Great weed guard info (great for Bass, Pike etc)


I have problems with weed guards... they end up becoming bass guards and I have a heck of a time hooking the fish. I've tried most of the styles shown with the link have actually cut off a weed guard so I could start hooking the bass there were attacking the bug.

I have more problems with the fly line hanging up on weeds than I do the bug.

Fortunately, most of the places I fish for bass do not look like the Black Lagoon so weed/bass guards are not required.
I'm with GAT on this. I cut the weedguards off any store bought flies that are unfortunate enough to be tied with them. I fish REALLY weedy stuff for largemouth, too. I found that missing 9/10 bass is more frustrating than getting your flies snagged once in awhile.
If my fly does catch a weed, I recast to the same spot. Usually one hard backcast will free the fly of weeds.

Jim Ficklin

Genuine Montana Fossil
I use a single loop of 40# when I'm fishing Dahlberg Divers in weeds or hitting pockets back in the reeds, but that's the only time I use them. These rarely hang-up, bounce flies off reeds during errant casts, & I don't seem to miss many bass. I tie these in tight to the bend and very close to the shank leading to the barb.

Jim Darden

Active Member
well I've tried a ton of different styles and the one that works best for me is the second one on your list, a simple post. If you work the fly slow, it seems to keep me out of trouble and doesn't seem to affect hooking the fish. I hate to use them but sometimes you have to. I think the problem is more psychological than real in my case but I worry about being able to hook the fish although I can't honestly say that has ever been a problem
Well, I hit the lake yesterday evening and it was WEEDY! So I was glad to have tied all my flies with weed guards. Casting to and on top of Lilly pads and sliding them off and then up and over slinking through some serious debris with my cone head bunny strips made me glad I had weed guards on the flies.

Here is my theory on weed guards, fly fishing and Bass.
Weed guard mono size and stiffness should be "calculated" in relation to the weight of the fly being fished. Light flies only need light weed guards. The style in which you tie the weed guard matters for the application.
Bass inhale flies or whatever fishing lure you use hence the way some of the gear guys set the hook. Fly guys can't set the hook that way simply because your fly line has way too much drag so one could yank the goods right back out of the Bass' mouth. This may lead one to think that the weed guard is the issue when really there are more and other challenges at hand.

All gear fishing techniques for Bass can't be brought in to fly fishing for Bass since I believe we have a few more challenges based on the equipment used.

All that said, I believe weed guards to be very helpful you just have to consider what type of mono you need to use as a guard for the application because yes, throwing on 60lb mono in a small loop for weed guard could cost you a few Bass. But if you use 20lb in the same situation it may just be flexible enough to flex down for a good hook set. All this theorizing form a long day on the water with my friend who fished Bass all the time with gear.

Oh, and only caught one, he caught two lol. Missed a bunch and noticed that with one my mono was too thick and I lost the fish. He was fishing big rubber worms using them as a weed guard. Those are on there pretty good and it's probably why such a hook set is required to push through the plastic and into the lip of a Bass.

Shawn West

Active Member
I was going through some photos and found a picture that illustrates that using a weedguard does not really stop a bass from getting hooked. In my opinion, most weedguards are tied on with the wrong type and size mono. The primary purpose of a weedguard is to support the weight of the fly while it goes over and through cover. I always use Hard Mason for my weedguards. My standard size is 20 pound. I primarily use the single loop weedguard. Is this the perfect weedguard? No, but it has worked well for me over the past 25 years.

As you can see in this photo, this is a fairly small bass, but it had no problem getting hooked with the weedguard attached.

I do not always use a weedguard, but I carry flies with weedguards just in case the cover dictates I is needed.




livin' the dream
14 AWG guitar wire. Slam your cast into cattails and its cool. Even if it does hang-up, the leader should be strong enough to pull it free.