How To Free Snags On Ultralight Tackle

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Getting snags is impossible to avoid with any type of fishing gear you’re using. However, when you’re using ultralight fishing gear it becomes an even bigger problem. If you find yourself in a position where you are at risk of losing your lure, you may want to think about a few of the techniques that I personally use to free up snags and try to save myself a few bucks.

Don’t Try Snatching It Free – One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to try snatching the lure free from the snag. If you’re dealing with a pile of weeds you may be able to get away with it, but for most situations this is either going to cause the lure to sink deeper into the snag, or even end up breaking your line. Rather than snatching the lure free, you’ll want to slow down and try to make a determination of what all you could be snagged on, and how to best approach the situation.

Lightly Wiggle The Rod Tip – The first technique you can use is to hold the rod high into the air and begin wiggling the rod tip back and forth. Try to avoid pulling the rod tip straight into the air because you’ll end up sinking the hooks deeper into the snag. When you move the rod tip left and right you are going to be able to dislodge most snags as long as the lure isn’t set too deep.

Learn The Bowstring Technique – If wiggling the rod back and forth doesn’t work, you can also attempt the “bowstring” technique. For this you want to tighten down your drag, and then reel up any slack. With your pointer and thumb you can grab the line and slowly pluck it like you would a bowstring or guitar string. Pull it semi-tight to you, and then let it “pop” back to it’s original position. This “popping” is enough to get the lure to drop down, freeing itself from the debris under the water.

Build Your Own Lure Knocker – When you’re unable to wiggle the rod tip, and the bowstring technique fails to loosen your lure, you’re going to need to use a “lure knocker”. These are heavy weighted items that will slide down your line and sit on top of the lure. With the added weight of the knocker sitting above your lure, it will usually pull the lure down hard enough to break the hooks free from whatever you’re attached to. You can make your own knocker with a paperclip, and heavy weights. I usually use a total of 2-4 ounces of weight, depending how deep I am fishing.

Reposition Yourself From The Snag – If you are able to walk around, or move the boat, you can position yourself directly across from where you were at when you snagged, and attempt to remove it from an opposite direction. As long as you haven’t set the hooks too deep into the structure, this method is almost guaranteed to loosen the snag and save you a few bucks.

More great how to guides on the blog

How to Properly Fish with Spinners
How to Estimate the Weight of a Fish
How to Attach Fishing Line to a Reel
How to Set Your Drag the Easy Way
How to Fight a Large Fish on Ultralight Tackle
How to Correctly Fillet Fish

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