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IN ASSOCIATION WITH<br />

FISHING<br />

SECRETS<br />

GUIDE<br />

Your ultimate fishing manual<br />

FULL OF<br />

EXPERT ADVICE<br />

From top anglers including:<br />

Chris Cameron, Rob Wootton<br />

Lee Thornton & more...<br />

Lo-Viz<br />

hook link<br />

Method Quick<br />

Feeder Bead<br />

KM-2 hook<br />

HOW TO PICK THE<br />

RIGHT TACKLE & BAITS<br />

THE RIGS YOU NEED<br />

TO KNOW<br />

CHOOSING<br />

YOUR FIRST POLE<br />

FLOAT PATTERNS<br />

EXPLAINED


CONTENT<br />

21: Which<br />

pole elastic?<br />

– Different<br />

versions<br />

explained<br />

2<br />

WELCOME TO YOUR<br />

FREE FISHING<br />

SECRETS GUIDE<br />

T<br />

HERE can be few<br />

activities more<br />

diverse than<br />

fishing, with its many<br />

different styles and<br />

disciplines, not to mention<br />

the dozens of fish species<br />

to try and catch, all of which<br />

can be little overwhelming.<br />

That’s why, in this guide,<br />

you’ll find everything you<br />

need to know about the<br />

tackle, baits and tactics for<br />

doing battle on commercial<br />

carp fisheries, arguably our<br />

most popular UK venues.<br />

So, whether you’re a fan<br />

of the feeder, want to get<br />

into pole fishing or simply<br />

prefer to sit back and watch<br />

a float, there’s something<br />

here that’s sure to tick a few<br />

boxes and help your fishing<br />

in 2021 and beyond. Enjoy!<br />

3: Starting out – Common<br />

methods to master<br />

4-5: Shotgun feeder – Master this<br />

deadly tactic<br />

6-7: Pellet waggler – Try a<br />

stealthy shallow attack<br />

8-9: Latest gear – Red-hot tackle<br />

to look out for<br />

10: Hook<br />

choices<br />

– Brilliant<br />

patterns for<br />

pole or rod<br />

11: Hair-rigging – Pinpoint bait<br />

presentation every time!<br />

12-13: The 5m line – Take on carp<br />

at short range<br />

14-15: Margin mauling – Bag<br />

monsters under your feet!<br />

16-17: Going long – Reach out for<br />

more feeder bites<br />

18: Try the Jigga – A new take on<br />

fishing shallow<br />

19: Load your feeder – Chris<br />

Cameron shows you how<br />

20: Essential floats – Stick,<br />

waggler and pole patterns<br />

22: A rod for every job – How to<br />

pick the right one<br />

23: Poles & whips – Anglers,<br />

choose your weapon!<br />

24-25: Surface slapping –<br />

Make some noise for action<br />

26: Quick tips – Advice to catch<br />

you more fish<br />

27: Fish in comfort – Create the<br />

ultimate fishing station<br />

28: Venue<br />

guide – The<br />

waters to<br />

head for this<br />

weekend


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Just starting fishing?<br />

T<br />

HIS Fishing Secrets<br />

supplement is designed<br />

to help you progress in<br />

our wonderful sport with lots of<br />

tips, tricks and advice to cover a<br />

range of methods and venues.<br />

The more experienced angler<br />

will already have much of the<br />

tackle needed, but if you’re just<br />

starting out in fishing, it can be<br />

a little bit overwhelming when<br />

deciding what to buy.<br />

The truth is that basic kit is<br />

perfectly adequate to see you<br />

catching plenty of fish. Over time,<br />

you can then move on to bigger<br />

and better things both in terms<br />

of tackle and your results.<br />

To begin with, let’s look at the<br />

methods to use. By far the most<br />

popular and easiest are feeder<br />

and pole fishing. Both will catch a<br />

range of species and can be used<br />

on most venues around the UK<br />

throughout the year with good<br />

results. It also means getting<br />

kitted out won’t break the bank<br />

by any means! Check out the<br />

shopping lists below to arm<br />

yourself with all you’ll need in the<br />

coming months…<br />

Feeder fishing<br />

There are many different types of feeder<br />

to use, but for a mixed bag on commercial<br />

fisheries, little can beat the Method feeder. It<br />

puts your hookbait right in among the feed<br />

and there’s no trouble spotting a bite!<br />

The Method can be fished at relatively close<br />

range, so there’s no need to worry about big<br />

casts. A simple 20-yard chuck will suffce<br />

on most fisheries. So long as your rod and<br />

terminal tackle (hooks and hooklengths) are<br />

strong enough, you’ll be on to a winner.<br />

Even bait is sorted for you with ready-to-go<br />

pellets to put around the feeder and hookbaits<br />

that you can use straight from the tub.<br />

FEEDER FISHING BASICS SHOPPING LIST<br />

● 10ft feeder rod<br />

● Reel<br />

● Mainline<br />

● Method feeder<br />

& mould<br />

● Hooks to nylon<br />

● Landing net<br />

& handle<br />

● Mix & Go pellets<br />

● Hookbaits<br />

Pole fishing<br />

For delicacy and presentation of the<br />

hookbait, nothing rivals the pole – and<br />

the good news with this approach is<br />

that on most commercial fisheries you<br />

can catch close in, which does away<br />

with the need for long, expensive<br />

poles.<br />

Target 4m out or, better still, in the<br />

margins at your feet and you’ll be<br />

surprised at just what you can catch.<br />

A strong, robust 4m or 5m carp-style<br />

ready-elasticated whip or pole will be<br />

just the job.<br />

This comes already elasticated, and<br />

in some packages with a pole<br />

rig. If not, you can pick from<br />

many pre-tied rigs to get the<br />

right type of float, strength of<br />

line and size<br />

of hook.<br />

Then<br />

just add<br />

hookbaits<br />

and bag<br />

of feed<br />

pellets!<br />

POLE FISHING BASICS SHOPPING LIST<br />

● 4m or 5m<br />

pole/whip<br />

package<br />

● Ready pole rig<br />

● Landing net<br />

& handle<br />

● Hookbaits<br />

● Feed pellets<br />

3


FISHING SECRETS<br />

The feeder with a maggot<br />

trick! Give yourself an edge…<br />

With a Shotgun<br />

Feeder, fish will<br />

soon be in your<br />

angling sights.<br />

SUMMER BAGGIN’<br />

The large 40g version will<br />

send your feed a long way<br />

and provide plenty of food.<br />

Andrew Quarmby<br />

W<br />

E ALL know how<br />

effective the Method<br />

feeder can be in<br />

summer – but do you ever get<br />

the feeling that the fish have<br />

seen it all before?<br />

You know how it pans out...<br />

a few bites come fairly quickly<br />

at the start of the day, but then<br />

sport tails off. The carp are still<br />

there, but they’re not taking the<br />

bait with confidence.<br />

You could keep on plugging<br />

away in the hope that things<br />

A traditional<br />

Method feeder<br />

with mould.<br />

4


How the Shotgun Feeder works<br />

Lo-Viz<br />

hook link<br />

Method Quick<br />

Feeder Bead<br />

M-Tech<br />

main 8lb<br />

KM-2 hook<br />

IDEAL FOR<br />

WINTER USE<br />

The small 30g<br />

feeder is ideal<br />

for more delicate<br />

winter F1 tactics.<br />

might improve, or you could<br />

instead tear up the rulebook<br />

and reach for a method that’s<br />

completely different to anything<br />

the fish will have come across<br />

before. Your answer lies in the<br />

Shotgun Feeder.<br />

Totally unique, the Shotgun<br />

is a type of pellet feeder, but<br />

that’s where the similarities end.<br />

Allowing you to load the main<br />

body with maggots and then cap<br />

things off with dampened micro<br />

pellets, once the feeder hits<br />

bottom, the shotgun effect kicks<br />

in, ejecting both maggots and<br />

those few pellets out right on top<br />

A strong, reliable feeder mainline is a<br />

must with the Shotgun Feeder.<br />

A 5G Method<br />

Feeder rod is<br />

the perfect tool.<br />

of your hookbait.<br />

Why maggots, though? Well,<br />

we all know that every fish loves<br />

them, and although pellets form<br />

a big part of the diet of a carp,<br />

they can get a little bit tired of<br />

them in summer.<br />

Maggots, however, will always<br />

be hoovered up throughout the<br />

year and a combination of a short<br />

4ins hooklength and three red<br />

maggots on the hook is a meal<br />

few fish can resist.<br />

Like the Method feeder, though,<br />

once you begin catching on the<br />

Shotgun Feeder it’s going to be<br />

tough on your kit, so gear up<br />

accordingly. A tough as old boots<br />

mainline such as 8lb M-Tech<br />

will take the strain alongside a<br />

hooklength of 0.18mm Lo-Viz.<br />

Hooks, though, need thinking<br />

about as maggots are the main<br />

bait. The lighter KM-2 is the one<br />

to go for here in a size 16 or 14,<br />

matched to a soft-actioned rod<br />

like the 10ft 5G Method Feeder.<br />

In fact, so prolific is the Shotgun<br />

Feeder that your ordinary<br />

Method feeders may end up not<br />

seeing the light of day for many<br />

months to come!<br />

The Shotgun Feeder, in the<br />

smaller sizes, is also a winner for<br />

F1s in winter when maggots take<br />

over as pellets start to lose their<br />

effectiveness in the cold.<br />

SHOTGUN FEEDER<br />

SHOPPING LIST<br />

● M-Tech 8lb mainline<br />

● 0.18mm Lo-Viz hooklength<br />

● Sawn Off Shotgun feeder<br />

● 2mm pellets or Method Mix<br />

groundbait<br />

● Size 16 KM-1 or KM-2 hook<br />

● Two pints of red maggots<br />

5


FISHING SECRETS<br />

How to succeed when fishing<br />

shallow on commercial fisheries<br />

Pellet waggler<br />

fishing is fun<br />

and exciting.<br />

T<br />

HERE can be little<br />

doubt about the<br />

effectiveness of the<br />

pellet waggler for catching carp<br />

shallow when the sun is beating<br />

down. But in recent years<br />

there’s been a definite new<br />

trend associated with this<br />

method – stealth.<br />

From the days of launching<br />

big floats that hit the water like<br />

a cannonball, the modern take<br />

on the ‘pellet wag’ is to go in<br />

the opposite direction and make<br />

as little noise as possible with<br />

delicate, light floats that go in<br />

with the merest ‘plop’.<br />

This is because the fish on<br />

some fisheries have wised up.<br />

Like any method, over time carp<br />

and F1s have come to associate<br />

the standard approach (big<br />

floats) with danger. Switch to a<br />

lighter attack, however, and their<br />

guard is dropped.<br />

So, what are we looking at in a<br />

stealthy pellet waggler? Size is<br />

obviously the first thing, the float<br />

being much, much shorter than<br />

normal, almost a stubby shape.<br />

This is why the new Stubbee<br />

floats bear that name. Just a<br />

few inches long and made from<br />

light balsa wood, Stubbees still<br />

cast well but make minimal<br />

impact on the surface, allowing<br />

you to flick the rig in front of a<br />

cruising fish without raising the<br />

alarm.<br />

Packing a ball-shaped loading<br />

in the base, the need for any<br />

locking shot around the float<br />

is done away with and these<br />

weights are interchangeable too,<br />

allowing you to get just the right<br />

amount of weight for the casting<br />

distance needed and the amount<br />

You’ll need a decent catty.<br />

6


Mark Sawyer<br />

of splash you want to make.<br />

Being short, Stubbees also sit<br />

up immediately once the cast is<br />

completed. This has two benefits.<br />

First, they won’t dive too deep in<br />

among feeding fish and second,<br />

you’re ready and watching for<br />

a bite within seconds, as many<br />

takes on the pellet waggler are<br />

almost instant!<br />

At the business end of the rig,<br />

pick up a packet of pre-tied Band<br />

‘Em Pellet hooklengths, which<br />

already have a latex pellet band<br />

on a hair rig. Use the barbless<br />

KM-2 hook to relatively light<br />

Lo-Viz line and delicacy to match<br />

that of the float is assured. Cast<br />

regularly, fire half-a-dozen 6mm<br />

or 8mm pellets around the float<br />

each cast, and the action won’t<br />

be long in coming!<br />

Original Popper-style float<br />

How far out you catch on<br />

the pellet waggler can change<br />

throughout the day as the fish<br />

move. From getting bites at<br />

20m, you may then need to add<br />

several metres to the cast to keep<br />

on catching, so a longer rod will<br />

help. Look at using a 12ft model<br />

to not only make casting easier<br />

but to also pick up the line on the<br />

strike that much faster.<br />

As good as light wagglers are,<br />

there’s still a place for heavy<br />

Popper-style models that make<br />

a big splash as they hit the water.<br />

If you’re getting bites quickly,<br />

almost as soon as the loosefeed<br />

lands, this suggests that making<br />

Pellet Stubbee<br />

wagglers land<br />

with finesse.<br />

the same noise with a float will<br />

get results!<br />

Although the pellet waggler<br />

can be a very positive way of<br />

fishing, it’s one that lends itself<br />

to fishing as light as you can<br />

get away with when it comes<br />

to tackle. A 0.20mm Lo-Viz<br />

mainline to a hooklength of<br />

0.18mm will keep bites coming,<br />

but won’t leave you undergunned<br />

once a carp is hooked.<br />

You’ll get bites faster if you<br />

can keep your loosefed pellets<br />

landing in a tight group. You<br />

can guaranteed that by using<br />

the right type of catapult that’s<br />

powerful enough to launch<br />

the feed, but which also has<br />

an enclosed pouch to stop the<br />

pellets from spreading through<br />

the air.<br />

A longer rod will enable you to<br />

follow fish out. The Arco-Tech<br />

allows you to fish at 11ft or 12ft!<br />

STUBBEE SET-UP<br />

KM-2<br />

hook<br />

Double<br />

overhand<br />

loop<br />

Pellet<br />

Stubbee<br />

0.20/8lb<br />

Lo-Viz<br />

12” (30cm)<br />

0.18/6lb<br />

Banded<br />

pellet<br />

PELLET WAGGLER<br />

SHOPPING LIST<br />

● 12ft carp/pellet waggler rod<br />

● Stubbee pellet wagglers<br />

● 0.20mm mainline<br />

● Band ‘Em Pellet hooks<br />

to nylon<br />

● 6mm pellets<br />

● Catty<br />

7


FISHING SECRETS<br />

The latest gear to give you an edge to success!<br />

L<br />

OOKING to upgrade<br />

your gear or just started<br />

fishing and not sure<br />

what to invest your cash in?<br />

Every few months there seems<br />

to be more and more new tackle<br />

on the market, from poles and<br />

rods to the smaller bits and bobs<br />

like hooks and feeders – the<br />

choice is staggering!<br />

So to help narrow the search<br />

down, pop your feet up and have<br />

a browse through the latest top<br />

tackle over the next few pages…<br />

QUARTIX ZOOMER FEEDERS<br />

Long casts need a special type<br />

of feeder to hit the mark, namely<br />

weight forwards or ‘rocket’ style<br />

tools such as the Zoomer.<br />

Available in 30g, 45g and<br />

60g weights, its tough metal<br />

cage body has the aerodynamic<br />

loading off-set to increase<br />

casting potential, topped off with<br />

a super-strong crimped loop<br />

attachment.<br />

TOP TIP FOR<br />

LONG CASTS<br />

QUARTIX ZERO LIMITS FEEDER RODS<br />

Long-range feeder fishing has been one of angling’s success<br />

stories in recent years, becoming incredibly popular and resulting<br />

in new ranges of tackle dedicated to long casts for bream and<br />

carp.<br />

The Quartix range of feeder rods (out in June) are made using<br />

never seen before hollow spliced quivertip technology. This<br />

revolutionary development means you can cast more accurately<br />

without twist or wobble. They’re not cheap but are set to be the<br />

Ferrari of feeder rods!<br />

8


MEGABYTE GROUNDBAITS<br />

High in pellet and fishmeal<br />

content, these groundbaits<br />

are ideal for commercial<br />

fisheries all year, owing to<br />

the double grinding process<br />

that leaves the finished mix<br />

super-fine in texture and<br />

low in feed value.<br />

Equally effective for<br />

feeder or pole work at<br />

depths to 6ft, there are four<br />

flavours and colours to pick<br />

from – Scopex Yellow, F1<br />

Noir, Betaine Green and Red<br />

Krill – and each one comes<br />

with a free bottle of Method<br />

Reacta Boost to pep the<br />

mix up even further!<br />

XTREME G-PULSE POLES<br />

An updated version of the<br />

famed Xtreme poles, these<br />

MkII models have an improved<br />

action with even more stiffness<br />

and better balance, as well<br />

as several new features and a<br />

slightly lower overall weight.<br />

All this adds up to great poles<br />

to do battle with commercial<br />

fishery carp!<br />

Rated to a massive No30<br />

elastic, those new features<br />

include EVA domed protection<br />

on the fourth section to avoid<br />

damage when breaking the<br />

pole down to land a fish;<br />

aligner arrows on each section;<br />

and white Power top-2 kits<br />

(called Shadow Zero) that are<br />

designed to be anti-spook to<br />

fish when held over the water.<br />

Each kit comes with a puller<br />

slot to make the perfect pulla/<br />

strippa set-up.<br />

Choose from the M2 at 10m<br />

long or the M3 that’s available<br />

in 11.5m and 13m packages.<br />

You get a FREE bottle of Reacta<br />

Boost worth £1.99 in every<br />

1.4kg bag.<br />

X-FLEX CATAPULTS<br />

Fishing is so varied that it<br />

pays to carry a few cattys<br />

around with you. The X-Flex<br />

Pellet Catapult is designed<br />

to fire half-a-dozen hard<br />

pellets into a tight area,<br />

while the Mini Baits gives a<br />

wider spread. There’s also a<br />

mesh pouch version of the<br />

Pellet for quick and easy<br />

loading and firing of bait.<br />

SUPRA DRY SPOON<br />

LANDING NET HEADS<br />

Designed for match fishing<br />

where speed is essential, this<br />

landing net head range is also<br />

great for pleasure anglers too,<br />

cutting through water with<br />

ease to follow hard-fighting fish<br />

making a last bid for freedom.<br />

They are also very light, but all<br />

with a strong frame for dealing<br />

with big fish. Match the net size<br />

to your preferred type of fishing<br />

– the 22ins diameter model is<br />

brilliant for carp or river chub<br />

and bream and the 20ins for outand-out<br />

commercial carp, while<br />

the 18ins version will tackle F1s or<br />

small silverfish on natural venues.<br />

9


FISHING SECRETS<br />

The best hooks for success!<br />

HOOKS are perhaps the most<br />

important part of your tackle –<br />

they’re the direct link to a fish<br />

– which means that you never<br />

want one to let you down!<br />

However, a hook for fishing the<br />

feeder in high summer needs<br />

to be very different to one for<br />

picking off shy-biting F1s and<br />

silverfish in the cold of winter.<br />

So, what should you tie on to<br />

those pole or feeder rigs? Here<br />

are five patterns that’ll cover<br />

every base…<br />

KM-1<br />

Summer fishing on commercials<br />

is about catching shallow, picking<br />

off carp swimming just a few feet<br />

under the surface. The KM-1 has<br />

the perfect blend of strength and<br />

lightness to get the job done.<br />

KM-2<br />

Every angler should have a good<br />

all-round hook, and the KM-2 is<br />

exactly that – a pattern that’ll<br />

work brilliantly for hair-rigging<br />

baits shallow, or for when you<br />

switch to the bottom.<br />

AND FOR<br />

SOMETHING<br />

WITH A TWIST…<br />

Q Curve QC-1<br />

Method Wafter<br />

With the rise in popularity<br />

of wafter hookbaits, a<br />

curved hook is a must to<br />

substantially increase the<br />

quality of hook hold. Slip a<br />

Q-Curve on to your rig and<br />

it’s highly unlikely that a fish<br />

will end up anywhere other<br />

than in your net! Made from<br />

110 carbon steel with an<br />

anti-glint finish, Q-Curves<br />

are Teflon impregnated to<br />

give a super-sharp, long<br />

lasting point.<br />

EYED<br />

SUPER<br />

SHARP<br />

KM-3<br />

The real powerhouse of the KM<br />

series, the barbless KM-3 is a<br />

brilliant hook for hit-and-hold<br />

fishing. The eyed pattern is ideal<br />

for hair-rigging corn and large<br />

pellet when you’re after big carp.<br />

KM-4<br />

For fishing with more traditional<br />

baits like maggots and worms,<br />

a spade end pattern is best, and<br />

the KM-4 is the one to use when<br />

a touch of finesse is needed<br />

without sacrificing strength.<br />

TEFLON<br />

IMPREGNATED<br />

DULL<br />

FINISH<br />

UNIQUE<br />

STAY-HOLD<br />

BEND<br />

10


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Hair makes a difference<br />

– it’s how it hangs!<br />

Y<br />

EARS ago, hair rigs on<br />

hooks were only for the<br />

specimen hunting set.<br />

How things have changed, and<br />

what a difference hair-rigging<br />

has made to our fishing!<br />

The rise of commercial carp<br />

fisheries and baits such as pellets,<br />

wafters and mini boilies now<br />

makes a hair rig an essential part<br />

of an angler’s kit, and to save on<br />

time, you can now buy reliable<br />

ready rigs off the shelf that are<br />

good to go.<br />

It’s not, however, just a case<br />

of using a hook with a band<br />

tied on the end of the hair.<br />

Advancements in tackle and our<br />

understanding of how fish feed<br />

have paved the way for dozens<br />

of different types of hair rig<br />

ready rigs.<br />

A twisted hair on Band ‘Em<br />

style hooklengths makes the hair<br />

a bit stiffer and helps the bait<br />

to hang in-line better, while the<br />

versatile Las-soo means you can<br />

mount and fish with any bait you<br />

wish. And if you want something<br />

with a twist, give the Meat Carp<br />

hooks a go, using the corkscrew<br />

style attachment.<br />

Here are five of the best to get you bagging this summer…<br />

POLE PELLET<br />

BAND ‘EMS – A<br />

GREAT HELP ON<br />

THE POLE!<br />

THESE banded<br />

hooks are<br />

designed for<br />

pellets, corn<br />

and meat on<br />

the bottom or<br />

up in the water.<br />

Band size is<br />

matched to hook<br />

size for perfect<br />

presentation,<br />

using KM-1 hooks<br />

to a 6ins Lo-Viz<br />

hooklength. Unlike<br />

many pre-tied<br />

banded hooks, the<br />

hair is twisted so<br />

the bait hangs in<br />

line every time.<br />

MEAT CARP<br />

This pattern uses a<br />

clever spiral spike<br />

on the hair to firmly<br />

anchor the bait. Great<br />

for commercial carp or<br />

river chub and barbel,<br />

the super strong KM-3<br />

hook is matched to 10ins<br />

of hooklength, ideal for<br />

feeder or pole work.<br />

LAS-SOO CARP<br />

These pre-tied hooks<br />

can manage all sizes of<br />

bait due to the unique<br />

Las-soo noose. A built-in<br />

gripper stop slides along<br />

the loop to hold the bait<br />

in place. Made up of a<br />

KM-1 barbless hook to<br />

12ins of line, it’s perfect<br />

for fishing pellets.<br />

BAND ‘EM METHOD<br />

There’s no need for a<br />

long hooklength when<br />

fishing the Method, and<br />

the 4ins links on these<br />

hooks are just the job.<br />

Matched to a KM-2<br />

hook, the latex pellet<br />

band is slightly offset to<br />

keep the bait inline amid<br />

a pile of micro pellets.<br />

Q-CURVE QC-1<br />

METHOD WAFTER<br />

For wafters a special<br />

type of hook is needed.<br />

The Q-Curve is super<br />

sharp and strong, and<br />

band size is matched<br />

to the hook, twisted<br />

4ins hairs making the<br />

bait behave naturally to<br />

feeding fish.<br />

Top Tip – make your hookbaits really stand out<br />

BE sure to get the hook size to line strength ratio right – a<br />

size 18 to 12lb line is no good! Make the hookbait as visible<br />

as possible. Try adding White Adrenaline Nano Boost to<br />

your hook pellets to make them stand out to the fish!<br />

11


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Summer Baggin’<br />

– with a new line of attack!<br />

Russell Shipton<br />

12<br />

I<br />

N THE summer, carp will<br />

move in close to the<br />

bank to feed, and a<br />

great area to target them is<br />

what’s known as the 5m line.<br />

This is roughly the point<br />

where the marginal slope of<br />

a lake meets the main depth,<br />

somewhere that fish will patrol<br />

knowing that food naturally<br />

gathers here. It’s a spot you’ve<br />

just got to fish!<br />

This may be at 5m or it could<br />

be as much as 8m out. At<br />

whatever distance you end up<br />

fishing, you have to ensure that<br />

your tackle is up to the job, as<br />

double-figure fish will more than<br />

likely be encountered.<br />

It all starts with the pole you<br />

use. This allows for pinpoint bait<br />

placement and presentation,<br />

and you don’t need an expensive<br />

16m pole to get the job done. A<br />

robust 8m pole built to handle<br />

big fish will do you proud. Check<br />

out the Thriller V3, an 8.5m<br />

margin pole that comes already<br />

elasticated and good to go.<br />

Set to just the right tension to<br />

prevent lost fish in mid-battle,<br />

you can elasticate the pole<br />

yourself. Hollow elastics are very<br />

popular and the blue Hi-Viz 18-22<br />

grade will put you firmly in the<br />

driving seat. For total control,<br />

look at the 5m Bomb Proof pole,<br />

fitted with a side puller slot to let


you strip elastic out while playing<br />

a big carp to make landing them<br />

a lot easier.<br />

The next thing to look at are<br />

rigs. Again, big fish should be in<br />

mind, so lines and hooks must be<br />

powerful stuff. Certainly, lines of<br />

no less than 0.20mm diameter<br />

as main and 0.18mm for the<br />

hooklength to a size 14 KM-4<br />

hook are needed, plus a strong<br />

float from the Xtreme series.<br />

If tying rigs isn’t your thing,<br />

have no fear! The Xtreme Baggin’<br />

pole rig series has a ready-made<br />

rig for most situations, including<br />

emptying the 5m line of big carp.<br />

Tied to sensible lines, and with<br />

the right hook for the job, they<br />

mean that with that elasticated<br />

pole you can be ready to fish in<br />

just seconds.<br />

Shotting on this rig can be<br />

moved about to any pattern<br />

you like, but in general, a strung<br />

bulk of Slot Shot will allow<br />

the hookbait to fall slowly and<br />

naturally through the water<br />

where fish will see it, follow it<br />

and pick it up. Take a look at the<br />

rig diagram on the right to help<br />

A Snack Attak hookbait on a<br />

size 14 hook is the perfect<br />

combo for a bagging session.<br />

you on your way.<br />

That, then, leaves what to put<br />

on the hook. Old classics like<br />

corn, meat and pellet are great,<br />

but for something completely<br />

different, pick up a jar of<br />

Adrenaline Snack Attak. These<br />

can be hooked directly and are<br />

a soft hookbait that ooze flavour<br />

and aroma into the water. Highly<br />

buoyant, Snack Attaks need to be<br />

fished on a large size 14 hook to<br />

allow them to sink slowly. Once<br />

the colour and flavour has leaked<br />

out, simply re-dip them in the pot<br />

to power them back up again.<br />

With a choice of White Vanilla,<br />

Scopex Yellow, Red Krill or<br />

chocolate orange, there are lots<br />

of options to play about with.<br />

Lo-Viz<br />

line<br />

Xtreme<br />

pole float<br />

For total control, look at the 5m Bomb<br />

Proof Pole, fitted with a side puller slot to<br />

let you slip elastic out while playing a carp.<br />

Slot-Shot<br />

equally<br />

spaced<br />

SHOPPING LIST<br />

● Strong pre-elasticated<br />

8m pole<br />

● Robust ready pole rig<br />

● Jar of Snack Attak<br />

Snack<br />

Attak<br />

6ins (15cm)<br />

hooklength<br />

KM4 hook<br />

13


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Margins: Set the trap – but you have to be<br />

systematic in your approach!<br />

The rewards are<br />

there if you get<br />

it right.<br />

You now need a<br />

refined approach<br />

for the margins.<br />

A No20 elastic is perfect<br />

for fishing down the edge.<br />

Dale Calvert<br />

A<br />

T FIRST glance, fishing<br />

the margins for carp<br />

seems simple – you just<br />

fill the swim in with lots of bait,<br />

fish over the top of it and bag<br />

up. At times, this is indeed true,<br />

but those red-letter days when<br />

everything goes to plan are<br />

actually few and far between.<br />

The problem is that fish have<br />

got used to this approach and<br />

will often back away from large<br />

amounts of groundbait, corn<br />

and pellets being shovelled into<br />

shallow water. Instead, setting a<br />

trap and fishing almost for one<br />

carp at a time is the best plan.<br />

Gone are the massive pole cups<br />

dumping in bait on top of the<br />

fish, replaced by a much smaller<br />

pot on the end of the pole to<br />

drop in a mere dollop of feed<br />

each time. This is just enough<br />

14<br />

“Setting a trap and fishing<br />

almost for one carp at a<br />

time is the best plan”<br />

to encourage a carp to feed and<br />

then find your hookbait. Done<br />

correctly, every drop in will result<br />

in a fish in the net.<br />

Whopper pots are the order of the<br />

day for fishing in the margins.<br />

Try setting up with a Whopper<br />

pot, which allow you feed over<br />

the top of your float with a tasty<br />

mouthful and to set that trap. It’s<br />

big enough to take a sprinkling<br />

of corn or a nugget of groundbait<br />

and makes things very accurate


compared to a pole cup that’ll<br />

spread the feed.<br />

Done this way, you’ll not only<br />

keep the fish hunting, but will<br />

also pull fewer fish into the swim<br />

at one time. This means line bites<br />

are minimal so that when the<br />

float does go under, it’ll be from<br />

a fish picking the bait up.<br />

Given the size of fish that the<br />

margins hold, your tackle has to<br />

be up to the job. Ready-to-go<br />

margin rigs are fine, but if you<br />

want to tie your own set-up,<br />

look at using a strong, short pole<br />

float such as the MW Mugger to<br />

0.20mm line and a size 14 KM-3<br />

hook and Reactacore elastic in<br />

the No20 grade. This sounds too<br />

strong, but when you see a big<br />

margin carp tear off into the lake,<br />

you’ll understand why you need<br />

to fish proper kit!<br />

On the hook, big is best, so an<br />

8mm pellet, two pieces of corn<br />

or a whole worm will keep small<br />

fish away and make sure that<br />

whatever takes the bait is going<br />

to be big. For feed, using what’s<br />

on the hook is a good idea,<br />

namely corn and pellets, with a<br />

little groundbait in summer.<br />

MW Mugger<br />

float<br />

The ultimate<br />

margin pole.<br />

Important: The margin tackle you need<br />

0.20mm<br />

Lo-Viz<br />

POWERFUL MARGIN POLE<br />

Without a doubt, margin tackle<br />

needs to be strong because<br />

a 15lb carp isn’t out of the<br />

question and they go off like<br />

a rocket when hooked! A<br />

standard carp pole will be fine,<br />

but if you really want to take<br />

margin fishing seriously, take<br />

a look at a dedicated margin<br />

pole such as the Reactacore<br />

XQ-1. Incredibly strong and<br />

able to take the most powerful<br />

of elastics, it’s a pole built with<br />

one thing in mind.<br />

BULK SHOTS<br />

Fishing in just 12ins of water<br />

means there’s no need for a<br />

fancy shotting pattern on your<br />

rig. In fact, simple is best and<br />

that means a straight bulk<br />

of shot pushed together just<br />

above the hooklength. Slot-<br />

Shot weights make sure the<br />

line hangs neatly and are also<br />

strong enough to not move<br />

or ‘ping’ off the line under<br />

pressure when playing a big<br />

carp.<br />

WHITE TOP KITS<br />

Margin swims are normally<br />

shallow, which can lead to fish<br />

feeding there becoming very<br />

spooky and easy to scare out<br />

of the peg. Waving the pole-tip<br />

over their heads is a common<br />

cause for this, something<br />

that can be solved by using<br />

Phantom-style white top kits<br />

on your pole. These create less<br />

of a shadow on the water.<br />

SHOPPING LIST<br />

● Strong XQ-1 Margin Pole<br />

● Reactacore elastic<br />

● Whopper pots<br />

● MW Mugger float<br />

● KM-3 hook<br />

● Slot Shot<br />

6ins<br />

hooklength<br />

Slot-Shot<br />

bulk<br />

KM-3 hook<br />

Corn or<br />

soft pellet<br />

15


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Go the full distance<br />

Lee Thornton<br />

L<br />

ONG-range feeder<br />

fishing has become<br />

incredibly popular in<br />

recent years, reaching out to<br />

catch big carp, bream and F1s<br />

– and it’s not as diffcult as it<br />

seems at first glance.<br />

Casts of well over 80 yards are<br />

now easy to master provided you<br />

use the right tackle to get the<br />

job done, and there’s one main<br />

benefit to being able to throw a<br />

feeder to the horizon when the<br />

need arises.<br />

How many times have you<br />

stopped catching on the feeder?<br />

Quite a few, no doubt, and the<br />

reason is not that the fish have<br />

vanished, more that they’ve<br />

backed off further out into the<br />

lake. Being able to follow them<br />

by adding several yards to the<br />

next cast soon puts you back in<br />

touch and catching again.<br />

For long casts you’ll need<br />

a rod that’s capable of<br />

performing, so we’re talking<br />

12ft and longer, matched to a<br />

mainline and shockleader setup.<br />

A shockleader is a length<br />

of stronger line joining your<br />

mainline to a hooklength, which<br />

will take the strain on each cast.<br />

For a 6lb mainline, a 10lb leader<br />

is about right, using around three<br />

rodlengths (36ft) of leader.<br />

Feeders also need not only<br />

the weight, but also the right<br />

shape to cast a long way. The<br />

most popular are bullet-shaped<br />

‘weight forward’ cage feeders<br />

such as the Quartix Zoomer in<br />

Give the feeder<br />

the beans to get<br />

the distance.<br />

the 45g weight. This will cut<br />

through any crosswind and make<br />

sure you’re deadly accurate.<br />

On the business end, you don’t<br />

want to lose what you hook,<br />

so 12ins of 0.20mm Lo-Viz as a<br />

hooklength to a size 12 Q-Curve<br />

hook fished with a hair rig is the<br />

name of the game here. Slipping<br />

a piece of silicone tube on to the<br />

A hooked carp is<br />

played with the<br />

rod held low.<br />

16


hook at the bend helps turn the<br />

hookpoint inwards when you get<br />

a bite, which adds up to more<br />

fish being hooked.<br />

There’s little to beat a wafter<br />

hookbait, popping a small Slot<br />

Shot just beneath the hair to help<br />

the wafter stand proud on the<br />

bottom. Feed is a simple choice<br />

between pellets and groundbait.<br />

Micro pellets can be a little<br />

selective on their own, so a mix<br />

of the two is a safer bet.<br />

Check List<br />

USE TOUGH LINE!<br />

Casting a long way puts a lot of<br />

strain on tackle – and a rugged<br />

mainline is a must. M-Tech in 6lb<br />

breaking strain, matched to a<br />

shockleader of the same line at<br />

10lb, will allow you to cast well<br />

over the 60m mark with ease.<br />

ROCK SOLID SET UP<br />

There’s nothing worse than<br />

having the rod bounce all over<br />

the place after casting. A superstable<br />

feeder arm is essential,<br />

as is a solid rod rest head. The<br />

Trigger rest is just the job, with<br />

an upright at one end to stop the<br />

rod being dragged in.<br />

GROUNDBAIT OR PELLETS?<br />

Both feeds are good, but if you’re<br />

unsure, go for a 50/50 mix of<br />

both, adding dampened micros<br />

to Megabyte F1 Noir groundbait<br />

in clear water. On coloured lakes<br />

use Betaine Green.<br />

BE ACCURATE – EVERY TIME<br />

Having the right rod is important,<br />

not only to get your feeder to<br />

the distance you need, but also<br />

to make sure it lands in the same<br />

place each time! Packed with<br />

technology, the Quartix range<br />

are built for just this purpose,<br />

ensuring accuracy and distance.<br />

Trigger rod rest<br />

heads are solid<br />

and reliable.<br />

Megabyte F1<br />

Noir mix and a<br />

Zoomer feeder.<br />

For bream, hitting the same<br />

spot and building the swim up<br />

is the plan of attack, but for big<br />

carp, it’s a little different.<br />

It’s rare to have a run of carp<br />

here, instead using long casts to<br />

pick off the odd fish. Therefore,<br />

make only one cast to a spot and<br />

whether you catch or not, put the<br />

next chuck somewhere different,<br />

but on the same line. This is<br />

usually a more effective ploy.<br />

LONG-RANGE FEEDER<br />

SHOPPING LIST<br />

● Quartix Feeder rod<br />

● Quartix Zoomer Feeder<br />

● M-Tech mainline<br />

● M-Tech shockleader line<br />

● Lo-Viz hooklength line<br />

● Q-Curve hooks<br />

● Megabyte F1 Noir<br />

groundbait<br />

● Trigger rod rest head<br />

17


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Jigging… what on Earth is it?<br />

JIGGA FLOAT SET-UP<br />

The Jigga can<br />

be deadly for<br />

wily F1 hybrids.<br />

A banded<br />

pellet, the ideal<br />

Jigga hookbait.<br />

18<br />

S<br />

EEN by some as ‘not<br />

quite cricket’, the Jigga<br />

allows you to freeline a<br />

hookbait up in the water,<br />

offering no resistance to a fish<br />

taking the bait and allowing the<br />

bait be lifted and dropped<br />

through the upper layers of the<br />

swim without moving the float.<br />

A hole through the body<br />

and stem lets the mainline run<br />

through, stopped above the<br />

float by a rubber float stop and<br />

beneath by a small bulk of No8<br />

Slot Shot. Under the shot go the<br />

hooklength and hook - 6ins of<br />

0.14mm Lo-Viz to a size 16 KM-1<br />

barbless - with a banded hard<br />

4mm or 6mm pellet as hookbait.<br />

One final thing to get right<br />

is the length of line that can<br />

be lifted and dropped through<br />

the float body, or, in effect, the<br />

depths you can fish at. This is all<br />

down to where the fish are, so it<br />

could mean only having 12ins of<br />

line to lift and drop, or as much<br />

as 3ft. Generally, however, the<br />

Jigga is about catching very<br />

shallow, so short is best.<br />

Ship out, lower the rig in and<br />

let the line pull through the float<br />

until it hits the float stop. Now<br />

lift slowly and the float will stay<br />

still but the line will lift until it hits<br />

the bulk of shot, taking the pellet<br />

with it. It’s now a case of working<br />

the rig constantly until a fish<br />

takes the bait and hooks itself.


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Loading your feeder<br />

Chris Cameron<br />

T<br />

HE METHOD feeder has<br />

transformed fishing and<br />

with the introduction of<br />

specialised moulds. It couldn’t<br />

be easier to get set up!<br />

But many anglers don’t realise<br />

how important it is to know when<br />

to bury the bait and when to put<br />

it on top of the ball of feed. Both<br />

can work well – it depends on the<br />

reaction of the fish.<br />

Micro pellets are the go-to for<br />

many anglers, but these need to<br />

be soaked to make them softer<br />

and sticky before going on to<br />

a Method<br />

feeder. It’s<br />

much easier<br />

to use<br />

groundbait<br />

instead.<br />

A mix<br />

specifically designed for<br />

the Method feeder will help,<br />

something sticky enough to<br />

stay around the feeder on the<br />

cast and as it sinks, but which<br />

will then break up quickly once<br />

things have settled and begin to<br />

pump out attraction to pull fish<br />

into the area. Adrenaline Mega<br />

Byte Carp Method Mix is the type<br />

of groundbait you’re looking<br />

for combined with a wafter<br />

hookbait.<br />

Making the Method ball up<br />

couldn’t be easier with the arrival<br />

of purpose-made moulds. It now<br />

takes seconds to get a compact,<br />

evenly-shaped ball, a far cry from<br />

the days of squeezing groundbait<br />

on to the feeder by hand!<br />

Another great tip is to choose<br />

a Method feeder that’ll hold<br />

bottom if you’re fishing on<br />

the marginal slope of a far<br />

bank or around an island (your<br />

quivertip should never move<br />

once the feeder has landed!).<br />

On a slope the feeder can slide<br />

back into deeper water, so a<br />

Gripper Flat Bed Method with<br />

gripped grooves on the base is<br />

unbeatable to hold position.<br />

TOP TIP<br />

Get a feeder with a<br />

grooved base to hold on<br />

to the slope.<br />

HOOKBAIT PLACEMENT<br />

WHERE do you put the<br />

hookbait inside the feed –<br />

top or bottom?<br />

A bait sat at the bottom<br />

of the pellets or groundbait<br />

means that a fish will have<br />

to wait until the ball has<br />

broken down before it can<br />

pick it up. This approach is<br />

best when more of a sit and<br />

wait attack is needed.<br />

On the flip side, for<br />

sessions when bites are<br />

coming quickly and the fish<br />

are almost tearing the ball<br />

of feed apart, try popping<br />

the hookbait on top by<br />

placing it in the mould first<br />

and then adding pellets or<br />

groundbait.<br />

Top tip to keep bait fresh<br />

GET yourself an EVA case with a<br />

zipped lid to help keep prepared<br />

pellets or groundbait fresh<br />

throughout the day. There’s<br />

nothing worse than having<br />

your feed dry up! Tucked away<br />

in a case, it’ll stay moist and in<br />

perfect condition.<br />

Hookbait first into the mould...<br />

...will end up on top of the ball.<br />

19


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Essential floats<br />

What you need and when to use them…<br />

Rod and reel floats<br />

T<br />

HERE are dozens of different<br />

floats to pick from in tackle<br />

shops, but how can you be sure<br />

that what you pick up is actually right for<br />

the job in hand?<br />

Never fear, make the correct choice<br />

every time with this guide to both pole<br />

and rod and reel floats...<br />

Canals<br />

Slim and super<br />

sensitive, this<br />

unloaded balsa<br />

float is perfect<br />

for delicate<br />

presentation<br />

when you’re after<br />

silverfish like roach<br />

on canals or F1s on<br />

lakes. Pick from 3 x<br />

No4, 4 x No 4, 2BB<br />

and 3BB sizes.<br />

Running water<br />

For running<br />

water you need<br />

a stick float like<br />

the famous Pete<br />

Warren model,<br />

4x No4 and 5x<br />

No4 are the most<br />

popular sizes. On<br />

very fast rivers<br />

step up to an Avon<br />

style with a bulked<br />

shotting pattern.<br />

Peacock Pellet<br />

Waggler<br />

A jack of all trades,<br />

this float is equally<br />

at home running<br />

maggots down a<br />

river swim as it is<br />

fished shallow as<br />

a pellet waggler.<br />

Extremely buoyant<br />

and in big sizes<br />

to help you cast a<br />

long way.<br />

Loaded clear wag<br />

This is a great allrounder.<br />

They’re<br />

especially good<br />

when used with<br />

pellets fished just<br />

off the bottom<br />

on commercials.<br />

These Fat Boy<br />

models are used<br />

by international<br />

match angler Rob<br />

Wootton.<br />

Up-in-the water<br />

You’ll need some<br />

floats for fishing<br />

for carp in the<br />

upper layers in<br />

summer. Choose<br />

Baggin Machine<br />

smaller models for<br />

puddles or Splash-<br />

Em style for longer<br />

casts. The dome<br />

stops them diving<br />

too deeply.<br />

Pole and whip floats<br />

TOP TIP<br />

A float adaptor won’t<br />

damage your line as<br />

shot can, and makes<br />

changing waggler<br />

floats quick and easy.<br />

F1s<br />

You need a slim<br />

body and fine<br />

tip for F1s. This<br />

signature model<br />

designed by Lee<br />

Thornton is ideal.<br />

Open water<br />

Choose a<br />

diamond shape<br />

for stability. The<br />

Middy MW has a<br />

whipped side eye<br />

for extra strength.<br />

Margins<br />

These short<br />

stubby floats<br />

have a thick tip to<br />

allow you to tell<br />

bites from liners<br />

with ease.<br />

All-rounder<br />

An elongated pear<br />

is ideal for many<br />

circumstances<br />

and this White<br />

Knuckle pattern is<br />

also super tough.<br />

20


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Elastic choice is vital!<br />

Hybrid elastics are<br />

becoming more<br />

and more popular.<br />

W<br />

HEN YOU really think<br />

about it, it’s amazing<br />

how far pole elastic<br />

technology has moved on!<br />

From the days of having just<br />

two strengths to pick from, we’ve<br />

now got dozens to suit every<br />

situation. We also have different<br />

types of elastic too.<br />

Where once you could only fish<br />

with a solid elastic, there are now<br />

latex, hollow and more recently<br />

hybrid versions. Far from being<br />

a mere gimmick, each has its<br />

place. In elastic terms, and the<br />

proverbial ‘one size fits all’<br />

definitely does not apply.<br />

Elastics must also be balanced<br />

to the rig you’re using, and the<br />

size of fish expected, so here’s a<br />

quick guide…<br />

SOLID<br />

Traditional solid<br />

elastics are<br />

nowadays used<br />

mainly in the<br />

lower grades to<br />

give anglers a<br />

super-soft action<br />

for tackling F1s or small silverfish.<br />

It’s thought that a solid elastic<br />

offers less stretch, ideal for<br />

swinging fish to hand.<br />

HYBRID<br />

The most recent arrival on the<br />

pole elastic scene is the hybrid<br />

which, as the name suggests,<br />

sits between a solid and a hollow<br />

in terms of performance. You’ll<br />

find a little less stretch in this<br />

Top tip<br />

WITH the new S-SLIDE system,<br />

launched this summer, you<br />

simply drill your top kit to a<br />

6mm width, click<br />

the bush into<br />

place and you’re<br />

good to go. A<br />

game-changer!<br />

elastic, allowing more control<br />

over hooked fish with less need<br />

for stripping elastic out of the top<br />

kit. A good all-round choice.<br />

HOLLOW<br />

A stand-out<br />

feature of hollow<br />

elastic was<br />

the unrivalled<br />

stretch it<br />

offered, resulting<br />

in far fewer lost<br />

fish when shipping back or hookpulls<br />

at the net. However, due to<br />

that stretch, a side puller system<br />

is needed to keep things under<br />

control. It’s often used for when<br />

bigger fish are expected.<br />

DACRON CONNECTORS<br />

Stonfo-style connectors have<br />

been around for years, but many<br />

anglers have moved on to using a<br />

Dacron connector and have never<br />

looked back! Dacrons create<br />

a stiffer link between you and<br />

Top tip<br />

KEEPING pole elastics<br />

lubricated is a wise move,<br />

helping to cut down on lost<br />

or bumped fish and allowing<br />

the elastic to work properly.<br />

Half-a-dozen squirts down<br />

your top kit just before<br />

starting to fish will be<br />

enough, allowing lubricant<br />

to flow fully through the<br />

sections to coat the elastic.<br />

the pole rig, allowing for more<br />

control and fewer tangles.<br />

PULL IT SIDE PULLER SET-UP<br />

Gone are the days of using<br />

traditional bungs in the bottom<br />

of top kits, even when fishing<br />

rivers and canals. Side puller<br />

systems have taken over, giving<br />

you an easy way to strip elastic<br />

out of the kit when playing fish to<br />

ensure total control or to adjust<br />

the tension in seconds.<br />

21


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Rods explained<br />

What you need to get the job done!<br />

10FT METHOD FEEDER<br />

For commercials, a rod like this is<br />

essential. Get something with a<br />

50g casting weight and a soft<br />

style action. The latest 5G rods<br />

are perfect.<br />

PELLET WAGGLER 11FT<br />

Want to bag up in the summer?<br />

You’ll need a dedicated rod for<br />

up-in-the-water work. Again, the<br />

latest 5G technology rods are a<br />

great choice.<br />

RUNNING WATER LONG 14FT WAGGLER<br />

For running water fans out there, this flagship rod in the<br />

Reactacore XZ range is just the job! A crisp, fast response on the<br />

strike makes it brilliant for floatfishing, while the incredibly light<br />

weight and balance make holding the rod for hours a pleasure.<br />

Once a fish is hooked, the through action kicks in to give you<br />

enough power to avoid snags, alongside just the right amount of<br />

softness to keep a good hookhold in powerful water.<br />

DISTANCE FEEDER 13FT<br />

For distance work on big pits you<br />

need a 13ft brute of a rod to get<br />

the job done.<br />

The latest Quartix models,<br />

which include new spliced<br />

hollow-tip technology, are great<br />

examples, but they’re not cheap!<br />

They allow for superbly<br />

accurate long-distance casts<br />

while retaining bite sensitivity.<br />

Getting your feeder out to hit<br />

the spot every time at up to 100<br />

yards is now a doddle.<br />

BARBEL ROD<br />

If you’re planning river<br />

sessions for barbel you’ll<br />

need something capable<br />

of casting up to 6oz<br />

(160g) weights.<br />

The Power Phase model<br />

shown here comes with<br />

two tips rated to 80g and<br />

160g. It will allow you<br />

to cast 5oz feeders with<br />

ease. It has large K-Style<br />

guides to assist the cast<br />

and it is very, very strong<br />

in order to bully fish out<br />

of your swim.<br />

22


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Poles and whips explained<br />

N<br />

OBODY could argue the<br />

impact that poles have<br />

had since they became<br />

available in the 1980s.<br />

If you look around any fishery<br />

now, you’ll see most anglers<br />

fishing a pole. Its benefits<br />

include precise feeding and bait<br />

placement, presentation, rig<br />

control and speed of hitting bites.<br />

But there are lots of poles on<br />

the market, all with specific jobs<br />

to do. Silverfish, whips, margin<br />

– what’s the difference, and how<br />

much do you need to spend?<br />

MARGIN POLES<br />

For doing battle with big carp at<br />

close range you need strength<br />

and power. Ranging from 6m to<br />

10m, each section is significantly<br />

stronger than what you’ll find<br />

Whips suit<br />

speed fishing<br />

for smaller fish.<br />

The Arco-Tech<br />

Speed Whip is<br />

well named!<br />

on a standard pole. The readyelasticated<br />

White Knuckle 6m<br />

pole is possibly the best-selling<br />

margin tool on the market.<br />

SILVERFISH POLES AND WHIPS<br />

Small-fish work needs finesse.<br />

That makes a silverfish pole<br />

lighter to hold and more<br />

balanced to hit quick bites.<br />

For catching quickly it’s worth<br />

trying a whip. These slender, light<br />

poles are designed to be fished<br />

to hand. The Muscle-Tech 6m is a<br />

strong pole for bigger carp, but<br />

can be used for silvers, while the<br />

Arco-Tech 8m was designed for<br />

silverfish speed fishing.<br />

LONG AND F1 POLES<br />

The domain of match anglers,<br />

long poles can cost anything up<br />

to £3,000 or more and reach<br />

Long poles are<br />

take-apart and<br />

versatile.<br />

to 16m, yet there are plenty of<br />

shorter models that’ll serve you<br />

well for a fifth of that price.<br />

Look for a brand of pole that<br />

has interchangeable sections.<br />

That way, if you decide to step<br />

up to a better model, all sections<br />

and top kits can be used. These<br />

are well-balanced and amazingly<br />

light poles that can do the lot.<br />

MINI BUTTS<br />

When you need a little<br />

more reach, a Mini<br />

Butt comes in handy.<br />

These are strong,<br />

short sections that<br />

fit on to the pole’s<br />

butt section to add<br />

extra length without<br />

affecting the pole’s<br />

balance. Some poles<br />

now have these to<br />

fit into the No5 or<br />

No6 sections too.<br />

23


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Make some noise and bag up shallow!<br />

Rob Wootton<br />

O<br />

N HEAVILY fished<br />

commercial carp<br />

waters, the fish<br />

associate noise with food – any<br />

splash on the surface will soon<br />

be investigated – which is what<br />

makes tactics like the pellet<br />

waggler and the loosefed pellets<br />

raining into the water around it<br />

so good during summer.<br />

Change to the pole, though,<br />

and it’s a lot harder to make that<br />

noise. Anglers used to rely on<br />

loosefeed to pull fish into the<br />

swim, but in recent years we’ve<br />

begun to use the rig itself to do<br />

the job, something that match<br />

anglers call ‘slapping’.<br />

This is simply the act of<br />

propelling the rig – float, bait and<br />

all – through the air and on to<br />

the surface several times before<br />

waiting for a bite. The rapid<br />

succession of splashes from the<br />

rig simulates pellets hitting the<br />

water and gets carp curious. It’s<br />

so good that, at times, you don’t<br />

even need to feed anything at all!<br />

Using a light float set a couple<br />

of feet deep and a hard pellet in<br />

a bait band. The routine is to ship<br />

the pole out (fishing typically<br />

from 11m and further) and then<br />

quickly whip the rig in a circular<br />

motion around and over the<br />

pole tip, letting it splash on the<br />

surface. Do this three times and<br />

then let the rig settle – a bite<br />

White Phantom top<br />

kits stop fish<br />

spooking from the<br />

pole over their heads.<br />

24


shouldn’t take long in coming. If<br />

it doesn’t, this is the time to feed.<br />

Fire in just half-a-dozen 6mm<br />

pellets, and follow it up with<br />

three more slaps of the rig.<br />

No two days are the same and,<br />

on one session, you may find that<br />

feeding is needed to keep bites<br />

coming while the following week,<br />

the noise of the slap is enough.<br />

Slapping is also deadly for<br />

catching carp that you can see<br />

swimming just under the surface.<br />

Very often you can actually watch<br />

“Slapping your rig is so<br />

good that, at times, you<br />

don’t even need to feed<br />

anything at all!”<br />

Low visibility lines<br />

are important when<br />

fishing shallow.<br />

A light float set a<br />

couple of feet<br />

deep is effective.<br />

The splash of the<br />

rig and baits pulls<br />

in inquisitive fish.<br />

a fish hear the noise, change the<br />

direction it is swimming in and<br />

head straight for your rig!<br />

Although a heavy float will<br />

make a noise when it hits the<br />

surface, this is about the only<br />

advantage it had and, if anything,<br />

as light a float as you can get<br />

away with will be better.<br />

The 4x10 MW Mugger is<br />

designed for this style of fishing,<br />

with all of the shot grouped<br />

under the float to help make a<br />

good splash.<br />

Banded pellets are THE bait for<br />

slapping, so that calls for an eyed<br />

hook to let you fish a hair rig.<br />

Take a look at the KM-3 in a size<br />

16, slipping a small Nano latex<br />

pellet band on to the hair to grip<br />

the pellet firmly.<br />

Even in coloured water, carp<br />

can react to a shadow over their<br />

heads caused by the pole-tip.<br />

White Phantom top kits solve<br />

this, greatly reducing any<br />

silhouette and allowing the fish<br />

to feed in confidence.<br />

The carp you catch shallow<br />

tend to be of a good average<br />

size, so pole elastics need to be<br />

up to the job. Hollow 14-18 grade<br />

Reactacore has the softness<br />

and stretch to let a carp roar off<br />

when hooked, but without any<br />

danger of a hook-pull. A Dacron<br />

connector is also a good idea, as<br />

this will minimise tangles around<br />

the pole-tip.<br />

Slapping is an active way of<br />

fishing and, as a result, the pole<br />

you use needs to be light and<br />

easy to manoeuvre. The XZ-65<br />

is top of the tree, although the<br />

XP35 model is perfect too, being<br />

well balanced and crisp on the<br />

strike. It will hit bites but is not<br />

in the least unmanageable when<br />

repeatedly propelling the rig up<br />

and over the tip.<br />

SLAPPING<br />

SHOPPING LIST<br />

● 4x10 MW Mugger float<br />

● Reactacore 14-18 elastic<br />

● Size 16 KM-3 hooks<br />

● 0.18mm and 0.16mm Lo-Viz<br />

lines<br />

● Band ‘Em Nano latex pellet<br />

bands<br />

● Hard 6mm pellets<br />

25


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Quick tips<br />

E<br />

VERY angler has an<br />

arsenal of tips that they<br />

rely on to keep<br />

catching. These range from<br />

baits, tactics and even location<br />

to picking the right peg before<br />

they even start fishing!<br />

Here are seven of the best tips<br />

for you to try when the going<br />

gets a little bit tough…<br />

Try banding red maggots when<br />

1 you stop getting bites. This change<br />

in presentation can be just what’s<br />

needed to get the fish feeding again!<br />

Add a blast of powdered<br />

2 spice to your paste mix, then<br />

cover it in 2mm feeder pellets to<br />

create a totally unique hookbait.<br />

In winter, scaled-down mini<br />

3 feeders with red maggots on<br />

the hook let you regulate how<br />

much bait goes into the swim.<br />

Try cupping in a mini PVA<br />

4 bag of pellets with your rig<br />

put in straight over the top to<br />

achieve a tight grouping of feed.<br />

A little Adrenaline Plasma on<br />

5 your Method feeder forms<br />

a haze in the water and releases<br />

lots of aroma.<br />

26<br />

Create a cage feeder<br />

6 ‘sandwich’ by packing in<br />

dampened pellets trapped with a<br />

smear of groundbait at each end.<br />

7<br />

A radical change can trick<br />

fish into feeding. Match star<br />

Steve Gregory finds couscous is<br />

a great feed for carp and F1s!


FISHING SECRETS<br />

Want to take it easy?<br />

Get a chair station!<br />

O<br />

NE of the attractions of<br />

fishing is the chance to<br />

get out in the fresh air<br />

and relax, forgetting about the<br />

stresses and strains of modern<br />

life – and what better way to do<br />

that than with a comfortable<br />

fishing chair that’s been<br />

designed not only to let you kick<br />

back, but also to catch a good<br />

few fish into the bargain?<br />

That’s what the MX-100<br />

Recliner chair system will do, a<br />

ready-to-go package that allows<br />

you to fish float, feeder or even<br />

the pole. Revolutionary in design,<br />

the basic chair folds down<br />

quickly and easily for storage and<br />

transporting to the bank, but it’s<br />

more than just functional.<br />

A high padded head rest,<br />

adjustable back rest and fulllength<br />

seat with lumbar support<br />

will let you fish in total comfort.<br />

The full package arrives with<br />

a unique side bar that can take<br />

either a front and back rest for<br />

fishing waggler and feeder or<br />

up-and-over rests to let you fish<br />

a pole up to 10m easily. Four<br />

Thread Stikks attach to the other<br />

side of the chair’s frame to take<br />

accessories alongside a side tray.<br />

Finished with adjustable legs<br />

and swivel mudfeet, there’s also<br />

a special cutaway groove on the<br />

back for easy pole shipping.<br />

Head and back<br />

rests provide<br />

maximum comfort.<br />

ROD-STYLE<br />

POLE-STYLE<br />

Set up, it puts<br />

everything<br />

close to hand.<br />

A side tray<br />

keeps tackle<br />

close to hand.<br />

FLOAT OR FEEDER<br />

The special special side bar can<br />

be configured to hold either a<br />

waggler or feeder rod.<br />

YOU CAN GO LONG<br />

Special up-and-over rests are<br />

designed to hold poles up to 10m<br />

long in place easily.<br />

27


Where do you want to go fishing?<br />

W<br />

ITH your tackle, bait<br />

and tactics sorted and a<br />

head full of tips to catch<br />

you more, it’s time to decide<br />

where to actually go fishing!<br />

The UK is blessed with many<br />

varied and wonderful fishing<br />

environments, but the three most<br />

common are rivers, lakes and<br />

canals. Each is very different in<br />

terms of the fish it holds and also<br />

in the way it needs to be tackled,<br />

so you may wish to focus on one<br />

specific type of fishery until you<br />

have mastered what’s required.<br />

COMMERCIAL FISHERIES<br />

Man-made and heavily stocked, bites are almost<br />

guaranteed. The dominant species is usually carp,<br />

although a good mix of other fish will also be<br />

present. Short-range pole fishing or the feeder<br />

are the best tactics with pellets, corn and meat<br />

– but never leave home without maggots, just in<br />

case. Typically, a day ticket ranges from £5 to £10.<br />

NATURAL LAKES<br />

These can range from small farm ponds to huge<br />

reservoirs. Fish stocks will be lower, and depths<br />

can vary greatly, making the feeder a great<br />

approach. Small fish such as roach and perch<br />

offer fun fishing on the float or pole in summer.<br />

A club yearbook is good value for money, or your<br />

local lake might even be completely free to fish.<br />

RIVERS<br />

Running water is subject to the weather, so rivers<br />

are seen as the ultimate challenge. Roach, dace<br />

and bleak will get you lots of bites, while for<br />

the longer game bream, chub and barbel are<br />

the targets. Float, feeder, pole or whip will all<br />

work. Clubs offer day or year tickets, but many<br />

stretches are free, so do your homework.<br />

CANALS<br />

Thousands of miles of canal criss-cross the UK,<br />

and they hold surprisingly big fish. A typical<br />

canal is quite narrow and shallow, lending itself<br />

to pole fishing or a light waggler, but on wider<br />

and deeper shipping canals the feeder will catch<br />

bream and chub. Many stretches are free to fish,<br />

or a day ticket can cost as little as £3.<br />

Special 28-page fishing supplement courtesy of Angling Times<br />

Information correct at time of going to press, diagrams and pictures are covered by copyright 2021

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