Photos: The Worst Fish Hook Injuries to MeatEater Fans

Photos: The Worst Fish Hook Injuries to MeatEater Fans

Earlier this year, Pat Durkin enlightened us on the art of human catch and release. If you’re looking for poetics about how anglers so often get hooks in places they don’t belong, go read his article. But if your stomach can handle it, stick around here for 12 pictures from our fellow impaled MeatEaters. Be warned: You’re about to see some messed up stuff.

“First cast after shore lunch I hook into a 40-inch pike. As I’m handling him, he flips his tail and tosses the Suik right into my hand. At that moment, the pike had the first hook in its mouth, the second hook in my hand, and the third hook in his gill plate. After a 90-minute boat ride, 2-mile walk, and 45-minute car ride, a Canadian doctor with the 5 o’clock whiskey shakes helped me free the hook. Good times.” -Grant Lawrence, Illinois

“I stepped on a big MirrOlure with my right foot and then bounced around trying to get it out. That’s when I landed right on a giant hook with my left foot.” -Jared Jenkins, Florida

“I was tying a new leader line on the treble hook. We were catching coho like crazy so I was trying to hurry. When I was tightening the knot, I lost my grip on the hook and buried it in my thumb. We had to call for a plane to take me from Saltery Cove to Ketchikan to get it removed.” -Jill Williams, Oregon

“I was trout fishing with a clear float bubble and a Joe’s Flies spinner. A big bass slammed my lure and it was a fun fight on my ultralight setup. But when I got him to shore and reached down to lip him, the small treble hook ripped out of his lip and into my finger. The barb got wrapped around some nerve endings and made it impossible to push through.” -Weston Chambers, Arizona

“I was picking up tip-ups after a day of ice fishing. I put them away by pulling the leader line tight and connecting the hook to the top of the folded tip-up. Well, it was really cold and I pulled it tight but my hand slipped and got the hook buried in it. I needed my tetanus booster anyway, so I went to the clinic and had them take care of it.” -Cheryl Sullivan, Vermont

“I was guiding a father and son and suggested to them not to hang their baits on the seat. Well, not long after the boy fell in the boat and impaled himself with a large ‘cowgirl’ in his back. We boated back to the lodge, froze him up, and pushed it through. We got back on the water that day and the boy caught a 48-inch muskie!” -Don Pursch, Minnesota

“A buddy and I were fishing a small bass tournament when my friend hooked into a small pike. He got the fish boatside, and seeing there was only one hook in the fish, I figured I could just unhook it in the water. When I reached down, the northern jumped and threw the lure. It caught me right in the face. We laughed a bit, but within 10 minutes the hooks were out and we were back fishing. As a bonus, we won the tournament.” -Rob Brower, New York

“With daylight dwindling on the Oz River in Russia, I hauled forward my sink tip as hard as I could into the wind and buried a giant streamer in my forearm. The guide trying pinning and pulling, and then had to cut the hook and pull through. He insisted we go back to camp to finish the job because camp had something the boat didn’t: vodka.” -Dirk Zondag Jr., California

“A muskie was in the net and barely hooked int he corner of the mouth, so I got lazy and grabbed the closest pliers instead of the hook-out I usually use. In a split second, she rolled on my hand and put the 4/0 hook in me. I pushed the hook through and pinched the bard, then headed back to the cabin for my R.N. wife to flush and bandage the wound. I caught two more muskies that day.” -Casey West, Minnesota

“My buddy changes lures all too often when we’re muskie fishing. One time he changed his lure and hung the old one on the boat cover. Later when trying to step over the motor he caught himself good. We tried a side cutters, but an emergency visit was necessary. He splashed himself with water the whole way back to shore to keep himself from passing out!” -Jesse Buckley, Minnesota

“On my first California Delta bass trip, my buddy was teaching me how to roll cast. I had too much line out prior to casting, letting the lure reach out and tag him. It was only an hour into the trip, so we took the lure off and left the treble hook there for the rest of the day.” -Kyle Johnson, California

“The owners were fishing along a creek with their dog.  The dog had been trying to bite the jerkbait all day, but up until this point they were paying attention. The owner had the rod behind him while walking through a thicket when the dog jumped up and got it. They brought the dog to me in the animal hospital to get it removed.” -Ryan Oddo, Illinois

Sign In or Create a Free Account

Access the newest seasons of MeatEater, save content, and join in discussions with the Crew and others in the MeatEater community.
Save this article