Fishing Knots [Full Guide]

Man tying his fishing line knot.

There are a few different types of fishing knots you’ll need to know how to tie. We’ll quickly outline them below for you.

Knots for Fishing Hooks

Davy Knot

  • Thread three or four inches of the leader through your hook eye
  • Form a loose overhand knot just ahead of the hook
  • Bring the tail end of your leader back through the loop. It should pass between the hook and the overhand knot.
  • Tighten your knot. Start by pulling on the tag end first to draw up your knot. Set the knot by pulling on your mainline next.

Kryston Loop Knot

  • Measure six inches from the end of your line and tie an overhand knot. Cross the line’s tag end over and out of the loop. Leave your loop open.
  • Feed the line’s tag end through the hook eye and back through the loop from behind. Repeat the process for two times to create a box-shaped closed loop that sits right behind the loop that secures your fly.
  • Pull on the standing line to make your box smaller without completely closing it.
  • Adjust the non-slip loop’s size in front of the fly. Hold the top part of the box and pull on the tag end to slid the box closer to the hook eye.
  • When you get the correct size, get the knot wet and pull on the standing line and tag end to tighten your knot down. Pull on the standing line to get it tight.
  • Tie an overhand knot with the tag end around the standing line, wet it, and tighten in. Trim any excess.

Knots for Two Fishing Lines

Alberto Knot

  • Make a loop on your mono leader and pass 10 inches of the braided line through.
  • Hold the braid and loop in your left hand and start wrapping the braid around the double mono line you made when you made the loop.
  • Wrap seven times away from the loop.
  • Wrap seven times back toward the loop, and make each wrap go over the previous one.
  • Feed you tag end back into the loop and have it exit the same way it originally went in.
  • Pull the wraps tight and slide it to close the loop.
  • Cut the tag end on the mono loop and the braided line to finish.

Knots for Your Fishing Reels

Arbor Knot (Works for Traditional, Fly, and Centerpin Reels)

  • Wrap your fishing line around the spools’ arbor using the tag end of the line. Tie an overhand knot around the sanding part using the tag end.
  • Tie a second overhand knot in the tag end. This should be just an inch or two away from the first knot.
  • Gently pull on the standing part of your line. This will slide the first overhand knot down to your spool. The second knot will tighten against the first, and you trim the tag end away to finish.

Fly Reel Knot

  • Wrap your backing around your spool two times.
  • How the tag, both ends, and the backing together.
  • Take your tag end and wrap it around both the backing and tag six times.
  • Pull it gently to tighten it slightly before sliding it down to the spool.
  • Trim your tag end.

Knots for Your Fly Fishing Flies

Riffle Hitch

  • Tie the fly to your leader using your preferred knot. Create a small loop in the leader in front of your fly.
  • Put the loop back over your fly and tighten down to create a half of a hitch on the fly shank.
  • Create a second loop like you made the first.
  • Pass the second loop you created back over the fly. Tighten it down in front of the half hitch you created in the second step.
  • Gently manipulate the fly so that your leader exits the knot you created below the eye. It should end up perpendicular to your shank.

Turle Knot

  • Thread your fly onto your tippet and leave a few inches of tag end to create your knot. Double your line back onto itself. Bring your tag end behind and over the doubled line to make your loop. Pass your tag end twice through the loop you made to tie a double overhand knot.
  • Tighten your knot and slip the loop over your fly. Pull on your leader to set the knot right against your hook.
  • Trim any excess.

Knots for Tying Swivels

Offshore Swivel Knot

  • Run the end of your double line through the swivel’s eyes.
  • Rotate it half of a turn. This will create a single twist between the swivel eye and the end of the loop.
  • Pass your loop and twist it over your swivel. Hold the double line and the end in one hand and let your swivel slide to the end of the double loops you created.
  • Use your left hand to rotate the swivel six to eight times through both loops.
  • Hold pressure on both double lines. Release your loop and pull the swivel. You should see line loops forming.
  • Grasp your swivel with rigging or pliers and push the loop down towards the eye. Keep an even pressure from start to finish.

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