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Catfish Rod Holders

Catfish Rod Holders

This article is about the various catfish rod holder available on the market, the different types of rod holders, the various manufacturers of rod holders, the different type of fishing that will influence the type of gear you may need. 

What is a catfish/catfishing rod holder?

A “Rod Holder”, in our case a catfishing rod holder, is a device that includes a fishing rod mount which in cooperation with a bracket mounted on a boat removably mounts a fishing rod on a boat to extend in overhanging relationship to a body of water in a position to catch fish.

Rod holders are not limited for boating use only, they may also be used for bank fishing. In this case, the base of the rod holder is usually larger to guarantee more stability and will be pined to the ground through various methods depending on the rod holder manufacturer’s taste.

In the sport of catfishing, the importance of rod holders has been established by many professional anglers through the last decade. A rod holder helps maximizing your changes of catching a catfish when our on the water with your boat. They are usually necessary if you decide to use trolling applications as well as it will be helpful with refining the position and placement of your catfishing rod. Once you are all configured, it’s pretty much  hands-free catfishing until you get your first catch of the day.

Do I need a rod holder?

Let’s say yes, you will need and enjoy those rod holders. The good thing is that they are becoming incrisingly part of your fishing boat set up and rod holder bases (we’ll talk about bases later) are more and more compatible with many boat brands for a quick and non-destructive installation.

You do want to be able to focus more on your electronics and on operating your boat safely. If you are physically busy holding your rods, you can easely imagine where your focus will be and envision the wide variety of accidents possible when on a boat and not paying attention to your safety. Not to mention, anyone that ever held a rod a whole day knows it will take you a few days to recover from fatigue and muscle pain.

On a technical side, you will do want to use rod holders for trolling purposes, to keep your rods and lines organized and avoid a giant mess.

Rod Holder quality and material:

Quality and material matters. It matters a lot indeed. It’s like everything else in life, you get what you pay for. Rod holders come in different shapes, sizes, specific applications, type of materials (steel rod holders, aluminium rod holders), various thickness etc.

Here again, we’re focused on catfishing, We know those cats, at least the ones we target, are way larger that anything else living in fresh water hence you do want to look at catfishing specific rod holder brands as the thickness of their products will be greater and than the other non catfish specific brands. Those are usually qualified as “high end” rod holders vs other plastic based rod holders. It’s true they are usually in the $20-$25 price range which can be double the price compared to a plastic based alternative however they will last way longer and they might be cheaper on the long run and avoid the ultimate frustration of having it break and take away your favorite catfishing rod with it.

You may see some price difference even in the high end spectrum. If may want to research which rod holder is made in the US vs made overseas (usually in China, India or Eastern Europe), hand crafted vs machine made, etc.

Catfish Rod Holder Brands

Two brands come to mind when it comes to catfishing

Monster Rod Holders, owned and operated by YouToube celebrity Steve Douglas, all the rod holders are unique and hand crafted by Steve himself. The quality of his steel rod holders is unmatched. Beautiful, stylish, they are build to last. Monster Rod Holders only build rod holders designed specifically for catfish/catfishing.

About Monster Rod Holders:

Mr. Steve Douglas states the following on their “about us” section of their website:

“Long story short, while fishing a catfish tournament on the Ohio River in 2007 I lost the catfish of a lifetime do to a broken rod holder. It happened so quickly, before I was able to stand up to grab the rod as I seen the initial takedown. All I could do was watch as the rod along with the rod holder was pulled from my boat into the depths. Now in my mind of course this Monster was over 100 lbs, but in reality who knows. But that was the day I swore it would never happen again just in case, I happen to get lucky and hook another Monster one day. I immediately went to work on the design and feature’s that I needed to for tournament catfishing and made 8 of them. I used them in 2008 on the national trail and other anglers seen them and wanted me to also make them some rodholders and it has snow balled from there. The Monster set the standard in the catfish tournament industry providing, strength, durability and versatility. We are now the Official Rod Holder for the Cabela’s King Kat National Tournament Trail and support and sponsor many local and regional catfishing tournament organizations throughout the country, promoting the sport of catfishing. All rod holders are made here in the great state of Kentucky in the good Ole U.S.A. The materials used is ½ in. solid steel bent to perform the angles, and coated with a baked on UV resistant rubber, giving you years of protection for your investment. Thanks for considering at our product line, we truly appreciate your business. We are a family owned and operated business located in Kentucky with solid southern old school values.”

Driftmaster is another company that stared humbly and grew to become a brand that is recognized nationwide. Their products meet a good quality standard. Their products started for different types of fishing and are now also used for catfishing.

About Driftmaster:

Mr. Baynard stated the following on the “about us” section of their website:

“The idea started with my dad, Calvin Baynard, and one of his friends, Tom Thaxton who was a guide here on the Santee-Cooper Lakes. Back then, most of the guides fished for landlocked striped bass, catfish, or crappie and they needed a way to man multiple rods while they were fishing. The idea to create a suitable rod holder came out of necessity and my dad started producing the first of what has become Driftmaster rod holders. Over the years, the business grew from a small garage business to a well known and respected name in the fishing industry.”

Give a look at some of the products available on CatfishConference:

Catfish Rod Holders catfish rod holders Catfish Rod Holders Screen Shot 2018 08 13 at 8


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Attend the 2019 Catfish Conference and talk to professional anglers about their favorite catfish rod holders  brands, rod holder configuration and much more. They are always glad to help! New to the sport? Discover the basics here