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06 Mar 2017
by Terry Hearn
Slack-lining to snags?
Would you advocate slack-lining at 80yds tight to snags?

Question

Would you advocate slack-lining at 80yds tight to snags? Please explain the reasons behind your answer?

No mate, definitely not. I wouldn’t slack line at 80yds even if it was open, weed-free water, let alone tight to snags, as to my mind a tight line is always going to be better at hooking fish. Unless you’re fishing into very deep water, from a very high banked swim, like a cliff, then the last few yards of your line should be on the bottom at that kind of range anyway, even when fished bow-string tight.

Snag fishing should always be done with tight lines and I personally like to clip-up with my bobbins at the top, the clutches fished tight and the rods pointing directly at the spot in such a situation. I’ll even spin the magnet on my Steve Nevilles round so that the line only needs to tighten a fraction before I get that first bleep, well before the line even pulls free of the clip.

The only time it becomes a bit trickier is when fishing to snags that are only a short distance out, and when it’s pretty deep, as obviously in that situation a tight line is likely to lift the end of the leader off the deck. If I think that’s the case then I’ll generally add heavier pieces of rig putty above the leader than normal, as much as half-an-ounce worth, and then I’ll fish ‘bobbin tightness’, with the indicator on a short drop of just three- or four-inches. If you’re fishing to snags then you’re generally fishing for fish that aren’t going to drift too far from cover anyway. So long as I can get the last few feet down I’m happy.

It’s all a trade off really. Yes, it’s nice to get everything nice and flush to the deck for yards and yards before the end tackle, but I’d rather risk spooking one than losing one in the snags because I’ve fished the lines too slack, or while I’m on the subject, with clutches fished at girly tension.

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