As the temperatures drop, kick your predator season off in style with my killer set-up
How to tie Dai Gribble’s ‘go-anywhere’ rig for autumn pike action
NOW we’re in October, many anglers’ thoughts, including mine, are turning to predator fishing for perch, pike, and zander.
This week, to help you get your season off in style, I’m starting a new mini-series where I reveal the most effective, easy-to-tie rigs you need for the months ahead – kicking it off with a pike float rig which I call my ‘go anywhere’ rig.
Over the years I’ve found deadbaiting for pike one of the most enjoyable and reliable tactics. Deadbaits can be presented in many ways and this week’s rig is extremely versatile. It works anywhere from small rivers to huge reservoirs.
HIT BITES EARLY
A brightly coloured pike float running across the water and then disappearing under the water is one of the best sights in angling.
As soon as the float is moving you know the pike has the bait in its mouth, so strike straight away. Leaving the run longer than the few moments needed to pick the rod up and strike is likely to result in one of two outcomes, neither of them good. The pike may drop the bait and you’ll miss an opportunity, or the fish is likely to be deep-hooked. This makes unhooking difficult and increases the risk of the pike being harmed.
You need to keep a close eye on the float to ensure runs are spotted as soon as possible, so please don’t spend your session staring at the screen on your phone – it’s not fair on the pike!
To hit a pike run, wind the line tight then strike with a single sweep of the rod. Braid allows instant contact with the fish and will ensure the hooks are set.
HANDLE PIKE CAREFULLY
With their tooth-laden jaws pike might look tough, but they are actually quite fragile fish that need to be handled with great care.
I would urge any angler targeting pike for the first time to go fishing with someone experienced in handling them or, better till, attend a pike fish-in if one is available locally.
Take great care of both your fingers and the pike when unhooking. A good pair of forceps is essential. I find the easiest way to unhook a pike is to turn it on its back and gently lift the lower jaw from the bottom of the gill cover to expose the hooks.