Circle hooks and birthday bluefish [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Circle hooks and birthday bluefish

Dble Haul
09-24-2001, 01:36 PM
My first experience with circle hook flies was full of mixed results. During the day, I had at least six hits on the circle hook juvies that I'd tied, but no hookups. I'm assuming that these fish were stripers, because my partner brought in a few on the standard J hook flies. So I changed over to the same pattern tied on a J hook, and met some success with the stripers.

As night fell, the striper activity slowed down tremendously. We changed to black deceivers and juvies, and found willing bluefish at the end of a breachway at the tail end of the outgoing tide. Most casts resulted in a strike, so I decided to give the circle hooks another shot. I tied on a black circle hook juvie, and nearly every strike resulted in a hookup. My partner and I saw virtually no difference between our success rates (J hook vs. circle), and the lip hooking ensured by the circle hooks was very welcome with bluefish in the dark.

So now comes the inevitable question. Would these hooks have worked in the daytime for the blues, or are they only worthwhile at night when these fish tend to take a fly deep and deliberately and usually hook themselves? I tend to think that they would be just as effective in the daytime, because there's rarely anything subtle about a bluefish strike.

I'll continue to experiment with these tools as the opportunities present themselves. I really can't complain about the results so far. My birthday was full of fish and it turned out to be a pretty good time.

Until then,


09-24-2001, 03:06 PM
Mark -

Did you use a wire tippet with the circle hooks at night? If not, did you get bit off very often?

If you were able to avoid biteoffs because of the lip hooking I would definitely put a couple in the box for blues, easier than tying wire by a long shot!

Dble Haul
09-24-2001, 03:16 PM
Juro- I used a 6" section of 45# test Ande's tippet at night. During the daytime I've noticed that this stuff will make even the blues a bit shy, so I only use it at night. For what it's worth, I did have to retie every three or four fish because I noticed nicks in the shock tippet. The blues were definitely taking these flies deep.

You've given me food for thought. Maybe I'll try a wire tippet next time, and save myself the aggravation of having to retie my shock tippet every so often. I'm also going to search for circle hooks with longer shanks; this may help to eliminate the wear on the shock tippet. We'll see.


09-25-2001, 07:51 AM
i use a 50# flourocarbon bite guard, and i also pre-rig them on whatever flies i think i might be using. then i just loop them on to the leader. ive caught some nice bass too that didnt seem to be spooked a bit by the flourocarbon. however i only do this when i know theres blues in the water. so i loose a fly, and then start going to the pre rigged flies. i have caught quite a few blues without having to change rigs.
i dont like to use wire if i know theres a chance bass are around too.