Musky can grow to a very large size and have a lot of power in them, which means that handing and unhooking them isn’t always the easiest thing to do. That’s why using an appropriately sized fishing net is super important when targeting this apex predator.
In fact, it can mean the difference between a smooth and secure landing and release of a fish and an utter disaster, which, in the worts case, can even leave you injured and bleeding.
I for one have always preferred scenario number one and I am pretty sure that most of you out there would second that.
But what makes a great musky net and how do you choose the right type of net for this species? To help you make the most informed choice, I’ve decided to write this helpful guide on the very best musky nets out there.
Not only can they help you land more fish, but they’ll also make sure that handling and releasing those big musky will be a walk in the park.
So, let’s check out those musky nets!
QUICK SUMMARY: In this article, I’m reviewing three reliable and solid musky fishing nets that you can find on Amazon. These are: the Fabrill Big Kahuna, the Drifter Predator XL Musky Net, and the Ranger Net Knotless Flat Bottom
What Is the Best Fishing Net for Musky?
Top Pick: Fabrill Power Catch Big Kahuna
The Fabrill Power Catch Big Kahuna is, by far, the best musky net money can buy! Thousands of North American predator anglers swear by it and virtually all of them recommend this fishing net.
I’ve consulted Strike and Catch’s own musky expert Andre Charron, who, of course, also uses this net for his musky fishing. This is what he had to say:
“Best musky net I’ve ever used. Big thick mesh. No tangles. Easy on the fish. Definitely one of the best investments I ever made for fishing in general!”
If that’s not a good gear review, I don’t know what is!
Indeed, the Big Kahuna has plenty of really great features that are essential when fishing for big freshwater predators. The combination of which results in a phenomenal musky landing net that, once you use it, you do not want to be without!
Here are some of its greatest pros and features:
- Hoop size: 40×44” (will comfortably net even the biggest of muskies)
- Handle length: 48”
- Net depth: 48” (even 40+ inchers will have plenty of room)
- Ergonomic handle that eliminates torque and roll-over
- Made of corrosion-proof stainless steel
- Tangle-free, knotless netting (very fish-friendly and no more snags)
- Dual I-beam extrusion for ultimate strength
- Ensures a secure and confident landing (no matter the size of the fish)
The enormous size of the Fabrill Big Kahuna is definitely its biggest strength. Not only can you net any size of fish no matter how much it might protest, but the extra room also means that the fish will be calmer once it’s netted, making it way easier and to swiftly unhook and release your catch.
And then there’s the awesome big and thick mesh. If you’ve fished with conventional fishing nets, you know that most treble hooks will end up getting snagged in their tight mesh, often while the fish still has the hooks in his mouth.
It can take an awful lot of time to unsnag those trebles, and if the fish starts to move or roll itself into the net, very often, the only option is cutting the hooks free…and there goes yet another fishing net (I’ve been there myself too many times).
This will simply not be an issue with the Big Kahuna, which also means that, in the long run, you’ll save a lot of money!
And speaking of that; here’s the only con I found:
- It is a high-end fishing net that costs more than most other nets on the market
That said, this is a long-term, and often, one-time investment you commit yourself to here, as this net can last you for many years. So, if you’re serious about getting into the musky game, this is definitely the best pick for you!
Runner-Up: Drifter Marine Predator Series Musky Net
The Drifter Marine Predator Musky Net is another great pick for muskies. It offers great stability and balance, as well as strength and plenty of room for your caught fish.
It is stated by the manufacturer that this net can pick up 70lb without bending or failing, which definitely makes it a great big fish landing net.
It’s also made of really durable material, which means that it can last you for many years and fishing trips.
Let’s take a look at some other pros and features of this fishing net:
- Hoop size: 44×40”
- Handle length: 48”
- Net depth: 42” deep-coated net bag
- Heavy-duty reinforced hoop for additional strength
- One of the strongest nets available on the market
- Very soft mesh for great fish care
- Smart T-grip handle for extra net control (won’t ever slip into the water)
- Easy to use while simultaneously fighting the fish (good choice when you’re alone on the water)
- Longer than it is wide, which can make landing really wild musky that don’t come in headfirst a little more difficult
- The length of the extended handle is a little short
A solid big fish net that can land you a ton of muskies if you know how to use and handle it correctly.
Budget Pick: Ranger Net Knotless Flat Bottom Rubber Coated Net
The Ranger Net is a really good budget alternative for beginners or anglers with a limited amount of money to spend.
It’s not as big and roomy as the first two fishing nets presented in this article but has otherwise most of the features that are necessary for a solid musky net.
So, if you’re fishing waters that don’t hold giant musky, or if you’re just getting into this type of fishing, the Ranger Net will probably be the best choice for you.
It’s also a great pick for young anglers who simply do not yet have the storage and transportation possibilities, or the necessary budget for really high-end fishing gear.
Because it’s definitely better to start out with a smaller net than no net at all! And this one’s definitely got your back in most situations!
Some more pros and features of the Ranger Net include:
- Hoop size: 28×30”
- Handle length: 54-84” (longer handle for a better reach and an easier landing of the fish)
- Net depth: 36” (still plenty of room for a net this size)
- Quick extension handle
- Easy storage (handle smoothly slides up into hoop)
- Heavy-duty hoop and handle
- Knotless, coated rubber netting (supports easy handling and quick releasing of the fish)
- Very affordable price
- Its limited size means that it takes some skill to land a really big musky (which you might not possess yet if you’re just starting out)
- The handle loses some of its strength when it’s fully extended, don’t try to lift too heavy fish with it (lift it by the hoop instead)
A solid beginner’s fishing net that will be of great assistance to you during your first months or years as a musky hunter. When you’ve gotten more experienced and start to land bigger and bigger fish, try to upgrade your net to a bigger and stronger alternative (if your budget allows for it).
How Big Should a Musky Net Be?
As you can’t possibly know how big the next musky you’re going to catch will be, using a big, roomy fishing net with a hoop of around 40 inches is always a good idea when fishing for skies!
A net of that size allows for a secure and unproblematic landing, handling, and releasing of your trophy musky, every time! Put in other words, it’ll make your fishing experience so much better!
Of course, as a beginner, you might have a hard time handling such a big fishing net, which is why it can be wise to start out with a smaller-sized one.
With a little skill, you can still manage to net a bigger musky, should you hook up to one.
Should You Always Use a Net When Fishing for Musky?
Being a predator fisherman myself, I’d always use a fishing net when targeting toothy fish like musky or pike.
All too often, hand-landing big predators like that can lead to the fish and/or you getting injured. Using a fishing net is the best and easiest way of avoiding that, which, in my opinion, should always be a priority.
Of course, you can still get injured by those mouths of terror and their razor-sharp teeth or the musky’s extremely sharp gill plates, but handling and unhooking them in a roomy net, in which they can remain in the water, will drastically reduce that risk!
PRO TIP: Should you still manage to get bitten or to cut yourself, bringing a waterproof first-aid kit with you on your predator fishing adventures allows you to patch yourself up and, hopefully, to keep fishing. You can find a complete outdoor first aid kit on Amazon here.
- Should You Use a Wire Leader for Muskie?
- How to Fish for Musky at Night (An Expert Guide)
- Muskie Teeth (With Lots of Facts and Pictures)
Featured image courtesy of Brian Sturge