I have read a bit recently about the increasing use of circle hooks on some of the big GT lures for example, and from my limited understanding so far, they seem to be working just fine for those anglers who are using them correctly. And then late last year a friend of mine over in the Florida Keys sent me a couple of lures that he thought I should have a look at - and one of them is the one you can see above. Lure shape aside, it is of course the fact that this little lure comes in the box already rigged with two circle hooks. Have any you reading this had any personal experience of fishing with circle hook-rigged lures ?
The lure here is the Yo-Zuri Sashimi Jerkbait (SP - suspending), and it's dimensions are 90mm long, weight 12g. I can see no reason why this lure would not interest "our" bass, but I am really interested to see how a couple of circle hooks might fish on a lure. Anybody who knows about the use of circle hooks will know that the golden rule is NOT to strike a bite, and if you think about it, how often do you actually strike a take from a bass on a hard lure, and especially on a retrieve ?
I have not taken this lure out for a play yet, but one thing I have to assume is that a company as well known as Yo-Zuri have tuned this lure to fish properly with these circle hooks on there. Whether it is a true suspending lure in saltwater remains to be seen, but that is another matter entirely. I so want to see how these circle hooks work on the bass, but my main worry then is that so many of the lures we currently use seem to be so finely tuned or balanced that a change of hooks or hook type might kill them stone dead. I remember when I began changing the (truly awful, why ?) trebles on my Tackle House Feed Shallow lures, and the first one I did saw the lure come straight to the surface and not fish properly. I got there in the end with the right replacement trebles, but it does prove that some lures might not take this approach, yet...........might things start to change if the adoption of circle hooks on lures ever started to really take off ? Who knows ?
By now I am sure you know my feelings about the use of barbed treble hooks, but I would also like it so that you could easily remove one set of treble hooks from any lure and it continue to fish properly. Yes, some lures respond fine, but in reality you need to go out and test each type of lure to see that it then works properly. I simply can't see the need for three sets of treble hooks (nine hooks in essence), and barbs or no barbs aside, I would love to hear and learn more about the use of lures like this Yo-Zuri one. If a lure with circle hooks works like the use of circle hooks with bait, then the fact that the fish should nearly always be hooked in the scissors will make for far easier and less stressful unhooking.
I am heading off to the Sky Sports studios later on today (Friday) to go and do the Tight Lines programme with Keith Arthur. I can remember first being asked to come on the show when it was Bruno Brookes who was presenting it, so it's been a while that they have been kindly asking me back. All credit to Keith and the production team for taking this show to where it is now - a professionally produced weekly fishing programme. Always fun to go and see the guys and do the show, and I think my girls back at home in Cornwall are going to be allowed to delay heading upstairs for a bath by a little bit to see their dad on TV on Sky Sports. They have never seen any of my fishing programmes, so what they will make of their dad being on the box and not with them in the room I don't know - and especially considering that they would most likely prefer to be watching Peppa Pig instead of Tight Lines !!