Our History, Craftsmanship & Passion

Continually Making History

The St. Croix story has evolved over 70 years and our path has taken many different twists and turns, with some being more successful than others. But our occasional missteps have never defined us. How we have responded to them most certainly has. With a gritty determination, St. Croix built the most advanced fishing rod facility in the world and with it, a world-class brand that has earned the respect and admiration of anglers around the planet. We will continue to challenge ourselves, our employees and our partners to be the best every day.


Whether your rod was made at our Park Falls, Wisconsin headquarters, or if it comes from our state-of-the-art factory in Fresnillo, Mexico, you can rest assured that your St. Croix rod was handcrafted, from start-to-finish, by passionate and talented members of the St. Croix team.

Park Falls, WI
usa factory and factory store

St. Croix’s facility in Park Falls, Wisconsin manufactures our Legend, Avid, Mojo and other rod series. If you are in northern Wisconsin, be sure to sign up for a facility tour, or stop in to purchase your favorite rod right off the factory floor in our retail store.

facilities Mexico

Our newest manufacturing plant is a state-of-the-art factory in Fresnillo, Mexico. St. Croix’s vertical manufacturing ensures that every rod is produced start-to-finish right there on the premises, including the awared winning Mojo series. Just like in the U.S., there is no outsourcing and everything is made using the most advanced materials, with the same high-tech machinery.


Unique to the fishing rod industry, St. Croix has complete control over the sourcing, manufacturing and craftsmanship that go into building our rods. Whether it takes place at our headquarters in Park Falls, Wisconsin – or our state-of-the-art factory in Fresnillo, Mexico – each rod is a product of the passion and attention to detail of the talented people who make them.

timeline 1948 block

1st Multi-Section Bamboo Fishing Pole

It all started with a simple need—finding an easier way to transport long fishing poles. Following a business brainstorming session, founding brothers Bob and Bill Johnson created the first multi-section bamboo fishing pole. This seemingly simple innovation launched both a new product and a company that would continue to lead the industry.

timeline 1955 block


Lightweight and flexible, fiberglass quickly became the replacement for bamboo. St. Croix was quick to pioneer this new material and began developing new models for specific species and environments. In just one year St. Croix would have 24 models for salmon/steelhead alone.

timeline 1956 block


Getting rods to water remained a primary angler challenge. To solve this, St. Croix introduced a series of Whip-Out and Flip-Out rods. These multi-section, telescopic rods extended up to 20 feet, but easily collapsed for storage and transport. They remained a favorite for the next 40 years before newer options would later replace them. For fly fishermen, St. Croix introduced the 978-3, a collapsible rod that carefully balanced quality, convenience and price. These high-performance rods disassembled into three sections and included a travel tube for just $15.

timeline 1957 block


Remember the 8100-L? Not many do. As the great-grandfather of a flourishing family of St. Croix Ultra-Lights, it was built in four lengths with a Tennessee handle for hands and reel. The line-up ranged in weight from 3-1/2 oz. for the 78” model to just 2-1/4 oz. for the 48” version. Not bad for fiberglass and 1950’s technology.

timeline 1961 block


An ultra-thin glass cloth blended with superior phenolic resins and an exquisite nylon elastomer allowed St. Croix to introduce the Imperial “XL” product line. Included was the first full-length (6’) spinning rod to weigh under two ounces.

timeline 1965 block


After many early successes, St. Croix began to lose direction and struggle financially. Local business leaders approached Park Falls entrepreneur Gordon Schluter with an opportunity to invest into the company. Gordon accepted and began to rebuild the St. Croix brand and business.

timeline 1979 block


With an emphasis on engineering and streamlining manufacturing, St. Croix introduced the Ferrule-s (pronounced “ferrule-less”) fit. This provided a more secure assembly, reduced opportunity for metal components to deteriorate and simply generated a better performing rod.

timeline 1983 block


St. Croix continued to push engineering milestones by introducing an all-graphite rod. Known as the Imperial Graphite, this breakthrough led the way to the hundreds of graphite models currently in St. Croix’s lineup.

timeline 1991 block


Teaming up with renowned surf fishing legend Ben Doerr, St. Croix created a complete series of extreme-performance surf rods. Designed to achieve maximum casting distances and accuracy, along with specifically designed graphite blanks and cork tape handles, the Ben Doerr Surf System quickly gained a national following.

timeline 2000 block


St. Croix engineers continue to innovate with the introduction of integrated poly curves® tooling technology on the mandrel design. IPC® eliminates transitional points in the blank, creating rods with smoother actions, increased strength and greater sensitivity.

timeline 2005 block


Advanced Reinforcing Technology™ represents the latest innovation created by St. Croix engineers. An exotic carbon fiber material, ART™ prevents ovaling and adds that adds 10X the strength to a rod blank without increasing blank diameter or weight.

timeline 2008 block


St. Croix not only pushed the limits of performance, but also pushed to inspire and involve more anglers. The introduction of the Mojo Bass created a whole new category of high-performance and high-value bass rods and quickly became the company’s most successful product launch.

timeline 2013 block


St. Croix introduces FRS (Fortified Resign System) & TET (Taper Enhancement Technology), further advancing the best blanks on earth.

timeline 2017 block


Demonstrating their value, St. Croix continues to win awards for their products at the iCAST industry show.
2012 | Legend Xtreme wins best freshwater rod & Legend Inshore wins best saltwater rod
2013 | Legend Xtreme Inshore wins best saltwater rod
2015 | Re-designed Avid Inshore wins best saltwater rod and Mojo Bass Fly wins best fly
2016 | Legend Glass wins best freshwater rod
2017 | Re-designed Legend Glass wins best freshwater rod and Legend Tournament Inshore wins best saltwater rod

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