I know that loads of people love to fish a main pole or a float rod while having a big-fish ‘sleeper rod’ on an alarm at their side if fishery rules allow.
The idea is to keep busy catching smaller fish while still having the chance of presenting a boilie, large piece of meat or stack of corn on a self-hooking bolt rig and freespool reel for a bonus big ’un.
When the alarm sounds, you’ve got time to drop the rod or pole, pick up the sleeper rod and fight the fish. Easy!
If you fancy fishing a sleeper rod, or you’re looking for a decent and affordable rod for small ‘runs waters’ where you’re only likely to be casting from the margins to 60 yards’ range for carp from high single to low double-figure weights, I can thoroughly recommend this new, compact, two-piece, 10ft rod from Korum.
The matt charcoal grey blank has a 2.5lb test curve and breaks down into two equal lengths for easy transport fully made-up in a rod sleeve or quiver, ready for instant use. Under load, the powerful blank has a nice ‘tippy’ action that’s best suited to 12lb or 15lb mainlines and will happily cast leads and small PVA bags weighing up to 3.5oz over the kind of real-life ranges that most of us fish at.
The 10ft length makes it perfect for smaller runs waters and virtually all commercial fisheries – especially those where many of the match carp have grown to double figures and are difficult to land on ‘normal’ pole, float and feeder tactics. It also makes a great, close-range carp stalking tool.
I teamed my test rod with another two new Korum products that suit this increasingly popular style of fishing right down to the ground. Korum’s 6000-size, five ball bearing Free Spool reel (RRP £54.99) carries 300m of 12lb mono and perfectly balances with the Korum 10ft Carp rod. There’s also a slightly larger 8000 model for the same price.
If you do plan to fish a sleeper rod it is essential that you use a freespool reel, or completely slacken off the clutch on a normal reel to prevent the rod being dragged straight into the lake by what are often vicious and lightning-fast rip-round bites.
I also helped myself to the new-look Korum Bite Alarm, which is spot-on for this job. The alarm has a volume control, so there’s no excuse for annoying other anglers by having it set too high! The alarm costs £14.99 on its own, or you can buy a Bite Alarm and Indicator Kit for £19.99 which I really like, and used here.
Fishing a 2oz lead with a big cube of luncheon meat on a hair rig and a thumb-sized PVA bag full of pellets, I had five carp to 7lb on the sleeper rod while fishing the pole for smaller fish during a quick, three-hour afternoon session.
Casting just 35 yards to an aerator, the sleeper kit did the job faultlessly. I enjoyed catching about 15lb of small F1 carp, tench and skimmers on the pole, but the bonus rod must have put an extra 30lb of better fish on the scales. Result!