How good are telescopic rods for fishing?

Im at college so space is limited, but im wondering how good are telescopic rods? The ones that can collapse from 5-7 feet to around 1 feet

I'd also appreciate some insight on which models/material is best because i see alot of telescopic rods that look flimsy and easily broken.

14 Answers

  • Kevin
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer


    I went to college a long time ago, but fishing and cycling kept me sane. I went to a small school in the Ozarks where river fishing is some of the best in the country and the landscape is like a gift from God and most people don't even know it.

    I digress. I've been using both kinds of rods off and on since they came out with them about 30 years ago. Even before that - there was cheap ones. However, either Shakespear or Garcia was making a decent graphite rod back then under the house brand for Bass Pro back when Johnny Morris still had one store in Springfield, Mo.

    Bottom line: they work well. I find them to be a tremendous advantage when rafting with other people, inner tubing, and canoeing in heavier water than class 1. Anytime that it becomes extremely important that I take down the rod instantly or lose it, that's when I pack the telescoping rod. They are also good for backpacking or flying on a plane when you don't want to babysit a tube carrier.

    Keep in mind that all of my comments here apply to telescoping and not the segmented ones that come in about 5 sections. Those are convenient - but you can't make them short and stash them in a cooler when your 60 seconds from hitting whitewater, and if I can't do that - then there's no advantage to having it. For the telescoping ones, I leave my lure on, and reel in the extra line so that the lure and short line help keep the rod stay short.

    There are some disadvantages. They aren't as strong. I have had fish break several. I'm usually using 8 lb test - preferably spiderwire - in small to medium sized rivers (50-500 cfs) fishing for smallmouth, largemouth, and whatever else will hit my lure. Sometimes I get a surprise.

    Several times (as in 3) in the last few years I've had fish break these poles. In one case, I think it was ready to go and I didn't notice it. The bass wasn't that large. In another case - it was a monster. I'll never know how big it was, but it turned my kayak (malibu II sit-on-top) around and towed me several feet while stripping line like I'd hooked a car on the highway. I'm guessing it was a channel cat. They get very predatory in the spring and will hit lures. Sorry I digress.

    The other disadvantage is that they have a tendency to slide down occasionally if you don't get them tight. You'll get a feel for that. Sometimes an upper section will rotate and you have to adjust it.

    Other than those 3 issues, they are fabulously handy. I hate losing a really big fish though. The one time you are going to want a rod that will stand up to anything is the time that this kind will fail you.

    So - if you know for a hardcore fact that you are not going to luck into a 12 lb largemouth, you aren't using it for peacock bass in brazil or florida, and you aren't on Lake Washington during salmon season, then go for it.

    My advice to you is: get 2 rods. Ask for it for Christmas if you have to. We aren't talking much money here. We aren't talking much space either. I mean - I could find room for a fishing rod if I lived in a refrigerator box. I realize dorm rooms are small - but you'll have room for 2 fishing rods. The first rod I'd get is a telescoping spinning rod from bass pro. Don't pay more than 20 bucks for it and you won't mind so much when it breaks. They aren't worth more than that, but they'll do the job 99% of the time.

    Then I'd skip the fancy airplane materials and go right to fiberglass. I'd get a medium stiffness 2 piece "ugly stick" from bass pro. Bruce Lee couldn't break one of those with an ax. It's light enough to enjoy small stream bass fishing and if you tie into anything up to 20 or so pounds, well, let's just say it will be stronger than any line you are likely to be using.

    Good luck in school. Study hard. Don't stop for any reason, and if you aren't doing well, stay after it until they kick you out.


  • zeitz
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    Telescopic Fishing Rod

  • Anonymous
    5 years ago

    This Site Might Help You.


    How good are telescopic rods for fishing?

    Im at college so space is limited, but im wondering how good are telescopic rods? The ones that can collapse from 5-7 feet to around 1 feet

    I'd also appreciate some insight on which models/material is best because i see alot of telescopic rods that look flimsy and easily broken.

    Source(s): good telescopic rods fishing:
  • 1 decade ago

    Most telescopic rods have a tendency to be not well designed and break easily.

    Your best bet?

    Buy a 2 or 3 piece rod. They perform & last MUCH longer than a telescopic rod.

    Everyone I've ever known that purchased a telescopic rod was eventually sorry.

    Hope this helps? Good fishing!

    UPDATE: Kevin- If you've broken "several telescopic rods" and lost a "MONSTER fish" while using one how can that be viewed as "bottom line: they work well"?

    Yes, a telescopic rod breaks down and is easily stowed but if it doesn't function properly as a fishing rod WHY own it?

    Understand, there are pack rods and 2-3 piece rods you can purchase that can break down and function almost as well as a one-piece rod.

    If conveinance is more important than landing a MONSTER fish WHY go fishing?

    Kevin what you are saying is,"Telescopic rods work great until you catch the fish of a lifetime and then they break like a twig?"

    Sorry Kevin, your heart is in the right place, but your answer isn't holding up, (like most telescopic rods!).

    When I went to college I didn't have an "extra dollar" (vs Space) to spend on something I KNEW was going to break easily.

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  • Anonymous
    4 years ago

    For the best answers, search on this site

    I have been fishing for years and I absolutely love my telescopic rod. I use a rod depending on the circumstances, whether im float fishing or ledgering, how far am I expecting to cast. I use my telescopic rod more often than not because I like to do a lot of stalking on rivers moving from one swim to the next. Its handy cos its not too long and bulky, I can break it down keeping the rig set up and then extend it again when needed. Not being too long it doesnt get in the way of overhanging trees and bushes and can get into tighter spots. It all depends really how I intend to fish on the day.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    The short answer is: Don't do it. You'll be disappointed.

    First off, a standard, two-piece spinning rod doesn't take up any space at all. Stow it in the corner of a closet, or even in a dresser drawer, and you won't even know it's there until you need it. Even a one-piece casting rod takes up no space--your reels are what take up space, and that problem remains no matter what rod you get.

    Short of that, you're better off with an oufit sold as a "pack" or "travel" rod. These break down into from 3 to 5 sections, and often come in a hard case that protects. The difference between them and the telescopes is that a pack rod is designed to came as close to matching that makers regular rods as possible.

    The list of problems with the telescoping rods is long. To begin with, most of them are cheaply made; and cheap is as cheap does. They tend to be brittle, and break easily; sections jam in the open position (and there goes your storability); they break easily; their actions leave much to be desired; they break easily; they tend to be either too stiff or too limber. And, did I mention that they break easily?

  • Artie
    Lv 7
    1 decade ago

    Telescopic rods are gimmicks and junk. (period) Yes they might work even a few times but they are not a mainstream fishing "have to have"

    even at college in limited space you can hang a great rod and reel over the window covering or above the curtains flat against a wall out of the way. Get the rod and reel that suits your ability and the species you are wanting to target.

  • 1 decade ago

    Given that the best rods are one-piece, it's obvious that telescopic rods are a severe compromise. A small 2-piece would be much better.

  • 1 decade ago

    OK, well there already have been a lot of great answers going into lots of detail, kudos. But to put it simply don't get a telescopic rod. They have a tendency for jamming in one position and staying that way, they can on occasions snap too. My advice to you would be to get a multi section rod, one in say 2-4 sections, the modern spigot joints match up very well and you will get a good action, as opposed to a telescopic rods, don't forget to get a hard cordura rod tube to store it in so it doesn't get broken. Aluminum rod tubes are best but can get a little expensive.

  • 1 decade ago

    I like the idea of telescopic rods and I think I'm going to buy one soon.


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