Sometimes knowing when and how to set the hook is a key to landing or losing a fish. The lures and baits, as well as types of hooks you use, will determine whether you set the hook immediately or wait for a second or two after getting a bite. Here is when and how to set the hook on some of the most popular types of lures on the market.
The general rule of thumb is to briefly pause before setting the hook which gives a fish time to fully commit to your bait. If you are into using hollow body frogs, those usually come with quite sturdy hooks and you will need extra time and power to make it penetrate the mouth. Same goes for using topwater soft plastic baits like our Boxer and Classic which can do magic when casting weightless with an offset hook – just wait for a second and set the hook by steadily sweeping the rod backward.
Crank and Spinnerbaits
Bites on these lures feel like either a hard jerk on the line or your lure just stops vibrating. In both cases just keep reeling with the rod pointed down until you feel the fish move and then sweep to set the hook.
Some fish like bass tend to nip at swimbaits so you will have to wait until you feel the fish load up before setting the hook. If you set the hook too early you might end up with a tail bitten off if you are using soft plastic swimbaits. However, there is something you can do to increase your hookset ratio. You can try using our Double Hooks as they don’t leave much chance to a fish when it comes to clear water fishing.
And there is also a special rig we have designed which is even better when it comes to swimbaits – Corkscrew Rig. The idea behind it is that you combine all the benefits of treble hook and versatility of using plastics and different size and weight jigs to control the action. Here is how to rig it:
Jigs and Soft Plastics
Setting the hook on these lures is one of the most fun ways of catching fish. Lean back a little back and give it a good sweep to drive the hook into the roof of the fish’s mouth. If you are using spinning gear, keep in mind that these rods are usually not as strong and require more care and consideration when it comes to setting the hook. It is important to note that you don’t wait and set the hook as soon as you feel a bite as it means that the lure has already been inhaled and fish is in the process of spitting it out, so you have less than a second to react.
Setting the hook when using soft plastic lures can be little different as sometimes fish is playing with the bait and spitting it out immediately or is just nipping on a bait. In this case, play a little bit like you are taking the bait out of fish’s mouth and when you feel a good bite wait for a second and set the hook hard!
Finesse Soft Plastic Baits
This is probably the easiest way to catch fish if you want to make sure that you are not getting zero after a day spent on the water but it also requires a different approach to setting the hook. First of all, you set the hook immediately when you detect a strike. Second, you adjust the drag so you don’t bend the hook or break the line as this technique will require the use of thinner wired hooks and lighter line. So, try employing a gentle sweep hook set to prevent from breaking your line or hook.