On my local North West canals, there are only two baits worth considering in early spring conditions, and they’re breadpunch and casters.
Bread will almost always work in clear water, while casters have that habit of drawing in and holding the better fish, even if you don’t actually catch with them on the hook.
Here's how I do it, give it a go on your next session...
Vary the depth
For bigger fish it’s punched bread 3ins overdepth – for roach, anything from an inch to 8ins off bottom is brilliant.
Plumb up accurately
My flat-bottomed plummet is a drilled 2p piece fitted with a felting nail and silicone sleeve to attach the hook.
Feed with a tiny pot
The smallest feed pots let you regularly top up swims with a couple of casters and a pinch of liquidised bread.
My SF2 breadpunch float is shotted with a bulk of No11s grouped tightly together 15ins from the hook.
My 6ins hooklength is Edge Tackle Pure Fluorocarbon from 0.07mm-0.105mm, hard for fish to see and very stiff.
Two baits, two rigs
My wire stemmed stick-type float is shotted shirt-button style with 12 x No12s, for a slow-falling caster hookbait.
Read the full feature from a previous issue of Angling Times over on our Members site.