Take to the water to master big reservoirs – Steve Ringer

by Angling Times |

I love fishing big reservoirs and lakes for bream and roach, but one problem with them is that the water close to the bank can be incredibly shallow until you get a good few metres out into the lake.

This presents several problems that can only be solved by getting into the water yourself. Sitting a few metres out gives me more reach in terms of how far I can cast a feeder or fish the pole at, and it also makes landing fish easier, especially bigger bream, as you’re not playing them in very shallow water. Fishing in the water is also better from a fish welfare point of view if using a keepnet. The net will be fully submerged and not sticking out of the water, as can happen if you were to fish from the bank.

How far out you go into the lake is up to you, but I’d say always think ‘safety first’.

Lakes can drop off quickly into very deep water, and you can’t always see where this is, so I’d wade out with a landing net handle to test the depth in front of me until I found where things deepened off. I’d then sit half-a-metre or a metre back from this point.

Use a platform

Although you can sit in the water on your box, using the extending legs, a bespoke platform is much better in terms of stability. Make sure it is big enough to accommodate your box, and that the fixing points lock solidly with no slipping!

Buy some waders

Once in the water, you can fish in wellies or even flip flops if it’s warm, but I’d invest in a pair of chest or thigh waders for setting the platform up. They’ll allow you to get in front of it to secure the legs and level things up.

Have gear to hand

I hate having to wade to the bank to get something I’ve forgotten, so I set up two large side trays. One holds bait and groundbait, the other terminal tackle and extra feeders. I also have a groundbait bowl hoop to slot a bucket into.

Keep your rods safe

An extending top kit roost is handy to slot rods on to without having them in the water, where tips can get damaged. It must be extendable to cope with the deeper water. For my landing net, I’ll pop a pole roller behind me to rest it on.

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