I decided to get out today and try a few new rigs I have knocked up. To try things out you need to pick a venue where you will get lots of bites and fish as there is no point trying things out on a hard venue. So I headed for Monk lakes peg 57, this is at the top end of match lake 2 and is always solid in the colder weather.
Ive been reading a lot about this hook in the loop recently on the forums and in the mags, I have been using a similar rig with a bulk close to the hook but without the loop for a while now but adding the loop is supposed to make it easier for fish like F1s & skimmers to suck in the bait and I can see the thinking behind it. The rig was tied up with a 4 x 18 Carpa Chimp float with a bulk set about 2ft from the hook and 2 number 8s just about the loop, trace line was 0.12 attached to a Drennan Carp hook like in the picture below.
I also had a selection of different sized Carpa Chimp float set up in a similar way for different depths.
You dont need to fish out to far here so I plumbed up at dead depth at about 7 meters on a top 6 with the 4 x 18 float and had about 9ft of water here, also I had a top 4 rig set up with a smaller 4 x 12 float into about 3.5ft of water, I had a few bait with me to try, corn, maggot, 4 & 6 mm expander pellets, I fed both swims little and often with a few pellets and caught one a bung for a couple of hours switching between the two swims, a selection of F1s, small carp, tench, barbel & skimmers were netted.
Also a huge bleak!
I found with the loop rig I was missing very few bites, each was either a slight lift, or the float vanished out if sight, a lift of the pole resulted in a hooked fish virtualy every time, in conclusion the loop rig would without doubt out fish the standard bulk and 2 droppers sort of presentation, it worked particularly well for the skimmers where some times bites can be hard to hit. I can draw this opinion from fishing the lake many times before with a more standard rig.
Now for a change of tactics and to try out my new rod a 3 piece 11ft carbonactive float, I liked to 2 piece rod so much I brought it slightly softer brother, this was set up with a 3g Drennan puddle chucker, set to fish 3ft deep in 12ft of water, 0.12 trace attached to a 18 hook, white maggot was the feed/hookbait and steady feeding at about 25 yards had the chub and ide biting well and I was soon catching a few to about a pound, after a while I started to pick up some of the bigger F1s. These seem to feed in the coldest of weather and are always willing to come up shallow, you pick up a bigger stamp of fish compared to fishing on the deck with the pole too.
So a good days fishing probably catching the best part of a ton or more (one of my highly acurate estimates!!), Im ready for the first match of the year now at Framfield.