How to Unsnag a Fishing Lure

If you love fishing like I do, you are probably very familiar with what it means to get your lure snagged. You probably know as well as the rest of us the terrible struggles that come with getting your lure back when it gets caught. Once it gets tangled in those weeds or caught on that underwater log, your heart sinks slowly and you know you have a long hard road ahead of you to retrieve it.

You could just break the line and put on a new lure, but most of us are fishing on a budget and we can’t afford to lose too many lures that easily. On top of that, what if your favorite lure gets stuck? You can’t just give it up without a fight! Here are some great tips to help you unsnag your fishing lures when they get caught.

When unsnagging fishing lures, it’s important to not put pressure on your fishing rod. Although buying new lures and fishing line can be a pain, those items are much cheaper than buying a whole new rod. If you try to unsnag a caught lure by pulling on the rod, it may break and leave you with an entirely new problem on your hands. Any heavy pulling should be done by leaving the rod to one side and grasping only the string with your hands. This will avoid damage to your rod and, in the worst case scenario, you lose a bit of string and a lure but at least your rod remains intact.

One handy way for unsnagging a lure, especially when it is caught on something unmovable like a big rock or an underwater boulder, is the bow and arrow method. Pull the line until the string is more or less taut like a guitar string or a bowstring. Next, using the other hand, pull on the taut line much like plucking a guitar string or shooting a bow. This simple method may be all you need to shake the lure free. Make sure to try this method a number of times before moving on.

If your lure is caught in weeds or underwater plants try pointing your pole straight at the place where the line is caught, making sure no more string can come off the reel, and pulling backwards slowly. This may pull the line free and cut right through the weeds while not endangering your pole in any way.

If there is a long pole or stick lying around or if you have an oar on you, try jabbing it into the place where your lure is caught. You may be able to knock the lure free but this may take some time and a few tries. Try carefully snagging the lure with your implement and pulling hard.

If your string is caught around a small stick or twig above the surface of the water, before doing anything else, reel in your line as much as possible so that the lure is touching or even hooked into the surface of the twig. You don’t want it moving upward to a place less easy to break off so make sure it will stay in place when you pull. Next, set your rod down and give the string a quick jerk in whichever direction that you deem will make it most likely for the twig to snap in two.

One of the most important things to know is that if your lure gets snagged when you were reeling in one direction, you’ll probably have to pull in the opposite direction to get it free. If you can’t get to a place where you can pull in the exact opposite direction, try at least walking sideways and pulling in a direction diagonal or perpendicular to the way you were reeling when it got snagged.

And, if all else fails and you desperately need that particular lure back, don’t hesitate to strip down to your boxers and dive in after it to retrieve it. Some lures are just too valuable or sentimental to risk losing and sometimes diving down to find your prized lure is the only way. Don’t worry; after all, it’s only water!