On a related topic, do you know of any reasonably priced surf casting rods that break down like that? I'm trying to figure out if I should get a couple before an OBX trip in April. I only own small tackle for inland fresh water stuff, from 4wt fly rods up to casting/spinning gear you could catch a lake trout on. I've never owned surf tackle, and the ones I've used from a friend had humongous two piece poles and heavy reels (I'd try to borrow his stuff, but he's going to the Delaware shore the same week). We'll have a very full vehicle with 3 people, an XL RTT eating up the roof space, and all the gear for a week of camping, so space will be at a premium. As an alternative, I suspect we can probably rent gear (?).
Renting a rod is usually very inexpensive, you may want to go that route if available. There is not just the rod, but also the reel. Plus likely give you opportunity to talk with the local on what works and best times and places.
As you know, the location, correct bait and time of day are most import factors. Fish where the fish are LOL. The cheep rod and can catch a good fish.
Saltwater surf rods for travel Okuma or Daiwa are excellent and of course Penn.
I would bring a PVC sand spike, they likely don't rent one of those.
Most the the break down rods are approx. 34" so they fit the drawers.
The locals here that surf fish usually have a piece of PCV strapped to the roof rack, and stick the rod in that. They use the rods that don't break down.