7 Essential Knots You Need To Know

How to Tie a Taut Line

Bryan Schatz December 16, Last updated: This means that I have recently taken up drinking beer at the pier and on top of the cliffs overlooking the ocean.

Bryan Schatz December 16, Last updated: This means that I have recently taken up drinking beer at the pier and on top of the cliffs overlooking the ocean. I sit and drink and watch the ocean alongside my voiceless companion, Fishing Pole.

He communicates only through infrequent gestures, and thus, does not disturb or cloud the comfortable ramble of my thoughts with unnecessary chatter. I also like Fishing Pole because, though he rarely communicates, when he does, it is profound. I think my fishing pole is mute, and the world is conspiring against me with my fishing endeavors.

Despite research, advice from the bait shop and a slew of fishermen, not to mention many, many hours spent trying out everything I have heard, my fishing spoils equal zilch. First, I attacked the problem of not knowing what bait to use, what size hooks to tie on my line, and the effective technique for pier fishing. As I ventured into this unknown world I quickly came to realize that fishing is a uniquely individual sport.

Not only in the sense in that it is often performed in solitude, but also that each fisherman has a specific set of guidelines that he believes incorporates the ingredients necessary for fishing fruition. And these guidelines are quite frequently in contradiction to the opinions of other fishermen, even at the same pier. They went something like this: So what kind of bait should I use at the pier? I only use squid. Cut it up though.

Whole squid is too big. Then I went and bought a bunch of squid and still have a ton of it in the freezer. No fish make residence in my freezer, however. Next conversation, after having no success: Yeah, you should get the sardines. Use a number 2 hook. I did however think that I hooked on a monstrous fish—which in reality was probably my hook caught in the rocks on the ocean floor—and struggled so hard against it that my line snapped and I lost my hooks and sinker…something that has occurred with unfortunate frequency since the first occasion.

Next, again after having no success: Nice, what kind of bait are you using? Nothing around here bites on anything else. Number 4 This continued on in the same contradictory and confusing pattern.

I can only conclude that perhaps this kind of advice should be taken as sort of a poll. The answer that comes up the most frequently is probably what you should go with. This requires a large pool of individuals, so ask everyone you see fishing, create a spreadsheet for the data, and base your actions on the numbers. Other aspects of the sport that must be considered include the flow of the tide, the depth of the ocean, the type of fish you want to catch, how tight you want the drag, the type of bait, the time of year, the time of day, the daily migratory patterns of certain fish species, and about a million little pieces of gear that all apparently have a purpose and are a requirement in the fish-catching biz.

But really, all of this is far too advanced for me and likely many like me at this stage. Oh, and did you realize that there are dozens of knots used in fishing? Which brings me to the main purpose of this article: Image from Shutterstock Knot Tying You cannot go fishing if you cannot tie a knot. Different knots are used for different situations, and having a variety of them in your arsenal and knowing when to use them will help make you and me a successful angler.

Though there are dozens of knots that can be used, there are three in particular that come up repeatedly as being the most important ones to know how to tie. While the knot works well with both monofilament and braided lines, it is particularly useful for braided, which can be difficult to make knots with. Thread your line through the eye of the piece of tackle you are attaching. Thread it through the eye once again so that you end up with a four to six inch length of doubled line. Tie an overhand knot in the doubled line and let your hook hang loose.

Pull the loop of line over your piece of tackle. Tighten the knot by pulling the tag end and holding the static line. To finish, clip the tag. The Improved Clench Knot: An easy, common, and useful knot, the Improved Clench Knot serves as a versatile way of tying tackle to the end of your line.

Insert the end of your fishing line through the eye of the hook.

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How to Tie a Full Windsor Knot

Drape the tie around your neck.

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