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Circle Hooks - - - 9 messages. Showing 1 through 9.
Pike Lover
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Daily Subscription Msg 1 Posted: 10:32 PM 05/27/09 (CST)
So I am thinking of trying to fish with Circle Hooks when I fish live bait (sucker minows). I understand that they help reduce gut hooks. Any thoughts on this product? Are they all they are cracked up to be, or just another way to lose a fish?
PierBridge
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Daily Subscription Msg 2 Posted: 02:54 AM 05/28/09 (CST)
I love Circle hooks for the simple fact that they work as advertised. I've probably caught well over a 100 fish on Circle hooks and all of them have been hooked perfectly in the side of the mouth.

You'll probably lose some fish that you wouldn't normally using circle hooks but once you learn the technique the misses will be limited. And as far as the missed fish go the time you save not having to get your hook out of a fishes stomach or re-tying after cutting your line means you'll be back in the water quicker and hopefully catching more Fish.

A fish hooked with a circle hook remains alive much longer than one with a 10/0 hook in it's stomach which is why I use them in some of my applications. Many studies have been done on Circle hooks and its been determined that mortality of released circle hooked fish is a significant fraction of that of released “J” hooked fish.
To me that's worth losing a Fish or two knowing all of my fish will survive when released.

With Circles you don't set the hook and that takes some getting use to after years of setting the hook. Trust me its almost impossible not to set the hook the first few times using Circle hooks.

If you are talking Bass or Walleye all you do with circles when detecting a bite is point the Rod tip at the fish and start reeling. You then just lift the pole and the Fish will have hooked itself right in the corner of the mouth. I also love circles when fishing with young kids who are not always paying attention that way you're not digging your hooks out of 5 inch sunnies all day because the fish are hooked in the mouth with Circle hooks.

I always use Circle hooks when targeting Channel Cats. I use longer poles with softer tips and let the pole and Circle do their job. When the pole bends I just pick up the pole and wallah fish on!

Other than I don't really have an opinion on Circle Hooks!... smile smiley


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Pike Lover
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Joined 02/11/2008
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Daily Subscription Msg 3 Posted: 12:23 PM 05/28/09 (CST)
Thanks for the review. I should have been more spacific that I will use them with large suckers for Pike fishing. I would imagine with a mouth like a pike a resonable strong hook set is still in order.
PierBridge
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Daily Subscription Msg 4 Posted: 01:55 PM 05/28/09 (CST)
Nope, no setting the hook on any Circle hook it will pull straight out and you will miss the fish.

You might want to look into some quick strike rigs if your targeting Norty and Ski's.

Good Luck!


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Pike Lover
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Joined 02/11/2008
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Daily Subscription Msg 5 Posted: 03:52 PM 05/28/09 (CST)
Not a big fan of quick strike. I suppose they are fine if the fish are hitting fast and hard, but a minnow doesn't live long on those. My experience is live minnow is better, even though I know they will take a dead one. ALso you can by very large circle hooks. I think they are even used in ocean applications, so I would be surprised of larger sized fish are out of the mix.
The Fisher
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Daily Subscription Msg 6 Posted: 04:03 PM 05/28/09 (CST)
Hey Pike Lover,

Pier has you pointed in the right direction. I would largely agree with his assesment of the circle hook question concerning fishing for pike or muskie.

I, and several others I'm sure, have tried comparisons of circle hooks versus quick strike rigs on muskies/pike. It has now been my experience that you are better off using quick strike rigs in fishing suckers for those species. I seemed to miss more ski's with a circle hook. I think it was because it is hooked in the bait's lip and you would still have to allow the muskie/pike to turn and injest the sucker as they do not normally hit the bait from the front. This basically negates the reasons to use a circle hook to begin with. You must still let the fish take the sucker too deeply before the hook is in position to make a solid hookup.

If you are unfamiliar with quick strikes they consist of a single hook that goes through the suckers lip attached with wire leader to a treble hook that is hooked to the sucker near the dorsal fin. As you are probably aware most all ski's strike from the side if possible... pike somewhat less often. However, the idea is that when the fish strikes the sucker they have the treble hook in their mouth. You set the hook almost immediately and have virtually no chance of a fish swallowing a hook.

I have boated probably over 100 muskies and who knows how many pike on quick strike rigs now and NEVER ONCE had a fish swallow the hook. ALL THOSE FISH were released unharmed to be caught again. The idea though is that you can set the hook almost immediately and have a solid set as you are directly setting a treble hook that is in their mouth.

I can't remember ever not putting hooks into the fish that I set the hook on in the case of a quick strike rig. I have lost a few at boatside because of poor netting or some other reason..but never can I remember even once not getting the hooks into the fish. Any that were lost were due to operator error!

It truly is a win/win in using quick strikes for pike/muskie. You have a great hook set with a treble hook that is in the mouth as well as virtually no chance that the fish will swallow the hooks. Therefore virtually every pike/ski will be released unharmed if you wish.

Well that has been my experience. I would however agree with PierBridge that circle hooks are a great way to go for any species other than pike, muskies, and gar.

Good Fishing To Ya,

Jason "The Fisher" Pence
The Fisher
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Daily Subscription Msg 7 Posted: 04:14 PM 05/28/09 (CST)
Hey Pike Lover,

I just saw the post about your lack of love for quick strikes and how your minnows had been dying using the quick strikes. I had already made my post....so i thought I might make this addition to it.

One question I would have is how large is the bait you are using? I am normally using things from 6 inches up to 24 inches. If you are using things smaller than 6 inches then just a treble very near the dorsal will be stellar. However, if you are having large enough bait die on the quick strike then I suspect you are actually putting the treble though the bait..probably through the backbone and killing it. They should live fine. I normally have bait live all day unless they are eaten. A 6-9 inch sucker should live all day on a quick strike with no problem unless the treble is placed to near the spine.

In placing the treble you scrape off a few scales and then just insert it barely under the skin and then pull it back out of the skin. In essence it is never to be in the bait...just barely hooked through the skin..not in the meat at all.

Anywayzzzz...hopefully some of that gives you a few ideas. Let us know how it goes!

Good Fishing To Ya,

Jason "The Fisher" Pence
Pike Lover
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Joined 02/11/2008
Posts:150

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Daily Subscription Msg 8 Posted: 10:51 AM 05/29/09 (CST)
Ok you have talked me into it. I will give the rigs another try. I don't have time to make any, as I leave for my fishing vacation tomorrow AM, but will stop by cabelas on my way home to grab a few. I know my local bait-shop has them too.
PierBridge
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Daily Subscription Msg 9 Posted: 12:23 PM 05/29/09 (CST)
Thanks Jason good Stuff!

As far as suckers dying thats the way it is with Sucker minnows they are not very durable especially once the water Temps start to rise.

I use to use them often for Catting but learned the price and longevity were not working for me. Nothing worse than seeing your $2 Suckers starting to die on the way to the lake.
Thank goodness for Bullheads which are basically free and quite durable in the mid summer heat!


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Circle Hooks - - - 9 messages. Showing 1 through 9.
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