How to Tie Hook Lengths for Fishing

How to Tie Hook Lengths for Fishing
Hook length is another term for a leader. A leader is simply a length of line that connects a hook to the main fishing line. Leaders, or hook length, can be larger or smaller in pound test strength depending on the situation and fish species. Leaders for larger game fish will often go up in test strength from the main line. Leaders used with wary trout, for example, may go down in size to help reduce the risk of scaring the fish away.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Monofilament or fluorocarbon fishing line
  • Fish hook
  • Scissors
Step 1
Cut a length of monofilament or fluorocarbon line from a filler spool with scissors. Choose a line based on the fishing situation, fish species and personal preference. Use the pound test strength of the main line as a starting point when choosing a hook length. Add or reduce the pound test of the hook length as desired.
Step 2
Hold the hook length in one hand and a hook in the other. Feed one end of the hook length through the eye of the hook so it exits on the point side of the hook.
Step 3
Turn the free end back and pass it through the eye once again. You will now have a double line on one side and a working loop on the other side of the hook eye.
Step 4
Tie a simple overhand knot with the working loop and double line, and do not tighten the knot. Pull the working loop down from the knot and around the bend of the hook.
Step 5
Moisten the knot and pull it down tightly against the eye of the hook. Pull on the hook length, hook and free end to secure the knot in place. Trim excess line from the free end of the knot with scissors.

Tips & Warnings

Use caution when pulling knots tied with monofilament or fluorocarbon tight. These lines, when pulled tight, can cause cuts or abrasions.

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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