The topic of today’s show is hook, line & sinker. Fishing can be as simple or as complex as you make it, and there are more rigging options today than ever before. Our guest host this week is James Lindner, and he’s going to expand on this important subject.

James Lindner: When you think of the classic hook, line & sinker, many of you would probably think of either a Lindy Rig, which is a classic walleye fishing system, or a three-way rig, which is a lot of times used for walleyes and even for catfish in recent years. There’s a few different hook, line & sinker options that have become very popular and extraordinarily effective. One of the newest offering that has really blown up in bass fishing is the Tokyo Rig. It’s simply a hook, a barrel swivel that hooks to a small wire shaft with some lead on it, and then you can apply a variety of plastics. It was initially designed to penetrate heavy cover for bass fishing, dropping straight down into cover. Recently, more and more people have been using this for deep water fishing situations. You can cast it out in 12 to 15 foot of water and fish it really slowly on the bottom, and it sort of ricochets off the bottom. I can almost guarantee you in the next couple of years, more and more walleye anglers and other anglers are going to use this rig for alternate fishing situations.

The next rig I want to show you is one that’s also a multi-species presentation, another hook, line & sinker, and it’s called the drop shot rig. They were, once again, initially designed for bass fishing. I’ll rig it up with a small VMC Neko Hook, tied with a polymer knot and a one foot leader that goes down to a sinker, tipped with a small soft plastic leech. I’ll fish this rig with the sinker on the bottom and the bait about 12 inches above. We’ll use this for walleye, panfish, and bass.

Troy Lindner: What about line? There’s three major categories, fluorocarbon, monofilament and braid, but each of them have their own unique subtleties.

James Lindner: Line is one of those things that is a preference thing based on an angler’s own experiences. Let’s first start out talking about braid – there’s a few primary reasons to use it: abrasion resistance and it’s sensitivity and feel. The biggest drawback is that braid can be expensive. I’ll share with you a few braided lines I like to use and why I use braid more than anything else. First up is Sufix 832 braid in 8lb test – I use this in a lot of my walleye and bass fishing situations on spinning rods. It’s extraordinarily sensitive and has a very, very narrow diameter. I can make long casts with it and it’s very durable.The next type of braid I use a lot, particularly for muskie fishing, is Sufix Performance Braid, which is a six carrier braid. It’s extremely tough, which comes in handy when you’re fishing big baits and you need that extra tensile strength. You need line that holds up to the shock and impact of hand-t0-hand combat fishing. The last type of braided line I want to talk about is something called Sufix Nano Braid, and this stuff is really intriguing. It has a really tight weave and it’s particularly effective for light line fishing situations. This is my go-t0 braided line for panfishing. Many panfish anglers consider this line to be revolutionary in the fact that you can cast a really lightweight bait a long ways.

Troy Lindner: It seems like we could talk all day just on the topic of line. It’s important to have different options not only in braid but also fluorocarbon and monofilament. Now when it comes to hooks, this is a big category and it seems like there’s a hook for every technique.

James Lindner: If i see one thing that people do wrong, it’s that they use too big of a hook with too light of line. You need to match your line weight with the size of the hook you’re fishing.

Troy Lindner: Now we’re going to switch gears here to sinkers and a big topic here is lead versus tungsten.

James Lindner: Tungsten has become popular because it’s a smaller size, packed with more weight. It’s an amazing thing because you match fluorocarbon and braid with these tungsten weights and your feel is incredible.