Fishing is a good hobby, but it have the right to be difficult to learn all of the ins and also outs. Learning exactly how to usage a gaff correctly is one of those things that you might not understand unless someone teaches you.

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Gaffs are used for hooking fish out of the water, which provides them quite dangerous if friend don’t know just how to usage them properly. Luckily, we’re below to teach you every little thing on how to usage a gaff so the your fishing trip goes smoothly!


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Gaffing a fish is just one of the most important aspects of offshore fishing. To carry out this, anglers use an underwater spear gun that fires out and impales the fish’s head. This way, they can be conveniently harvested by hand or v hooks on poles because that bait fishing.


Now, if you want to learn how to acquire that trophy fish, here’s how:

1. Edge the fishing rod

To store the fish native wriggling off your hooks, anglers need to make certain they angle your fishing stick correctly. This way, girlfriend can direct the head that the fish in the direction of a gaff man.


He should position himself over his target with one hand holding top top both ends of the gaff hook. The other hand have to grip firmly roughly the fish’s mouth.

2. Start raking

The next vital step is to begin taking the water towards your boat. Carefully position the hook so the it meets increase with and also pierce with the fish’s head.


Most prefer lengthy gaffs for fishing in tournaments due to the fact that it enables them to end the fight quickly and efficiently.

3. Lift together you pull

Fish are more likely to run after gift hooked together they try to gain away. Captain Dave claims it can be tough for an inexperienced angler.


If this happens, quickly lug it up and also move back to maintain control of the fish’s body. This way, you have the right to keep the fish ~ above the heat while reeling it into shore.

With this technique, you deserve to prevent the gaffed fish from acquiring off.


4. Continue the pull

The following step to efficiently gaff a fish: grab the line, hold it tight versus your chest, and keep pulling. Any type of hesitation can an outcome in shed time or also an injury from an aggressive types such as tuna. Don’t avoid until friend feel that tug top top the other end of your line!

5. Pull the fish up

Those who know just how to gaff a fish will tell you the many important component of catching any trophy fish. You have to pull the up along the gunnel and also over your boat.


Doing this minimizes risk and also gives friend bragging legal rights for having captured an impressive creature. Once onboard, her trophy awaits!

How to Gaff Fish the proper Way: Gaffing advice From the Experts

Gaffing fish is vital skill, together it entails ensuring that you deserve to catch and also take treatment of prey. There are numerous tips come learn, like exactly how to host the gaff or what tools to use.


While everyone has actually their preference, below are part tips from experienced anglers that you have the right to use top top your following trip:

1. Constantly place the gaff behind the command to manage it together fish make their turn toward her boat

According to AFTCO’s Greg Stotesbury, it’s constantly best come gaff in the meaty front shoulder behind the vulnerable leader. Additionally, the fish’s dorsal fin is complete of challenging bones that make it difficult for gaff hooks come tear out. The thick skin top top this component also keeps them native doing so in many cases.

A shoulder gaffed fish is simpler to steer earlier towards the boat side ~ it has been caught. Gaffing native under or near the tail never ever really works.

2. Wait till the fish is prepared to gaff

Gamefish from the ocean deserve to be difficult to catch. Fish will swim around and get tired before you’re able come gaff the properly, so wait till they’re tuckered out! If your watercraft isn’t moving, go to the cockpit and also turn ~ above the engine slowly. This way, big fish prefer dolphin fish space not too intimidated by movement and don’t swimming free.

The angler fighting the fish must never raise the head out of the water while wait on grappling.

3. Discover the best size gaff and also the right kind

They to speak a fisherman’s finest friend is his gaff. They’re poles through ax-like hooks at the end used come snag fish the end of your hiding spots. Yet which kind should girlfriend buy? longer gaffs permit competitors to reach out and also snatch snook or redfish that might wiggle free.

Matching the gaff dimension according come your wanted prey will assist ensure success for every little thing fishing expedition awaits!

Lastly, usage a paris gaff if you’re targeting huge marlin, redfish, or sharks. Its long rope tied in ~ the finish ensures it have the right to be thrown easily and also then pulled earlier in.

4. Use the right hook (. A landing network could also be helpful)

According come Capt. Dave Hansen that yoursaltwaterguide.com, your gaff have to be lightweight but strong. Make certain that it has actually no rust. He further emphasized that it’s much easier to gaff a fish using tiny hooks, particularly when they’re around 40 come 50 lbs. He added that utilizing a 6-inch hook is the best with big bluefin tuna.

Another tip to keep in mind: if there’s any way to execute it, usage a net. The snook, redfish, or grouper that appears close come size boundaries need the net. This way, you deserve to release lock if they’re too tiny or large.

5. Safety first

According come yoursaltwaterguide.com, the best way to gaff an ext fish is to continue to be calm. 

Gently gaff the fish. Carry out this in one liquid motion because that a clean shoot so the the fish doesn’t get away. An additional safety pointer from Dave is to placed the gaff down. After girlfriend gaff a fish, placed the gaff down and also keep that somewhere safe where human being won’t obtain hurt by it.

You can additionally use a safety and security spring, cork, or a tennis ball to sheathe it.

6. Once in doubt, don’t gaff a fish

If you are not 100% certain that you desire to store your fish, perform not gaff castle for any reason.

A an excellent rule-of-thumb when fishing: always set anything under 10 pounds free and take only what’s end ten pounds home. Law this ensures the there will be much more fish left for following time. Also, remember no to gaff through the tail!

Final Thoughts

Learning how to use a gaff isn’t as easy as it looks, particularly if you’ve never ever tried it. This overview will assist you move forward come gaffing prefer a pro!

Also, don’t hesitation to clock tutorial videos. Sometimes, the town hall a human being do the appropriate thing have the right to be the best learning experience.

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So, if you’re looking for a sign, check out these tips again and get all set to gaff a fish the best way.