EX­PERT CHOICE: TACKLE AND RIGS

Sea Angler (UK) - - BOAT ANGLER -

For the gen­eral fish­ing over the clean sand, and the mixed rough ground, most an­glers choose a soft-tipped rod be­tween 9ft and 11ft.

For ex­am­ple, try the Shake­speare Tip­sters or the Penn Squadron ver­sion, armed with a 5000 sized fixed-spool reel and braid be­tween 20-30lb. These are the hire out­fits that Gethyn has aboard.

The soft tip gives in­creased bite de­tec­tion, but the ex­tra length also al­lows the lead weight to be flicked fur­ther away from the boat, when needed, to cover more ground and of­fer a de­gree of up­tide po­ten­tial.

The rough-and-tough con­ger fish­ing is best done with a 20lb-class boat rod about 8ft long and matched to a mul­ti­plier reel loaded with 30lb braid and a 60lb mono leader to take the abra­sion.

The above two out­fits cover you for 90 per cent of the fish­ing within the Strait, and also for the open-sea fish­ing.

When fish­ing over the clean sand and tar­get­ing num­bers of fish, go for a flow­ing trace with three hooks on short snoods below a boom. This cov­ers a lot of ground and tar­gets all the species. Hooks should be a size 2, but I also make a few rigs with size 4 and 6 Aberdeens to al­low me to use smaller baits, if re­quired, for smaller species.

If you use fluoro­car­bon for the main flow­ing trace, you’ll cut down on po­ten­tial tan­gles. I like the hook snoods kept short to about six inches off the main trace and about 18 inches apart. In ad­di­tion, this rig can be gen­tly trot­ted away with the tide to cover even more ground.

In the mixed rough ground, when fish­ing for gen­eral species, I pre­fer a one-up, one-down rig with 14in hook­lengths of 20lb fluoro­car­bon and size 2 Aberdeen hooks. This keeps two baits in the feed­ing zone tight to the seabed.

If you fish a three-hook rig ver­ti­cally, the top hook is usu­ally just wast­ing bait and gets few bites.

For cod, go for a 30in flow­ing trace made from 30lb fluoro­car­bon on a run­ning leger. The hook would be a sin­gle size 4/0, with no need for a Pen­nell when tar­get­ing codling.

The same rig can be used for the con­gers, but in­crease the hook­length to 60lb and use a size 6/0 hook.

As for lead weights, with braid you can usu­ally get away with 12oz or less if you trot away, but I carry a few leads in in­cre­ments be­tween 3oz and 1lb too. ■

Carry a range of lead weights

Lu­mi­nous beads work well with small baits in the coloured water

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