Q: My captain saw me using double wraps while wiring a fish the other day, and he said that was a dangerous thing to do since I wouldn’t be able to let go fast enough if the fish took off. He told me that I should always use a single wrap instead. I’ve never lost a fish due to the leader slipping though my hands, although I have lost fish that broke the leader just as I was dumping. What’s the real story?
San Nicolaas, Aruba
A: Basically, two wraps should come off easily, the way multiple wraps come off a spinning reel without any problem. (Do not take more than two wraps with wire or mono leader – ever!) With just one wrap, a hard-pulling fish can pull the leader through your gloves and wind up catching your hand or glove with the swivel. Not a great feeling.
Practice taking wraps with all your smaller fish on light leader, so your ability to take a double wrap quickly and easily becomes automatic. Similarly, practice letting go by pointing your hand at the fish and letting the leader come off your hand the way line comes off the spool of a spinning reel.
The key to wiring big fish is not to show how strong you are or how hard you can pull – it’s the ability to quickly take and release the leader without breaking it! It should never slip through your hands, since you can’t control the leader or the force you’re pulling with if it is sliding on you.