Musky America Magazine

How you hold your rod is also important. Some fishermen hold the rod above the real; some Palm the real as they hold the rod; and some hold the rod below the real. Holding the rod below the reel seat also makes a good hook set difficult and you won't get nearly as much pressure on the fish. Getting good hook sets is especially important with the fish. With those hard mouths, you need as much pressure as you can get. Incidentally, for anyone who hasn't tried it, I would suggest trying setting hooks in the yard with a friend. Using your regular Muskie rod and line, have a friend take out 20 or 30 feet of line and take turns setting the hook while one of you holds the lure at the other end. (You might want to take the hooks off.) Most of you will find that the hook set that you think is "crossing their eyes" is barely a light tug at the other end. Try it; you will get a new perspective on setting hooks. Paying attention to detail is equally important after you hook that fish of a lifetime. The musky fishermen that I see using poor quality nets or nets that are way too small for the job continually surprises me. With all the money we spent on boats, rods, reels and equipment, it doesn't make sense to not have a quality net with you whenever you are out musky fishing. My preference in a net has long been those nets made by Beckman. They also have a net with a rubberized baggie and I recommend it highly. Speaking of nets, how often have we heard the stories of a big musky going through the bottom of the net? In most cases this is because the net has rotted through years of sitting in the sun. Make certain you replace your net bag whenever it shows any sign of weakening. Being prepared also means having the proper tools in your boat to release muskies quickly and cleanly. No musky fishermen should be out fishing without a good pair of long nose pliers and