Home Tips Which is Better, Ultralight or Regular Fishing Rods?

Which is Better, Ultralight or Regular Fishing Rods?

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Perhaps you are about to choose a new rod and wonder if you should opt for an ultralight or regular version. If that’s the case, you need to know the advantages and disadvantages of both. Explore your options, and don’t rush with your choice. After all, you want the best possible rod for your fishing game.

What Is Fishing Rod Power?

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Before we dive into the details, let’s explain what fishing rod power is. Both light and ultralight signify what the rod’s power is.

To explain it simply, power measures how much weight is needed to bend a rod. You need more power to bend a regular or light rod compared to an ultralight rod. The latter can flex much more easily than the other two. While rod power ratings go from extra heavy to ultralight, you need to choose between the light or ultralight option if you are fishing for trout.

Remember that power is different from the action of the rod. Action refers to where the rod starts to bend, not how much weight it can take.

A Light Fishing Rod – What’s That?

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This type of rod is ideal for lures that weigh less than 1/16 of an ounce, so mostly flies or small lures. A light fishing rod is usually lightweight, which means it’s easier to carry around and can be a good choice for smaller anglers.

What Can You Catch With a Light Rod?

Because light fishing rods are able to take on limited weight, they are dedicated to catching smaller species, including bluegill, panfish, trout, and small bass. Of course, you can catch a bigger fish with this type of rod, but that usually requires more skills and patience.

An Ultra Light Rod – What’s That?

Ultralight fishing rods weigh very little and are light in action. While using this rod, keep in mind that you cannot put a heavy lure and then cast an ultralight rod, because if you do so, your line or even the rod could snap.

This is why the lure that you use should weigh between 1/32 and 1/16 of an ounce.

What Can You Catch with an Ultra Light Rod?

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As you have probably already realized, with an ultralight rod, you target smaller fish, for example, brook trout. This rod is good for fishing inshore, on quiet lakes, or on small and calm creeks.

While using an ultralight rod, you can better feel what is happening around the lure or hook. This is why it’s a great choice if you need to feel the smallest bites. It comes in handy when you catch shy and tiny fish.

Ultralight Rod and Light Rod – Differences

While they might seem very similar, there are a couple of differences that distinguish these two types of rods. The most important one is accuracy. With an ultralight rod, you can be extremely accurate. Because of that, you can cast the line exactly when you need it to go.

Even though light rods are pretty accurate, if you want to build up your fishing game even more, opt for an ultralight option. This added accuracy happens because the tip of an ultralight rod bends more easily, creating a better arc.

Another difference is the weight of the bait that the rod can handle. When you fish in a remote creek or a backwater lake, you need tiny lures. Of course, you can put a 1/32-ounce lure on your light rod, but you won’t see the same effect as with an ultralight option.

Ultralight vs. medium light rod

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Now you know the difference between an ultralight and a light rod. Let’s have a look at medium-light rods. The heavier the weight of the rod, the smaller is its accuracy.

With heavier rods, you cannot use smaller flies. That means you can’t use them for catching small fish or fishing in little creeks, and you might have much smaller chances of catching crappier, brook trout, or arctic grayling. So, if these species are your goal, opt for an ultralight or light rod.

However, if you are interested in getting a bigger fish, such as bass, you need a heavier rod. You might want to reach for medium-weight rods as they are more resistant to bending. That means that you might feel much less of what is happening around the hook compared to a lightweight rod.

The Price

Of course, the price depends on many factors, including the quality of the materials or brand. Generally speaking, ultralight rods are more expensive than light rods.

Is It Easier to Break an Ultralight Rod?

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Generally speaking, ultralight rods have thinner banks. Because of that, it’s more likely to nick them and, in effect, break them. However, these rods can remain sturdy if you use them properly and take care of them. Be sure to run necessary check-ups, and don’t forget to use lighter baits.

Is It Possible to Catch a Bass on an Ultralight Rod?

Ultralight rods are dedicated to smaller fish, but it doesn’t mean that catching a bigger one is impossible. As you might imagine, doing so requires special skills. If you are a beginner, catching a bass with an ultralight rod might be impossible.

It’s worth mentioning Rip Collins here, who got a trout of over 40 pounds using a lightweight rod.

How Long Should My Ultralight Rod Be?

That depends on the fish you target. A 5-6 foot length is considered a good length for ultralight rods. However, some people prefer 7-foot length rods, as they are great for long casting and fly fishing.

The shorter your rod is, the more accurate your casting is.

Should I Invest in an Ultra Light Rod if I Aim for Trout Fishing?

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You can use a light rod for trout. However, if you want to be more precise and increase the sensitivity of the rod, you should choose an ultralight pole.

In the End, Which Option Is Better?

As you can see, you need to decide on your own which option is better. Take into consideration where you fish and what your target species is. Based on that, use our tips to pick the best weight of the rod for yourself.