FREE LINE 03 - Page 177

All Things Riggy
ast time out, I started
this series going into
detail on the business
end of the setup – the
hook! This month I'm
going to look at a few
things I do and use to disguise the
setup so that the all-important hook
finds its target in our quarry's mouth.
Working for Premier Angling, I all too
often overhear the average angler dismissing what fish can see and detect.
I however have witnessed all too
often on crystal clear water what carp
will and won't tolerate when checking a margin spot and seeing the rig
and a dinner plate sized patch of bait
left around the hookbait, while every
last piece of bait is hoovered up
around it. You know the rig's been
spotted and they've cleaned you out
good and proper. This must be going
on numerous times when the rig is
out in the pond and you can't physically check a spot like you can do
with an edge trap. I think this happens far more often than the carp
actually picking up the hookbait and
getting rid of it, so I think some part of
the end tackle is visible or looped up,
and the carp clocks it. These big old
wise carp that inhabit our pressured
circuit waters however will comfortably feed on the rest of the baited
patch, and devour all the goodies
we've introduced, but the baits in
close proximity of the rig are viewed
as danger baits and are left
The whole presentation therefore is
key to catching, and the more we can
disguise and camouflage the end
tackle, the greater the chance of the
carp actually sampling the hookbait.
If we can get her to pick the bait up,
then with an effective rig and a sharp
hook we've got a great chance of calling the alarms into action. As any
matchman will tell you, the best way
to get bites is to fish light tackle so
the bait acts as naturally as possible,
but unless you're fishing a weed and
snag-free water, this is totally impractical for the big carp angler. As most
of our big carp reside in weedy, snaginfested lakes, and in particular feed
in and amongst these areas, we need
to use strong enough tackle that once
hooked gives us every chance of landing the fish. Unlike a lot of match
anglers, you should be angling for
landed fish, and not just for quantity
of bites and fishing the percentage
(Top) How many times is all the bait
gone except for the danger patch?
(Above) Note how the hook is hidden
under a balanced bait.
(Right) Good mix of particles.
game. When winter fishing when the
weed has died back, and if no snags
are in close proximity then I will drop
down to 10lb nylon hooklink and say
a size 11/12 Drennan Barbel hook or a
Korda size 12, which are both strong
for their size. However for most of my
angling a 15-25lb hooklink is required
with a size 7 or 8 hook, depending on
the pattern, which is the smallest I
will go down to.
As we are trying to hide everything,
the way I try to hide the hook is to
cover it with the bait .I do this by one
of two methods. Firstly, if I'm fishing a
straightforward bottom bait, or I am
using a long hair, then I will use a PVA


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