Every new hay hook we get, I stick them on the receiver hitch on the pickup and force the end a bit more open, so is easier to let go after moving a bale, keeps the hook from hanging onto the bale and maybe jerking you around as the bale moves further.
I use the real long handled hooks for dragging bales around, or reaching higher up, but to really move bales like stacking, the short, light ones are a good length to just extend your arms to reach further, especially for the shorties as I am, without being so long as being heavier and harder to use continuously.
Bales high up on the edge of the stack, I push them down with the end of the handle of the rake, slowly moving them off the edge.
When using the rake end, be sure to barely catch the teeth, so you can turn loose quickly as the bale balances for a second and then falls.
When using bales off a tall hay stack, be sure to leave yourself a step-staircase of bales so you can climb up there easily.