rapala knot

The Rapala Knot: Learn How To Tie The Rapala Knot

If you’ve been around fishing at all in the last 90 years you’ve probably heard the name Rapala pop up a time or two. Rapala is one of, if not the most famous lure company in the world.

That same company that has produced 242 world record fish on their lures, and unsurprisingly have also created a knot.

However, it’s not your typical fishing knot that cinches down onto the eye of your lure.

Instead, this is a loop knot similar to what you would use when connecting two pieces of line, and Rapala claims that using this knot will give your lure a little extra action in the water that make fish go crazy.

What is a Rapala Knot?

The Rapala knot can be used for a couple of different reasons, but it was created to connect your main line to your lure. It is a remake of “the original Rapala knot” which was shown to be a weak and ineffective knot when landing big fish.

It was improved upon by adding a few additional turns around the main line.

In theory, this knot is meant to be the perfect combination to go with any lure and works even better when paired with something that has a very broad side-to-side motion such as a wide wobble crankbait or even a jerkbait.

Instead of tightening down the knot onto the eye of your lure or hook, use a loop that gives the lure a more lifelike look. Even though there isn’t a tight connection to the eye of the hook, there is little to no strength loss in the knot.

This is because the pressure is focused on the loop instead of the knot itself.

This means that you need to be careful if using light line and you hook a larger fish. If you’ve got on an 8-pound test and you wind up hooking into a big largemouth, then just know you could have a tough time bringing it in.

Also, because the tag end of the knot faces out, you’ll find that you could be bringing in more grass and weeds than normal during your retrieve.

How to Tie the Rapala Knot

  1. Tie an overhand knot about 3 inches above the tag end of your line.
  2. Thread the tag end of your line through the eye of your hook or lure.
  3. Pull the tag end of your line back through the downward-facing side of the overhand loop.
  4. Pinch the tag end and the main line then slide the overhand loop down to the eye of your hook or lure.
  5. Wrap the tag end of your line 3-5 times around the main line.
  6. Take the tag end of your line and run it up through the bottom facing side of your overhand loop that you made.
  7. Take the tag end of the line and put it through the new loop that was created. This new loop will be above the overhand loop.
  8. Pull on your tag end and main line in order to tighten the knot
  9. Cut any remaining line

You should now have a small loop wrapped around the eye of your hook, and slightly above it will be the knot that you tied.

Keep in mind that the Rapala knot does not work as well when using braided line. It’s best to stick with mono or flouro.

Rapala Knot tying variations

There are not too many Rapala knot variations. If you want, you can go with the original Rapala knot where you wrap the tag end of your line around the main line only once.

However, remember that this is not as strong and the knot can be pulled apart easier.

Rapala Knot tying Alternatives

palomar knot

If you want to use a different knot or plan on fishing with braid then the Palomar would be a good choice.

With this knot, you can use mono, fluoro, and braid. This variation is perfect for the angler who likes to utilize all the different types of fishing line. Its breaking strength is around 14-15 pounds and is popular with saltwater anglers due to its strength.

  1. Double up your main line so you have two pieces running parallel with each other.
  2. Pass it through the eye of your hook and place it behind the two parallel lines.
  3. Wrap it around the parallel lines and through the loop you just created.
  4. Opening up the end of the line, wrap it around the hook.
  5. Hold it in place with the line that is through the eye of the hook.
  6. Pull the main line to tighten the knot.
  7. Trim off any excess line.

If you’re looking for something a little bit easier then you could try the perfection loop knot. It is one of the easier loop knots that you can tie, and is used mainly in fly fishing to connect fly line to leader.

Similar to the Rapala knot, this should only be used with mono or fluoro line.

  1. Take the tag end of your line and wrap it around the main line to make a loop.
  2. Loop it around one more time and then bring the tag end to the middle of the two loops.
  3. Pass the second loop you made back through the first loop.
  4. Hold the main line and the end of your second and then pull to tighten.
  5. Trim off any excess line.

This is perfect if you want a great life-like lure action just like the Rapala, and many fly fishermen will use this when throwing streamers to give it that same life-like action.


If you find that the fish are keying in on crankbaits, swimbaits, jerkbaits, or streamers, but you keep getting short strikes, then tying on a Rapala knot could be the ticket to a successful day out on the water.

Keep in mind that if you want to use braided line instead of mono or fluoro then the Palomar knot will be your best bet.