What rod should I use with a Abu-Garcia 5500 open-faced baitcasting reel?

I just acquired an Abu-Garcia 5500 open-faced baitcasting reel, and am going to be fishing for northern pike, river catfish, etc…. What kind of rod should I buy? A casting rod I suppose? What brand should I buy, I heard St. Croix is pretty good? Can anybody provide with tech spec of what I am looking for? I am a novice fisherman new to all of this. Thanks!

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6 thoughts on “What rod should I use with a Abu-Garcia 5500 open-faced baitcasting reel?

  1. hey there, st croix is a great rod but it is a little pricey, if price is not a issue go for it. but i will tell you that shakespears ugly stick is an incrediable rod. they make any thing from a flipping rod all the way up to deap sea fishing rods as well. if i was you i would get a 7 foot or 8 foot ugly medium heavy rod. it will serve the purpose and it will do exactly what you are wanting in a rod. i am not 100 percent sure of the price for an 8 foot but i am figuring that it will run close to 60-70 dollars. man i hope that helps you out a bit good luck good fishin be safe and remember to share the experience


  2. I agree with Justinto.

    If your mainly gonna go after Catfish and Pike , (and you are new to fishing), an Ugly Stik would be a decent choice.

    Ugly Stik’s are not very “sensitive”, but for Cat-fishing and Pike you don’t really NEED a super-sensitive outfit. And Ugly’s are inexpensive and nearly indestructable.

    Thumbs UP to Justinto & BFB (I havn’t heard of those either BFB- wink! lol)

    Here’s a link to a good Ugly Stik rod- http://www.basspro.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/Product_10151_-1_10001_22372____SearchResults

    Good luck in your search for a rod!

  3. I agree with ‘em all! (I too have never heard of an open faced baitcasting reel, LMAO.)

    Ugly Stik’s aren’t very sensitive but, you don’t want sensitive when chasing pike & catfish. Now, if you have a larger budget i would get a St. Croix. I have one myself, great rods. But, if you can’t afford it get a medium-heavy action 7′ Shakespeare Ugly Stik.

  4. well, BFB and Fisher K, if you have been reading questions here on Y!A, you should have by now. this is the third or fourth reference to open faced baitcasters l’ve seen in the last couple months.

    anyway, for an answer…you can put it on an ugly stick. but why put a hundred dollar reel on a thirty dollar rod? st croix is an excellent rod. they have some less expensive models.


    look at the PC 70 MHF

    you should check BPS other rods also like their “extreme” or “bionic blade” series.

  5. A 7 ft. medium action rod would work best for both those types of fish, and an ugly stick makes it too…good luck

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