A leader is basically the line or that length of the line that is in between your lure/hook and the actual mainline. Leaders can be you as short as six inches or even less, or it could be six feet or longer than that. Now that you know what a leader line is, let’s talk about its importance.
Is it really important to use a leader? If you are a fan of a spinning setup and prefer to braid lines, there are two reasons why you should be using a leader line.
So, the bad thing about the braided line is that, although it is great for casting, it is great for retrieving lures and getting your own good hook set, but it is bad for two reasons.
Number 1: Fish Can See It
If you are using braid, the use of a leader is great for making sure that the fish have less of a chance of seeing the line and getting spooked off.
Number 2: Abrasion
So, number two is abrasion. For many years I thought that braid had better abrasion resistance than mono. However, I was wrong. Braid lines can break really fast if used for a long time.
A lot of common fish like snook and bass have really sandpaper-like teeth. What I found is that if brad gets rubbed against a rough surface, it will disintegrate extremely fast.
That’s why you will need to use a leader line to beef up the section right next to the lure or the hook. This is going to be where most of the abrasion happens. Also, this is where it is most important for the line to be as invisible as possible.
So, when you are deciding to tie up your next line assembly, make sure that you think about the strength that you need to handle the fish.
You will need to beef up the leader line if you’re going to be targeting stronger fish or fish with sharper mouths. You can also lighten up the leader line if you’re not right.
If you’re targeting smaller fish or fish that don’t have, you know, sharp teeth or don’t do a lot of head shakes, you can go down on your leader. So that’s the basics of using a fishing leader.
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What Is The Ideal Line Weight For The Leader?
People often ask – should leaders be stronger than the mainline? If you’re using monofilament or fluorocarbon as your mainline, the leader line should be stronger than your mainline.
Your leader line should be heavier than your mainline when fishing near structures, such as bridges, docks, rocks, or when aiming for fish with sharp teeth. If you use braided lines, you should use lighter leader material.
What Should Be The Size Of A Leader Line?
The general rule of thumb is that ss the number gets smaller, the leader should get thicker. Thicker leaders will be more effective at casting heavier flies and capturing larger fish. For optimal performance, pair all sizes with 2-7-weight rods.
How To Tie A Leader To The Main Line?
In this section, I will show you how to tie the mainline to the leader using the simplest and easiest knot possible. It can be difficult for a beginner to tie a braided line into a mono or fluorocarbon, but the process is quite simple.
Practice makes perfect when it comes to tying your fishing line to a leader. Albright knot has been very strong for me to tie my leader to my mainline. If you need to tie a knot immediately, the Albright knot is the quick and easiest knot to tie.
Everyone learning how to fish should understand how to tie a leader to the mainline. Due to their different stiffness, braid to fluorocarbon is among the hardest lines to tie. But if you follow these steps, you can easily tie the knot.
1. First, take two lines. One should clear that will be your leader line. And the other one should be your line of choice.
2. Now, take the leader line and fold it over one another in order to create a loop. Then you are going to take the mainline and feed it back up through the loop that you just created.
3. Now, hold all the lines with your right hand. At this point, you should start making barrel rolls around the leader with your mainline.
4. When you are doing the barrel rolls, you want to make sure that you don’t cross over one another with each barrel roll. You want to continue to go in one direction.
5. You might want to make five or more-barrel rolls. You should also do fewer wraps if the leader is bigger than your mainline.
6. For smaller diameter lines, you should wrap it up to ten times.
7. For the next step, you should take the mainline tag and feed it back through the circle that you have created or the loop that you just created.
8. Now, you should wet the line using water or saliva, and you would want to center it down. Grab all the lines with one hand, and the tag ends your main leader and start pulling them.
9. Once you get that tight, release the tag end of your leader line and start pulling both your mainline and leader line. Finally, cut your tag ends, and you are now left with a nice and strong, and sturdy knot.
Now that you know how to use a fishing leader, start creating a habit of using leader lines. Trust me; you will be catching a lot more fish if you use this extra line.
Codfish, for instance, tends to take cover at the bottom of the ocean and nest in areas that are really hard to reach. The rocks below can be very sharp.
If the fish rubs against those pointy rocks, there is a good chance that your mainline will break. The teeth of codfish also can be extremely sharp, which will chew through the fishing line with ease. That’s why you will need to use a strong line as a leader line.