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It’s no secret amongst carp anglers that hair rigs are a proven carp catcher. They are truly one of the best carp fishing rigs.
Want to know what I mean?
These hair rigs are specifically designed to work based on how carp feed. They will allow your bait to sit more naturally, free of the actual business end of the hook. If the carp takes the bait, these hooks will make it practically impossible for it to ‘spit’ the hook.
These hooks are made from high quality carbon steel, and they hold their shape well.
It’s not all about shape, however.
You’ll also want your point to stay sharp. Carbon Steel ensures that.
The best bit? You’ll get 18 pre-tied rigs in a pack. Add up the minutes you’d spend tying 18 individual hair rigs. With any luck you’ll see that this pack saves you a significant amount of time.
Great value with 18 in a pack.
Great quality carbon steel hooks.
Sometimes you might want to customize an element of the rig by building it yourself.
For a proven purpose-built carp rig this is a great choice. You’ll save time and be able to fish, safe in the knowledge that you’ve got a great chance of success.
I’m a big fan of simplicity. And these hooks offer exactly that. They are available in a range of different sizes. By being able to mix and match different sizes you can also mix and match the size of bait that you want to present to the fish.
It’s just a hook, right?
Wrong. The bronze color is more in keeping with the natural environment. The last thing you want is a shiny mirror effect sparkling off your bait and spooking the fish. The straight eye aids in bait presentation and ensures consistent hook penetration when you strike.
A good all-round hook.
Various sizes available.
None, to be honest.
They are strong, reliable and versatile. As fishing hooks go this is all that you’ll need.
This hookset offers really great value. For a modest sum, and depending on which hook value pack you choose, you’ll get between 50-150 hooks. That should be enough to keep even the most avid fisherman going for quite a while.
But you get more than just a lot of hooks…
The shape of the hooks is unique. The eye is positioned in such a way that once the hook is set, it’s going to stay there. The hook point is absolutely razor-sharp, which is exactly what you want. The eye size is optimized to allow thicker line, which I think is a great feature.
I also really like that the hook is finished in black, this gives it a low visibility profile, which should increase the number of bites.
Chemically sharpened hook points, the sharpest there is.
I love that these hooks are barbless, they are really good for catch and release.
Quite possibly the best barbless carp hooks you can get.
The unusual shape limits the type of rigs you can use them for, so they might not be for everyone.
For a perfect catch and release hook, these are great value for the money.
If you are the type of angler who likes to change things constantly to increase their catch rate you are going to need a lot of hooks. You’ll probably be spending a lot on hooks then?
Wait, you’re going to love this…
For the money you are going to get so many hooks with this set.
600 hooks! And they come in 10 different sizes. That’s a lot of bang for your buck! And they are really good quality too. The long shanks make them ideal for worm baits or any large bait. They also feature a double reverse barb which makes sure the bait stays fixed in positon.
The ultra-sharp hook point is turned inward which aids in hook penetration.
There is quite a lot of versatile technology in this hook, including bait barbs and an inward facing point.
Constructed from high quality and bend resistant carbon steel.
Bait barbs are a blessing and (sometimes) a curse, they make unhooking fish a little more difficult. This also goes for removing old bait from the hook.
Variety is the spice of life, and of fishing. By being able to adapt your setup, and thinking about how many hooks you actually get, this is a great option for those of you on a budget.
Well, I’m not going to complain about removing bait without offering a solution.
Ok, prepare to be amazed…
These hooks are positively space-age. It’s all about what they are made from. Teflon is a compound that is world famous for having the same friction coefficient as ice.
What does this mean?
The hooks are nonstick. They slide in to whatever you pull the hook point into. Whether that is your bait, or the mouth of a hungry carp. Unhooking is super simple too! The curved shank helps to keep the fish hooked during the fight, only aided further by the micro barb behind the point.
Space age nonstick technology.
The hook shape is reliable to keep the fish hooked.
The hook shape will limit the rigs and bait that you may be able to use.
Nonstick is good for hooks. If you are a conscientious angler then these will help with catch and release. Just be sure to crush the barb first.
I really can’t emphasize enough how good these hooks are. They are a really great solution if you are looking to catch bigger fish.
Want to know what makes them so great?
There are lots of features packed into this piece of curly metal. The points are needle-sharp and ultra-fine ensuring easy hookups. And the wide gap allows you to fit a variety of baits onto the hook bend. It also aids in ensuring that hooked fish stay hooked.
There’s more to come…
One feature I really like is the shape. Aside from the above, circular hooks have a tendency to hook fish neatly in the corner of their mouths. This allows you to unhook them really easily. Aside from considering carp welfare, it also means you will save time, which equals more fishing!
With circular points a hookup is a gradual affair and removes shock on the line. The line will tighten gradually instead of a severe ‘pull’. They are great hooks for catch and release.
Excellent fish holding and easy removal, what’s not to love?
One of the best-known hook brands on the market today, real quality and it shows.
One of the best carp hooks on the market.
The hooks might not be as suitable for smaller finer baits. But you want to catch big fish, right?
If you are a fan of big baits and big fish then you are going to need something that stands to all the stresses and strains that come with it. These hooks could be an ideal choice.
If you are going to invest in good quality hooks you want to ensure they stay sharp right?
A blunt or dull hook is useless… And actually, is quite unkind to the fish’s mouth. You’ll be able to keep your hooks in the best condition by giving them a quick ‘refurb’ from time to time. A diamond-coated sharpening stone is the best way to do this.
As one of the hardest materials known to man, this diamond stone will make light work of touching up any hook points. It even features different grits in order to ensure maximum sharpness and therefore a higher percentage of hookups.
I’ll even show you how to use it…
Watch this video to find out how to sharpen fishing hooks.
It is really effective at getting your hook points back to their best.
If you are using heavy hooks, you’ll need a stone that is capable of sharpening them.
This is a great solution.
At 200/400 diamond grit, this stone will have your hook points gleaming in seconds. It even features a handy groove to make sure you have got the angle just right.
And you aren’t just limited to hooks…
Oh no, this sharpener is substantial enough to touch up other items in your tackle box. This includes knives, scissors and bait needles.
When sharpening you will need a firm grip, the dipped plastic handle ensures this. Come rain, shine or even snow, it will give a rock-solid performance.
A versatile tool for all of your sharpening needs.
Rugged grit to rescue even very blunt hooks.
I would have liked at least one of the grits to be slightly finer, but hey I like really sharp hooks.
A tool for sharpening everything, what’s not to like? It might be a bit brutal for really fine hooks, but as a general sharpener it really works well.
Buyers Guide to Carp Fishing Hooks
If you’ve ever had a hook fail, or kept missing bites you’ll know that all hooks are not created equal. It can be frustrating to realize that, but for choosing a better hook, you could have landed a big fish.
I’m now going to tell you what to look for so it never happens again and to help you choose the best fishing hooks for carp.
The Best Hook Size for Carp Fishing
Big hooks catch big fish. But small hooks catch big fish and small fish too. If you are wanting to increase the number of fish you catch, it is better to go with a smaller hook size. If you are being ‘bothered’ by a shoal of smaller fish you can always go bigger to deter them.
But that’s not all…
A large part of catching a lot of carp is to do with bait presentation. Let me give you an extreme example to understand the concept. A piece of sweetcorn on a size 2/0 hook is going to result in you catching nothing.
What I’m trying to say is…
What dictates your hook size is actually the bait. You need it to be perfectly presented to catch a carp. The secret to good bait presentation is picking a hook size that works with the bait.
You are going to achieve four things when selecting a hook shape.
A hook that works with your chosen method. Such as float fishing or bottom fishing.
A hook that secures and presents the bait well.
A hook that hooks the fish as soon as it bites and keeps the fish on the line.
A hook that is easy to remove once you have landed the fish.
As a good all-round hook, a circular hook ticks all of the above boxes. They tend to work slightly better for bottom fishing, however, if you have a range of hooks and decide to use a float then it is fairly simple to change to something else.
Securing and presenting the bait is a biggie. Barbs can go some way to making this easy, especially if they are mounted on the shank of the hook. Finer wired hooks tend to make the bait act in the most natural manner possible. Wide gap hooks allow you to be versatile in your choice of bait.
Are you getting the picture…
For a solid and strong hook, go for circular. Just like a stone arch, circular hooks have few week points. One proven method to keep fish on the line is the use of a barb. We’ll talk about barbs in a few moments.
Once you have landed the fish you are going to want to remove the hook quickly, so that you can put him back into the water. Barbless hooks make this easier. Other things that might also help are frictionless hook materials such as Teflon.
I said I’d talk about barbs… here it is.
When to use Barbed or Barbless Carp Hooks
If catch and release is your thing (and I’ll be honest, it should be) then you are really going to want to use barbless hooks. It just makes life so much easier than having to play ‘fish dentist’ on the bank.
If you still are unsure how to do it have a watch of this to see just how easy it is.
Being a successful carp fisherman is about getting as much information as you can. This includes from other anglers. I’m going to address a few common questions.
Can carp see hooks?
My general advice is this…
If you have the possibility to do it, hide the hook within your bait. Carp are pretty clever creatures and if they have been caught before they may very well associate a hook eye, or even the point with being caught.
Why take the chance?
Carp tend to have very good eyesight, but they rely mostly on ‘mouth feel’ when foraging for bait. Anything that is out of the ordinary will turn them off. It is one of the reasons why hair rigs are so effective.
In answer to the question, yes, as far as we are aware carp can see hooks. The only time a fish should be aware of the hook is when you are reeling it in. Choose dark or drab colored hooks to ensure success.
What are the best hooks for winter carp fishing?
Big baits tend to work better in winter.
Let me tell you why…
If the fish are slowing down and there’s a reduction in natural food due to a drop in water temperature, they will only move when the food presented represents a net gain in energy.
Think about what I said above. What do you need if you are using a bigger bait?
That’s right, a bigger hook. By presenting a bigger bait you are giving the fish a reason to move and eat your bait. Make them an offer they can’t refuse, and see the results.
How to sharpen carp hooks?
As I said, a blunt hook is a waste of time. It will make your angling life more difficult all round, so it is vitally important to sharpen your hooks from time to time.
Using a sharpening stone couldn’t be easier. Look for features in a good hook sharpening stone such as varying grit sizes and grooves to ensure that you get the correct angle.
You need a good grip and a steady hand. Check out the review section above where I have linked a video to show you how to do it.
Understanding what to look for in a fish hook.
Bearing in mind that it’s just a sharp curved piece of metal, there is a whole science behind fishing hooks. It is easy to get bogged down in terminology.
A picture paints a thousand words… And so does a video.
If you are looking for more information, have a check of this video, it will tell you everything you need to know about fishing hooks.
What is the best bait for carp fishing?
I’ve covered this in one of my other articles. The best carp bait can be a tried and tested favorite such as sweetcorn or, if the fish are being particularly reluctant to bite, you can try something different. My peanut butter carp balls seem to work on those ‘slow days’.
A hook is actually a vital piece of tackle. I bet you didn’t realize they were so important and in fact quite technical when you start to take a really detailed look.
The best carp fishing hooks will allow you to use the bait you want, catch the fish you want, and hopefully keep the fish on the line more consistently.
Have you had any great experiences with a certain type of hook? Leave a comment below and I’ll maybe even try it on the lake next time I go, I’m always open to suggestions.