A jerkbait can be an excellent tool for anglers because when used as an effective lure the fish’s natural feeding response is triggered and battle can commence! If you’re interested in fishing jerkbait than you need the best rod for the job, your jerkbait rod has to be able to realistically mimic the ‘jerky’ movements of an injured baitfish by walking and twisting the bait to trigger the fish’s natural instinct to feed which will force them to try and take a bite. Your rod than needs to also be strong enough to handle the larger fish without damaging the rod, if you don’t have enough strength the rod may break, or you’ll lose the fish.
Most jerkbait rods are around 6.6 feet long which makes them easy to use and control. They are also usually fast action so you can control the bait effectively, and a medium or medium-heavy power which means you can fight with the fish easily but also don’t run the risk of ripping the hook out of the mouth. It can seem a little overwhelming when you first see the number of rods that are available and finding the right one can seem like finding a needle in a haystack. To make life a little easier we have picked 5 of our favorite jerkbait rods to show you, and put together a buyers guide to take you through some of the most important things to look for when you’re thinking about buying a jerkbait rod.
Top 5 Best Jerkbait Rods
OUR TOP PICK
KastKing make great quality rods that are fun to use and will catch you plenty of fish, and this model comes in a range of different lengths, actions and powers for all kind of fishing techniques, from 6'8" to 7'11" lengths, moderate, moderate fast, and fast actions and medium-light, medium, medium-heavy and heavy powers. There are both casting and spinning models available and the rods have a 1=piece design construction. The best model for jerkbait fishing is the 6'10" long, medium power, fast action casting rod. This option has a lure rating of 1/4-3/4 and KastKing have done a great job in the design and construction of this model.
The rod is incredibly lightweight and with a line rating of 10-20, you’re sure to catch some great fish with it, especially as it has excellent sensitivity which makes setting hooks very easy. The rod is very durable, and the reel seat is more than secure enough for you to be able to fish without worry. A lot has been achieved with the construction of this rod, and all elements of it work well together for fishing jerkbait. The rod is well balanced and has very comfortable handles in the golf style which are very comfortable to use and make it easy to maintain an excellent grip even if changeable weather conditions.
This rod is a great option for most anglers as the rod is surprisingly robust, with an excellently secure reel seat and superb guidelines. The rod casts very well and can handle a surprising amount of abuse both from the fish and the elements. It’s a good rod for a beginner looking to take their fishing a little more seriously, the backbone is serious considering its power but it’s still easy and fun to use. This rod is a great model that can definitely keep up with some slightly higher-priced options, and truly delivers in terms of its performance and durability. Any angler would be happy to add this to their fishing gear, and if you’ve only recently started to build your own fishing arsenal this is a good all-rounder to have around.
Great for a range of skill sets
Very sensitive for hook setting
Lightweight and durable
Comes in a range of lengths and powers for different fishing techniques
Eyelets are quite small
- Elite Carbon Blanks & Nano Resin Technology - Speed Demon Pro rods start with our own Elite Carbon blanks that utilize Carbon Nano Tube resin technology to reduce weight, increase breaking and lifting strength by over 30% compared to standard graphite blanks. These proprietary blanks are not only strong and light but may just be the most sensitive rods you've ever had in your hands.
- Fuji Guides/Reel Seats & WINN Grips - Only the finest Fuji guides and reel seats are used to ensure that reels stay firmly in place and that lines are never frayed or are slowed down by inferior guides. Spinning models using Fuji LV style guides with Alconite rings, casting models use Fuji LN model guides with Alconite rings. Handles and fighting butts are custom WINN golf style grips that provide comfort and a sure grip in all conditions.
- 15 Technique Specific Actions & Lengths - We've design each action based on years of experience and elite angler input to ensure that each model is precisely built to delivery uncompromising performance for each specific technique. Everything from the rod weight, action and length of the handles are carefully considered to build your favorite new rod. There are currently 15 models including 4 spinning and 11 casting models all in 1-pc designs and ready to take you to a new level in your sport.
- Lightweight Composite S-Glass Crankbait Rods - The Speed Demon Pro crankbait rods use a composite blend of S-Glass and high modulus graphite for a lightweight, well balanced, thin rod blank that still has a soft crankbait action. There are two casting models, 7' crankbait and 6'8" Square Bill rod and a new 7'3" spinning model for those anglers looking to make long casts with small crankbaits and still have that soft crankin' action rod using a spinning reel.
- True Tournament Performance Rod - We've spared no cost in building these rods to ensure that they look as good as they perform! You'll be proud to have the entire series on your boat knowing that you're using a true performance rod
St Croix has a reputation for crafting quality, high-performing fishing rod, and it’s easy to see why some anglers hold them up as one of the best manufactures of rods today. If you’re searching for a jerkbait rod it’s always worth stopping off at St Croix and seeing if there’s anything that might suit you, and this is a great option for pretty much anyone. The rod comes in lengths from 6'0" to 7'6" lengths and there are ultra-light to medium-heavy power options available too which des give you a little bit more versatility when thinking what model you may want.
For jerkbait fishing, the best model to go for is the 6'6" length with medium or medium-heavy power and fast action. As jerkbait fishing is all about being able to move your lure like a real injured baitfish would, you need a rod that’s going to help you do that and this option’s construction is second to none. If you’re just starting jerkbait fishing then this is an excellent rod for you as it will help you quickly master the basics of jerkbait fishing while still helping you catch fish even as a novice.
The rod is made with a SCII Graphite blank which is very sensitive, but also strong and easy to control. The rod has medium flex which combined with the actions and tapers gives this rod excellent casting ability and makes it easier to set hooks. The sensitivity on this rod makes it easy to feel even the lightest of nibbles which helps stop you from missing bites. The rod is very fun to use and the lightness removes a lot of the stress from your wrists and hands.
The rod is more than capable of handling the larger fish, so if you’ve been out of the game due to injury or illness this a good rod to use if you want to fish for long periods and still catch some great sized fish. This is an excellent rod for a range of different skills and techniques, and while beginners may particularly get a lot using this rod for jerkbait fishing, plenty of seasoned anglers will find it a lot of fun as well.
- Very strong and durable
- High value considering the cost and the quality of its performance
- Comfortable cork handles
- Suitable for beginners
- Great sensitivity to help you detect bites
- May not be as stiff as some would expect/want
- Premium SCII Graphite
- Outstanding Strength, Sensitivity, and Hook-Setting Power
- Finely Tuned Actions and Tapers for Superior Performance
- Premium Grade Cork Handle
- Hard Aluminum-Oxide Guides with Black Frames
If you’re looking for durability and strength than you know that the best place to find it is probably Ugly Stik. Ugly Stik rods are known for their durability, versatile performance, and lightweight feel. They have a wide range of lengths available and the medium and medium-heavy options are great rod for jerkbait fishing. The rod is constructed from a graphite and fiberglass composite which is one of the places where the rod gets its durability and strength, if you’re worried about your rod suddenly snapping when you’re working bait, fighting a fish or even hauling your catch than this might be a good option for you. Ugly Stik rods don’t break easily at all, and they’re durable enough to last you for a good few years at least.
The composition of this rod means that it’s strong without losing sensitivity and while you can defiantly find more sensitive rods out there, this will still let you know when you’ve got a bit and has a wide range of sensitivity to pick up lighter bites too. The lightweight nature of this rod also means that it’s a good option for when you want to spend longer periods on the water working lures, with this rod you’ll get tired much less quickly.
This rod is well thought out and features like having a colored tip to make it easier to see when the fish was on the line even in lower light conditions is a nice touch form Ugly Stik and is a demonstration of their commitment to their customers. If you’re looking for something durable and likely to last you forever if you take care of it right then this pole is a lot of fun and will catch you some great sized fish. This could be a good option for beginners, especially if you’re afraid of damaging your rod which stops you from really throwing yourself after the fish. This rod is very robust and will be able to handle pretty much anything you throw at it and while it might not be the perfect rod it’s a lot of fun to use and will help you catch some great prizes.
Very strong and durable construction
Almost impossible to break thanks to graphite composite
Great for a range of skill levels
Can catch a range of differently sized fish
Some beginners may find a bit stiffer than they want
If you’re looking for a rod that can be used with the lighter lures and baits than this spinning rod might be the solution you’ve bee searching for. These rods are designed for a wide range of fishing techniques and the 6'6" long, medium power, fast action rod is perfect for fishing jerkbait. The rod offers excellent lure action and has a lure weight rating of and 1/8-3/4 oz, the line weight is 6-12 lb and this rod is tough and durable with more than enough backbone to haul the fish in easily.
The rod is made from 30-ton carbon which offers both sensitivity and durability. The rod is sensitive enough to let you feel a wide range of bites, and if a beginner chose this rod they may find that they’re able to catch a wider range of fish than they were previously. The rod also features a Fuji reel seat which is very secure and stainless-steel guides with SiC Inserts that help the line run smoothly and without tangles. This is a well-balanced and light rod that feels amazing in your hand. For added portability, it comes with a choice of either 1 pc or 2 pc construction, so if you’re looking for something that you can easily fold into a backpack and take on the move this may be just what you’re looking for.
This rod is suitable for beginners or those looking to use a lighter bait or lure and it’s also a great option for beginners. This rod is a lot of fun to use, and the split-grip handles are very comfortable which combined with the lightweight nature of the rod makes it easier to fish for longer without getting tired. If the 6'6" long, medium power option isn’t right for you then there is a wide range of length and power options that might be more suitable to your situation.
Lightweight and easy to use
Well made from high-quality materials
Comes in a wide range of lengths, powers, and actions
Hook keeper could be a little bit better
- 【What You Get From Cadence】Cadence fishing poles offer high-performance premium features at an unbeatable value. Fishing with quality, dependable gear should not mean breaking the bank. Cadence has a reliable customer service team and we will solve any problem you have. Customers have a risk-free guarantee when purchasing from us!
- 【Ultra-High Quality 30-TON Carbon Fiber Blank】All CR5 1-piece and 2-piece fishing rods are constructed with 30-ton carbon matrix graphite blank offers strongest ,lightweight, durability and sensitivity than other rods. Ideal for game fish including freshwater fish like bass, walleye and trout as well as popular inshore species like red fish, speckled trout and flounder with a rinse after fishing.
- 【Premium Materials】Cadence CR5 spinning rods are made from materials that bring strength and sensitivity without weight. Made of 30 ton carbon, SiC guides with durable stainless steel frames, a comfortable Fuji reel seat and a blank wrapped in carbon veil to enhance the durability. Rods comes in 2 handle configurations; carbon split grip and full grip using a premium cork and EVA, is made to deliver a premium rod at a greater value than the competition.
- 【Super Smooth Power】Stainless steel guides with SiC inserts makes it more smooth and durable, avoids line sticking into the guides, minimizes friction while also enhancing sensitivity by transferring vibrations from the line through the guide to the rod and to your hand.
- 【Travel Friendly】Unique 2 piece design makes it easily and affordable to fit in car, trunk, boat hatch than traditional one piece,but using feel like a one-piece fishing rod ! 2 piece spinning rod allows you to travel to your favorite fishing spot and enjoy fishing whenever and wherever you want.
This rod is made from a 24-ton carbon and has enhanced rod tip lifting power which greatly impacts its strength and ability to handle the heavier fish. The rod has excellent sensitivity to help you detect a range of bites and has more than enough power to bring in the big fish. The rod has great action for working the jerkbaits realistically and triggering the fish’s natural feeding response.
The rod feels very light and combines with the cork handle feels very comfortable to use even for long periods. The rod comes in both spinning and casting options which makes it suitable for both experienced anglers and beginners. Beginners should choose the spinning options, while experienced anglers will prefer the casting option. Both are excellent rods and give a great performance consistently.
Very responsive and sensitive
Comes in both casting and spinning options
Lightweight and durable
The tip has increased lifting power
Can handle the larger fish
Beginners may find the medium option feels more like medium-heavy to start with
- Responsive and durable 24-ton carbon blank construction
- Ufr: Unidirectional fiber reinforced rod tip technology
- Ufr technology increases rod tip lifting power by 3 times
Best Jerkbait Rods Buying Guide
Looking through some of the best options available might have gives you some idea of what you're looking for and the kind of things that might suit you. You might have even found the rod that you were looking for, but if you want a bit more information before deciding that this section the guide is for you. We’re going to show you some of the most important features to look out for when picking a jerkbait rod.
Like all rods choosing what length you want your jerkbait rod to be is an important decision. In jerkbait fishing it’s normally best to go with the shorter lengths, poles between 6 and 7 feet long are normally best for jerkbait, and most anglers consider a 6”6’ to be the ideal length rod. This is because a jerkbait rod needs to be easy to control as you’re going to be twitching bait for long periods and shorter rods are less tiring to handle. The casting distance on a longer rod also means that the jerkbait will be launched further away which seems like a good thing, but the longer length makes it harder to work the bait and can even hit the water and startle the fish as you move the bait.
Jerbait rods can be either be casting or spinning rods and you need to decide what options suit you better. Most anglers go for baitcasting set-up when fishing with jerkbait because it gives you more power and control, especially if you prefer heavier lures and baits. Beginners though will generally be more satisfied with spinning rods because you won’t yet have learned how to control a bird's nest or a line backlash and you may find your progress frustrating. Spinning rods are easier to master and grow your skills on, and they’re much better for lighter lures. Dependant on your skill what type of jerkbait rod you get depends very much on your preference and what sort of tackle you are using. Make sure you try and pick the best rod for where you’re fishing, what you’re using, and what fish you’re going after.
Why should I use a jerkbait rod?
Jerkbait rods let you work the lure, which means twitch the lure the same way an injured fish moves to try and trigger the fish’s natural feeding response, so they try and take a bite. If you’re fishing in frigid waters than this is a very effective method, and using jerkbait is generally a great way to entice the fish to strike.
When should I fish jerkbait?
You can fish jerkbait all year round and catch a variety of fish. It’s a great option in cold water or temperatures because the fish are slower and jerk fish are a good source of food for them so they’ll bite more easily.