How to Tie Fishing Line to a Leader

How to Tie Fishing Line to a Leader
A leader is a short length of fishing line that is attached to the main line. The hook or lure is then tied to the leader. Leaders provide a point of attachment for hooks, spinners and other baits other than the main line itself. Similar-sized, lighter or heavier lines can be used as dictated by the situation or fish species.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Fishing line
  • Leader
  • Snips
Step 1
Lay the main line and the end of the leader side by side. This is the beginning of the surgeon's knot. You will work with the two lines as one. The ends are also referred to as the tag ends.
Step 2
Form a single loop with the main line and leader. The loop should be at least 3 to 4 inches in diameter. This will provide enough room for you to continue forming the knot.
Step 3
Pass the leader and main line tag end through the loop. Make three to four turns around and through the loop.
Step 4
Moisten the knot slightly. Hold both the main line and leader tags and begin pulling the knot down to tighten it.
Step 5
Finish the knot by pulling the tag ends tightly and trim any excess line using snips.

Tips & Warnings

Pull the knot down slowly when securing. Make any small adjustments to the turns around the loops as you go.

Article Written By Keith Dooley

Keith Dooley has a degree in outdoor education and sports management. He has worked as an assistant athletic director, head coach and assistant coach in various sports including football, softball and golf. Dooley has worked for various websites in the past, contributing instructional articles on a wide variety of topics.

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