a hook keeper
- Odd color palette
KASTKING Perigee II Fishing Rod
The Perigee II inshore spinning rod model features Fuji O-ring line guides, fine-tuned ergonomic graphite reel seats, an EVA grip of high-density, a hook holder, and a carbon finish making this model a real keeper. Being both sturdy and flexible, this fishing spinning inshore spinning rod won’t budge no matter how you cast the rod, and it can withstand quite the lure weight. As a two-piece inshore spinning rod, storage and transport are easy.
COMPATIBLE LINES: N/A
- Carbon fiber blank
- A lifetime warranty on rod tips
- A good bang for the buck
- Might be too fragile for some
ABU GARCIA Ike Dude Fishing Reel & Rod Combo
Targeting younger audiences, the Ike Dude reel and inshore spinning rod combo is affordable, not difficult to use, looks sleek, and is balanced-out for bass, blue hill, crappie, or catfish fishing.
With a length of 6 feet, the Ike Dude comes at us as a 2-piece rod, which makes it compact and easy to travel with. The composite blank construction yields the rod lightweight, so your cast and control will not be impacted negatively.
The stainless steel cone and line glides render less friction on the inshore spinning rod, plus, with a handle made of durable EVA, a strong yet comfortable grip is ensured. Hook keeper is included, and it’s Texas-rigged.
COMPATIBLE LINES: Mono
- Pre-spooled with a fishing line
- Easy to maneuver
- Perfect for freshwater fish
- Might not work for saltwater fish
- More appealing to younger users
CADENCE CR5 Spinning Rod
Everyone likes to root for the good guys, and due to Cadence’s youth charity program, it’s a respectable company to support.
Cadence focuses on giving back a percentage of all proceeds to youth fishing programs, which aim to place as many inshore spinning rods in the hands of underprivileged youngsters as possible. As a result, every purchase of a CR5 or other model contributes a percent towards the program.
However, the CR5 didn’t just earn a seat at the table for its charitable donations, but also because it is a top contender as the best inshore spinning rod for saltwater fishing. CR5s are comprised of 30-ton carbon blanks that transmit motion from the tip clear down to the handle, granting anglers a great deal of sensitivity and control. Because of the superb control and sensitivity, the rod also wins the title as being the best 2 piece inshore spinning rod – due to the fact that a 2 piece rod doesn’t usually offer as much control as a one piece.
LENGTH: 4’8″ to 7′
ACTION: Moderate to fast
POWER: Ultralight to medium-heavy
COMPATIBLE LINES: Braided and monofilament lines
- Stainless steel guides
- 30-ton carbon blank for durability
- Lightweight and balanced feel
- Charity-focused company
- Reel seat occasionally comes loose
SHIMANO Solora Fishing Rod
Specially designed for anglers that are after some fast action with medium power, one should be careful not to override the manding and hook sets. Featuring a full-length cork handle, the Solora inshore spinning rod model ensures a firm grip and a handle that won’t wear off easily, plus, thanks to the cork, the handle will slowly take the shape of your hand, making it a perfect fit, besides lasting longer than an EVA-foam handle, for example.
COMPATIBLE LINES: Mono/Braided
- Full-length cork grip
- Fast action
- Reinforced aluminum oxide guides
- Graphite reel seat
- Suitable for men and women
- For fast action only
- No hook-keeper
FALCON RODS Coastal Spinning Rod
Falcon Rods introduced its Coastal model for those on the lookout for a nice inshore spinning rod. Offering anglers precision, sizable length, and powerful action, the Coastal model won’t fall short to deliver a fine fishing experience. This spinning rod is long-lasting, sturdy, and corrosion-resistant, making it perfect for saltwater fishing.
Featuring a graphite blank, fully Fuji line guides, a Fuji exposed blank reel seat, and a fine cork handle make this spinning rod a definite keeper, delivering endurance, quality, and sensitivity at the same time.
For anglers that prefer inshore fishing for redfish, specks, flounder, and snock, the Coastal model is the go-to spinning rod that’ll offer awesome responsiveness and comfort.
COMPATIBLE LINES: N/A
- Cork handle
- For inshore fishing only
SHAKESPEARE Micro Spinning Combo
Shakespeare’s inshore spinning rods, especially the Micro Series rods are designed to be very lightweight to offer anglers super-light angling. If you’re after catching small fish like panfish, bream, trout, or crappie, then use a lighter line for this Micro spinning combo and that’s all you’ll need. This inshore spinning rod combo features a graphite composite design that renders it rather strong yet lightweight, offering just enough sensitivity. The line guides are stainless steel with inserts also made of stainless steel, reducing friction for smooth use. There’s a traditional reel seat with padded hoods, while the handle is entirely made of cork to deliver comfort regardless of water conditions.
POWER: Ultra-light / Light
COMPATIBLE LINES: Mono
- Cork handle
- Easy to use
- Not for bigger fish
The Penn Battalion inshore spinning rod is currently the best inshore spinning rod for anglers making their way further inland particularly along river estuaries, just a stone’s throw from the sea.
Unlike many of the other variants on the list, the Battalion comes in a variety of models. Each model offers its own unique traits and features. Some are equipped with a split-grip cork handle, whereas others are built with an extended EVA handle. Nevertheless, they all function nearly the same, as they are all attached to 30-ton graphite blanks that provide great levels of sensitivity and control.
Anglers hunting for tarpon and redfish can make great use out of the Battalion, as many variants offer fast action to ensure that quick biting fish don’t get away. Of course, it is also a major plus that all models come fitted with Fuji line guides that stay perfectly intact even after years of use with braided lines. Due to the wide variety of features and models that all perform splendidly, the Penn Battalion inshore spinning rod is certainly worthy of the title of being the best inshore fishing rod.
LENGTH: 6’6″ to 8′
ACTION: Moderate-fast to extra-fast
POWER: Extra-light to extra-heavy
COMPATIBLE LINES: Braided and monofilament lines
- Fuji guides for durability
- 30-ton graphite blank for durability/sensitivity
- Perfect for both saltwater and freshwater
- Optional split-grip handle for better control
- All variants only come in one-piece
BEST INSHORE SPINNING RODS
Saltwater rods are made with a variety of materials these days, though the best inshore spinning rods tend to be made of fiberglass, graphite, or composite materials.
Fiberglass rods are favored by many anglers when they head to the river estuaries and the sea, as the blank material is naturally resistant to saltwater. Of course, it also doesn’t hurt that such rods are extremely powerful and flexible, permitting holders to bring in sizable fish with ease. That same strength also allows the rods to endure serious amounts of pressure before they become damaged, making them the most durable of the major rod variants.
Graphite rods also offer some unique benefits for those hunting for inshore species, as models created out of the ultra-sensitive material can detect fish the moment they sniff the bait. While the sensitivity is the main selling point, the unfortunate blemish to graphite rods is that they do occasionally splinter when too much pressure is applied. Nevertheless, they are a good option for anglers tracking down light-biting and smaller species.
Finally, there are composite rods, which are a combination of graphite, fiberglass, and various other materials. What attracts many anglers to composite rods are their unique features, as the rods can possess the strength of a fiberglass piece, while simultaneously offering the sensitivity of a graphite one. Overall, blanks created of composite materials are pretty great choices for nearly any type of fishing, and are no doubt some of the best inshore rods when combined with a top rated reel.
The term action is one of the most confusing ideas that a new angler will encounter when searching for inshore saltwater fishing rods.
In the simplest of terms, the action component is where a rod bends when pressure is applied, and how fast the piece will snap back to its original shape. For that very reason, action is measured with a speed scale.
Fast action rods bend near the top third of a rod, and snap back to their original position quicker than any other variant. Because of their tendency to rapidly snap back, they are a great choice when attempting to catch fast acting species such as barracuda or tarpon.
Moderate action rods bend close to the middle, and present a healthy balance of speed and cushion. When an angler sets the hook with a moderate action rod, the rod absorbs some of the initial pull, rather than transmitting the full force directly into the mouth of the fish. For fish that have soft and cushy mouths, a moderate action inshore spinning rod is a must.
As one might guess, the last variant that rods come in is a slow action. Slow action rods, which are essentially tortoises compared to the fast action hares, bend just near the handle of the tool. When a great deal of pressure is applied, slow actions form a parabolic shape. While faster actions are better for hooking fast biting fish, slow actions are better for reeling in behemoths that spontaneously run or hit the line.
Nearly every manufactured rod comes with a power rating, in order to give anglers an idea of how much weight a piece can handle.
Thus, the power rating measures the amount of force that a blank can handle when directly leveraging pressure against it. So naturally, the scale is measured in terms of weight, from light to heavy.
Rods with a light power rating are designed to be quick and responsive. They often have a slightly thinner blank and shorter handle to provide maximum control.
On the contrary, medium power rods are equipped to handle greater weight and bring in modest-sized fish. Many of the sportfishing products for bass, catfish, and trout are equipped with medium power, to give anglers a healthy balance of control and fighting power.
Heavy power rods are the big boys in the group, and are used when targeting large species that fight hard. Many anglers equip themselves with a heavy power rod when fighting saltwater species such as tuna, shark, or marlin.
However, anglers that target species such as barracuda or redfish can make serious use of the best inshore fishing rods equipped with a medium power level.
Every angler wants to have a house on the water with a prime fishing spot just 100 yards away. But unfortunately, that just isn’t the case for most, as many have to transport their goods fair distances in order to enjoy the sport.
As a result, it is far easier to purchase a two or three-piece rod that can be attached to a high-quality fishing backpack. Although one-piece rods can provide a greater level of sensitivity, they are somewhat of a burden for those that are constantly on the road. Unless an angler has a fishing rack or large truck bed, then the pole is likely going to be a nuisance to transport.
It is by no means necessary to have a two or three-piece product, but many of the modern saltwater inshore rods come in multiple pieces, to make life a little easier for the traveling angler.
Due to their relatively similar size and appearance, many new anglers view freshwater and saltwater rods as being the same. However, such a mistake could turn out to be very costly, as a freshwater rod taken to the sea certainly doesn’t fair well.
Freshwater rods lack the corrosive resistance that saltwater rods do, and wither away after brief exposure to the briny water. After even just a few trips, an angler could find themselves with a rod that barely functions.
One of the best ways to avoid such a situation is to check whether a rod is manufactured to resist salt and/or freshwater. There is a handful of rods that can be used in both bodies of water, but discovering which are capable of that before purchasing a product is imperative.
BEST INSHORE SPINNING RODS
1. What is an inshore rod?
An inshore fishing rod is a variant of the traditional fishing tool that is designed specifically for shallow saltwater fishing. Nearly any type of angling done within 9 miles of the shoreline is referred to as inshore, giving the rod variants their name. And due to shallow water only containing moderate-sized fish, inshore fishing rods are typically only rated to handle species 20 pounds and below.
At first glance, such a rod looks nearly identical to any decent freshwater pole. The length usually ranges from 5-8 feet, however the majority fall around the middle at 6’6 or 7’.
One of the key factors that differentiate inshore spinning rods from freshwater rods is that they are specially created to withstand salt and corrosion. Anglers that bring freshwater pieces to the ocean often end up ruining their equipment, as the salt does a fantastic job of eating away at the binding materials on a rod.
2. What is the best size rod for inshore fishing?
There is no ‘one size fits all’ formula when choosing a fishing rod. Since anglers come in a diverse range of heights and builds, it would be nearly impossible to find one best inshore fishing rod that could suit every person 100%. Ultimately, an angler needs to evaluate their height when purchasing a piece, to ensure that they have enough leverage to handle a rod.
Nevertheless, the sizes which seem to attract the majority of handlers are 6’6 and 7’. The two variants offer a decent amount of leverage, allowing fishermen to cast great distances, while simultaneously being able to pull in modest-sized fish.
Yet, when it comes to inshore rods for kids, the best length is likely around 5’. Kids that fall into the age range of 10-14 can effortlessly whip around 5’ poles, and land fish as large as 20 pounds.
3. What other specs should an inshore rod have?
No piece could fight for the title of being the best inshore spinning rod without offering supreme resistance to saltwater and sand.
There is no beating around the bush – saltwater is rough on fishing tools. It has a tendency to work its way into cracks and crevices, and eat away at perfectly good components. As a result, rods that are consistently used at the seaside tend to break down quicker than those used in freshwater. Such a phenomenon demands that inshore saltwater rods be created or coated with anti-corrosive materials.
Although it’s not nearly as important, it is handy to have a rod that breaks down into two or three separate pieces. Most anglers don’t live right next to the seaside (apart from the lucky few), which means they will have to do a bit of traveling to get to the water. As such, it’s convenient to have a piece that can break down, and fit into a carrying case, car, or on the back of a motorcycle.
4. What is the best inshore spinning rod?
The best inshore spinning rod is certainly the Penn Battalion.
Penn offers a wide variety of optional features with the Battalion, as some models come fitted with split-grip cork handles, some with 8’ extra-heavy power, and some with an extra-fast action. Subsequently, all variants are manufactured around a 30-ton graphite blank that is both sensitive and durable. It also doesn’t hurt that Fuji line guides are attached to every piece, to prevent wear and tear from braided line.
Although the features are impressive, the performance is truly what takes the cake about the Battalion. Anglers can easily whip the lightweight rod around to catch tarpon, striped bass, redfish, and more. Best of all – the model isn’t constrained to just saltwater, and also makes a great freshwater rod for large species such as catfish, salmon, and walleye. All in all, the tool truly is the best inshore saltwater spinning rod that anglers of any experience level can get their hands on.
5. What is the best inshore spinning rod under 100 dollars?
The best inshore saltwater rod under 100 dollars is the KastKing Crixus.
It’s almost hard to believe that the Crixus can be sold for under 100 dollars, as the piece offers some of the most cutting edge technology currently available in rods. Every Crixus is manufactured with IM6 graphite, a SuperPolymer golf handle, and ultra-durable zirconium rings.
With the abundance of high-quality features, it is no wonder that the model also performs strikingly well. It provides great sensitivity, responsiveness, and durability in nearly all situations. Anglers can choose from models as short as 5’6” that are no doubt some of the best kids fishing poles, to lengths as great as 7’6” for targeting heavy species. And most importantly – the piece can be taken to both freshwater and saltwater locations.
As always, we create our content with you, fellow adventurers, in mind. So, how’d we do? Did you find this informative? Did it help you make a decision? Did we miss anything? We’d love to hear from you below. Thanks for reading and we hope your next adventure is a great one!