Pole fishing for big canal fish

Jason Cunningham shares his big-fish canal rig

Pole fishing for big canal fish

by Angling Times |

Feed for big fish on a canal is simple for me – minced-up worms with a few maggots and casters. I’m not a fan of groundbait, because it pulls in too many little fish. The amount I feed and when I feed it depends on the fish I’m after and how many I feel are in the swim.

Perch need small helpings of worm to keep them coming back
Perch need small helpings of worm to keep them coming back

For example, perch need small helpings of worm to keep them coming back and letting me pick them off, so a quarter of a large pole cup each time is ample. Bream and skimmers, on the other hand, will graze for longer over bait, so a full cup goes in.

Bream will graze for longer over bait
Bream will graze for longer over bait

Topping up with more bait is not done when bites fade, more when I come off one line. If I’ve caught well in one swim, I’ll feed before fishing the second, confident there are a number of fish about. If, though, I’ve only caught the odd fish, I’ll hold off feeding again to give what’s there enough time to settle and move back into the area. Dumping more bait on top of already finicky fish can be a disaster!

My rig is fairly simple, with the bulk of the shot three-quarters of the way down the rig to bomb the bait past any small fish down to where the specimens are.

Big-fish canal pole rig
Big-fish canal pole rig

1: Float - 0.3g Andy Jones Wootton

2: Line - 0.15mm Powerline mainline to an 0.13mm hooklength

3: Shotting - Bulk of No10 shot and two droppers spaced below

4: Hook - Size 16 Kamasan B611

5: Hookbait - Double caster or a lobworm tail

6: Feed - Finely chopped worm with a few casters and red maggots

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