5 Best Trout Spinning Reels – A Buyers Guide

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Freshwater trout fishing is always an adventure. Whether you’re targeting them in a stream, river, or lake, these fish will always give you a run for their money. They live in highly oxygenated water and these areas are often some of the most beautiful in the world! To successfully land these fish you not only need the proper bait, but you also need the right trout spinning reel. 

Your reel is one of the most important aspects of your setup. It receives consistent pressure even if you aren’t catching fish, you expect it to perform. Do yourself a favor and invest in a high-quality reel. Not only will it last you many years, but it will also help you land that trophy fish! 

In this article I will cover:

  • The Five Best Trout Fishing Reels 
    • Daiwa BG Trout Spinning Reel – (Our Best Overall Pick!)
    • Okuma Ceymar – (Our Best Budget Pick!) 
    • Shimano Sedona – (Our Most Versatile Pick!)
    • Abu Garcia Revo 
    • Daiwa Regal
  • How to Set up your Reel 

Daiwa BG Trout Spinning Reel – Our Best Overall Pick!

Peace of mind is something every angler should strive to have. There are too many moving parts in fishing and uncertainty with equipment can cause anglers to not be as efficient as they should be. The Daiwa BG Trout Spinning Reel is one that will last for years and perform in every scenario. 

These reels are also saltwater ready, but the 2500 size makes it an ideal size for more finesse-style fishing. You’re able to attach this to an ultralight trout rod or a slightly heavier one depending on where and the size of the fish you’re fishing for. 

You’ll have a dynamic cut ABS reel, an aluminum body, and a waterproof drag system. Depending on the line you’re fishing, the Daiwa BG Trout Reel is able to handle it. You’ll be able to avoid both loops and wind knots on those more challenging fishing days. 

The drag system for the price of this reel is phenomenal. It’s waterproof so you know it’s not going to be damaged by excessive use. Perhaps the best aspect of the Daiwa BG Spinning reel is the comfort level. The paddle on the handle won’t slip and does not feel weak at all. You can fish with this reel all day and your hand won’t be sore. 

In trout fishing, you’re making quite a few casts, moving around, and giving your reel a ton of action. It’s not a sit-and-wait type of fishing! The Daiwa BG Trout Reel is in the higher price range bracket but it is going to perform superbly and last you for years. 

Okuma Ceymar – Our Best Budget Pick!

The Ceymar model from Okuma is a great lightweight option. It’s only suitable for freshwater so keep that in mind before you take it out into any saltwater! You’ll have to do a deep clean on it before you store it. The c-10 or c-20 model is a perfect fit for trout! 

You’ll have an 8-bearing drive system and a machined aluminum spool. You can use a monofilament or braided line on the Ceymar. These are both solid options for trout fishing. Use a 2-6 pound test on the c-10 version and a 4 to 8-pound test on the c-20 model. 

Okuma put a balancing system in this reel to be able to operate well at high speeds. You won’t get any wobble or bouncing when you make a cast or have to reel in quickly to make a cast. The EVA handle knobs allows you to control the pace at which you reel and give you the power to fight any large fish you tie into. 

If you’re looking for a reel to fish trout in streams and small rivers or still water, then the Okuma Ceymar is the choice for you. The best aspect of this reel is its affordability of this reel. For a really competitive price, you’ll receive a reel that’s comfortable, works well, and is going to last for quite a few years. 

Pair this reel with an ultralight or smaller fast-action rod. Creek fishing and small river fishing won’t be the same as using the Okuma Ceymar. 

Shimano Sedona FI – Our Most Versatile Pick!

Shimano is a well-known brand that has made reputable fishing equipment for decades. You’ll find a 3+1 ball bearing system and a massive upgrade in performance from previous models. There are few reels on the market that are affordable and can perform at this high of a level. Plus, the versatility you receive with this reel is going to allow you to take only one reel on your excursion. 

For trout fishing, choose the 2500 model. If you’re going for an extremely ultralight setup, Shimano makes a 1000-size reel. Use a 4 to 6-pound test on these reels. It should be plenty for the majority of fish you catch. 

Recently Shimano has updated the gearing on the Sedona FI and changed it to a Hagane setup. It’s a cold-forged gear so you’re able to throw much larger baits to some of those trophy fish. Also, the new spool lip and line roller allow anglers to make exceptionally long casts. Shimano removed the contact bail so there wouldn’t be any hangups as you’re casting. 

The final new feature Shimano included was the Varispeed Oscillation System. This new oscillation system makes sure that the line doesn’t stack on the top or bottom half of the spool. This allows for an easy way to manage the line and fewer worries about any hangups on a hot day of fishing. 

The single paddle is comfortable and won’t slip if you’re reeling in a large trout. Also, it’s durable. You won’t worry about snapping it if you’re putting an excessive amount of pressure. For mid-range pricing, you’ll have a reputable reel that is going to perform in any situation that you need. 

Abu Garcia Revo X

Abu Garcia is another one of those brands that anglers can trust. They’re well-known for their quality rods and solid reels. The Revo X is another reel for less than $100 that’s perfect for trout. This may be the smoothest reel on this list! It also looks phenomenal. 

You’ll receive a 6+1 bearing system and IM-C6 body construction. This combination leads to a nice and long day on the water. It’s comfortable and you know that it will last for however long you need. The Rocket Line Management system is another aspect of this reel that adds to the versatility. 

Fish with monofilament, braid, or fluorocarbon line depending on the type of fishing you’re going to be doing. If you’re going after trout, use the Revo 2×10 or the 2×20 model. You’ll get the 6:2:1 gear ratio and have an 11-pound max drag! 

The Abu Garcia Revo X is only 7.7 ounces so it pairs well with any light rod that you own! You’ll be able to fill the spool with 190 to 220 yards of line on the reel depending on what line type you’re using! 

For a reasonable price for such a high-quality reel, you won’t be sorry. Affordable and quality reels aren’t always easy to find, but Abu Garcia managed to create a wonderful option. 

Daiwa Regal

The final reel on this list is the Daiwa Regal LT. It’s another extremely affordable option for anglers looking to purchase a quality trout reel. You’ll find this reel in 1000, 2000, 2500, and 3000. The available gear ratios are 5:2:1 and 6:2:1. For trout fishing, the 1000 to 2500 models are my personally recommended sizes to opt for. 

The drag system in the Regal is the real deal. Yes, when you’re trout fishing you don’t necessarily need an extremely strong drag system, but the Regal system is going to perform if you happen to tie into a trophy-size trout. 

The Daiwa DigiGear system gives anglers a nice combination of smoothness and power! The drive gear and pinion gears make a massive difference in the reel and Diawa has found a combination that works extremely well. 

This reel is able to handle braid and fluorocarbon so keep that in mind before you make your decision. If you only need a finesse reel, the Regal is what you should choose. It’s a beautiful reel that’s extremely affordable. For a mid-price range reel, you can’t go wrong! Make sure you pick one up for your next trout fishing excursion. 

How to Set Up Your Trout Fishing Reel

When fishing for trout, you’ll only need a three to four-pound test. You can use any of the three types of line, but monofilament is the easiest to maneuver. Plus, it’s much cheaper! If you’re a diehard trout angler, a 6 to 10-pound braid is a smart choice for your mainline. It won’t stretch so you can feel every strike. 

Attach a 2 to 6-pound fluorocarbon leader to get more stealth since the braid is fairly easy to see in the water. A one or two-foot leader can easily do the job. 

Final Thoughts 

Pairing the proper rod and reel is vital for a successful day on the water. You want a comfortable setup! Invest in any of the abovementioned reels and you’ll be more than happy. All of them are near $100 or less and are known for their durability.

If you enjoyed reading this post, please check out my article on matching your reel with the Best Trout Fishing Rods – A Buyers Guide here!

Daniel Mooers