Whether you are a seasoned fisherman or a novice angler, you deserve the best experience every time you go out to fish. Shark fishing can be a big challenge since you have to fight with the harsh and fierce fish species. But there is nothing to worry about; we have done the research and will give you all the information you need to select the best rod for shark fishing.
The two most critical factor that influences your choice of fishing rods is:
- your fishing location
- the size of the shark you intend to catch
In general, the rods must be long and strong enough to handle the extra pressure and counter the sharks.
5 Types of Shark Fishing Rods
Choosing a shark fishing rod that matches the size and strength of the shark species you’re targeting is essential. Consider the location, such as shore-based or boat-based fishing, and the type of fishing technique you plan to employ.
1. Stand Up Rods
Stand-up rods are designed specifically for fighting large fish, including sharks. They are shorter in length, usually ranging from 5 to 6.5 feet, and feature heavy-duty construction to handle the intense battle with sharks.
2. Surf Rods
Surf rods are longer fishing rods, typically ranging from 8 to 14 feet, designed for surf casting or surf fishing.
They provide the distance and power needed to cast baited hooks beyond the surf and into deeper waters where sharks may be present.
3. Boat Rods
Boat rods are shorter and sturdier than surf rods, typically ranging from 5 to 7 feet. Boat rods have a heavy action and are designed to withstand the demands of fishing in offshore or deepwater environments.
4. Stand Up Trolling Rods
Stand-up trolling rods are commonly used when trolling for sharks. They are built to handle the pressure of trolling at high speeds and sudden strikes from large fish.
Stand-up trolling rods are shorter and have a strong backbone, allowing anglers to fight fish while standing up.
5. Heavy Duty Spinning Rods
Heavy-duty spinning rods are designed to handle heavy line and big fish, and they often have a fast or extra-fast action to provide power and sensitivity. These rods work well when casting or live baiting for sharks.
Top 3 Best Shark Fishing Rods – Comparison
Top 8 Best Rods for Shark Fishing
1.PENN Carnage III Surf Spinning Rod
The PENN Carnage III series offers a great variety of lightweight, powerful fishing rods. From the build material to the ergonomic design and convenient grip, this rod will amaze you.
The rod features a durable and lightweight 100% graphite composite blank construction which provides strength and sensitivity while reducing overall weight. It is equipped with stainless steel Fuji K guides with Alconite inserts.
Length options typically range from 8 to 12 feet, and line ratings range from medium to extra-heavy, allowing anglers to choose the right combination for their specific needs.
The PENN Carnage is a perfect choice for surf fishing from the shores when you are looking for long-range heavy casting. You get the best combination of power, precision, design, and performance. No doubt, this is a real value-for-money product.
- Graphite composite blank construction
- The rod is extremely sensitive, and you can use it to cast accurately
- Fuji K guides
- The grip is comfortable and will not slip from your sweaty palms
- Suitable for both beginners and experienced anglers.
- 8 to 12 feet length options
- Heavy-duty but lightweight
- Ergonomic rubber shrink tube handle
- High-quality Fuji reel seat
- Alconite inserts prevent line wear
- A few users have reported breakage, particularly when subjected to high-stress situations
- The sensitivity may not be as high as expected
2. Tsunami Airwave 11′ Heavy Surf Rod
This is your best bet if you are looking for a well-balanced surf fishing rod. The Tsunami Airwave 11′ Heavy Surf Rod is constructed using high-density graphite and carbon composite blank, which offers a combination of strength, sensitivity, and lightweight design. This construction allows for better casting distance and increased sensitivity to detect bites.
It is classified as a heavy power rod and has a length of 11 feet, which is excellent for long-distance casting and reaching fish in the surf zone.
The rod features a fast action, which means the tip is responsive, and the textured vinyl grip handle provides a secure and comfortable hold, even when wet.
- High-density, multi-modulus graphite blank, which provides strength and light design
- High sensitivity and great resilience
- Long-distance casting
- Fuji Alconite guide for a smooth finish on the line
- Graphite (Fuji) reel seat
- Textured vinyl grip for better comfort
- Two-piece design, allowing for easier transportation and storage
- Perfect design and lots of features
- Durable, sturdy, and extremely sensitive
- Very well constructed from high-density fibers
- Handles casting heavy weights and battling powerful fish
- Some anglers may find the Airwave rod to be relatively stiff
- Limited length options
3. Daiwa Beefstick Surf Rod
If you are looking for an ultra-light and versatile fishing rod, then the new Daiwa Beefstick will meet your expectations. This rod is also a reliable and durable option for anglers on a budget.
The Daiwa Beefstick Surf Rod is constructed using a durable fiberglass blank that allows the rod to handle heavy loads.
The rod features a moderate to fast action, meaning it has a flexible tip that transitions into a stiffer backbone. This action provides a good balance between sensitivity and power.
It’s equipped with aluminum oxide guides that are designed to be durable and corrosion-resistant. It also features a non-slip rubber butt cap and a textured EVA foam grip handle, providing a comfortable and secure hold.
The Beefstick Surf Rod is available in various lengths, typically ranging from 9 to 12 feet.
- Constructed using a strong and resilient fiberglass blank
- It has a flexible tip that gradually transitions to a stiffer backbone
- Its guides are corrosion-resistant and provide smooth line flow
- Ergonomic handle design
- Suited for both casting and spinning
- Handles heavy loads well
- Good level of sensitivity
- Good value for the price
- Some anglers have reported occasional issues with guide alignment or durability
- Not as visually appealing as other higher-end surf rods on the market
4. Okuma Tundra Surf Glass Spinning Rod
The Okuma Tundra Surf Glass Spinning Rod is popular among surf anglers who prioritize durability and affordability.
It’s constructed using a durable fiberglass blank. The Tundra Surf Glass Spinning Rod is available in various lengths, typically ranging from 7 to 15 feet. Longer lengths allow for increased casting distance and better line control in the surf. The rod is typically classified as medium to heavy power.
It’s equipped with durable ceramic guide inserts. These guides are designed to reduce friction and provide smooth line flow during casting and retrieval. It also comes with an EVA foam grip handle that helps reduce hand fatigue during long casting sessions.
- The rod is built to last and can handle the demands of surf fishing environments
- The rod features a moderate to moderate-fast action, which means it has a flexible tip
- It’s equipped with sturdy guides
- Anti-slip, cushioned EVA grip
- Accessible option for anglers on a budget or those who are new to surf fishing.
- Handles different fishing techniques, including casting bait, lures, and heavier weights
- Decent level of sensitivity
- The rod’s design helps maximize casting distance and accuracy
- Comfortable and secure grip
- Budget-friendly option
- It may lack some sensitivity compared to rods made from more sensitive materials like graphiteNot highly durable
- It is slightly heavier compared to similar models
5. St. Croix Mojo Salt Conventional Rod
The St. Croix Mojo Salt Conventional Rod is best suited for small/medium sharks and other predatory fish. This a high-quality fishing rod designed specifically for saltwater fishing.
It’s constructed using a premium SCIII graphite blank. This material provides excellent strength and durability.
The power ratings typically range from medium to heavy, allowing you to handle a variety of saltwater game fish, including some smaller to medium-sized shark species.
It comes equipped with corrosion-resistant, hard aluminum oxide guides, and a Fuji DPS reel seat. The rod has a split-grip handle design, featuring high-quality cork grips that provide comfort and control during long casting and retrieves. The split-grip design reduces weight and improves sensitivity
St. Croix offers a 5-year warranty on their Mojo Surf Saltwater Casting Rod. This warranty gives anglers peace of mind and assurance of the rod’s quality and durability.
- Constructed using a high-modulus SCIII graphite blank
- Integrated Poly Curve (IPC) Technology
- Fuji DPS reel seat and aluminum-oxide guides
- Split-grip handle design
- St. Croix offers a 5-year warranty
- It can handle a wide range of saltwater game fish
- The integrated Poly Curve (IPC) technology improves sensitivity
- The grip is outstanding
- Withstand the corrosive effects of saltwater
- Specificity to conventional reels
6. Penn Prevail II Surf Casting Rod
The Penn Prevail II Surf Casting Rod is constructed using a combination of graphite and fiberglass materials. This construction provides a good balance of strength, sensitivity, and durability.
The Prevail Surf Spinning Rod has stainless steel guides and aluminum oxide inserts. The rod is typically fitted with a durable and secure reel seat that holds the reel in place during fishing. The handle is designed for comfort, and made of EVA foam or rubberized cork, providing a comfortable and non-slip grip even when wet.
The Prevail II Surf Casting Rod is available in a range of lengths, typically ranging from 8 to 12 feet or more.
- Constructed using a combination of graphite and fiberglass materials
- Features a moderate to fast action
- Equipped with durable and corrosion-resistant guides
- The handle is designed for comfort and grip
- Durable construction
- Corrosion resistant
- Reasonable price point
- Some users may find that the guides are not as durable or smooth as those found on higher-end surf fishing rods
- While it offers a good balance of sensitivity and power, some anglers may prefer a different action, such as a slower or faster tip flex
7. Shimano Tallus CST 76 MH SBK
The Shimano Tallus CST 76 MH SBK is a high-quality casting rod designed for offshore and big-game fishing.
The Tallus CST 76 MH SBK is 7 feet 6 inches long and has a medium-heavy power rating. This length and power combination provides a good balance between casting distance, leverage, and strength.
The rod features a strong and durable TC4 blank construction. The TC4 technology utilizes a blend of carbon fibers to create a lightweight yet powerful rod that can handle the demands of saltwater fishing. This construction provides excellent strength, sensitivity, and responsiveness.
It’s equipped with Fuji aluminum oxide guides and a comfortable EVA handle.
- Durable blank construction made with Shimano’s TC4 blank technology
- Good casting distance and leverage
- The rod has a moderate-fast action
- Fuji aluminum oxide guides
- Comfortable EVA handle
- Strong and durable construction
- Overall quality components
- Enables to feel subtle strikes and movements
- You can use it for both offshore fishing as well as from the boat
- Not ideal for targeting very large or heavy fish species
- Priced at a higher range
The rod is built with a durable and corrosion-resistant blank to withstand the harsh conditions of offshore saltwater fishing. It is made of fiberglass, which provides strength and flexibility.
The rod has a heavy power rating, indicating its ability to handle large fish species and heavy trolling setups. This makes it a good choice for targeting big game fish like sharks, marlin, tuna, and sailfish.
The rod comes with both a bent butt and a straight butt section. The bent butt provides leverage and comfort for fighting powerful fish, while the straight butt offers a more traditional rod configuration.
The rod is designed to be easily broken down into two pieces, allowing for convenient transportation and storage.
- Constructed using high-quality composite materials
- Offers both a bent butt and a straight butt option
- Features specialized trolling guides that are designed to handle the demands of trolling
- Comfortable EVA foam handle
- The rod can also be used for bottom fishing or live bait fishing
- Heavy power rating
- Versatile (can be used for bottom fishing or live bait fishing as well)
- The bent butt option offers added leverage and comfort when fighting powerful fish
- Some anglers have reported concerns with the long-term durability of the guides
How to Choose the Best Rods for Shark Fishing?
Choosing the best rods for shark fishing requires careful consideration of several factors.
Here are some key factors to keep in mind when selecting a shark fishing rod:
Construction and Material
Look for rods made from strong and durable materials that can withstand the intense fights with sharks. Graphite, fiberglass, or composite materials are commonly used for saltwater fishing rods.
Consider rods with reinforced blanks, quality guides, and strong reel seats to ensure they can handle the demands of shark fishing.
Power and Strength
Sharks are powerful and aggressive fish, so you’ll need a rod with sufficient power and strength to handle their fights.
Look for rods with medium to heavy (for smaller sharks) or extra-heavy power ratings, as they can provide the backbone and lifting power necessary to battle larger sharks.
Longer rods generally offer better casting distance and leverage when fighting sharks. Opt for rods in the 7 to 12 feet range, depending on your fishing style and the location you’ll be fishing in.
Determine the size of the rod based on the size of the sharks that you want to catch. Remember, smaller ones won’t cast long and give you enough power.
The action of a rod determines its flexibility and responsiveness. Fast or extra-fast action rods are typically the better choice for shark fishing as they provide quick hook sets and better control during the fight.
Pay attention to the tip design of the rod. A responsive and sensitive tip can enhance your ability to detect bites. Look for rods with a sensitive tip that allows for quick response and good bite detection.
Your rod must be highly sensitive; even the slightest movement must be detectable. Check out the latest models with hyper-sensitivity kits attached to them. The last thing you would want is to return empty-handed.
Comfort and Ergonomics
Look for rods with comfortable grips, such as EVA or cork handles, as they provide a secure and comfortable hold, even when wet.
A well-designed reel seat that securely holds the reel in place can also enhance comfort during long fights.
What Size Rod and Fishing Reel for Shark Fishing?
For shark fishing, it’s recommended to use a rod in the range of 7 to 12 feet in length. The specific size will depend on factors such as the size of the sharks in your area, casting distance requirements, and the fishing technique you plan to use.
- If you are targeting smaller shark species (ex. blacktip sharks), a rod in the range of 7 to 9 feet will do. These rods offer good casting distance and control for smaller sharks while still providing enough power to handle their fights.
- For medium to large shark species (ex. tiger sharks), a 9 to 12 feet rod is recommended.
Longer rods generally offer better casting distance and leverage when fighting larger sharks.
The specific spinning reel size will depend on the target species and the line capacity needed. Reels in the size range of 6000 to 10000 or higher are commonly used for shark fishing.
The reel should have a strong and smooth drag system to handle the intense runs and fights of sharks.
Check our guide on the best reels for shark fishing.
What Fishing Line Strength for Shark Fishing?
For smaller sharks, a line strength in the range of 30 to 50 pounds can be suitable, while big sharks may require line strengths of 80 pounds or higher.
Braided or Monofilament Line?
The choice between braided and monofilament lines for shark fishing depends on your preferences, fishing conditions, and the specific shark species you are targeting.
Braided lines have excellent strength-to-diameter ratio, making them ideal for targeting large and powerful sharks. They also have minimal stretch, providing better sensitivity and improved hook sets.
Monofilament lines have more stretch compared to braided lines, which can act as a shock absorber during aggressive runs or sudden movements by sharks.
Mono lines are also easier to tie knots with and cost less than braided lines, making them a more budget-friendly option.
What Weight Rod for Shark Fishing?
For smaller shark species, such as blacktip sharks or smoothhound sharks, a rod with a power rating of medium-heavy or heavy can be suitable. This allows you to handle the fights of these sharks without overpowering them.
For medium to large shark species like bull sharks or tiger sharks, a rod with a heavy or extra-heavy power rating is recommended. These rods provide the necessary backbone and lifting power to handle the strength and weight of these sharks.
If you are targeting heavy shark species such as great whites or large hammerhead sharks, or if you are fishing offshore from a boat, a rod with an extra-heavy or even a specialized heavy-duty shark rod is recommended.
What Is the Best Hook for Shark Fishing?
Common hook sizes for shark fishing range from 8/0 to 20/0, with larger hooks used for larger shark species.
Opt for circle hooks made from strong, durable materials such as stainless or high-carbon steel.
What Is the Best Bait for Shark Fishing?
Some popular bait options for shark fishing include:
- Live bait or frozen whole fish such as mullet, mackerel, bonito, or bluefish are commonly used as shark bait. These fish have a strong scent and oily flesh that can attract sharks.
- Cut pieces of fish, especially mackerel or bonito, can be very effective.
- Squid is a versatile bait that works well for many shark species. It can be used whole or as strips or chunks.
- Chumming can be an effective method to attract sharks to your fishing location and keep them interested. Chumming involves dispersing a mixture of fish parts, blood, and oils into the water to create a scent trail
- The heads and racks of larger fish can be used as bait.
Check our guide on the best bait for shark fishing.
To Sum Up
Choosing the right shark fishing gear depends on various factors, such as the size of the sharks you plan to target, fishing location, fishing technique, personal preferences, and budget.
Opt for a graphite or composite blend rod with heavy or extra-heavy power to handle the strength and weight of sharks. Choose a rod length in the range of 7 to 12 feet with a fast or extra-fast action.
Consider your budget and look for rods that offer a good balance of quality and value within your price range. While high-end rods may offer advanced features (Penn Carnage Surf Spinning Rod), there are also reliable options available at more affordable prices (Daiwa Beefstick Surf Rod).