June 05, 2014
Survival Skills: Make Your Own Primitive Fish Hooks - 0
by Tim MacWelch
Gorge hooks may well be the oldest style of fish hooks on earth. They can be made from a wide range of materials and they can be surprisingly effective, though they are not suitable for catch-and-release. But that’s okay: We’re going to talk about them as a survival tool, so throwing back fish would be counter-productive.
The function of these hooks is pretty straightforward. Your goal is to entice the fish to swallow a pointed object that will lodge in the soft tissues of its stomach or esophagus, allowing you to land the fish. Bait is usually involved, but the technique is different from those employed in modern fishing. When a fish nibbles at the gorge hook, give out line and wait. This is very contrary to the quick tug most of us are used to when setting our standard fish hooks. With the gorge you give out 10 to 15 feet of line, wait 30 seconds, and then gently retrieve the line (and hopefully the fish). Use a net (or a basket tied to a stick) to lift the fish from the water. It might throw the hook if you try to lift it without the aid of a net. Tear the gorge free, re-bait if necessary, and cast it out again.
Here are three different styles of gorge hooks, all of which can be fished in the same manner.
Ever fished with a thorn fish hook? Let us know how it worked in the comments.