What Is a Snelled Hook?

What Is a Snelled Hook?Snelled hooks have been in use for decades. The knot is secure, without making any sharp twists or turns. That means the snell knot does not reduce the line's breaking strength the way other knots do.

Why Snell?

Snelling your hook to the leader material does more than just attach your hook to your line. The wraps of the snell knot around the hook shank help keep the hook in line with your leader. "So what," you ask? Here's the deal: If you tie your hook on with a knot that does not keep it straight with the line, it will spin in the current. Spinning baits don't attract fish, and they twist your line.


Snell a Hook

Insert several inches of monofilament through the eye of the hook along the shank with the tag end of the line toward the bend of the hook. Keeping the line against the shank, make four or five wraps around the shank and monofilament, working your way back toward the eye. To complete the knot, tuck the tag end between the shank and the line near the eye, and tighten the knot.

Change it Up

Snelled hooks can be tied in groups and kept ready for use. With a loop on the far end of the line, anglers can replace hooks as necessary during a fishing trip by using a snap swivel. Simply open the snap and slide on the loop of your snelled hook.


The snell knot can cover up to one-fourth of the hook shank. The wraps of the snell are vulnerable to damage from the sharp teeth of fish such as bluefish and barracuda. When targeting sharp-toothed species, anglers are better off with a simple clinch knot for their hooks.


Keep your snelled hooks organized by size. Plastic containers are an inexpensive solution to keeping snelled hooks organized. To keep things simple, snell your hooks and leave the other end untied. Left this way the hooks will come out smoothly from the container.

Article Written By Stephen Byrne

Stephen Byrne is a freelance writer with published articles in "Nor'East Saltwater," "Sportfishing" magazine, "Pacific Coast Sportfishing" and "Salt Water Sportsman." As a fishing charter captain, he was also interviewed for a feature in "Field and Stream." Byrne studied environmental science at the State University of New York at Delhi.

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