Looking for a rod holder that will give you peace of mind? Here are the five best rod holders for pontoon boats to give you an amazing experience.
Nature has given us so many things to enjoy and rejuvenate, and fishing is one thing. The thrill and challenge involved in fishing can make you fall in love with it. Fishing tests your patience, but the anticipation of a fish snagging your lure is out of this world.
Fishing is my heart, soul, and mind. It is a meditation for me and gives me the pleasure of self-fulfillment. I have spent hours sitting on the lakeside fishing.
But recently I took my skills a notch ahead and bought a Pontoon boat. I find Pontoon perfect for fishing. It offers a wide deck with so many choices for positioning the rods that it automatically becomes the best boat for fishing.
But the boat came with a small flaw. The fishing rod holders that come with this boat are either flimsy or of cheap quality. Hence, I had to look for a new rod holder that could easily fit on the boat’s railing and hold my fishing rods firmly without slipping them.
In a week, I tried and tested almost 20 fishing rod holders and finally selected these five holders, which in my opinion, are the best to date. They are easy to install, have high-quality material, are adjustable, compatible with almost all types of fishing rods, and embedded with many other features that make them the best. Take a look at all these five products!
In this review:
Things To Consider Before You Buy A Rod Holder For Pontoon Boat
A fishing rod holder must consist of high-grade material as it will bear maximum tension during the catch. All the rod holders on my list are made of high-grade material. Hence make sure that the rod that you select comprises high-grade plastic or metal and holds on to the railing of your Pontoon firmly.
Installing a rod holder must be a quick job that needs fewer tools and accessories. Hence before buying a rod holder, ensure that it is easy to install and remove. You must drill the base easily on the surface and then insert the groove through the hole with a slight twist and turn.
Some rod holders come with a clamp base which is even easier to install. You don’t need to drill on your boat anywhere to fix them. All the rod holders on my list are easy to install and remove with less or no external help.
First of all, buy a fishing rod holder that is compatible with your boat. Then ensure that the holder is compatible with almost all the types of fishing rods so that you don’t buy a separate rod holder for every fishing rod you own.
There are many rod holders in the market, but not all are compatible with the pontoon boat. The rod holders on my list are all compatible with pontoon boats and all the fishing rods available.
A rod holder must be adjustable because you cannot spend your whole day in just one position, or you cannot expect water to not change directions. Hence look for several adjustability features such as 360° swivel and up and down and right and left movement.
Also, it will be great if your rod holder can be installed horizontally or vertically as needed. The rod holders on my list have all these adjustable features.
There is no harm in having some additional features in a rod holder as it will be a great buy. Firstly, it should be affordable. Next, it should have a locking system to hold the rod firmly so that you don’t end up losing your rod.
It should also come with a great design, be easy to install, light weight, and fold nicely to take up very little space. The rod holders on my list have all these great features.
You might also like to read: Detailed Guide to Adaptive Fishing Equipment
Frequently Asked Questions
Are there rod holders in pontoon boats?
Some pontoon manufacturers give rod holders with the boat. However, the ones that come with the boat are not very high quality and snap off easily. While in some cases you need to buy them separately.
What are the best boat rod holders?
There is no one answer to this question as it varies from person to person. Well, I can talk about myself here, and in my opinion, all the five rod holders that I have mentioned here are the best among the plethora of options we have. And if I have to pick one, I will say Scotty is a clear winner here.
Can pontoons handle rough water?
Yes, bigger pontoons can handle rough water. Hence if you have a smaller pontoon, you should avoid going in the water where the current is high as it may flip over.
Do pontoons flip over?
Yes, lighter pontoons flip over due to high currents. Hence you need to sail wisely if you are in water where the water can change its course.
Best Rod Holders For Pontoon Boat: Our Top 5 Picks
#1 Scotty Powerlock Rod Holder
- Material: 9.8/10
- Installation: 9.7/10
- Compatibility: 9.6/10
- Adjustability: 9.8/10
- Other features: 9.7/10
- Material: Synthetic nylon plastic
- Quantity: 1
- Railing: surface mounting
- Rotation: 360°
This rod holder comes with amazing adjustability. It offers six positions of vertical adjustment, 12 positions of horizontal adjustment, and 360° of horizontal rotation. Hence, you can fully adjust it up and down and the way you want. I use trolling rods, and this rod holder was perfect for them.
- Suitable for various types of fishing rods and reels.
- It comes with a power lock ring feature. Hence you can leave it unattended.
- More sturdy than other comparable holders.
- It can be utilized in various situations and then removed for easy storage with the help of its quick-release base.
- It’s sturdy and can bear a large amount of tension.
- It is easy to install and remove with the help of its mounting piece.
- Some users complained that the holder is not good for fly reels.
- Some had issues installing it on a kayak.
Features In Detail
- Material: This fishing rod holder comprises high-grade synthetic nylon plastic. This is not any ordinary plastic with a flimsy build. This material makes this rod holder very sturdy, which can bear tensions and help pull up even large fishes. I could easily pull up a walleye without putting much effort.
- Installation: There’s a deck mount or what might also be called a surface mount to install the holder. The Scotty deck mount fits on top of the deck or the surface of the Pontoon boat. It also has a feature that allows it to be side mounted to the gunnel or side of the boat, depending on the situation. It is easy to install the base and remove it in both ways. Then you can just twist the groove to insert the rod holder or remove it.
- Compatibility: The rod holder is compatible with almost all the rods and reels available. Its power lock interior diameter is 1.95 inches, accommodating even the thickest rods on the market.
- Adjustability: This rod holder offers six positions of vertical adjustment, 12 positions of horizontal adjustment, and 360° of horizontal rotation. Hence, you can fully adjust it up and down and the way you want.
- Other features: The rod holder is an open-style rod holder at a very affordable price. Its quality construction will hold up for years to come. The fiber-reinforced engineering grade nylon and Power Lock offer strength, resilience, and reliability.
#2 AresKo Rod Holder
- Material: 9.4/10
- Installation: 9.3/10
- Compatibility: 9.2/10
- Adjustability: 9.5/10
- Other features: 9.2/10
- Material: Plastic and metal
- Quantity: 1
- Railing: Universal fit
- Rotation: 360°
This rod holder by AresKo is one of the simplest rod holders on my list to install. It comes with a clamp base that can easily fit over any railing, whether square or round. You just need to hold the railing with the ring and screw the clamp tightly to keep it intact. It needs no drilling, and it’s totally up to you how you wish to mount it. You can also install it horizontally or vertically. Such as surface mount or rail mount. It’s up to you.
- This is a multi-functional holder to improve your fishing experience.
- The ring lock prevents the fishing rod from falling into the water.
- You don’t need to drill anywhere to install it.
- The installation type is perfect for older adults.
- It is suitable for any type of fishing reel or rod.
- You can adjust it to any orientation.
- The rod holder can bear great tension.
- It comprises eco-friendly and high-grade material.
- Some fishers complained that the rod holder was not stable during heavy loads.
- Some were of the view that it is not easy to adjust it.
Features In Detail
- Material: The material of the rod holder is very durable, and mine has been working great for the past year. I was able to catch big fish also with it. Yes, you may think that the plastic is of cheap quality, but no, it’s high-grade plastic, and to top it, it is eco-friendly. The clamp portion comprises metal and adds to the strength of the rod. It doesn’t sway if you are snaking on the water.
- Installation: This rod holder by AresKo comes with a clamp base that can easily fit over any railing, may it be square or round. You just need to hold the railing with the ring and screw the clamp tightly to keep it intact. It needs no drilling, and it’s totally up to you how you wish to mount it. You can also install it vertically or horizontally.
- Compatibility: the rod holder is compatible with all rods with reels or no reels. Hence you don’t need to worry about buying a rod that fits your rod holder. You can buy any type of rod to fit in your AresKo.
- Adjustability: This rod holder comes with two different joints. You can easily adjust the fishing rod in any orientation by adjusting these two joints. Also, it offers 360° rotation. With the 360° rotation, you can adjust your rod position for the tide, current, and wind conditions.
- Other features: the rod holder gives you the ease of fishing. You don’t need to hold on to the rod for fishing. You can use almost any type of rod with it because of its open-ended grip. It’s a great gift option. The ring lock prevents rod loss. It is perfect for kayaks as well as boats. Also, you can use it for different fishing techniques such as spinning, casting, etc.
#3 Croch Fishing Rod Holder
- Material: 8.9/10
- Installation: 9.0/10
- Compatibility: 9.1/10
- Adjustability: 8.8/10
- Other features: 8.7/10
- Material: ABS Steel
- Quantity: 2 pieces
- Railing: universal fit
- Rotation: 360°
This rod holder by Croch is one of the sturdiest fishing rod holders on my list. It comprises ABS steel which is high-grade steel and perfect for holding onto the surface or railing tightly. The material does not break or snap due to high tension and lasts for long. It is also a corrosion-resistant and eco-friendly material.
- You can clamp it anywhere firmly.
- It is made of high-quality ABS steel.
- The holder offers rail mounting and flat surface mounting options.
- It is a universal holder for all rods with reels or without them.
- You get a 360-degree horizontal and vertical adjustment.
- The clamp opens to a maximum of 7cms.
- Some users found it difficult to adjust the holders.
- Some were not able to screw the clamp without taking external help.
Features In Detail
- Material: It comprises ABS steel, high-grade steel perfect for tightly holding onto the surface or railing. The material does not break or snap due to high tension and lasts for long. It is also a corrosion-resistant and eco-friendly material.
- Installation: The holder comes with one of the simplest installation processes. All you need to do is unscrew the clamp and open it. Then place it on the railing and screw it tightly. You can also mount them on the flat surface of the boat using a drill.
- Compatibility: This fishing rod holder comes with a universal fit. You can accommodate any rods, be it casting, spinning, or spin cast ones, without any hassle. I used a spin-cast fishing rod with it and held the rod firmly.
- Adjustability: The rod comes with a versatile twist-lock tube, which allows for 360-degree adjustment horizontally and vertically. Hence you need not worry about changing directions of the boat as the holder can move the rod freely in any direction without you losing it.
- Other features: The rod holder is a strong build and comes with a dual mounting option. And has a large clamp opening. It comes with a great design, is easy to install, lightweight, and folds nicely to take up very little space.
#4 Eagle Claw Clamp-On Aluminum Boat Rod Holder
- Material: 8.5/10
- Installation: 8.4/10
- Compatibility: 8.6/10
- Adjustability: 8.4/10
- Other features: 8.3/10
- Material: High-grade plastic blend
- Quantity: 1
- Railing: square railing
- Rotation: 360°
This product is a great value for money. It has everything that an angler wants in a rod holder. It comprises the most durable plastic, offers multiple adjustabilities, and is easy to install and uninstall. It is also compatible with almost all types of fishing rods with a reel or without a reel that is 3.5 meters in length and 1.375 inches in diameter.
- The rod holder comprises high-impact plastic that is corrosion-resistant.
- It is easy to change the angle of the rod with a simple adjustable feature.
- Its locking technique holds the rod firmly so that you don’t lose it.
- The holder is designed with input from an expert team of professional fishermen.
- Designed to hold rods that are up to 3.5 meters in length.
- It’s easy to mount it, just turn the knob and tighten it.
- Some users complained that the clamp damaged their pontoon rail, which may be due to them turning the knob too tightly.
- Some were not happy with the overall quality of the holder.
Features In Detail
- Material: the material of this rod holder is entirely high-grade plastic along with stainless steel hardware. It is corrosion-free and has high-impact plastic and hardware pieces. Also, you will need a hammer to break it as the plastic is a tough one and not easily breakable.
- Installation: It comes with a simple clamp-on/off technology, which you can install with a twist of a knob. It will tightly hold on to the square railings that most pontoons will have. Also, if you are using a rented boat, you can easily remove it at the end of the day, fold it and pack it in a small bag and you are good to go.
- Compatibility: It is compatible with almost all the types of rods we have on the market. But the diameter of the rod should not be more than 1.375 inches, and its length should be somewhere near 3.5 meters. It will be challenging to accommodate a very thick or thin rod in it.
- Adjustability: This fishing rod holder is easily adjustable, with a 360-degree swivel. It also offers 90 degrees of up and down movement; hence you need not worry about your catches. Plus, the locking features hold on to the rod firmly, so you don’t lose your fishing rod, and you can enjoy drinks with your friends while the holder is doing its job.
- Other features: the rod comes in one size that fits almost all the boats and kayaks. Its durable material makes it long-lasting. It comes in a nice black color that makes it stand out.
#5 Scotty Square Rail Mount Rod Holder
- Material: 8.2/10
- Installation: 8.1/10
- Compatibility: 8.0/10
- Adjustability: 8.2/10
- Other features: 8.0/10
- Material: reinforced engineering grade nylon
- Quantity: 1
- Railing: square rail
- Rotation: 360°
Scotty is one of the best manufacturers of rod holders. Its products are rather expensive, but this rod holder is an exception. This rod holder is the most affordable rod holder on my list that is filled with great features which cannot be overlooked. So if you want to go fishing on a budget, then this rod holder is what you need.
- You can install the base of this rod holder with a driller.
- After the installation, you can use the holder the way you want as it offers versatile mountings options.
- The stainless steel fasteners hold the mount securely.
- It fits on a 1.25 inches square railing, perfect for pontoons.
- It holds a bait caster reel in a cushioned cradle.
- With the help of a pistol grip rod butt, you can easily retrieve the rod.
- It is perfect for small to medium size fishes.
- The reinforced engineering-grade nylon material offers resilience, strength, and reliability.
- A slot at the front holds the spinning reel securely in position.
- Some people faced difficulty in installing it.
- The base is not compatible with other brands of rod holders.
Features In Detail
- Material: the holder material comprises reinforced engineering-grade synthetic nylon plastic, which is extremely durable and not easily breakable. You can use it for years without complaining about its quality and performance.
- Installation: you need to install the base with the help of a driller and a screwdriver, then it is simple to fix in the holder without using any tool.
- Compatibility: The holder is compatible with all types of fishing rods and is perfect for small to medium-sized fishes. However, the square mounting base is only ideal for square railings.
- Adjustability: You can swivel the holder to 360° and up and down to catch the fish. However, the holder doesn’t go very high but is perfect for trolling.
- Other features: The holder comes with a soft latching strap to hold the rod firmly. With the pistol grip rod butts, it’s easy to retrieve the rod quickly. Cushioned cradle and spinning reel slot in front are also some of its great features.
A Few Final Words
Fishing is the best recreational activity you can indulge in if you own a boat and, in this case, a pontoon boat. It’s a great experience to sail with friends and catch fish simultaneously. But it is not all that you need for fishing. A rod holder is also equivalently important while fishing. Hence buy them wisely. For me:
The best option is the Scotty Powerlock Rod Holder. This is because this fishing rod holder comprises high-grade synthetic nylon plastic. This is not any ordinary plastic with a flimsy build. This material makes this rod holder very sturdy, which can bear tensions and help pull up even large fishes.
The AresKo Rod Holder is another great choice. It offers a clamp base that can easily fit over any railing, may it be square or round. You just need to hold the railing with the ring and screw the clamp tightly to keep it intact. It needs no drilling, and it’s totally up to you how you wish to mount it. You can also install it vertically or horizontally.
If you are looking for a value for money option, you can also consider the Scotty Rod Holder With Square Rail Mount, which offers a soft latching strap to hold the rod firmly. With the pistol grip rod butts, it’s easy to retrieve the rod quickly. Cushioned cradle and spinning reel slot in front are also some of its great features and so many other features at a very reasonable price.