Korum Glide Power Float Rod
Barbel fishing needn’t be all about legering – floatfishing for them is great fun too. Of course, you’ll need a rod that’s up to the job and Korum’s Glide Power Float rod – with its parabolic action – is designed specifically for battling with hard-fighting fish on the float.
The guides are sized to be used with stronger reel lines on both fixed-spool reels and centrepins, and the full cork handle and gold trimmings give the rods a classy overall look.
Available in 11ft, 12ft, 13ft and 12-14ft models,.
Price: £64.99 - £79.99, www.korum.co.uk
Shakespeare SKP Concept Barbel Rods
The Concept rods are part of Shakespeare’s brand new SKP range and there are three barbel rods to choose from ranging in test curves from 1.75lb - 2.25lb. All feature double leg guides for added strength, full cork handles and hi-viz white tips which are easy to see in low-light conditions and when fishing with your rods tips up in the air against dark backgrounds such as far bank bushes.
Price: £49 - £53, www.shakespeare-fishing.co.uk
KODEX QX-i TWIN TIP BARBEL ROD 12FT
THIS rod is a modern take on the original Avon Quiver, and boasts a progressive through action with lots of clout in the mid-section, enabling you play a barbel rather than just haul it in.
Use the hollow (non-quiver) top to handle the largest of feeders or bag set-ups weighing up to 6oz, or put on the quivertip carrier section that comes with 2oz and 4oz tips, ideal for slower-paced rivers and lighter feeders.Recommended for use with lines up to 15lb.
Price: £94.99, www.kodextackle.com
GREYS PRODIGY TXL BARBEL
AMONG the very best off-the-peg barbel rods, the Prodigy TXL comes with both an Avon-style top section and a quivertip carrier section taking tips of 1.5oz, 2.5oz and 3.5oz.
The 2lb tc model is ideal for big-river work, while the lighter 1.75lb version suits smaller, more intimate venues.
Both rods will hurl weights up to 4oz, and if you need to up the ante in floods or fast-flowing waters, the enlarged line guides offer the safe option of using shockleaders without the fear of knots snagging.
Price: £159.99, www.greysfishing.co.uk
Daiwa Black Widow Specialist Twin Top
This 12ft rod is built around a slim, full carbon blank which ensures that it offers the perfect balance between casting prowess and fish-playing sensitivity.
The sharp action perfectly complements both the supplied top sections.
The fixed position 2oz fibreglass quivertip is highly sensitive, ideal for use with light leads in slower flowing waters. The heavier-actioned hollow tip is perfect for fishing with big feeders, or when targeting large fish.
Price: £74.99, www.daiwasports.co.uk
Daiwa Black Widow BR
Currently the cheapest reel in Daiwa’s freespool range, but still a quality offering, this reel comes in four body sizes from 3500 to 5000, and is well suited to big-fish and feeder work.
Smooth and reliable, the Black Widow has many recognisable Daiwa features such as Airbail, Twistbuster, and the BR freespool mechanism.
The largest 5000 model weighs in at 473g, and has three internal ball-bearings, and a stated line capacity of 310m of 14lb line.
Price: £67.99 (but shop around), www.daiwasports.co.uk
Shimano Baitrunner ST
A 6000-sized reel will easily handle the rigours of casting heavy feeders and leads on large powerful rivers. Barbel are renowned for their savage bites, so the Baitrunner facility enables line to be stripped on the take, giving you peace of mind that your rod won’t get dragged in!
Shimano has a deserved reputation for making some of the best reels on the market and despite it’s incredibly reasonable price, this model is packed with features, including a balanced double handle, XT-7 body, 4.6:1 gear ratio and Super Stopper II for instant and infinite anti-reverse.
Price: £54.99, www.fish.shimano.eu
Guru Duel 600 Specimen Net
Designed for all kinds of big-fish work when you need a large landing net that is not too heavy and cumbersome. The net incorporates a dual mesh – the wider mesh makes up the majority of the net sides to assist with manoeuvrability and reduce drag in flowing water, while the finer mesh base prevents tackle such as hair rigs being snagged.
Importantly, it is also deep enough at 28ins to safely scoop bigger fish and rest them in the margins to recover while you sort out your scales and camera kit.
Price: £19.99, www.tackleguru.com
Drennan Specimen Unhooking Mat
The innovative design of this new mat from Drennan allows it to be turned from a flat mat into a walled cradle with the simple pull of a cord. Generously padded, with a soft, wipe-clean surface, the mat features reinforced webbing carry handles to make it easy to carry a fish back to the water. Drainage holes in each corner minimise water collection.
Price: £54.95, www.drennantackle.com
Korum compact digital Scales
It’s worth carrying a set of scales so you can record the weight of special catches. These Korum Compact Digital scales are so small that they’ll fit in your pocket – perfect if you’re traveling light and adopting a roving approach.
Price: £25.99, www.korum.co.uk
Kodex SP20 Unhooking Mat/Weigh Sling
We like this uhooking mat as not only does it have a spacious and well-padded unhooking area, but it folds down to a compact size for easy transport. It also doubles up as a weigh sling and, with the side zips pulled up, it can be used as a carryall too, making it a highly versatile bit of kit, especially if you’re looking to reduce the amount of kit you have to carry.
Price: £39.99, www.kodextackle.com
Korum Latex Barbel Spoons
A powerful frame and a reinforced spreader block lift big fish safely up high banks. The open latex mesh dries quickly, and allows water through easily.
The nets are deeper than most, ideal for short-term fish retention, and a retaining tag is useful when carrying the net between swims.
In two sizes, 26ins and 30ins.
Price: £21.99 and £23.99, www.korum.co.uk
Chairs and rod support
JRC Stealth X-Lo Chair
Made with a strong but featherlight aerospace grade aluminium frame, the Stealth X-Lo is the ideal chair for the mobile angler. Weighing a mere 3.4kg, it packs down to a compact size and comes with a padded shoulder strap for easy transport. The clever rear leg design enables a nice and stable set-up.
Price: £94.99 (but shop around), www.jrc-fishing.co.uk
KORUM AERONIUM SUPA LITE CHAIR
THE Aeronium is as light a chair as you’ll ever come across. Framed in magnesium alloy, it weighs in at just 2.3kg, making it one of the lightest on the market. Its webbed covering material is comfortable, hard-wearing and fully waterproof.
The shoulder area is fully padded but breathable, and the chair comes with height-adjustable legs with swivelling mudfeet. There’s a deluxe version too.
Price: Standard £79.99, Deluxe £98.99, www.korum.co.uk****__
Korum River Tripod
A super-stable bit of kit with anti-twist extrusions that provide a solid platform for your rods.
At the rear of the tripod there’s a special stabiliser for added strength and stability, but it can still be pushed into the ground if required.
A cam lock system allows the frame to be extended during use but pack down to a compact size for ease of transport. The chunky front and rear buzz bars are attached via a Speed Fit system – this means there’s no need to screw them in, they simply slot into place and are secured with a cam switch.
The front legs can be adjusted to pretty much any angle and can easily be lengthened.
Price: £74.99, www.korum.co.uk
Korum Barbel Reel Line
BARBEL being one of the hardest-fighting coarse fish species, strength and durability are the key characteristics you need of your mainline when targeting them.
Korum’s Barbel Reel Line pretty much does what it says on the tin – it provides extreme abrasion resistance and superior knot strength, and absorbs powerful lunges. Oh, and the camo finish blends in with the riverbed. Job done. Available on 500m spools in 10lb, 12lb and 15lb breaking strains.
Price: £9.99, www.korum.co.uk
E-S-P Camo Sink Link
This extra-strong and supple braid makes an excellent hooklength material. The alternating tones break up the outline of the hooklink, providing a definite edge when fishing for pressured fish or in clear water.
Even if it doesn’t fall perfectly flat on the deck, it’s so soft to the touch that fish are unlikely to spook if they come into contact with it.
The line comes on 10m spools in 15lb, 20lb and 25lb breaking strains.
Price: £5.95, www.drennantackle.com
Drennan Super Specialist Barbel hooks
When big fish in running water are the target, you need a hook you can rely on. This is a tried-and-tested pattern with an immensely sharp extra-long point providing instant penetration on the take.
Price: £4.45, www.drennantackle.com
Korum River Feeders
Designed specifically for use in running water, their low profile allows the water to pass easily over the top of the feeder. This means you need less weight to hold position in the flow, which ultimately means your tackle bag will be a hell of a lot lighter! The hexagonal holes let the flavour from your bait leak out quickly and pull fish in from downstream. Available in 60g, 90g, 120g and 150g.
Price: £2.25-£3.75, www.korum.co.uk
Gardner Target Specimen Hooks
A mega all-round pattern that lends itself to being used with a variety of baits and rigs. The application of the unique Covert finish reduces glare from the hooks and helps it to blend in with the surrounding environment. Small details like this can make all the difference when fishing in pressured river stretches.
The beaked point of the the Target Specimen is less likely to become blunted by any stones or gravel on the river bed, and the wire is forged and double tempered for added strength.
The hooks are available in sizes 10-16 in barbed and barbless options.
Price: £3.50, www.gardnertackle.co.uk****__
Kodex Extra-Large Bait dropper
An essential bit of kit for putting down a bed of bait such as hemp and pellets which would be washed away by the flow if fed via a catapult. It has a long-lasting cork pad for attaching a hook, and the mechanism opens instantly on hitting the bottom.
Price: £6.99, www.kodextackle.com
Sonubaits Super Crush Barbel Groundbait
This pungent groundbait contains three ingredients no barbel can resist – fishmeal, hempseed and meat extracts.
It’s a sticky mix that’s designed to stay in your feeder longer than traditional groundbaits, allowing flavour to leak off with little actual feed content. This increases the chances of the barbel finding your hookbait, as they’ll be less preoccupied with the loosefeed.
Sold in 2kg bags.
Price: £7.99, www.sonubaits.com
Sonubaits Oozing Barbel Pellets
Barbel won’t have any trouble locating these hookbaits, even in murky or flood water, thanks to their intense flavour. Once in the water you can see the flavours and colours leaking off which will pull fish in from downstream. Available in three proven flavours – Halibut, Spicy Sausage and Cheesy Garlic – and two sizes.
Price: £3.99, www.sonubaits.com****__
Sticky Ellipse Pellets
Not only do these rich and oily pellets generate an aggressive feeding response, but the flattened elliptical shape makes them ideal for use in flowing water.
Once on the bottom they are much more likely to remain in position than cylindrical pellets, which can move in the flow. They can also be used as a hookbait by gluing a couple of pellets on the hair.
Price: £5.99, www.stickybaits.com
Dynamite Baits Marine Halibut Meat
Luncheon meat combined with Marine Halibut pellets… what barbel could resist? Made with low-fat meat but packed with protein and bits of pellets, the meat oozes flavour. It can either be cut into cubes or you can simply rip off a chunk.
Price: £2.99, www.dynamitebaits.com
Sticky Krill Active Boilies
Carp aren’t the only species which love boilies – big barbel find them hard to resist too! These latest offerings from Sticky are a little different to standard boilies in that they have a special paste-like outer layer formed from extra liquids and powders.
Once in the water this skin quickly starts to break down and kicks out extra food signals and attraction.
The boilies are available in 12mm, 16mm, 20mm and 24mm sizes in 1kg or 5kg bags.
Price: From £12.99, www.stickybaits.com
Dynamite Baits Meat-Furter Big Fish River Paste
Wrapping your hookbait in paste is a fantastic way to add extra attraction into your swim. This spicy meat-flavoured offering is a favourite with barbel and with a high leakage and medium breakdown time it will pump attraction downstream for a prolonged period.
Price: £5.25, www.dynamitebaits.com