Why The Length Of Your Fishing Leader Line Can Be Critical
By: Luke Simonds on January 3, 2020
What is the ideal length for a leader for inshore saltwater fishing?
What happens if it’s too short?
Or if it’s too long?
Why do you even need a leader?
In this video, I’ll answer all of these questions and more!
Check it out below.
Ideal Leader Length [VIDEO]
Before we get into this, know that these aren’t very strict guidelines and a lot of it has to do with personal preference.
Advantages of having a longer leader:
- Monofilament and fluorocarbon are more abrasion-resistant than braid line, so the longer your leader is, the more abrasion-resistant your line assembly is.
- When landing fish, a monofilament leader is easier to grab than braid, so a longer leader makes it easier to bring fish into the boat.
- It keeps your braid (which is easier for fish to see) farther away from the lure.
Scenarios where I like to have a longer leader:
- When I’m live bait fishing and sometimes when finesse fishing with soft plastics.
Advantages of having a shorter leader:
- You can cast better. It’s bad for knots to go through guides (weakens the knot and makes you susceptible to wind knots) and shorter leaders make it so you don’t have a lot of extra line hanging out of your rod tip.
- If you’re using thick leader, there’s a greater chance fish will feel a longer leader than a shorter leader with their lateral line.
- As more line is out of the rod tip before you make a cast, it’s more dangerous for other people in the boat, so shorter leaders are safer
Scenarios where I like to have a shorter leader:
- When I’m using topwater lures
- When I’m using spoons
How long should a leader be?
I typically start with a leader about 26″.
As I catch fish throughout the day, sometimes to part closest to the hook will get frayed, so I’ll snip off an inch or two and retie.
I’ll do this until I get to about 13″, then I’ll tie on a new leader about 26″ again.
Although there’s not an exact science for the ideal leader length, I typically use leaders between 13″ – 26″.
Check out this article for detailed information about how to make the most effective leader assembly for catching redfish, seatrout, flounder, and snook with artificial lures (best knots, leader material, leader strength, etc).
What is your ideal length for a leader?
Have you found anything different to work for you?
Do you have any questions about leader length?
Let me know in the comments below!
And if you know someone who ties too short or long of leaders, please TAG or SHARE this with them!
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