Your favourite stretch of river may have dozens of spots that look likely to hold a big chub, but only a handful of them will produce the goods.
The temptation is to take a pot luck approach by investigating just a few of these enticing swims, but this is a risky approach and more often than not it’ll end in glum failure.
Even if you have just a few hours to wet a line, adopt a proactive attack – you only need a few minutes in each swim.
Most anglers will spend perhaps 15 minutes in each peg, but years of experience have convinced me that this is just a waste of time.
If you have a chub in your peg and you run the bait close to it, it’ll snap it up in an instant.
With that in mind, two casts are all you need in each swim before you move on to the next.
Chub can be extremely finicky, and now the sun is beaming and temperatures are soaring, they’re bound to look for cover.
Swims with overhanging bushes or sunken trees are always worth investigating, and running a loafer float close to them will soon let you know whether fish are hiding there.
Although I only have two casts, I vary each one slightly. If the first run doesn’t produce, I’ll alter the pace at which the float is moving. This could be holding it back a fraction more or, on the flipside, allowing the current to push it through quicker.
There’s no need for plumbing up and I’ll simply take a guess at the depth, based on my knowledge of the venue. Again, I’ll adjust this by a fraction for the second cast to see if it makes any difference.
A large piece of breadflake is highly visible, so even if you’ve set the rig so that it ends up a foot off the deck, a chub is still going to see it and have a go at it.
Bank on bread
When you’re constantly on the move it’s important to travel light. The more kit you take, the less inclined you’ll be to head for the next zone.
A rod, reel, landing net and a few tackle bits should come with you, and you’ll only need three loaves for bait
I’ll stick two of these through the blender at home and the other will come with me for flake hookbaits.
I don’t blend the bread too finely because I want some substance to the loosefeed so that there are scraps of food for the chub to snap at.
I’ll feed a small nugget directly in front of me before each trot through the swim, and this is lightly squeezed because I want it to break up and encourage the fish to feed.
When it comes to the hookbait, I use roughly a quarter of a slice for each piece. That may sound large, but chub have massive mouths and can engulf a bait of that size with ease.
Seek out the hiding places of big chub and they won’t be able to resist playing ball.