Bass Pro Shops Micro Lite Graphite Spinning Rod Review

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Bass Pro’s Micro Lite spinning rod is an excellent value, delivering lots of performance at a reasonable price point. If you’re in the market for a new ultralight rod, you could do a lot worse than this, even if you’re willing to spend big bucks, you might not do as well with a pricier model.

I’ve fished this rod quite a bit, and you can count me as impressed!

Rod Review: Bass Pro’s Micro Lite Spinning Rod

Length: 6’ 6”
Blank material: IM6 graphite
Power/action: ultralight/fast
Lure size: 1/32 oz. to 1/4 oz.
Line weight: 1 to 6 #
Handle: 13.4” continuous cork
Guide material: 7 + 1stainless steel
Pieces: 2

Available at Bass Pro

bass pro micro lite graphite spinning rod

bass pro micro lite spinning rod ml66uls-2

Blank

bass pro micro lite rod blank

The heart of any rod is its blank, and in this case, Bass Pro delivers the expected combination of fast action and superb sensitivity. Constructed from IM6 graphite, you’ll feel every nibble, and even the softest bites from a torpid crappie will twitch this rod’s tip.

That’s to be expected in an ultralight, but you can count on remarkable strength, as well. Yes, the tip is fragile, and if you want to break it, you can–especially if you grab the rod near the end and give it a tug while hung up!

But when actually fishing the Micro Lite, I’ve been impressed.

You’re not going to muscle big fish from cover with any ultralight–that kind of control just isn’t possible. But I’ve fought and caught four- and five-pound bass on this rod, and while it bent like a sapling in a storm, it held its own throughout.

To my mind, that’s a serious point in the rod’s favor.

And the blank loads easily and casts well, even with lures on the light-end of the recommended range.

Guides

bass pro micro lite rod guides

Guide quality often suffers on reasonably priced rods–that’s a simple fact.

To keep costs down, rod manufacturers can cut corners on guide quality, skipping the silicone oxide inserts and the Fuji name brand to reach a price-point most anglers can hit.

In this case, that’s certainly true. And while you get eight guides, including the tip, they’re not as robust as the ones you’d find on higher-end rods like those from G. Loomis or St. Croix.

Expect polished stainless steel inserts.

Now, I’ve never had any trouble with them, and one of the advantages of ultralight fishing is that the guide quality isn’t critical. Guides matter when real stress is being placed on the line, forcing it to rub the guides and produce friction.

It doesn’t take much heat at all to break even a strong line, but with trout, crappie, panfish, and reasonable bass, that’s just not going to happen. And by providing plenty of guides to distribute this force over, Bass Pro offsets mediocre guide quality.

One potential problem can be braided lines. Because they tend to be abrasive, they can wear the guides, eventually cutting grooves. Generally, I’d recommend nylon monofilament for ultralight fishing, for reasons that we’ve explained before. But if you decide to spool braid, this is something to keep in mind.

Available at Bass Pro

Handle

bass pro micro lite rod handle

The handle on the Micro Lite really stands out to me. Made from quality cork, it’s 13.4 inches long, pretty darn tough, and comfortable enough to use all day. And given that length, there’s plenty of space for big hands and nasty fights.

I like continuous cork handles, and I know a lot of anglers do. But if you prefer EVA foam or split grips, this probably isn’t the rod for you.

Reel Seat

bass pro micro lite rod reel seat

The reel seat on the Micro Lite is made from brass, and I really like the design.

It uses two rings to secure your reel, and with the second ‘locking’ ring tightened down, your reel really stays put. I have no issues with wiggle whatsoever.

Ferrule

bass pro micro lite rod ferrule

This is a two-piece rod, and as you’d expect, it’s joined by a ferrule. As you can see, I wasn’t kidding about having fished this rod a lot!

rod joint

And while not quite as flexible at the joint as a one-piece, it’s still pretty good, and the ferrule itself is tight and secure.

Available at Bass Pro

Final Thoughts

The Bass Pro Micro Lite isn’t a G. Loomis or St. Croix, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing.

Equipped with a very nice handle, an excellent blank, and a great reel seat, it’s an excellent performer on the water–and it’s light on your wallet to boot.

I’ve fished a lot of ultralights, and I honestly don’t think I’d spend the extra money to step up to the high-end brands. Season after season, fish after fish, this rod has earned my respect.

Give it a chance, and I think you’ll feel the same.

Check out the Bass Pro Micro Lite Elite Reel Review

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