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04 Dec 2015
by CARPology
Snag fishing in winter
In one corner of my local lake there's a large set of snags that the fish seem to spend most of their time in during winter. I haven’t done any snag fishing before, can you help? Wayne Shanley, via email

Luke Church says: “If you wanted to fish tight to the snags I would suggest casting to the area, clipping up with the clip on the spool and marking the line. This sets the perfect distance to the snags without casting into them. It’s very easy to cast into the overhanging branches if you’re not using a spool clip and this could result in you constantly pulling for a break and losing end tackle. It would be worth trying to cast to less twiggy areas of the snags if possible to reduce the chance of casting into them.

“Once you are happy with your cast, it is important to set the rod position and reels correctly. Whilst fishing close to the snags, if you get a bite you need to be really quick making contact with the fish. To help you with this, set the rod up so the direction of the rod and the line to the terminal tackle is as straight as possible. One of the main things to do though (especially if there are underwater snags) is wind your clutch up tight so you are fishing ‘locked up’. By doing this you’re not allowing the fish to swim into the snags, putting itself in any danger. I also always make sure I set my bivvy up reasonably close to my rods so when I do get a take I’m on it instantly.

“Once you get your bite you need to apply a fair amount of pressure to steer the fish away from the snags and out of danger by slowly walking backwards. Even a really strong line will stretch and walking backwards helps compensate for this.

“You need to be 100% certain all your tackle is strong enough to cope and your knots are tied perfectly. Any weakness will soon be made apparent as the tackle is tested to the absolute max.”

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