Walk into a tackle shop and there is sure to be a plethora of hooks in all sorts of shapes and sizes for sale. It can be an overwhelming feeling and even more confusing then picking line! I think that’s why most people don’t put as much thought into picking a hook as they should. So, what is the right hook for the job? Well, that isn’t an easy answer because it all depends on your presentation. Let’s take a look at some of the hooks you’ll find at a tackle store and what hook is the right hook for the job.
The right hook for lures and as a stinger hook on large live bait rigs.
Typically seen on crankbaits, spoons and inline spinners, treble hooks are those three-pointed hooks that usually rust away on your crankbaits. Changing the hooks is one of the best upgrades you can do to a lure. When you do change the hooks make sure to get hooks of the same size you are replacing. If they are too big or small you will change the action of your lure.
Treble hooks are also great as stingers on live bait rigs, especially with larger baits. One trick is to slide it onto the hook of your EWG swimbait hook and let it sit at the bend of the hook while you fish a swimbait.
Large hooks with a deep gap, the right hook to accommodate lots of plastic.
These come in a couple of different forms, but what makes swimbait hooks different from work hooks is the gap. They may have a screw lock or a keel weight but they all have a larger gap than a normal hook. This is so when you set the hook the plastic of the swimbait can move down into the gap and expose the point.
Octopus or Mosquito Hooks
One of the most efficient hooks for live bait.
Be it minnows, dew worms or roe, the octopus hook is one of your best choices for live bait. The design keeps fish hooked better than long shank hooks, and the smaller size allows the bait to act more naturally. Also, a very popular hook for drop shot rigs.
Very popular with saltwater anglers, because it is often the right hook for the job.
Circle hooks look like an Octopus hook, but with a turned-in point. It might look damaged, but that turned point actually hooks fish better, as long as you do not set the hook! This is a favourite amongst anglers who use dead or cut bait, like saltwater, carp and catfish anglers. Once the hook enters the fish’s mouth, the point finds the fleshiest part of the mouth and buries itself with minimal pressure. No hook set required, just put pressure on the fish by reeling it in!
The “standard” long shank hook
Once the standard for live bait, I would suggest saving these for fishing with kids or for greedy panfish. The long shank helps you remove a buried hook from fish when the hook set is not instant. Bigger fish can actually use this long shank to apply leverage against you resulting in the hook coming out.
Bait Holder Hooks
One of the most popular baits for live bait
The bait holder comes in many different shapes but they are all identified by the extra barb on the shank of the hook, design to keep the bait on the hook…hence the name!
Ideal for trailers and single hook replacements
The Siwash hook is stout with an open eye. You close the open eye by squeezing it with pliers once you put it on another hook or ring of a lure. It is a great choice to replace treble hooks on inline spinners where there are no split rings, or as a trailer hook on spinnerbaits.
“The” bass hook…if you’re flipping and pitching it is the right hook for the job!
You see all sorts of these hooks in different shapes and sizes when you walk down the hook aisle. Worm hooks are the ones with the funny bend near the eye of the hook. That bend helps to texas rig soft plastic baits, making them weedless so you can fish in the heaviest cover…where the big girls lay!
If You Still Need Help picking The Right Hook For The Job
Owner hooks have an interactive chart that helps you choose your hook based on the species you are targeting. It helps with narrowing down the vast selections of hooks. Check it out on their homepage here Owner.