FL02 PDF (212pp) - Page 162



Carp Care
and Safety
By Mick Krassos
W
ith new-comers entering
the carp fishing arena on a
daily basis I
felt it was
time to have a look at an important
aspect of our beloved pastime, and
check out some of the products on
the market that can be used to protect our highly coveted prizes when
they are finally in our care. On my
travels round various venues it never
ceases to amaze me that the amount
of money people are prepared to
spend on their rods, reels, bivvies and
alarms etc, but yet seem quite happy
to go into their local tackle emporium
and buy the most useless budget
unhooking mat they can get away
with. I was recently walking round a
venue when a chap on the other bank
was doing battle with a feisty
cyprinid, so I strolled round to offer
some assistance if required. When he
finally got it in I maintained a secure
hold on the net whilst he readied his
gear. Looking round casually at his
setup I couldn’t help but think that he
a spent a few bob on his gear, only to
be dismayed at what can only be
described as a pathetic excuse for an
unhooking mat. I kid you not when I
say that it was more suitable for chub
and barbel than the mid-20 carp he
had in the net, and he genuinely
thought it was fine! Now I don’t know
whether he was misinformed or just
too tight, but the result was the same;
he had the wrong equipment for the
job, and it was clearly unsuitable for
carp fishing, offering very little
padded protection and hardly any
surface area for laying the fish on. I
hope to be able to run through some
(Top) Rods set high to keep the line
out of the extensive weed.
(Right) With smaller fish, sometimes
a good quality small sling is ideal.
162 FREE LINE
suitable carp care and protection
products, and give you some
informed choices before making your
purchase. Think about this when you
go to the tackle shop for your next
two or three bags of boilies, and ask
yourself if your safety kit is up to the
job. Anglers are happy to spend £30
on boilies to chuck in, but baulk at the
idea of spending a tad more than that
for an unhooking mat that will last for
seasons!
Landing Nets
This is one of the most important
aspects of carp safety. As soon as you

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