Learning how to fish isn’t all about knowing what type of bait to use or where a certain type of fish can be caught.
Learning how to tie a fishing knot is a huge part of this pastime and when you know how to do it efficiently, it’ll result in a much higher rate of success on the water.
How do you learn how to tie a fishing knot then?
There are many types of knots used in fishing, but if you’re able to master just a few of them, they’re all you’ll need to know. Popular fishing knots include the Palomar knot, improved clinch knot, and turtle know, each with their special purpose. With a few of these in your arsenal, you’ll be equipped to go fishing at any time on your own, and will be ready to face any potential problems.
This guide will walk you through to steps of learning how to tie a fishing knot, with the eight most commonly used knots discussed.
We’ll not only teach you how to tie them like a professional angler but also what they’re used for and how you can make them work for you when catching fish.
A little bit of practice goes a long way when learning knots, so get ready to start with the basics.
- 1 #1 Improved Clinch Knot
- 2 #2 Turtle Knot
- 3 #3 Palomar Knot
- 4 #4 Double Surgeon’s Loop
- 5 #5 Blood Knot
- 6 #6 Wire Line to Mono Knot
- 7 #7 Tucked Sheet Bend
- 8 #8 Snelling a Hook
- 9 Related Questions
#1 Improved Clinch Knot
Perhaps the most important knot that you’ll use in fishing is the one that connects the line to your hook and allows you to catch fish.
There are a few different methods you can use but the improved clinch knot is always reliable and easy to learn.
- Thread the end of the fishing line through the eye of your hook.
- Take the loose end and wrap it around the line between five to seven times.
- Thread the loose end through the last loop (closes to the eye of the hook) and then pull it back around and inside this loose section.
- Pull on both ends at the same time to tighten, and trim the ends to clean it up.
#2 Turtle Knot
A turtle knot is another way of tying a line to a hook, but this is generally used for thinner pieces of line.
This requires fewer steps than other methods but is better kept for a finer line that doesn’t need as much strength.
- Thread the line through the eye of the hook.
- In the end of the line, tie a loose double overhand knot.
- Collect the open loop and pass it over the hook while tightening so that the loop becomes snug around the eye of the hook.
#3 Palomar Knot
This knot is often considered one of the easiest to tie and also one of the most reliable knots, making it ideal for connecting the hook to the line.
With just a little practice, you should be able to tie one of these with your eyes closed.
- Double the line over to form a loop and then thread this small loop through the eye of the hook.
- Strengthen it with a loose overhand knot and then pass it around and over the end of the hook.
- Pull the end of the line so that it tightens up and then cut any loose line from the end.
#4 Double Surgeon’s Loop
When you need to make a loop at the end of a line or a leader so that it can connect to another loop, a double surgeon’s loop is the easiest method.
This might also be referred to as a double overhand knot and can be done fairly quickly in an emergency.
- Using the end of the line, fold it over so it creates a double line, and then tie one overhand knot.
- Collect the loop and put it through the hole you just created with the overhand knot to strengthen it.
- Slightly wet the knot and then tighten it by pulling the end.
#5 Blood Knot
There may come a time in fishing when you have to join two pieces of line together but run the risk of losing the strength of the line.
The most effective way to do this while maintaining that strength is with a blood knot and it’s very handy when fishing.
- Take the ends of both pieces of line and line them up so they’re together for a few inches.
- Wrap one piece of line around the other, five times, or more if needed to help secure it.
- Wrap the second piece of line around the first just as you did before, five times, or more if required.
- Bring the loose ends of both lines back to the middle between the two and then pull on them to tighten the knot.
#6 Wire Line to Mono Knot
This knot is a little trickier but it only needs to be used on the occasion that you have to connect monofilament to wireline.
Depending on the gear you’re using, it could come in handy to strengthen the two together.
- Take the end of the wireline and fold it back over itself to create a bend of about four inches.
- Push the mono line through the middle of the bend you just made in the line wire and wrap it around the bottom of it once.
- Make seven or eight close turns around both lines with the mono.
- Take the loose end of the monofilament line and push it through, between the center of the mono and underneath the wireline. Pull tightly to close.
#7 Tucked Sheet Bend
Sometimes referred to as the one-way sheet bend, this knot is useful for joining ropes or lines so that they don’t snag on any obstructions.
In fishing, it’s used for attaching either a snelled hook or leader loop to the line.
- Pass the end of the line through the loop or hook and perform a sheet bend knot with it.
- Pass the end of the line once again, but this time through the sheet bend knot.
- Tighten the knot until it strengthens.
#8 Snelling a Hook
When using monofilament, you require a special approach to snelling a hook.
This ensures that when a fish latches on, the line pulls tight so that it turns the right way in its mouth and enables a catch.
- Thread the end of the line through the hook twice.
- With the loop that was created, wrap this again around the hook so that you make up to 10 coils, quite firm to touch.
- Hold down the coils with a left hand finger and then pull on the line so the loop moves up underneath it.
Learning how to tie a knot can be tricky when you’re just starting out with fishing, but with some practice, they’ll become second nature.
Although we’ve listed eight knots that doesn’t mean you’ll need to use them all, and may even want to learn additional methods.
Here are some commonly asked questions, and their answers, about fishing and the knots involved with it.
What Is the Strongest Fishing Knot?
In terms of popular fishing knots, the Palomar knot is often considered the strongest.
This reliable knot is not only simple to learn to tie, and the first one that beginner anglers learn, but it’s effective for many different uses during fishing.
You can use the Palomar knot with braided lines and will never have to give a second thought to its strength and consistency.
What Is the Easiest Fishing Knot to Learn?
There’s no singular knot that would be known as the easiest, but in terms of beginners learning the basics, the Palomar and clinch knot would probably be the winners in this category.
These are two of the fundamental knots that are used in not just fishing, but many other activities, and they form the basis of many other knots and techniques that you’ll use while you fish.
What Type of Fishing Line Should You Use?
When it comes to fishing there’s no singular type of line that will work for everything, including tying knots.
You need to consider all factors like the other equipment you’re using, the size of fish you’re trying to catch, and other special requirements like budget and materials used to make the line.
Having a basic understanding of knots will allow you to tie them in any type of line you use.