The best tackle and baits for roach fishing

The bits you need for a big bag of redfins

The best tackle and baits for roach fishing

by Angling Times |

Autumn heralds the start of the big roach season, but to get in on the action you need to go properly equipped... never fear, read on!

Rods

Middy Trinity 5g 13ft Waggler

This three-piece blank boasts a little bit of extra power, should you hook something larger while targeting roach on a stillwater venue.

We love the cork and EVA handle combination, especially the stylish and comfy curved reel seat section.

Price: £89.99, www.middytackle.com

Middy Trinity 5g 13ft Waggler
Middy Trinity 5g 13ft Waggler

PRESTON SUPER FEEDER 3.6M (11.9FT)

This mid-length three-sectioned rod is mainly for feeder fishing on natural venues. It’s sensitive enough to offer instant bite detection from shy-biting fish, especially when used with braided reel line.

More than enough mid-section power will deal with heavy fish, yet there’s enough ‘feel’ in the blank for you to enjoy the fight.

The rod can propel feeders of 45g-plus up to 60m with ease, and it comes with carbon quivertips rated at 1oz and 2oz.

Price: £59.99, www.prestoninnovations.com

PRESTON SUPER FEEDER 3.6M (11.9FT)
PRESTON SUPER FEEDER 3.6M (11.9FT)

Drennan Acolyte Ultra float

Few rods come close to these for river roach fishing.

They are exceptionally slimline and lightweight, to the point where the longest 15ft version feels more akin to using a 13ft blank. Performance like this naturally comes at a price, but as in all things you get exactly what you pay for.

We recommend the shorter 11ft, 12ft and 13ft models for waggler work, and the 14ft and 15ft versions for trotting stick floats.

Price: From £159, www.drennantackle.com

Drennan Acolyte Ultra float
Drennan Acolyte Ultra float

Shimano Aero X1 Match 13ft

The X1 range represents really great value for money, and feels like a rod costing way more than its modest sub-£60 price point.

With an excellent fast action for punching out light floats of all descriptions, this is ideal for both river and stillwater roach fishing. We also love the carbon weave finish on these Aero blanks. You’ll struggle to find better for the money.

Price: £59.99, www.fish.shimano.eu

Shimano Aero X1 Match 13ft
Shimano Aero X1 Match 13ft

Reels

Middy GFD 3000 Reel

This compact little reel incorporates a host of superb technical features, including an instant-response, super-sensitive front drag system, quick fold-flat handle, and a low friction line roller that’s ideal for use for low-diameter mono lines.

The 3000 model has a lightweight polymer body, making it ideal for all stick and waggler work, while its speedy 5.2.1 gear ratio further adds to its floatfishing credentials.

Price: £44.99, www.middytackle.com

Middy GFD 3000 Reel
Middy GFD 3000 Reel

Abu Garcia 507 Closed Face reel

Closed faced reels aren’t something you see in use much these days, but we see no reason why not, as they make river trotting so easy. The central spool button controls when line is given or checked. The 506 and 507 models are legendary reels which have stood the test of time.

Price: From £69.99, www.abugarcia-fishing.co.uk

Abu Garcia 507 Closed Face reel
Abu Garcia 507 Closed Face reel

Shimano Ultegra FC

Packed with all the company’s cutting-edge technologies, this latest embodiment of the timeless Ultegra is super-light in the hand, yet still boasts a bombproof feel and impressive winding power.

It comes in a range of body sizes from 1000 to 5000, ensuring that everything from light float work through to heavy feeder fishing is pretty much covered.

Price: £129.99-£154.99, www.fish.shimano.eu

Shimano Ultegra FC
Shimano Ultegra FC

Okuma Sheffield Centrepin

An iconic ‘pin’ which makes for lovely, smooth trotting. Centrepins give line at a constant rate to match the current, so it doesn’t come off in jerky coils as can be the case with a fixed-spool reel.

This means a more natural presentation is achieved to fool crafty big river redfins. Also great for use with fine lines in high winds, as the closed face stops excessive line being blown from the reel. You can also go old school and use one for fishing close in on a stillwater.

Price: £169.99, www.okumafishing.eu

Okuma Sheffield Centrepin
Okuma Sheffield Centrepin

Lines

Preston Float Max

THIS new Prestons floatfishing reel line on handy 150m spools is already winning lots of fans.

It’s neutrally buoyant, so it doesn’t sink too far under the water, making it perfect for stick float work and all manner of waggler fishing.

Price: Price: £5.99, www.prestoninnovations.com

Preston Float Max
Preston Float Max

Drennan Supplex Fluorocarbon

Fluorocarbon is great as a roach hooklength material because it’s much harder for fish to see underwater than traditional mono.

It’s reassuringly abrasion-resistant too, even in the finer diameters. Try the 1.3lb and 1.7lb versions for roach. Comes supplied on 150m spools.

Price: Around £5.95, www.drennantackle.com

Drennan Supplex Fluorocarbon
Drennan Supplex Fluorocarbon

End tackle

Guru Pole Special

A relatively new hook which has fast become a winner for silverfish. Don’t be fooled by the ‘Pole’ name – they can also be used for rod-and-line work. A micro barb minimises damage when hooking delicate baits on natural-style venues.

Price: Around £1.50, www.tackleguru.com

Guru Pole Special
Guru Pole Special

Kamasan B511

This is a timeless pattern which has long been used with great success for baits such as squatts and pinkies in its smaller sizes and hempseed, for example, in its larger ones up to a 16.

This is a particular favourite with canal and river anglers.

Price: £1.15, www.anglingdirect.co.uk

Kamasan B511
Kamasan B511

Drennan Red Maggot

The crystal swept bend of this pattern, as well as its long needle point and micro barb, makes it ideal for single or double maggot or caster hookbaits. Unlike other models, the diameter of the wire gauge increases as the hook sizes get bigger, making them perfect for either float or feeder tactics. Available in sizes 14 to 22

Price: £1.10, www.drennantackle.com

Drennan Red Maggot
Drennan Red Maggot

Dave Harrell Alloy Stick floats

At this time of year, when roach will still be sitting in shallower, oxygenated water on rivers, try the Alloy Stem No2 Shallow Water Stick, which has been designed for sensitivity. The same company’s Shouldered Stick Floats are well worth adding to your collection too.

Price: Around £2.30, www.daveharrellangling.com

Dave Harrell Alloy Stick floats
Dave Harrell Alloy Stick floats

Preston Innovations Des Shipp Chianti

A long-established pole float pattern with a modern upgrade. These are slim floats in lighter sizes which are ideal for fishing for roach ‘through the water style’ with strung-out shotting. Fish them with baits such as maggots and casters.

Price: £2.10, www.prestoninnovations.com

Preston Innovations Des Shipp Chianti
Preston Innovations Des Shipp Chianti

Drennan Loaded Insert Waggler

The pattern features a sensitive insert tip which is perfect for reading shy roach bites. It’s better to choose a loaded float like this one to alleviate the need for big locking shot, which can damage fine reel lines. Go for the straight peacock version, which has a thicker tip, when tackling a river.

Price: £2.35, www.drennantackle.com

Drennan Loaded Insert Waggler
Drennan Loaded Insert Waggler

Kamasan Black Cap Feeder

There are times when you’ll need to fish a feeder for roach, especially at longer range. Try using scissors to enlarge the holes of a traditional maggot feeder like this one, to introduce maggots, casters and hemp. A helicopter rig set-up works a treat with these.

Price: From £1.40, www.anglingdirect.co.uk

Kamasan Black Cap Feeder
Kamasan Black Cap Feeder

Baits

Sensas Gros Gardons

The French brand produces many excellent silvers groundbaits but we’ve picked the popular Gros Gardons, which translates to ‘Big Roach’. It’s typically a dark natural brown once wetted and is fairly sticky, making it perfect for feeding in rivers and deeper canals.

Price: £4.25, www.sensas.com

Sensas Gros Gardons
Sensas Gros Gardons

Evolved Baits Original Spiced Punch crumb

Punch crumb is a great feed for roach, using a piece of punch from a white slice over the top. Add water gradually with an atomiser and mix well.

You can add some aquarium gravel to give the crumb weight so it sinks well on flowing water venues such as rivers and canals.

Price: Around £3.50, www.evolvebaits.com

Evolved Baits Original Spiced Punch crumb
Evolved Baits Original Spiced Punch crumb

Van Den Eynde Super Roach

An old favourite mix which is still available in 1kg bags. Super Roach is made in both a standard natural and a dark version, both perfect when fed in small balls or in a small feeder with a few free particles.

Price: £3.99, www.angling direct.co.uk

Van Den Eynde Super Roach
Van Den Eynde Super Roach

Dynamite Baits Frenzied Hemp

HEMP works well for roach in a few different ways. Cup some in at the start on the pole, or loosefeed it little-and-often. It can take a while, but the stamp of roach on hemp is often better than on any other bait.

Price: Around £2.75, www.dynamitebaits.com

Dynamite Baits Frenzied Hemp
Dynamite Baits Frenzied Hemp

Other essentials

Drennan Match Catty

One of the most popular and reliable catapults of all time. It features a special, tangle-free latex attachment that enables you to fire

it from both sides. It comes supplied with spare elastic.

Price: £8.75, www.drennantackle.com

Drennan Match Catty
Drennan Match Catty

Drennan Brass Head Bread Punches

Moving into autumn and winter, breadpunch is a fantastic bait for roach, and this set from Drennan is just the ticket, with six different-sized punches. Match the size of the punch to the size of the fish. The 6mm and 7mm sizes are better for good stamp redfins, or if there’s a touch of colour in the water.

Price: Around £11.95, www.drennantackle.com

Drennan Brass Head Bread Punches
Drennan Brass Head Bread Punches

Preston Response Whips

Whips are great fun to use when catching large numbers of roach at close range. These superb Response whips come in 3m, 4m and 5m lengths, perfect fished ‘to hand’ with flick tips.

Price: From £53.99, www.prestoninnovations.com

Preston Response Whips
Preston Response Whips

Daiwa Silverfish Landing net

This dedicated silvers net is light, strong, cuts through the water easily and has a fairly shallow mesh, making it easy for you to grab and unhook fish. It dries quickly and so won’t stink out the car or garage.

Price: £19.99, www.daiwasports.co.uk

Daiwa Silverfish Landing net
Daiwa Silverfish Landing net

Guru Incredible Pult

A distance catapult designed to group your free offerings tightly, even when fishing at maximum range. The elastic is extra-strong and the frame has a non-twist design to improve accuracy. Super-smooth frame runners reduce the wear on the elastic, and the catapult’s tension can be adjusted via four pegging points.

Price: £10.99, www.tackleguru.com

Guru Incredible Pult
Guru Incredible Pult

Korum EVA Roving Waist Pouch

When wading on rivers with a float rod, these EVA Roving Waist Pouches from Korum are a massive help. Fill them with maggots or hemp/tares, depending on what you’re trotting with. There are handy elasticated straps on the side for holding catapults when not in use.

Price: £15.99, www.korum.co.uk

Korum EVA Roving Waist Pouch
Korum EVA Roving Waist Pouch

Shakespeare Agility Landing Net

Built around an aluminium frame, these lightweight nets boast a fish-friendly rubberised mesh which dries incredibly quickly. Comes in two sizes – medium and large – with the former being ideal for silverfish work.

Price: From £11.99, www.shakespeare-fishing.co.uk

 Shakespeare Agility Landing Net
Shakespeare Agility Landing Net

Preston Original Slip Elastic

If you’re pole fishing for roach you’ll need a soft elastic to stop smaller fish twisting and turning their way off the hook on the way

in. The shallower the water and smaller the fish, the lighter the grade needed. Generally, a No3, No4 or No5 elastic is perfect on natural venues.

Price: around £2.99, www.prestoninnovations.com

Preston Original Slip Elastic
Preston Original Slip Elastic

Daiwa N’ZON Micromesh Keepnet

With a smaller mesh pattern that’s friendlier to the scales of silvers, this net can be attached to your seatbox or bankstick via Daiwa’s unique locking block. It features two strong aluminium top rings and three aluminium bottom rings to create a sturdy frame. There are two handles located inside the bottom third ring and it comes in a zippered bag. Lengths available are 2.5m and 3m.

Price: £59.99 and £64.99, www.daiwasports.co.uk

Daiwa N’ZON Micromesh Keepnet
Daiwa N’ZON Micromesh Keepnet
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