Gear

Choosing specialty hooks

Third-year Bassmaster Elite Series pro Kyle Welcher is known for being extremely detailed oriented when it comes to tackle rigging and organization. Details big and small are equal in priority, and that mindset is applied to his hook choices. Hooks are highly technical, as they must be, to maximize lure action and hook-setting properties when paired with the growing lineup of specialty soft plastics. 
When he needs to reach fish that are tucked under heavy cover, Welcher reaches for the Gamakatsu G-Power Flip and Punch hook. Equally effective with braid or fluorocarbon lines, this hook’s unyielding strength stands up to biggest fish in the densest cover.
Favoring heavy bushes, Welcher rigs his G-Power Flip and Punch with a 13 Fishing Invader creature-style bait. Overhanging bushes touching the surface or buck brush are ideal targets.
The new Gamakatsu G-Finesse Cover Neko hook is designed for fishing a finesse rig through heavy cover. The unique hook design allows for a weedless alignment, while the built-in swivel prevents line twist.
Welcher rigs his Cover Neko with a 13 Fishing Blunt Force Finesse (BFF) worm. He mostly throws it on pressured fisheries in brushpiles and beneath docks with cables. The idea is to take the traditionally open water oriented Neko and apply to rough neighborhoods. 
Welcher considers the Gamakatsu Round Bend worm hook a tried-and-true tool that works in a variety of scenarios. His favorite benefit is the ability to rig a worm perfectly straight.
Another plus is the ample space between the eye and the hook point. The design consistently yields effective hookups and minimizes fish loss.
Given the drop shot’s broad applicability, Welcher said he’ll always have one on his deck. His preferred method is rigging a worm weedless on the Gamakatsu Worm Light Wire hook.
With this setup, Welcher knows he can throw his drop shot on anything from docks to bridges to brushpiles with no worry of snagging. Also, the thin wire accommodates smaller worms.
Looking past the G-Finesse Drop Shot hook’s primary purpose, Welcher has learned the benefit of using that hook for his wacky rigging. Of all the applicable scenarios, his favorite wacky rig use is for fry guarders.
As Welcher explains, he likes the G-Finesse Drop Shot hook's diminutive size and the gap width, which he believes allows him to hook his wacky rig fish better.