To land that big one, you need proper gear and tackle. Fishing requires specialized equipment for your area and body of water, as well as what fish you are trying to land. Hooks are an essential aspect of fishing and come in various forms and styles. Certain fish species are drawn toward one form of bait over others, depending on location, time of year, depth of water and temperature. By learning a bit about hooks and baits, you are better armed to make good selections when trying for sport species.
Jigging for fish is the process of setting a specialized hook onto the line along with weighted sinkers and pulling the hook up and down along the bottom of the body of water, attracting deep-swimming or bottom-dwelling fish such as walleye. Jig hooks have a barbed end that sets the hook into the fish's lip or mouth upon strikes. The threaded line ending of the hook is set at angles between 45 to 90 degrees to the long end of the hook so the barb will bounce up and down on the bottom.
Treble hooks have a set of three barbed hooks set together in a tripod design. Treble hooks are found under spin cast lures and often used for bass, crappie, bluegill and sunfish. Treble hooks come in various sizes, and it is not uncommon to see two treble hooks set under lures for optimal strike setting.
Worm fishing invokes thoughts of Tom Sawyer digging up the ground along the banks of the river, pulling out a large night crawler and fixing it to the hook for a lazy summer day spent fishing. Worm hooks come in sizes from very small to large and are often referred to sizing by numbers, with 1 being the smallest and size 5 or 6 being among the larger ones. Worm hooks have a barb on the end and a large sweeping curve on the bottom, providing more curve for the fish's lip to slip over upon striking.
Bait choices vary based on location and species you are fishing for. Deep-sea species such as halibut or flounder are more likely to strike on live sardines or dead squid. Smallmouth and largemouth bass respond well to worms such as night crawlers. Catfish tend to strike on crawfish for bait. Walleye are not finicky and strike on almost anything, including small crustaceans, worms or insects. In spring, trout respond well to salmon eggs or cheese. Trout hit on worms, crustaceans, minnows and crawfish during spring runs.
Article Written By Eric Cedric
A former Alaskan of 20 years, Eric Cedric now resides in California. He's published in "Outside" and "Backpacker" and has written a book on life in small-town Alaska, "North by Southeast." Cedric was a professional mountain guide and backcountry expedition leader for 18 years. He worked in Russia, Iceland, Greece, Turkey and Belize. Cedric attended Syracuse University and is a private pilot.