If you think your knot is a problem, then you are right! It is amazing how so many fishermen make sure that every other part of their gear and rigs are correct and perfect. They wear the most expensive and stylish boots, hats, glasses, and sport the best rods and reels. When it comes to a knot, the fish is lost before the battle begins.
All knots will weaken your line. It does not matter what type of line you choose; knots will weaken them. If your monofilament is rated at 10 pounds of strength, even a perfect knot will make it 8.5 lb test. A crappy knot will decrease its strength 50% or more. Throw in the sun, wear and tear, and a wind knot or two and you should just throw your lures and flies into the river.
Every fisherman should learn a Clinch Knot, Blood knot, and a Uni Knot. The Duncan Loop is also a good choice. Search on YouTube videos for great directions and demonstrations on how to tie them. Each knot has a special application.
The Clinch Knot attaches a hook, fly or lure to your leader. Using a Duncan Loop variation will allow this knot to stay loose to the hook eye and add action. The Improved Clinch Knot can cut itself using some lines.
The Blood Knot attaches two pieces of line or leader together. These lines need to be close to the same diameter or within a few pounds’ strength of each other. Fluorocarbon can be dramatically stronger and thinner than other tippet materials. In this case, look at the diameter. You may be able to make the final section the strongest and thinnest tippet.
A Surgeons Knot is what fishermen that can’t tie a Blood Knot use. This cheapo knot weakens the line significantly. They will ague all day about the Surgeons Knot because they are too lazy to learn a proper knot, or their eyes make it a challenge. Take the time to learn a Blood Knot or buy more flies.
The Uni Knot is needed when using braided or woven lines. It will not slip and is simple to tie. There are also many other useful knots to tie. Certain knots do better in salt water, trolling, or other specific applications. As the fish get bigger and stronger, so should your knots.
Try to fish with the finest lightest lines and gear that you dare. This makes fishing more of a challenge. Lighter line will invite more hook ups. A great reel with a great drag will also help you land the big one. You gear also needs to stout enough to not over tire and over play out the fish. This is important when considering Catch and Release.
Tie one on!
For more Montana Grant, catch him at www.montanagrantfishing.com.