The trusty Palomar knot. It’s seemingly been around forever and is widely used. Anglers rely on the Palomar because it is simple to learn and can be tied quickly. By popular opinion and proven through strength tests over the years, the Palomar knot is also one of the strongest knots you can tie.
A Little History
The Palomar knot surged in popularity when the drop-shot technique caught on in the United States. For many bass anglers, the 2000 Bassmaster Classic contested on Lake Michigan and the connected Chicago and Calumet rivers in Chicago was the coming-out party for the technique. Mark Rizk, Aaron Martens and several others in the Classic field utilized the new drop-shot technique, which had recently “arrived” from Japan via California, to nearly win on the challenging fishery.
The key reason the Palomar is suited for the drop-shot is the tag end created when tying it – a tag end that can left to varying lengths without making the knot awkward to tie. The weight for the drop-shot rig is then tied to the bottom of the tag end so the lure “suspends” up off the bottom.
The Palomar knot is also a great choice for general fishing applications with monofilament, fluorocarbon and braided line, and it’s a go-to knot for many pros when fishing with heavy braid.
In the video below, Mercury Pro Team member James Niggemeyer shows how he ties the Palomar knot.
The Steps to Tie the Palomar Knot
1. Run the line through the eye of the hook or lure.
2. Now run the tag end back through the eye in the opposite direction, creating a loop on one side and a doubled line on the other.
3. Use the loop to tie an overhand knot with the doubled line.
4. Pass the hook or lure through the loop.
5. Cinch the knot down slightly.
5. Wet the knot.
6. Slowly cinch the knot down tight.
7. If you’re rigging a drop-shot, pass the tag end down through the eye of the hook so it exits the bottom. This helps keep the hook perpendicular to the line. If you’re not tying a drop-shot, just snip off the tag end.
If you’re drop-shotting, go ahead and tie your weight to the bottom of the tag end, rig your soft-plastic worm on the hook and you’re ready to go fishing.
A Scenario to Avoid
According to Niggemeyer, if there is one negative against the Palomar knot, it’s that when using fluorocarbon line, the friction caused when cinching the knot can weaken the line. To help avoid this problem, lubricate the knot thoroughly before cinching, and tighten it down slowly.