For those of you who have fished with a mesh/nylon net bag, you were probably just as excited as I was when you first used a rubber net bag. Not only are the rubber net bags easier on the fish itself, they also don’t get the hooks stuck in them like their mesh alternatives. Most new net frames and hoops (Nomad Nets are a personal favorite) are durable enough to outlast any of your other fishing products. One thing that will need to be occasionally replaced however is the net bag itself. The UV rays of the sun will slowly weaken the bag, which is also susceptible to getting caught on bushes or other snags. I’ve even had toothy brown trout get their jaw stuck in the rubber before doing an alligator roll causing the net bag to tear. Regardless of how it happens, if you use a rubber net bag, eventually you will have to deal with a hole forming. A simple solution to fix this on the water before getting a replacement bag? Use one of the elastic bands from a tippet spool to tie the bag together. I’ve tried using tippet or mono to stitch up the hole but the fine diameter of the line can cut right through the rubber leaving you with an even larger hole. I find the elastic bands easy to stretch and tie a couple overhand knots with, thus eliminating the hole. You will eventually want to replace the net bag itself but I’ve had countless days guiding where a hole forms and fish are able to squeeze their way through and out of the net. Netting a fish just to see the disappointment in the clients face as it slips through the hole in the bottom of the net bag is a thing of the past for me. Are there any field fixes that you have found on the water?
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