Best Reel For Lake Fishing

  • Reading time:23 mins read
  • Post category:Fishing Reels / Fishing Tips
  • Post last modified:June 1, 2022

Fishing for trout in a small mountain stream is a popular pastime, but it’s a different story when fishing for bass and other fish in a large body of water like a lake. In this case, you need the right reel to handle the size and power of the fish you’re after. So, what’s the best reel for lake fishing? Read on to find out!

Best Reel For Lake Fishing Reviews

We’ve listed fifteen of the best reels for lake fishing, based on customer ratings and reviews. Plus, we’ve included a buyer’s guide to help you choose the right reel for your budget and needs. So, whether you’re looking for a new spinning reel or baitcasting reel, read on for our top recommendations!

1# Pflueger President Spinning Reel

Pflueger President Spinning Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left/Right
Gear Ratio: 5.2:1
Ball Bearings: 6+1, 9+1

The Pflueger President spinning reel is perfect for novice anglers and experienced fishers alike. This lightweight, the corrosion-resistant reel has a machined spool with double anodization for smooth, consistent drag on those big catches.

With its braid-ready design and nine stainless steel ball bearings, the President can handle any fishing situation you might encounter. The slow oscillation gearing ensures every tangle-free line twist is brought to your lure, while the soft-touch knob provides a firm grip when things get slippery.

Pros
  • Lightweight and corrosion-resistant

  • Machined spool with double anodization for smooth, consistent drag

  • Braid-ready design and nine stainless steel ball bearings

  • Slow oscillation gearing

Cons
  • The reel is not waterproof

2# Lew’s Tournament XP Baitcast Reel

Lew's Tournament XP Baitcast Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left, Right
Gear Ratio: 7.5:1
Ball Bearings: 9+1

Introducing the Lew’s Tournament XP baitcasting reel! This amazing reel is made with a one-piece aluminium frame for durability and features a double-anodized, machined aluminium U-spool for smooth casting. The reel also comes with a premium 10-bearing system, stainless steel bearings, and a Zero-Reverse bearing for smooth operation.

Plus, the externally adjustable Multi-Setting Braking system provides great control over your casts. With up to 20 lbs. of drag power available, this reel is perfect for serious anglers. The carbon fibre drag ensures smooth performance on those big fish, while the 95mm handle with Combat Grip paddle knobs provides a comfortable grip even when wet.

Pros
  • One-piece aluminium frame for durability

  • Double-anodized, machined aluminium U-spool for smooth casting

  • 10-bearing system and Zero-Reverse bearing for smooth operation

  • Externally adjustable Multi-Setting Braking system

  • Carbon fibre drag

  • 95mm handle with Combat Grip paddle knobs

Cons
  • The reel is a bit on the expensive side

  • It may be too powerful for inexperienced anglers

3# Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris CarbonLite 2.0 Baitcast Reel

Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris 2.0 Baitcast Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left, Right
Gear Ratio: 6.8:1, 7.5:1, 8.3:1
Ball Bearings: 9+1

You’re looking at one of the most advanced baitcasting reels on the market, the Bass Pro Shops® Johnny Morris CarbonLite 2.0 Baitcast Reel. Featuring a carbon-rich design, this reel is stronger, smoother, and significantly faster than previous models.

The rigid 1-piece aluminium frame and super-strong carbon fibre side covers provide maximum performance, while the double-anodized, machined aluminium V-spool ensures lasting durability. The titanium nitride-coated line guide provides superior accuracy and protects your line from abrasion, while the aluminium crankshaft and brass main gear deliver premium power and reliability.

Pros
  • 1-piece aluminium frame for strength

  • Carbon fibre side covers for speed

  • Double-anodized, machined aluminium V-spool for durability

  • Titanium nitride-coated line guide for accuracy

  • Aluminium crankshaft and brass main gear for power

Cons
  • It may be too fast for some anglers

4# Abu Garcia Zenon Spinning Reel

Abu Garcia Zenon Spinning Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left/Right
Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
Ball Bearings: 10+1

Abu Garcia’s Zenon Spinning Reel is the perfect reel for anglers who demand a high-quality, superlight reel. The one-piece magnesium body makes it strong and durable, while the Superlight C6 V-Rotor ensures smooth performance.

With its Aircraft aluminium main shaft and Precision AMGearing, this reel can handle any fish you hook. And with the Rocket Line Management System, you’ll enjoy smooth and easy casting every time. Plus, the Premium 11-bearing system provides unbeatable durability and smoothness. So if you’re looking for a top-of-the-line spinning reel, Abu Garcia’s Zenon should be at the top of your list!

Pros
  • Superlight C6 V-Rotor ensures smooth performance

  • Aircraft aluminium main shaft and Precision AMGearing can handle any fish

  • Rocket Line Management System for smooth and easy casting

  • Premium 11-bearing system provides durability and smoothness

Cons
  • Heavy

  • Expensive

5# Abu Garcia Revo X Spinning Reel

Abu Garcia Revo X Spinning Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left/Right
Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
Ball Bearings: 7+1

The Abu Garcia Revo X Spinning Reel is ideal for serious anglers. Its smart design, durability, and performance make it a top choice for anyone who loves fishing. Featuring a light, tough IM-C6 carbon body and corrosion-resistant X2-Cräftic alloy frame, this reel can handle any condition.

Plus, the graphite rotor with the Everlast bail system ensures smooth operation and long life. The Rocket Spool Lip Design also helps to improve casting distance and accuracy, while the Rocket Line Management System keeps your line in check. And with its silent 6+1 system and HPCR™ stainless steel ball bearings plus roller bearing, you can fish all day without worrying about noise interference.

Pros
  • It features a light, tough IM-C6 carbon body and corrosion-resistant X2-Cräftic alloy frame

  • The graphite rotor with the Everlast bail system ensures smooth operation and long life

  • The Rocket Spool Lip Design also helps to improve casting distance and accuracy

Cons
  • The Abu Garcia Revo X Spinning Reel is not waterproof

  • The reel is not as silent as other options on the market

6# Abu Garcia Revo SX Spinning Reel

Abu Garcia Revo SX Spinning Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left/Right
Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
Ball Bearings: 8+1

The Abu Garcia Revo SX spinning reel is good for professional anglers. Its one-piece X-craftic aluminium gearbox ensures smooth operation, while the computer-optimized machined aluminium gears provide precision performance. The lightweight graphite rotor and Everlast bail keep your fishing trips light and comfortable, while the Rocket line management system ensures quick and easy spooling. And with its carbon matrix hybrid drag system, you can confidently fight even the biggest fish!

Pros
  • One-piece X-crafting aluminium gearbox

  • Computer-optimized machined aluminium gears provide precision performance

  • Lightweight graphite rotor and Everlast bail keeps your fishing trips light and comfortable

  • The rocket line management system ensures quick and easy spooling

Cons
  • Some users find the reel difficult to use

  • It can be a little noisy for some anglers

7# Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris Signature Series Spinning Reel

Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris Spinning Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left/Right
Gear Ratio: 5.7:1, 6.0:1
Ball Bearings: 9+1

The Bass Pro Shops Johnny Morris Signature Series Spinning Reel is one of the finest reels on the market today and offers the best value at this price. It’s built strong and smooth with a solid 1-piece aluminium frame, perfectly balanced rotor, and forged double-anodized aluminium spool.

Plus, it features our Micro-Pitched Gearing System for effortless power transmission, stainless steel main shaft, hard zinc drive gear, brass pinion gear, and quality 10-bearing (9+1) system. The Powerlock instant anti-reverse ensures smooth operation, while the water-resistant 6-disc felt/aluminium drag provides reliable stopping power when battling big fish.

Pros
  • 1-piece aluminium frame

  • Perfectly balanced rotor

  • Forged double-anodized aluminium spool

  • Micro-Pitched Gearing System

  • Stainless steel main shaft

  • Hard zinc drive gear

  • Brass pinion gear

  • 10 bearings (9+1) system

  • Powerlock instant anti-reverse

Cons
  • No spare spool included

  • Line capacity could be better

8# PENN Fathom Baitcast Reel

PENN Fathom Baitcast Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left, Right
Gear Ratio: 6.2:1, 6.6:1, 7.3:1, 7.6:1, 8.0:1
Ball Bearings: 6+1

The PENN Fathom baitcasting reel is designed with a full-metal body and crank side plate to protect internal components. It features a smooth 6+1 stainless steel bearing system, brass main gear and bearing-supported bronze pinion gear, HT-100 carbon-fiber drag washers, dual-action casting brake, line-capacity rings, and TiN-coated level wind system. This reel is perfect for professional anglers who demand the best performance and quality.

Pros
  • Smooth 6+1 stainless steel bearing system

  • Brass main gear and bearing-supported bronze pinion gear

  • HT-100 carbon fibre drag washers

  • Dual-action casting brake

  • Line-capacity rings

  • TiN-coated level wind system

Cons
  • No back cover

  • Plastic spool tensioner

  • Some customers have complained about the quality of construction

9# PENN Spinfisher VI Live Liner Spinning Reel

PENN Spinfisher Live Liner Spinning Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left/Right
Gear Ratio: 4.7:1, 5.6:1, 6.2:1
Ball Bearings: 5+1

The PENN Spinfisher VI Live Liner Spinning Reel is perfect for live bait and finicky game fish. Its 4-position Live Liner drag system ensures smooth, consistent drag pressure while you’re fighting fish. And its full metal body and side plates ensure durability under the toughest conditions.

Pros
  • Smooth, consistent drag pressure

  • Full metal body and side plates

  • Perfect for live bait and finicky game fish

Cons
  • The bail on the reel is quite stiff, which can make it difficult to open and close

10# PENN Spinfisher VI Spinning Reel

PENN Spinfisher VI Spinning Reel

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Specification

PENN Spinfisher VI Spinning Reel

Looking for a reel that can handle any situation? Look no further than the PENN Spinfisher VI. This reel is made with a full metal body and side plates, ensuring durability even in the harshest conditions. The CNC Gear technology provides precision gear alignment, while the IPX5 Sealed body and spool design keep saltwater and debris from ruining your day.

The sealed drag system ensures smooth, consistent drag on fish of all sizes, while the HT-100 carbon fibre drag washers provide maximum stopping power. And thanks to the oversized bail wire and line capacity rings, you’ll be able to land even the biggest fish with ease. So don’t go another day without the PENN Spinfisher VI spinning reel!

Pros
  • Durable

  • CNC Gear technology for precision gear alignment

  • IPX5 Sealed body and spool design to keep saltwater and debris out

  • Sealed drag system for smooth, consistent drag on fish of all sizes

  • HT-100 carbon fibre drag washers for maximum stopping power

  • Oversized bail wire and line capacity rings

Cons
  • It is not made for left-handed anglers

  • Heavy Reel

11# Team Lew’s Pro Ti Baitcast Reel

Team Lew's Pro Ti Baitcast Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left, Right
Gear Ratio: 7.5:1
Ball Bearings: 10+1

The Team Lew’s Pro Ti bait cast reel is the pinnacle of tournament-grade performance, boasting a super-strong titanium deposition finish that’s built to last. With a one-piece aluminium frame and side plates, this tough little reel is engineered for smooth high-speed action with Japanese bearings and a premium 10+1 bearing system.

The centrifugal brake can be easily adjusted to your desired specifications, while the carbon fibre drag system dishes out up to 20 lbs. of drag power when needed. The Speed Keeper hook keeper ensures your lures stay where they belong – on your line – while you’re casting or reeling in, while Winn Dri-Tac handle knobs provide an unbeatable grip even in wet conditions.

Pros
  • Tough, one-piece aluminium frame and side plates

  • Japanese bearings for smooth high-speed action

  • Premium 10+1 bearing system

  • The centrifugal brake can be easily adjusted to your desired specifications

  • Carbon fibre drag system dishes out up to 20 lbs. of drag power

  • Speed Keeper hook keeper ensures your lures stay where they belong

Cons
  • Some customers have complained about the quality of the titanium finish, saying it scratches and chips easily

12# Lew’s Custom Lite SLP Baitcast Reel

Lew's Custom Lite SLP Baitcast Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left, Right
Gear Ratio: 7.5:1
Ball Bearings: 10+1

Lew’s Custom Lite SLP Casting Reel is one of the lightest baitcasting reels on the market, weighing in at just 4.9 oz! The frame and side plates are made from Tanso Tech carbon fibre for added strength and rigidity, while the Duralumin 30mm U-spool ensures smooth, accurate casting.

The Speed Gears system provides perfect gear mesh for a smooth retrieve, and the externally adjustable 6-pin ACB braking system ensures accurate casts every time. This reel also features a 10+1 bearing system for ultra-smooth performance, a double-shielded stainless steel ball-bearing system, and a Zero Reverse anti-reverse.

Pros
  • 4.9 oz in weight: One of the lightest baitcasting reels on the market

  • Tanso Tech Carbon Fiber: Frame and side plates for added strength and rigidity

  • Duralumin 30mm U-spool: Ensures smooth, accurate casting

  • 10+1 bearing system: Ultra-smooth performance with lots of bearings

Cons
  • It can be challenging to find spares or repairs for this reel

  • The external braking system might be too aggressive for some anglers

13# Lew’s Custom Speed Spin Spinning Reel

Lew's Custom Spin Spinning Reel

View on Bassproshops

Specification

Retrieve: Left/Right
Gear Ratio: 5.2:1, 6.2:1
Ball Bearings: 9+1

Introducing Lew’s Custom Speed Spin spinning reel — perfect for serious anglers. This all-aluminium reel is built to last, with a flush-and-drain design that makes it easy to keep clean. The C60 carbon skeletal Speed Rotor ensures smooth, effortless casting, while the double-anodized aluminium spool ensures years of durable use. The 10-bearing system provides silky-smooth performance, and the Zero Reverse one-way clutch bearing ensures accurate reeling every time.

Pros
  • Smooth, effortless casting

  • Durable construction

  • Zero Reverse one-way clutch bearing

Cons
  • The Speed Rotor can be a bit noisy

14# Lew’s KVD Spinning Reel

Lew's KVD Spinning Reel

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Specification

Retrieve: Left/Right
Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
Ball Bearings: 9+1

The Lew’s KVD Spinning Reel is a high-quality reel designed for professional anglers. It features nine ball bearings and a Zero Reverse one-way clutch bearing for smooth, consistent performance. The thick aluminium bail wire and sturdy aluminium body and side plate provide maximum protection against wear and tear, while the S-curve oscillation system ensures smooth operation. The Duramax drag system provides powerful, consistent drag pressure, while Speed Lube delivers uninterrupted performance.

Pros
  • Smooth, consistent performance

  • Nine ball bearings

  • Zero Reverse one-way clutch bearing

  • Thick aluminium bail wire

  • Sturdy aluminium body and side plate

  • S-curve oscillation system

  • Duramax drag system

  • Speed Lube

Cons
  • Lacks mobility

  • Poor packaging

15# Lew’s Mach 2 Spinning Reels

Lew's Mach 2 Spinning Reels

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Specification

Gear Ratio: 6.2:1
Ball Bearings: 9+1

Get the power and performance you need with Lew’s Mach 2 Spinning Reels. With a smooth-rolling 10-bearing system and Zero Reverse, it’s easy to reel in your catch. The aluminium body and side plate keep it light and strong, while the Duramax drag system delivers powerful, smooth pressure.

The C40 carbon skeletal speed rotor with aluminium bail wire ensures quick, responsive action, while the S-curve oscillation system provides a steady retrieve. The solid brass pinion gear and stainless steel main shaft ensure lasting durability, while the double-anodized, knurled aluminium spool offers an improved grip. Speed Lube keeps you fishing smoothly all day long. Adjusts for right- or left-hand retrieve.

Pros
  • Smooth-rolling 10-bearing system

  • Zero Reverse for smooth reeling

  • Lightweight aluminium body and side plate

  • Duramax drag system for a smooth, powerful pressure

  • C40 carbon skeletal speed rotor

  • S-curve oscillation system for steady retrieve

  • Solid brass pinion gear and stainless steel main shaft

  • Double anodized, knurled aluminium spool

Cons
  • None

FAQ

What do you need to fish in a lake?
You first need to make sure you have the right type of rod and reel. The important thing to keep in mind is that the water here will exert significant pressure on your line and break it easily, so you’ll need a reel with some heft behind it – a stout drag system to keep them from ripping off after they hit the surface.
What are the 3 types of reels?
There are three types of reels- baitcasting, spinning, and spin cast. Each type has its own unique benefits and drawbacks.
What type of reel is best for Lake fishing?
When it comes to the best type of reel for lake fishing, there are a few different factors to consider. The most important thing is to find a reel that is comfortable for you to use. You’ll also want to choose a reel that is durable and can withstand the elements. Finally, it’s important to find a reel that is affordable and fits within your budget.
How do I know what size reel to get?
The first rule is to make sure you buy a reel that has enough capacity to hold the weight of your line. A large reel will be able to hold more lines than a smaller reel and so forth. Another thing to consider when selecting your right-size reel is – how much will you be casting? You don’t want one too small or it will wear out too fast due to constant use pulling inline aggressively, or you won’t have enough power on long casts.

Conclusion

Best Reel For Lake Fishing is a popular topic right now and for good reason. A reel can make all the difference in your fishing experience, so it’s important to find the one that suits you best.

We hope this article has given you some insight into what features are most essential to consider when shopping for lake reels, as well as helped answer any questions about Best Reel For Lake Fishing or Reels For Lake Fishing that you might have had. If there’s anything we’ve missed, please feel free to let us know in the comments section below!

Sergio Smirnoff
Sergio Smirnoff
Professional fisherman with 40+ years of experience.
Fishing and the ocean is a passion of my life. I am passionate about all kinds of sea fishing: fishing from the shore (spinning, float, baitcasting), from a boat, and spearfishing day and night.

I live in Tenerife (Canary Islands) for the last 10+ years and share my daily fishing experiences on my website. Many years of personal experience as a fisherman and the vast experience of my friends allow me to write professionally on any fishing topics (from choosing a flashlight and equipment to deep-sea fishing).

All of my advice is based on practical real-world experience and will be useful to both novice anglers and professionals. Read more about the author.

Affiliate Disclosure: FishReeler.com sometimes gets paid for listings, through sponsors or affiliate programs like Amazon, Ebay, Cabelas, Bass Pro Shop, Shimano, Daiwa, Rapala, Renn, Okuma, KastKing, etс. Clicking a link helps keep FishReeler.com free, at no extra cost to you!

About the author: Each article is verified by the fishing expert Sergio Smirnoff. The articles are written by professional and amateur fishermen with 20+ years of fishing experience.

Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any agency. The articles are for informational purposes only, share your opinions in the comments and join the fishing discussions, let's share our fishing experiences together!

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