There’s no doubting that carp in commercial fisheries are getting bigger by the day, with fish to double figures nothing out of the ordinary.
So it’s no wonder that many major pole manufacturers are upping their game when it comes to the strength of their products.
MAP’s latest offerings – the TKS C1 and C2 poles – fit that bill. These are no-nonsense, dedicated power poles rated to 20 elastics, designed to tame most fish you’re likely to encounter.
In fact, MAP is so confident in the poles’ strengths and capabilities that it is offering a
12-month guarantee with both.
The C1 measures 13m and comes with two pre-bushed Power kits, while the C2 comes in at 14.5m, with three kits. Both are built from high-performance Toray carbon.
My colleague Mark Sawyer had already been out and fished with these poles earlier this month for the TV cameras, but you can never have too many days on the bank so we headed to the local Decoy Lakes for this latest shoot.
Decoy is the kind of venue these poles have been created for, with big weights often made up of fish reaching into double figures.
The first impression you get when you pick up both poles is one of incredible strength, which fills you with confidence when hauling big commercial carp.
‘Legacy fit’ top kits are supplied with the poles, and these are a trademark of the TKS marque, meaning they’re interchangeable across the range should you change poles in the future or need spares.
Conveniently, these come pre-bushed so you can simply elasticate the pole and be ready to go.
I ran a 13 grade hollow elastic through one of the C2’s top kits and a really beefy 20 grade hollow through the C1. I expected the poles to cope with these effortlessly.
I decided to start the day with the C1 on the popular top-2 plus two line, where big fish are regularly encountered, not just on this lake but on most commercial fisheries.
Putting a few 6mm hard pellets in a pole-mounted pot and rattling them over the float, it wasn’t long before the orange top dipped and a hard-fighting, Lou’s Lake carp was hooked.
It tore off into the lake, elastic streamed from the top kit, and the C1 held firm. Before long, a feisty common of around 7lb was netted, followed by a string of other hard fighters.
Unsurprisingly, the pole performed well at its short length, and I had no trouble dealing with some seriously angry fish.
I was, however, intrigued to see how well the C2 performed at its full length – often the downfall of budget-conscious poles – but as I shipped it out to its full 14.5m length I was pleasantly surprised at how well it handled.
It felt stiff enough to hit bites and yet light enough to hold all day long.
Filling the catapult with 6mm pellets, I pinged a few tight around the float and it wasn’t long before another angry carp was making its way towards the far-bank snags.
The C2 bends quite a lot when a fish is hooked, however, the feeling of strength remained, just as it did in the C1.
After shipping back to the top kit a feisty 5lb carp was netted, and throughout the rest of the day fish to double figures were netted with ease.
I think you’d have to be seriously heavy-handed to break either of these poles, and I would be more than confident of using them with the heaviest elastic.
If you’re in the market for a power pole, the C1 and C2 are well worth checking out.
You’ll struggle to find anything stronger, and if you have nightmares about smashed pole sections MAP’s new releases are the perfect antidote.
I would have liked to see a cupping kit included with both poles, and they’re probably a tad too bouncy for hitting shy silver fish bites – but if you fish commercials for carp you won’t go far wrong with either.
Both the C1 and C2 are interchangeable with other TKS poles, making them the perfect addition to your armoury if you’re a fan of MAP tackle.