Ask five different anglers how to attach a hook to your fishing line and you will probably get five different answers. Anglers love their knots, are loyal and will defend them to the bitter end. This may sound a little silly, however, when your passion is fishing and the strength of a knot is the difference between landing a trophy fish or watching it swim away. Knots can get personal, an though there are many knots used to attach hook to line, there are a few that stand out as favorites among most anglers.
Improved Clinch Knot
The improved clinch knot is a second-generation knot in essence. The clinch knot served many anglers well. However, it was sometimes prone to slipping or coming loose. The result was the development of the improved technique for tying the knot.
Form the improved clinch knot by passing the free, or tag, end of the line through the eye of the hook so that 5 to 6 inches of line extends through. Wrap the tag end around the main line for six to seven turns beginning near the eye and working up the line. Turn the tag end down and pull it through the loop formed with the line just above the eye of the hook. Pass the tag end through the long loop formed along side the knot. Moisten the knot, pull down tightly and trim excess line from the end of the knot with scissors.
The Palomar knot is considered to be an easy to tie knot that is very strong. Suitable for use in attaching flies small lures and hooks to line, the Palomar is a good choice for fresh- and saltwater fishing applications.
Begin forming the Palomar by doubling the tag end of the main line so that a loop is formed about 5 inches from the end. Pass the loop through the eye of the hook. Form an over hand knot with the doubled line around the main line but do not tighten the knot at this point. Pull the loop over the bend of the hook. Grasp the tag end of the line and pull the knot down tightly.
Some anglers have found that applying a small amount of knot glue or super glue can provide additional holding power for the knot.
Hooks tied with a snell knot are strong durable. Snelling a hook is perhaps one of the oldest methods of hook attachment and is widely used in large fresh- and saltwater game fish applications. The knot is so widely used and accepted that many manufacturers produce hooks tied with a short and heavy length of line using the snell knot.
Begin tying the Snell knot by holding the hook by the shank so that the point is on the bottom. Thread the tag, or free, end of the line through the hook eye from the bottom and out through the top. Pull several inches of line through the eye, loop the line around and pass the end back through the eye in the same direction as before.
Pull the tag end down along side the shank of the hook until it is even with the bend. Wrap the loop of the line around the tag end and shank of the hook. Begin wrapping near the eye of the hook and work you way down the shank. Make six to seven turns with the loop around the shank, pull the tag end and main line to tighten the knot and trim excess line from the snell with scissors.
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.