A common problem experienced by every angler at least once in their lifetime is the angst and annoyance of bringing a fish in so close to the shore/boat’s edge, only to see it flick it’s body in such a way that your well-tied knot loosens and unties the second before you can grab the landing net.
This problem was brought to my attention yet again on the EKKA people’s day holiday this week when a number of budding young anglers presented me with heartbroken faces after their knots did not hold. So this week we’ll look at one of the basic yet extremely essential elements of fishing – knot tying. There are a vast number of knots available to be learnt by recreational anglers with varying degrees of difficulty. The average angler needs perhaps no more than three or four basic knots, but these knots relate directly to the style of fishing and what is expected to be caught.
Keep in mind, however Johnny who only fishes Barwon Banks won’t be interested in the knots Billy uses when Fly Fishing at Lake Cootharaba and the same goes for Terry who only uses his knots for bream at the Cod Hole. One thing reigns true, though, each knot when properly tied, can be the difference between boating a big fish, or losing it.
I suggest that you learn and use only those knots that are of the greatest use to you, and practise, practise, practise! The best knots are those which become second nature to you and can be tied under great stress – like when the tailor are running hot and your fingers are numb from the cold but if you don’t get another gang on, they’ll be gone quicker than you can say “frost-bite”!
A handy hint is to also say the steps out aloud when just learning a knot, coming up with ways to remember each component and you’ll remember much easier. Don’t rely on a knot book for reference as you will come to depend on this and when it comes to crunch time the book won’t always be available. The most commonly used know used by anglers would be the Clinch Knot, sometimes known as the “Angler’s Noose”. Kids around the world are taught this simple yet effective knot when they first start fishing. But the Clinch can uncoil if something big enough is on the other end.
Two knots that won’t uncoil and can be used by any angler for everyday use are the Double Uni knot and the Locked Half Blood knot.
Double Uni Knot:
This is in my opinion the most universal knot for joining two lines together with both mono and braided lines. Lines of different thickness can be joined together, two mono lines, two braided or most commonly braid to mono lines. Most anglers that have a spinning reel or bait caster that is used for lure fishing will back the spools with mono line, use the double uni knot to join it to the top shot braided line. A length of abrasion resistant fluorocarbon leader material would then be joined using the double uni knot again to the braided line. It is easy to use this knot with many different line sizes and types; it is really strong and can be tied in less than 1 minute.
Locked Half Blood Knot:
This is definitely the most widely used fishing knot for tying terminal tackle on. This is one you can tie it in less than 30 second and it has approx knot strength of 90%. This knot is really only any good for mono lines as braids will often slip free under pressure. It is good for tying mono up to about 80lb, which will cover most anglers’ needs. To tie it start by feeding the line through the eye of the tackle, twist the line around the main line about 6 times, feed it back through the hole formed by the first twist, now feed the line back through the open loop that has formed, apply saliva to the knot and pull it tight.
I am sure that if you don’t already use these knots when fishing, they will come in handy sometime in the near future. They are simple, strong and fairly quick to tie.
LOCAL FISHING REPORT
Noosa: Tailor, bream and the odd tarwhine between the first cutting and Teewah Village. Dart and whiting along Sunshine Beach. Tailor, trevally and flathead on lures inside the river mouth. Bream and still a few luderick along the rock walls at the river mouth. Whiting in the lower reaches, best along the Tewantin stretch.
Maroochy: Tailor along the beaches and off the coffee rock at Pincushion – best at night. Bream in the mouth of the river on the full tide and as the sun rises. Several quality flathead have been caught on soft plastics and fresh prawn in the shallow channels between Twin Waters and Cotton Tree, also at Picnic Point and Bli Bli. Bigger whiting are getting caught during the day around Goat and Channel Islands. Mud crabs along the Bli Bli reach.
Kawana: Tailor off the rocks at Point Cartwright and along the La Balsa Park stretch. Bream, tarwhine and tailor along Kawana Beach also a few decent bream at Currimundi. Bream and garfish between La Balsa Park Boat Ramp and the Kawana Waters Canals. Sand whiting in the Mooloolah river reach.
Caloundra: Tailor at Kings Beach, off the rocks at Moffatt Heads and inside the Bar. Bream and flathead around the mouth of Bells Creek and also on the making tide at the Skids. Whiting along the sand banks on the NW side of Bribie.
Sharky and Kids Caleb, Corey and Sienna fished the Cod Hole on the pupil free day instead of going to the EKKA.
Isabella and her Dad Craig Freier targeted flathead and landed these pan-size fish at Bli Bli.