You’ve got the perfect location, fishing rod and lure. Now you need to know how to tie a knot to keep that fish on the hook and bring it in. If your knot fails, nothing else really matters.
There are some standard fishing knot basics:
- Choose the right fishing knot and tie it correctly.
- Lubricate knots with water or saliva before drawing tight.
- Draw knots as tight as possible.
- Trim tag ends close to the knot.
- Fish often!
Here is a list of the five knots that you should learn and how to tie them. We’ve typed them up and given you a video to watch for those visual learners.
The Improved Clinch Knot
If you have been fishing for more than a week, you already know how to tie an improved clinch knot. This one is one of the MOST important knots in the world of fishing and is used by a majority of anglers to secure their lures, swivels, or hooks to the fishing line. It is a time-tested and very popular choice.
- Thread end of line through eye of hook. Double back making 5 or more turns around standing line.
- Bring end of line through the first loop formed behind the eye then through the big loop.
- Wet knot and pull on tag end to tighten down the coils. Slide tight against the eye and clip tag end close.
The Blood Knot
The blood knot is an easy-to-learn and valuable skill to have on any fishing boat. It is used for tying two pieces of fishing line together. It is often used for fly fishing or making use of odd or broken length fishing lines.
Instructions (click here to see a video from Orvis News):
- Overlap ends of lines to be joined. Twist one around the other making 5 turns. Bring tag end back between the two lines.
- Repeat with the other end, wrapping in opposite direction the same number of turns.
- Slowly pull lines in opposite directions. Turns will wrap and gather. Clip ends close to the knot.
The Surgeon’s Knot
When you need to attach two different pieces of fishing line, the surgeon’s knot is perfect. It’s similar to the blood knot. Where it differs is the surgeon’s knot is ideal for fastening together two fishing lines of DIFFERENT diameters. Most fishermen keep bits and pieces of old fishing line lying around just in case. So, this knot is easy to tie and can use the different sizes of line.
- Overlap the ends of the 2 lines.
- Form a loop and pass an end through it.
- Pass it through one more time.
- Tighten by pulling both ends.
- Trim the tag ends.
The Palomar Knot
Possibly the most basic knot. It is a simple knot to tie that doubles the line up around the line tie to give it straighter strength, but it is possible to tie this knot wrong and cut your line, so pay attention to the details in this one.
- Double your line and pass it through the eye of the hook or split ring.
- Tie a simple overhand knot with the looped end around the main line.
- Pass the loop over the hook or lure and flip the loop up over the main line and tag end.
- Pull the tag end slowly after you’ve wet the line until the knot cinches down.
The Spider Hitch Knot
What a stronger line to catch those heavier fish or the fighters? The spider hitch knot isn’t as well known as the others but it is very useful. The spider knot is able to take on heavier hooks or leaders by forming a double line which gives you extra security. If one line breaks, you have a second one.
- Make a double line loop holding it between thumb and finder.
- Pass the end over the thumb.
- Wrap the end 5 times around the thumb.
- Pass the end behind the loop. Now pass it through the loop.
- Pull the end out of the loop.
- Pull both ends to tighten the knot.
- Trim excess tag end.
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