Essential Fishing Knots You Should Know

Essential Fishing Knots You Should Know

If you are only recently starting off as a fisherman, you probably think there isn’t much to it.

All you need is a hook, line, and sinker right?


A real fisherman, who hopes to catch some great fish, won’t dare venture out to the water without having proper knowledge of all the various types of fishing knots.

Different types of situations require different types of knots.

For example, the sorts of knots you need to tie your hook to a fishing line are different from those required to join the different sections of the line with one another.

It’s always best to be prepared for all sorts of different situations, especially when you are out on open waters.

There is little point in struggling later on, when you can go prepared.

Here are some essential fishing knots you should know if you are planning on heading out fishing anytime soon.

If you’d like to see a graphical breakdown of the fishing knots, we got you covered:

Fishing Knots

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Improved Clinch Knot

improved clinch knot diagram

This knotting style is used to tie your fishing hook with a line.

This style of knotting is relatively common and uncomplicated for the most part.

Even if you have only recently started fishing, you are most likely to know this knotting style.

This is, in fact, one of the most crucial knotting styles in all of fishing. Anglers use this knot to either secure their fishing hooks, or to lure the fish to the line.  

In order to make this knot, you must start with threading the line through the eye of your fishing hook.

Next, with the loose end of the hook, wrap it around the line about six to seven times.

After this, you must take the loose end of your line and thread it through the loop that falls closest to the eye.

You must repeat this again, backwards, in the loose part of the line.

After you are done with this, you must pull both the edges of the line until you are sure the knot is tight.

You can then also trim the loose edge of the line if you feel like it, although this isn’t necessary.

And just like that, your improved clinch knot is ready!

Palomar Knot

palomar knot diagram

This type of knotting style is commonly used in order to tie your line with your fishing hook.  

According to anglers, the Palomar has incredible knot strength.

It serves a function similar to the improved clinch knot. This knot is generally used to secure your hook to your fishing line.  

Again, this is relatively simple knot, so long as you follow the steps correctly.

All you have to do is start with your fishing line. Double the line to make it into a loop.

Once the loop is formed, push this loop straight through the fishing hook’s eye.

Then, tie a loose knot, making sure it extends outwards. After this, pass the loop that you made earlier, around the edge of your hook.

Remember to pull on your fishing line and make sure that the knot is tight.

If you don’t want extra line to be left hanging, you can always cut off the loose edge of the line, however this isn’t a requirement.

And there you have it, your Palomar knot ready in no time!

Blood Knot

diagram of blood knot

The purpose of this sort of a knotting style is to tie two separate sections of the fishing line with each other.

The blood knot is often used to make use of broken or odd length fishing lines. It is also used with fly line.

Tying a blood knot is a pretty important skill to have, and is useful to have on any sort of fishing boat.

The procedure of making this knot isn’t too hard, so long as you follow instructions properly.

All you have to do is line up the edges of each of the fishing lines with each other.

Next, wrap one of the lines around the other a minimum of six to seven times. Repeat this process but switch up the lines.

Then, bring each of the loose edges of the lines back together in the centre of both of the lines.

Remember to pull with force on each of the lines to make sure that they are secure. Voila, your blood knot is ready!

Turtle Knot

diagram of turtle knot

This sort of knotting style is usually used to tie a fishing line that is particularly thin, with a smaller sized hook.

All you have to do is pass the fishing line through the middle of the eye of your hook.

Next, tie a loose double knot, making sure it extends outwards towards the edge of the line.

Then, pass the open loop that you made over your fishing hook.

As always, tighten the knot you have made, making sure that the loop remains snug around the eye of the hook.

This sort of knot seems pretty complex but isn’t all that hard, if you only follow the instructions step-by-step.

The turtle knot proves useful in many situations.

Double Surgeon’s Loop

diagram of double surgeons knot

The purpose of this knotting style is to form a loop at the very edge of the fishing line.

This style of knotting isn’t as common as the rest, but can still prove useful in various situations so it’s always best to have knowledge of it before heading out to sea.

The process is quite simple. All you have to do is fold the edge of your fishing line in order to create a double line.

Next, tie a single knot, making sure it extends over the edge of the line.

Then, pass the loop that you have made through the hole in the knot that you had created earlier.

Then, moisten your knot and pull on it to make sure it is perfectly tight.

Tucked Sheet Bend

diagram of tucked sheet bond

This is a particularly interesting style of knotting that can be pretty useful, every now and then.  

It is commonly used to either snell a fishing hook to a line or to attach the line with a leader loop.

The knotting process is pretty simple if you pay attention to the steps.

You need to start with passing the edge of the line through the loop. Next, you must tie an easy sheet bend knot.

Then, pass the edge of the line back once again through the sheet bend’s loop. Remember to pull the line to make sure the knot is secure.

And there you have it, a perfect tucked sheet bend knot!

Wire Line to Mono Knot

wire to a line knot

The purpose of this fishing knot style is to attach a monofilament with a wire line. 

This knot may seem pretty complex, but it isn’t all that hard once you get down to tying it.

To start with, fold about three to four inches of the wire line all the way back over itself. This will create a bend at the edge of the line.

Next, you need to pass the monofilament line through the center of your bend and wrap it around the bottom of the bend once.

Then, with the monofilament, make seven or eight rounds around both lines, making sure that the monofilament remains close to both of the lines.

Finally, pass the loose edge of the monofilament on the top, the centre part of the monofilament and underneath the wire line.

Make sure to pull the line and check whether or not the knot is tight and secure.

Snelling a Hook

basic knot to snell a hok

The purpose of this sort of a knot is to attach a hook with a monofilament.

The process itself isn’t too difficult but you must be careful to follow instructions. This sort of knotting style can be pretty useful in certain situations.

The first step is to pass the edge of the wireline inside the hook’s eye. Repeat this process twice.

Then, create a loop that hangs outwards, along with the fishing hook.

Next, wrap the loop that you have created around your fishing hook. This will help form tight coils.

Repeat this about five to ten times until the tight coils are perfectly formed.

Then, hold these coils in their place using one finger.

Then, pull up the wire line, until the loop you have made is tight and secure underneath the coils.

The Spider Hitch Knot

diagram of spider hitch knot

This sort of knotting style serves to strengthen the angler’s fishing line.

This knotting style is less commonly known, but is pretty useful all the same.

The spider knot is pretty great for taking on heavier leaders and hooks.

In order to make this knot, all you have to do is double a line all the way backwards in order to form a loop. 

Next, hold this loop between your forefingers and thumb.

Then, wrap the line that has been doubled around your thumb and the loop about five times.

Moisten the knot and pull squarely on all four lines to make sure the knot is tight.

This knotting style involves a double line that can give you a certain sense of security while fishing.

With a spider hitch knot, even if one of your strands were to break while battling fish, you always know that the other strands hold strong.

This is why this particular knot is favored by saltwater fishermen.

These are some of the most essential fishing knots you should know before you head off to catch some big game.

So stop waiting, grab your fishing gear, and head off to the waters!

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Roy Ericson

Roy Ericson started fishing when he was just a boy, like many of us did. He spent far too much time on the piers not being able to catch anything, until his uncle brought him deep sea fishing, out to the lakes of Michigan, where he lived, and to the various ponds in neighboring states. He’s been all over, caught over 400 different species of fish, and doesn’t believe you should embellish your stories. He’s just here to teach you about his absolute favorite thing in the world: fishing.