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Best Fishing Hooks For Every Situation

Written by: Pete D
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There’s no such thing as the “best” hook, just as there’s no “best” rod for every species, every technique, and every situation.

Instead, the best fishing hook is the one that matches the species, circumstances, and technique at hand.

For instance, fishing crappie in a brush pile with a treble hook is going to be little more than an exercise in frustration, while using a fine-wire Aberdeen hook to lure redfish with live shrimp isn’t going to do you much good.

We can’t cover every hook for every application, but we can get you started. Below, you’ll find reviews of some of the most common hooks, covering a wide range of fishing situations:

Also Read:

Best Fishing Hooks Reviewed

Gamakatsu EWG Offset Worm Hook - Best Worm/Senko/Creature Hook for Bass Fishing

Gamakatsu 25 Pack EWG Offset Worm Hook (Black, 3/0) (58413-25)

Amazon 

Sizes: 1, 2, 4, 1/0, 2/0, ,3/0, 4/0, and 5/0

Bass anglers need a sharp, strong hook that drives home easily and locks up tighter than a good trailer hitch. That’s why Gamakatsu is a trusted name in hooks - they always deliver top-notch performance.

For techniques like Texas and Carolina rigging, as well as less common rigs like the Jika, an offset extra-wide gap hook is essential.

That sweeping bend creates space for the worm, senko, or creature bait of your choice, and the offset allows the point to stay in line with the eye, leading to hard, secure hookups.

Offered in the sizes most needed for largemouth, this is a must-have in every tackle box.

Mustad UltraPoint KVD Elite Series Triple Grip Treble Hook - Best Treble Hook for Lures

KVD Elite Triple Grip Treble, Forged - Black Nickel 4

Amazon 

Sizes: 1, 1/0, 2, 4, and 6

Mustad’s UltraPoint KVD trebles are ideal for replacing cheap, dull, or damaged treble hooks on your crankbaits, jerkbaits, stick baits, and top water lures.

Sharp and strong with gaps that are just perfect for catching deep in a fish’s mouth, these are my go-to replacements on any treble-hooked lure in my tackle box.

One tip I often offer is to switch your hooks immediately - or at least after a season of use. Lure manufacturers typically supply their products with acceptable - but not great - hooks to keep costs reasonable. I get that, and that’s no knock against them.

But you’ll notice an immediate difference when you run a few of these KVDs on a crankbait.

Gamakatsu Octopus Hook - Best General Hook for Live Bait

Gamakatsu Octopus NS Black Hook Size 2/0 25 Per Pack

Amazon 

Sizes: 1, 2, 4, 6, 8, 1/0, 2/0, 3/0, 4/0, 5/0, 6/0, and 7/0

Octopus hooks are designed with a wide gap and a sweeping curve in the bend that brings the point and barb back toward the shank.

This delicate curve creates a self-hooking mechanism that’s perfect for live bait like shrimp, cut mullet, and minnows.

And the orientation of the eye means that your line pulls the point up and in when the fish takes your bait. Not only does it reliably turn into the corner of a fish’s mouth and drive deep, but it also reduces gut hooking and increases hookset percentages. 

These Gamakatsus are as good as it gets.

They’re sharp, strong, and available in a wide range of sizes to suit almost any species and bait option.

Mustad Classic Standard Wire Demon Perfect In Line Wide Gap Circle Hook - Best Circle Hook for Live Bait

Mustad Classic 39944 Standard Wire Demon Perfect In Line Wide Gap Circle Hook | Saltwater Freshwater hooks for Tuna, Catfish, Bass and more, [Size 7/0, Pack of 50], Black Nickel

Amazon 

Sizes: 1, 2, 4, 1/0, 2/0, 3/0, 4/0, 5/0, 6/0, 7/0, 8/0, 9/0, and 10/0

Circle hooks are similar to octopus hooks, though they offer an even more pronounced curve. These self-hooking hooks are perfect for techniques that leave your rod in a holder while your live bait does all the work.

Mustad’s Demon In Line Wide Gap hooks are very hard to beat for everything from red drum to tuna, specks to catfish. They’re sharp, plenty strong, and available in sizes that range from a tiny 4 to a giant 10/0.

If you’re fishing live bait and you haven’t switched from a J-hook to one of these, you don’t know what you’re missing!

Mustad Classic 4 Extra Strong Kingfish Treble Hook - Best Treble Hook for Channel Catfish

Kingfish Treble, 4 Extra Strong - Black Nickel 1

Amazon 

Sizes: 1, 2, 4, and 6

A big cat will wreck a standard hook, no question about it, and from snags to hard fights, you need a hook that’s built tough.

Mustad’s Classic 4 Extra Strong trebles are constructed from thick-gauge steel. It’s not going to let you down, and the barbs are sharp and reliable.

The shank is short enough to keep those points where they need to be, and you can count on these Mustads to lock up tight.

Keeshine 4X Triple Grip Treble Hook - Best Treble Hook for Blue and Flathead Catfish

KEESHINE Treble Hooks 4X Strong Triple Grip, High Carbon Steel Barbed Fishing Hooks Strong Sharp Strength Big Game Fishhooks Tackle Hooks (Pack of 10) #2/0

Amazon 

Sizes: 1, 2, 4, 6, 1/0, 2/0, 3/0, and 4/0

Keeshine’s 4X Triple Grips are available in huge sizes that are just perfect for monster blues and flatheads, where a ridiculously strong hook that doesn’t know when to quit is exactly what you need.

Tough enough to survive any trophy cat, these hooks won’t bend or break, and you can be confident that they’ll hook hard and fight till the end.

These are mean, big hooks as you get to sizes 3/0 and 4/0, and they’re just perfect for stinky garlic chicken breast and liver.

Eagle Claw 202EL Aberdeen Extra-Light Wire Hook - Best Light-Wire Hook for Crappie

Aberdeen fishing hook

Bass Pro

Sizes: 1, 2, 4, 6, and 1/0

Crappie have earned the nickname “papermouths” for a reason, and to catch them effectively, you need to use a much larger hook than you’d think.

And because they favor minnows as they mature, a think-wire, long-shank hook is perfect. It keeps your live bait kicking longer, and in the event that you get hung up in a brush pile, you can bend the hook to free it and bend it right back into shape for the next cast.

Eagle Claws thin-wire Aberdeens are simply fantastic, and I don’t know a crappie fanatic who doesn’t like them.

Mustad UltraPoint Slow Death Special Bend Aberdeen - Best Trolling Hook for Walleye

Slow Death Aberdeen Hook, Special Bent Shank - Red 6

Amazon 

Sizes: 1, 2, 4, and 6

When you’re trolling for walleye with nightcrawlers or minnows, nothing beats the Mustad UltraPoint Slow Death Aberdeen.

It’s thin enough to keep a minnow alive longer but still more than robust enough for a big, bad eye.

And by dint of that “special bend,” these hooks turn in just the right way to hook up hard.

The baitholder shank glues nightcrawlers in place, too, making this a great choice for ‘eyes.

Eagle Claw 181F-4 Baitholder Down Eye - Best Baitholder Hook for Panfish

Eagle Claw 181F-4 Baitholder Down Eye 2 Slices Offset Fishing Hook, 50 Piece (Bronze) (181FH-4)

Amazon 

Sizes: 2, 4, 8, and 12

These little Eagle Claw bait holders are just the right size for panfish like bluegill, and the down-cast eye allows you to snell them easily.

They’re sharp, and the barbs on the shank hold nightcrawlers in place like they owe the hook money.

If you’re after sunfish, perch, bluegill, and the like, there’s no better guarantee of a fun day on the water than buying a pack of these Eagle Claws and equipping yourself with a few fat worms.

Final Thoughts

While this selection of hooks is far from exhaustive, it covers the vast majority of species and situations from surf fishing to inshore trolling, catfishing to crappie angling.

Take a look, and the right option for you is almost certainly there.

As always, we’re dedicated to answering your questions, so please leave any queries you might have below!

About The Author
Pete D
Born and raised in Cleveland, Ohio, Pete grew up fishing on the Great Lakes. When he’s not out on the water, you can find him reading his favorite books, and spending time with his family.
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