Inshore insights: Keep your tackle tangle-free

Hook bonnets and rod socks are two easy, relatively inexpensive ways to keep your tackle tangle-free.

Hook bonnets and rod socks are easy fixes for a frustrating problem

How annoying is it when you grab one rod and two others are attached to it?

Time spent untangling rods is time spent not having a line in the water, which ultimately results in time spent not catching fish.

Use these easy tips to keep your rods tangle-free, and make your precious time on the water that more productive.


It’s the weekend, and you’re on your way to the ramp with your rods in the back of the truck.

By the time you get there, all of your tackle has become a jumbled mess and pulling the rods apart without breaking anything is like solving a Rubik’s Cube.

Not only is it a total pain in the behind, but it’s also an accident waiting to take out a guide or rod tip, nick up your fluorocarbon or mono, or even weaken your blank that might break on hook-set.


There are two items I use to prevent all these problems: hook bonnets and rod socks.

Hook bonnets are a lifesaver because they’re great for securing lures with treble hooks.

Popular lures like gold spoons, suspending lures and topwaters all have multiple treble hooks, with one being secured to the hook keeper and the other left dangling around. A hook bonnet will protect that second treble from snagging anything other than the corner of a fish’s mouth, so it’s a great tool.

Plus, they’re great for storing those same lures in tackle trays, so they don’t tangle with other hard baits.

Best of all, a bag of hook bonnets isn’t expensive, usually around $3.

Pro Tip: They can be modified with a pair of scissors to accommodate the treble kept by the hook keeper on your rod. Snipping off one side of the bonnet exposes the one hook you need to keep the lure in place.


My boat comes with a rod locker for safely securing my rods, but even then fishing line somehow snags reel handles and rod guides … you get the picture.

An easy fix is using rod socks  to isolate each one, keeping tangling from happening in the first place.

But they’re not good just for rod lockers. Use them when transporting equipment in the back of your truck — they’re good to keep the blanks and fishing line protected from nicks and scratches.

Pro Tip: Rod socks can be fairly expensive at $6 to $8 each. But that can add up pretty quickly, even if you’re protecting just a few rods. A good place to shop is eBay or even Amazon, where you can get them direct from the factory for $2 or less.


You’re a good angler, and should take care of your tackle to protect your investment and execute your fishing trips more efficiently Hook bonnets and rod socks are tools to aid you in that endeavor.

Tight lines, y’all.

Editor’s Note: Devin Denman is an avid inshore fisherman who writes the Louisiana Fishing Blog. To read more of his articles, visit

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