Best Knots for Tying Hooks and Lures

The 4 Best Knots for Tying On Lures & Hooks

The FishVault fishing subscription box includes some of the most popular lures and baits that anglers are finding success with. The proper lure can make a novice angler look like the next MLF Pro. And when you finally find that special lure that is working for the day, the last thing you want to happen is lose it because of a poorly tied fishing knot. That got us thinking about the best fishing knots to tie when you are using lures or hooks. Everyone has their favorite, but listed below is our favorite options:

  1. Snell Knot

In terms of sheer hook-to-line strength and easiness to tie, the snell knot is the best fishing knot around. It is great for connecting fishing line directly to baited hooks. Snell knots were originally conceived for eyeless hooks but can be used on many other types of hooks and lures. Use a snell knot for a variety of saltwater fish along with freshwater bass, catfish and carp.

Snell knot diagram

To tie a Snell Knot:

  • Pass the line through the hook to create a loop
  • Turn the loop around the hook's shank several times while working your way towards the curve
  • Tighten the knot by pulling the main line
  1. Improved Clinch Knot

This versatile knot is ideal for lure fishing and can also be used to attach hooks and swivels. Since it keeps up to 95% of the line's strength, many anglers use clinch knots for strong fish. The knot is best for monofilament and lighter fluorocarbon.

Improved Clinch knot diagram

To tie an Improved Clinch Knot:

  • Pass 6-12 inches of line through the hook/lure/swivel eye
  • Twist the tag end around the standing line 5-6 times while leaving a small space between the eye and the line
  • Run the tag end through this space to create a second loop
  • Then run it through this new loop
  • Slowly pull the tag end and line away from the hook to tighten
  1. Rapala Knot

Created by Lefty Kreh and perfected by the Rapala lure company, this knot is commonly used for tying a lure directly to a fishing line. It keeps line strength well and gives the lure a more natural motion when fly fishing on fluorocarbon.

The Rapala knot is known for being strong and reliable, and it is often used for fishing for larger game fish. The double overhand knots create a secure grip on the lure or hook, and the doubled line helps to distribute the pressure evenly when fighting a fish.

Rapala knot diagram

To tie a Rapala Knot:

  • Start by creating a loose overhead knot
  • Thread the tag end through the lure eye and back through the original knot
  • Give the tag end three turns around the main line before passing it through the overhead knot again
  • Then pass through the new loop you just made
  • To tighten, moisten the line, then hold the tag end close to the knot while pulling both the tag end and standing line
  1. Uni Knot

This knot is excellent for connecting eyed hooks to a line or leader, and it is strong enough to withstand the pressure of a large fish. Anglers also use it to attach fishing lines to reel arbors and swivels. You can tie a uni knot on any line type for freshwater and saltwater tackle.

Uni knot diagram

To tie a Uni Knot:

  • Pass the line through the hook eye and double it back
  • Place the tag end over this doubled line to create a loop
  • Turn it around the line 5-6 times
  • Pass the tag end through the loop
  • Hold both ends in one hand and pull until almost tight.
  • Moisten the lines
  • Pull the standing line away from the hook to fully tighten


Was your favorite knot listed? If “not” (pun intended), then feel free to leave a comment with your go-to option. All of us at FishVault love to engage in a healthy discussion about the fishing lifestyle. Who knows, maybe your favorite knot will become our favorite. We would love to hear about it. Until then, we will see you on the water.