Trout cranks

It’s getting to that part of the year where people are getting excited about some trout lure fishing in the not too distant future. It’s time to get those lure boxes organised and stocked up so here’s some lovely little cranks that are just ideal for the job. Quite a few to choose from in the Riverpiker shop but make sure to check out the Ugly Duckling cranks and the Tuco minnows.
Trout cranks

When Saturday comes

Every year it seems to be the same. Before we know it, time has flown by and the dreaded closed season is upon us. Me and Neil were out on the boat in tough conditions, murky flood water, the pike weren’t biting and we were counting the weekends left until we couldn’t fish the rivers anymore for a few months. It seems to creep up on us so fast. One minute we have loads of time the next it’s gone. Six weekends was all that was left and going by conditions in recent weeks, a few of those weekends we wouldn’t even get a chance. Why does it always rain on a Thursday? That rain then goes in to the rivers and by the time Saturday comes around they are up a meter or two and we’re not fishing again, not from the boat anyway and not doing what we want to do. So we had to hope that out of those six weekends left we could at least get one or two decent conditions to give us a chance to do what we like to do. Catching a few fish is what we want and if we are lucky then one of us at least will have a decent fish before the rivers close. We’re not specimen anglers so some good fishing will suit us, but we all love a big mamma don’t we!

As soon as Monday comes we’re already swapping messages, checking the week long weather forecast, watching those river levels and trying to predict what Saturday will bring and where we will end up. It better not rain again on Thursday or that’s going to leave us with five weekends to fish. Thats only five Saturdays and even worse, Neil works shifts so that will rule a few more of those out. By some sort of miracle, the week ahead forecast was actually favourable. At the minute the river was still carrying some extra water and also some extra colour but with luck that could be gone by Saturday if no rain comes in the mean time and at the minute, Thursday didn’t have one single drop of rain forecast. As the week went on we watched the river level slowly dropping and if that rate continued then Saturday would be the first day of normal level, so with that we just needed one more slice of luck and that was that there would be a little bit of clarity. Not too much, but at least enough to give us a chance on lures.

Fishing this winter and probably this past year has been steady. Personally i’ve not been out half as much as usual and I haven’t had that much luck with conditions when I actually have gone out. That’s not me making excuses or anything, that’s just how it’s been and I except that. Sometimes it just doesn’t happen how you want it. In an ideal world I’d have made up for it by getting out for those little short sessions before or after work just for an hour or so. They can boost your fishing time on the bank and also boost your mojo a bit if you catch a few. Short sessions blanking aren’t so hard to take and then when you actually do catch a few fish you feel like you’ve had your fix but not only that. You are already planning your next little session and then things just keeps snowballing. One day fuels the next and so on. But when you fish once per week or even per two weeks, and then that’s a long hard slug, it doesn’t really leave you wanting to get out again anytime soon. That fuels less enthusiasm and more excuses, that was me for the last ten months or so.

So anyway, we can’t believe it. Friday night comes and we are all set for some fishing the next day and even better we are thinking we have a half decent chance of at least catching a few fish. We arrive as dawn breaks, un load the gear and get the boat all set up. Another fishing boat turns up also. Just as we expected, we’re not the only ones seeing that today is the day to get out. Sunday is forecast a major storm. Strong winds and lots and lots of rain. So not only is Sunday a no go but from what is coming, that will be next weekend out of action also. Even more important to get a few fish today and get that fix. A quick chat with the lads on the other boat and then both boats are off. Me and Neil have a look at a spot that we know sometimes throws up an early fish while the other bigger, faster boat heads off upstream. We’ll no doubt cross paths at some point but for now at least we’re not in each others pockets. It’s nice to get an early fish, no matter how big, that saves the boat a blank and in no time Neil has landed the first jack.

Twenty minutes later and the pressure is off me as I land my first jack also. The target now is to get a few more pike numbers and just get a bit of action. This time of year I always say if we can catch ten pike, one of them will be a double at least. Sometimes i’ve had four fish with three doubles and other days i’ve had thirty pike but not a single double, but generally this time of year if you keep picking up the fish it’s only a matter of time before a chunky one comes along.

“What was it you said? Ten fish and one of the will be a double?” Neil asks. “Well then i make it the next fish will be a double” he says. It wasn’t. But we’ve had some sport and it’s still early so we are happy. The clarity is pretty good, not crystal clear but not coloured. Maybe it was just about perfect for lures. That doesn’t happen too often during winter fishing on the rivers so we had to make the most of it. The smaller pike were feeding, even though they were clearly sat on the bottom because every one of them had half a dozen or more leeches on them. Neil and I had pretty much caught the same amount of pike but before long, Neil had had another, and another and another. I think at one point he’d caught eleven pike to my five or something like that. It’s never a competition with us when we’re fishing, but that often happens. One guy seems to catch a few more than the other but then either later that day it evens itself out a bit or the week after it’s the other one catching more fish that time. I always say that if you can’t deal with your buddy catching more fish than you then you need to either fish on your own, or work out what exactly he is doing that you aren’t. Like I said, in time it evens it’self out. Unless of course your mate is simply better at it than you are.

There always seems to be something random or weird that happens when we are out. You’d think two lads going fishing could just go fishing but it’s never as simple as that. We turned a corner in the river and could hear someone shouting and we saw a group of people waving at us. Had they recognised us? Ha ha! Nah it was someone needing some help. We could hear a woman screaming a little histerically but couldn’t quite see what was wrong. Then we spotted it. One of those modern day snowflake dogs that are more used to being carried around in a hand bag had got itself in a pickle. It had fallen down a hole in the bankside and was teetering near the waters edge. The snowflake modern day dog owners couldn’t climb down the embankment and the woman was getting a little upset at her pet pooch struggling in the wet mud. So off we went to rescue the mut and be heroes once again. We must be a due a reward for that and Neil picked up two quick fire pike.

We’d covered a bit of water by now and the action was slowing down a little. We were chatting about how we had a few more fish in one short stretch, even though they were smaller it was sport. We were picking the odd fish up but not in any numbers and we weren’t finding any consistant sport in any of the stretches. We know loads of different parts of the river that can sometimes throw up a fish so we usually have a chat and see which bit we think to target next. You can either spend loads of time fishing smaller areas or run and gun and cover loads of water. To be honest both methods do work we’ve found, so you just have to make a plan and go for it. You could make a plan and stick to it but its actually better to know when to change the plan. You can spend all day on plan A and it never really happens, then go home thinking you should have tried plan B. So yep, make a plan and give it a good go but if it’s not working do something and change it. That could be moving to a new spot, changing fishing styles and tactics and so on. Why struggle on lures if the conditions aren’t right when a switch to bait fishing could mean you catch a few fish? If one favourite spot isn’t producing the goods then don’t stay there. Go have a crack somewhere else or even try somewhere new. You just don’t know what it might throw up.

We picked up a few more fish in time but it was steady. We’d opted to go looking at a few spots which meant quite a bit of travelling about. I’ve only got a 5hp petrol engine which means I can’t fly from one spot to the next so we have to think about what we are doing a little more. By now we’d seen another two boats out so that meant lots of water was getting covered between us all. We weren’t really sure if they were catching or not but you could guarantee that some of the places we would like to fish would be getting fished by those lads also. By now we were well upstream and a spot we had had a few nice fish from about a month earlier didn’t produce anything except a small jack pike. The first boat we saw early morning was now passing us and working some spots back downstream. We could do the same, there was plenty of water to go at. But we already had a plan. We wanted to target the area where we’d had more fish in the morning. Nothing big came from it but we were chatting about it and it was clear that me and Neil both felt that was our best shot at not only some more fish but maybe a better one.

It probably takes about an hour for me to cover all that water and get back to where we wanted to fish for the last hour. We did try a couple of spots on the way back but when nothing much happened in five or ten minutes we soon got going again. As soon as we got to the area we picked up a couple of quick fire pike. That made us feel happy about our decision and made us even more determined to fish this area hard. We’re due a better fish by my earlier theory, especially as now we were both in to double figures on the pike captures and I’d even nearly managed to even it up a bit, being just one behind Neil now (so at least I know i’m not a complete numpty.) Then Neil got whacked, set the hooks but a head shake and it was off. Before I could even ask what had happened I had a tiny knock, just as if my lure had touched something, and then the rod wrapped round.

I’m still using the Gator rods because I really do love them. I have the gumbait rod set up with 60lb Nano X braid and that’s always ready for throwing a jerkbait or a Burt and if i’m using bigger baits then the Gator Bigbait rod with 80lb braid. These rods are just a joy to use, they make casting all day long an absolute pleasure as you can throw a heavy lure about with little effort. It seems like years and years ago when i was last using shorter six foot rods and I can’t ever see me going back to that, especially for heavier lure fishing. I love also how much more you feel with these rods and how much they deal with an angry pike much better. You don’t bump as many fish or lose them so much on the fight. The pike shakes its head and the rod does it’s job, absorbing the headshakes while still keeping pressure on the hooks. I’ve already spotted that Gator have brought out a new version of these rods, the Elixir, and I’d love to get my hands on one. How long is it until my birthday?

It was a bit of a joke through the day. Neil especially had called a decent pike on a few occassions only for a jack to surface in the end. I love winter pike, they are so fit and strong and these river fish do give a good account of themselves. I’d also had a couple of calls that were way off the mark so by the time the last hour or two of the day was on us we were no longer even screaming for the net. We weren’t prepared to have our mate rip the piss out of us when a five pound fish surfaced. As i battled the pike, I was half thinking about Neil just missing a fish, we could have finished the day with a double hook up, and I was half trying to manouvere the boat in to the middle of the river as by now that storm was well on it’s way and we were getting blown about. I think Neil might have asked what it felt like and I can remember saying “this is a better one, this is a good fish”. The Bigbait rod had a proper bend on it, there was no thrashing around at all and even though there were no massive lunges or surges from the pike, it just felt heavy.

This thing surfaced, rolled and I know I used some strong language. “Don’t fuck this up Neil! I sceamed in a panic. The pike rolled one more time. You have that moment where you pray the hooks don’t come free, and they held firm. I can’t remember Neil ever fucking it up to be honest and as I slowly pulled the pike towards the net he was already sliding it under her. Get in you beauty! This was a proper one, this was a twenty.

We got the boat in to the edge and anchored up. Pike still in the net but now at least we could sort everything out without being blown all over the river. The hooks came out really easy as she was as good as gold in the net. No rolling about and tangling up hooks in the net, so that was a bonus. Neil turned to me and said, “that could be a twenty that mate”. As I rolled her in the net I saw the depth of the body and the thickness of her. I knew right then she would be well over twenty pounds. The last time i’d seen that girth on a fish was on a canal 25lb pike that I had, in fact Neil also later went on to catch that same pike. We both agreed this could be around that figure so we dug the scales out. Neils were handy and so in no time we had the net head detached from the handle and ready to weigh her. I’ve still not bought a bloody weigh sling. I guess it’s not a priority since I don’t catch enough big pike! Anyway i knew the head weighed something like 2.5lb, but we could check that afterwards. Neil lifted the net and the needle went right round to…….twenty three. “What?! It’s bigger than that” I suggested. Pike back in the net in the water I dug my scales out. Thinking about it, Neil is a short arse so i bet he wasn’t even tall enough to lift the pike up enough to get a weight. Either way this time it was me and my scales and when the needle this time tipped past 27lb I was much happier. That meant 24-25lb so all we needed now was a net weigh which i can now confirm was two and a quarter pound. So we both agreed that this fish was 24lb 12oz and it certainly looked every part of that.

We grabbed a few photos and made sure she was happy and then I reluctantly let her swim away. I love those moments and seeing a fighting fit beast go back down in to the depths is just magical to me, i never tire of it. The daylight was fading now and we still had a bit of a drive back. But we had to have another crack at the spot first to see if any other big girls were playing. But it wasn’t to be. We couldn’t complain though, it was a top day fishing. We’d had a few between us and we’d had my biggest pike from this river and my biggest pike on my new boat. Cheers for passing on the good mojo Jim!

Shop closing for a week soon.

Just a heads up. The Riverpiker Shop will be closed between October 25th and November 5th 2019, so if you need anything you have just over two weeks otherwise you’ll be waiting another week. Many thanks also for your continued custom, it is very much appreciated.

 

Gator products back in stock

Just a quick heads up to let you know that a fresh batch of Gator products, including perch bait, Gator gum in three sizes and Gator stingers has just hit the shelves at the riverpiker shop. If you need some, be sure to be quick as most of it sold out in no time last time. Plus as a side note, the riverpiker shop will be closed for a week or more from june 7th – 17th so if you need anything for the rivers opening now is the time.
Gator products

Double and triple swivels added to shop

Just added to the shop are some double and triple swivels, which are ideal for making up your stinger rigs for big soft plastics. At the minute these are only available in the large 1/0 size, which is 60kg Test. These are a little bulky but do the job. I am late adding these to the shop as I wanted to test them out first myself and see if there were any issues, which there aren’t apart from being a little more noticable than wire or smaller swivels. Also as a note, the Gator stingers are all sold out at the minute by I will do my best to get them back in stock.

GTR Double swivels
GTR Triple swivels


FFS Lures added to the shop

Just added to the shop, a custom made lure by FFS Lures. The floating finesse stick is a a custom made soft bait and is based on the popular ned style baits. Available in five colours these lures are great alternative to soft shads when targetting perch. They are available to buy in single units so pick and choose how many you want in each colour and I will pack them up. Also, until the end of February they are priced a little bit cheaper so make the most of it.
Click here to buy

The Best Lure Ever

That’s it, the voting is over and we have found a winner. The Cruelbaits Godfather Jerk  has been voted by you, the Best lure ever. Beating one of the legends of the lure world the Strike Pro Buster jerk with 883 votes to 599. We started with 128 lures which were all suggested by followers of the Riverpiker Facebook page, and over the last couple of months we have been voting for our favourites. Eventually we were left with just two and after a massive battle, by far the most votes of any of the rounds, we have our winner.  As a side note, the third place play off saw the Mepps Aglia beat the Rapala Xrap Peto.

Ok so what did we actually achieve here? Well right from the start all I wanted to do was to try and answer one of the most common questions I get asked. What is the best lure?  Personally I think this is a really difficult question to answer, even with a load of on line polls. There are so many factors, so many variables, so many opinions, so many types of lures, uses of lures the list goes on. From one year to the next I myself will change my own mind on what is my own favourite, even from one session to the next I will change it. Confidence in a lure is a big factor and to gain some kind of confidence, usually that means you have to have caught a few on it. But when you are just starting out you just don’t know what works and what doesn’t. So there, we have it. We have the answer and the answer is a list of lures below that made it right through to the last 16. If you wanted to, you could go buy all 128 lures from the competition because these were all put forward by anglers who have probably used them and caught on them. That would put a massive hole in your pocket, so this poll has narrowed it down to just 16, the best lures ever!

Cruelbaits Godfather Jerk
Strike Pro Buster jerk
Mepps Aglia
Rapala Xrap Peto
Westin Percy the Perch
Savage Gear Line thru Roach
Savage Gear 4D line thru Trout
Rapala Jointed Shad Rap
Savage Gear Low Rider
Svartzonker McTail
Rapala J9
Savage Gear 4 Play Swim n Jerk
Wolfcreek Lures The Wolf
Salmo Slider
Westin Ricky The Roach
Fox Replicant

 

XXL Grubs restocked

The popular XXL grubs are now back in stock on the Riverpiker shop. Even better, I have added more colours to the range so be sure to check them all out. Recommended from me are the super bright UV colours which are very good in low light and the more natural colours for anyone fishing clearer water. Also added are some more colours in the glitter range, for those who like a bit more bling! These lures are exellent for low and slow fishing through winter. A big bait to get the attention of those big pike. but don’t be scared to rip this bait in fast or even add jerks and pauses to make it dance about.

Best lure ever competition – Finalists confirmed

So we are finally there. The semi finals are over and we have the finalists in the best lure ever competition. The Cruelbaits Godfather Jerk has knocked out the Mepps Aglia spinner and the Strike Pro Buster jerk has seen off the Rapala Xrap Peto. So its a jerk v jerk final and for me personally, two of my most used lures have made it through to the final. But first, we need to have a play off battle for third place between the Mepps and the Xrap Peto.

Third place play off
Mepps Aglia v Rapala Xrap Peto

Final
Strike Pro Buster jerk v Cruelbaits Godfather Jerk

Click here to see the latest competition results.

Down to the last four – best lure ever competition

We are now down to the last four lures in our quest to find the best lure ever. This has been a long slog with many votes cast but we are finally getting to that point. There has been lots of opinions and debate along the journey and the way some people are carrying on it’s actually making the remoaners of Brexit look like grown ups. #luremoaners ha ha! It’s a bloody fishing lure competition for a laugh, just vote! Cries for votes to be cast again because their favourite lure didn’t come through. Cries of dodgy dealings, fake voters and all sorts.

All that to one side, we are nearly there. Two of the favourites by many, the Savage Gear line thru trout and line thru roach are both out, swept aside by jerkbaits, so that will do me fine. Not a single Savage Gear lure made it through when at one point, it looked as though it would be a clean sweep from the brand. A favourite of mine has fallen, the jointed Rapala Shad rap has gone but to be fair it came up against one of the greatest lures of all time, the trusty old Mepps spinner. Emerging as one of the favourites now, simply because it keeps sweeping all to one side is the Rapala Xrap Peto which knocked out the Westin Percy the Perch. But who will get through to the final? Facebook polls coming soon on the Riverpiker page.


Semi Final
Mepps Aglia v Cruelbaits Godfather Jerk

Strike Pro Buster jerk v Rapala Xrap Peto

Click here to see the latest competition results.

Best lure ever – round 4 summary

Well it’s getting really tough now. Some very close battles, where often the voting would swing one way then the other. A favourite to win by many, the Fox Replicant has gone. Other lures to lose their battle in this round were the Salmo Slider, the Savage Gear Low rider and after a revote, the Savage gear 4 play swim n jerk which lost out by just 5 votes to the Buster jerk. Another close battle was the Svartzonker McTail which lost by just 5 votes to the Westin Percy the Perch.

So now we are down to the last eight lures and some very interesting match ups.
Quarter Final
Mepps Aglia v Rapala Jointed shad rap
Cruelbaits Godfather Jerk v Savage Gear 4D line thru trout
Strike Pro Buster Jerk v Savage Gear line thru roach
Westin Percy the Perch v Rapala X rap Peto

Click here to see the latest competition results.

Best lure ever – Round 2 summary

The Savage round – Round two of the Best lure ever poll has again seen some mega battles and some mega shocks. The 64 that made it past the first hurdle have now been whittled down to just 32 lures. Again we had super high quality custom lures taking a battering, while the mass produced readily available lures from the likes of Savage Gear, Westin and Strike Pro seemed to mostly all go through with ease. The biggest knockout blow of the round has to be the Musky Mania Squirrely Burt which was pushed aside by the Savage Gear 4D line thru trout in an epic battle. But, there is no time for tears, we move on to round 3 in our quest to find the Best Lure Ever. Make your vote count!

Click here to see the latest competition results.

Best lure ever – round one summary

Wow, that was a bit mental wasn’t it. A total of 128 lures in a 1v1 vote to see which one progresses. Every lure was not only put forward by you guys, but voted on by you guys. Some really tough battles and some surprising results, but surprising to who?

Well it became clear a few battles into round one that some people were really enjoying the format and the idea of finding the best lure ever. But on the other hand, there also seemed to be a few people who felt we had unfair battles, or results that should never have happened. Well that’s just the luck of the draw and the majority vote wins, no matter who it is.

Yes the classic lures may have served well over the years, but both the British and Swedish record holding lures have gone out in round one. The creek chub pikie and the famous Zalt have gone, and both these lures have had pike well over 40lb. On the other hand, brand new lures to the market like the Rapala xrap-peto have gone through comfortably when they haven’t even had time to get a proper soaking.

So for me, I think at least so far this lure battle has shown us all one thing. That there is a massive increase in the amount of lure anglers out there and these guys are buying the new shiny lures. Go back ten years and every lure angler then knew about the mepps or the ondex, they were using creek chub pikies, kuusammo spoons and so on. These days it’s all savage gear, rapala and strike pro.

So on to round two and another 32 votes will be starting monday on the riverpiker Facebook page. Make sure you make your vote count!

Click here to see the latest competition results.

 

We are ready to find the best lure ever

The riverpiker community have spoken, and we have the list of 128 lures. We will vote, and a winner will be found! Stay tuned for the first vote.

Abu Atom
Abu Fat head killer
Abu Hi Low
Abu McHybrid
Abu Tormentor
Allcock Spoon
Bomber long A
bucher depth raider
Castaic boot tail
copper and silver spoon
Craig Beverley Chimera
Crazyfish Nimble
creek chub pikie
Cruelbaits Godfather Jerk
Daiwa D popper frog
Daiwa duckfin shad
Daiwa spintail shad
DAM Effzett rattling spinnerbait
DAM effzett spoon
Dave Greenwood Big Dipper
Dave Greenwood lures Delta
Delalande Sandra
Devils own scale spinner
Dobb daddy
Dodobaits JAWS
Duo Realis Shinmushi
eastfield lures wingman curlytail
Ecogear Grass Minnow
Fladen eco fat plugbait
Fladen Maxximus conrad softy
Fox micro grub tail
Fox rage proshad
Fox rage replicant
fox rage zander proshad
Fox spikey shad
Gator Gum
Headbanger lure
heddon crazy crawler
Heddon Frog
Heddon lucky 13
Kibs tornado spoon
Killshot jerk
Kuusamo Professor
Loz Harrop middle darter
lunker city sluggo
manns-stretch
Mark houghton Mud pig
Mark houghton slide n shad
Matt Holmes custom jerk
Mepps Aglia
Mepps lusox
Mikado Gosia
Miuras mouse
Mscustomflies Reaper
musky innovations bulldawg
Musky innovations shallow invader
musky mania jake
musky mania squirrely burt
Ondex spinner
Ottó bácsi villantói
Peter Temple glider
Pig shad
Pikeman spoon
PM lures Frank the crank
PM lures Little Johnny
PM lures rat
PM lures ziggy
Quantum The Thing
Rapala glidin rap
Rapala J9
Rapala jointed shad rap
Rapala magnum
rapala original
rapala SSR
Rapala x-rap Peto
Relax kopyto shad
river run manta
river2sea whopper plopper
Robinson lures Bream
Robinson lures Gliding trout
Robinson lures jacktail
Rublex classic
Rublex Orkla
Salmo Fatso
Salmo Hornet
Salmo pike
Salmo slider
salmo sweeper
salmo turno jack
Savage gear 3d herring shad
Savage gear 3D hybrid pike
savage gear 4 play swim n jerk
savage gear 4d line thru pike
savage gear 4d line thru trout
savage gear cannibal shad
savage gear dabush spinnerbait
savage gear deviator
savage gear kick frog
savage gear line thru roach
savage gear lip lure
savage gear low rider
savage gear real eel
savage gear shad
shakespeare Big s
spro BBZ
Spro bronzeye king daddy
spro flapper
spro pikefighter
spro rat
storm goant tail
Strike pro Buster Jerk
strike pro guppy
strike pro wolftail
Strike pro Xbuster
svartzonker mcmio
svartzonker mctail
Toby spoon
Toothy critter zombie
Triple devil
Ugly ducking
unknown from a joblot!
Westin Mike the pike
Westin Percy the perch
Westin Ricky the roach
Westin shadteez
Westin swim
Wolfcreek lures The wolf
Zalt

Best lure ever?

So we are currently trying to find the “best lure ever” on the riverpiker facebook page and right here on riverpiker.com. We so far have a list of over 100 lures which will then be pitted off against each other in a knockout vote by you guys, with the last one standing crowned the winner. Below you will find the latest list of lures suggested.

Now Facebook has gone a little mental since I posted this up and keeping tabs on every entry is tough, so if i missed your suggestion, please let me know and I will add to the list.

Abu Atom
Abu Fat head killer
Abu Hi Low
Abu McHybrid
Abu Tormentor
Allcock Spoon
Bomber long A
bucher depth raider
Castaic boot tail
Craig Beverley Chimera
Crazyfish Nimble
creek chub pikie
Cruelbaits Godfather Jerk
Daiwa D popper frog
Daiwa duckfin shad
Daiwa spintail shad
DAM Effzett rattling spinnerbait
DAM effzett spoon
Dave Greenwood Big Dipper
Dave Greenwood lures Delta
Delalande Sandra
Devils own scale spinner
Dobb daddy
Dodobaits JAWS
Duo Realis Shinmushi
eastfield lures wingman curlytail
Ecogear Grass Minnow
Fladen eco fat plugbait
Fladen Maxximus conrad softy
Fox rage proshad
Fox rage replicant
fox rage zander proshad
Fox spikey shad
Gator Gum
Headbanger lure
heddon crazy crawler
Heddon Frog
Heddon lucky 13
Kibs tornado spoon
Killshot jerk
Kuusamo Professor
Loz Harrop middle darter
lunker city sluggo
manns-stretch
Mark houghton Mud pig
Mark houghton slide n shad
Matt Holmes custom jerk
Mepps Aglia
Mikado Gosia
Miuras mouse
Mscustomflies Reaper
musky innovations bulldawg
Musky innovations shallow invader
musky mania jake
musky mania squirrely burt
Ondex spinner
Ottó bácsi villantói
Peter Temple glider
Pig shad
Pikeman spoon
PM lures Frank the crank
PM lures Little Johnny
PM lures rat
PM lures ziggy
Quantum The Thing
Rapala glidin rap
Rapala J9
Rapala jointed shad rap
Rapala magnum
rapala original
rapala SSR
Rapala x-rap Peto
Relax kopyto shad
river run manta
river2sea whopper plopper
Robinson lures Bream
Robinson lures Gliding trout
Robinson lures jacktail
Rublex classic
Rublex Orkla
Salmo Fatso
Salmo Hornet
Salmo pike
Salmo slider
salmo turno jack
Savage gear 3d herring shad
Savage gear 3D hybrid pike
savage gear 4 play swim n jerk
savage gear 4d line thru pike
savage gear 4d line thru trout
savage gear cannibal shad
savage gear dabush spinnerbait
savage gear deviator
savage gear line thru roach
savage gear lip lure
savage gear low rider
savage gear real eel
savage gear shad
shakespeare Big s
spro BBZ
Spro bronzeye king daddy
spro flapper
spro pikefighter
spro rat
storm goant tail
Strike pro Buster Jerk
strike pro guppy
strike pro wolftail
Strike pro Xbuster
svartzonker mcmio
svartzonker mctail
Toby spoon
Triple devil
Ugly ducking
unknown from a joblot!
Westin Mike the piker
Westin Percy the perch
Westin shadteez
Westin swim
Wolfcreek lures The wolf
Zalt

Spooling up

A week or two ago , I was out with Jacob as you may have seen in a previous post. Well leading up to the day, I knew I would be mostly perch fishing but I didn’t know what rod I was going to be using. My little Sonik rod is ace for small cranks on overgrown rivers, but anything larger than a half pound perch has it bent double and creeking like it’s about to snap. I have a cheapo Shakespere drop shot rod, but let’s be honest, I was never going to be going drop shotting. I’ve got a random assortment of custom rods, custom being that I’ve managed to break the tip off them. I have an Enigma rod which is better suited to 2.5inch plus shads on at least 5g jig heads but it’s not really sensitive using anything smaller and I prefer to use it for my pike fishing with small cranks and 3 inch softies. Basically, I need to buy a new rod.

Then I remembered I’d not dug out my Gunki baitcaster rod for a while. It’s only rated 3-15g which is spot on for my approach to perch fishing. As most of you know, it’s cranks and 2.5 inch kopytos mostly for me, all within the casting limit of this rod. I had paired it with an Abu Revo SX reel, which is not too bad. There’s a kind of annoying clicking feel as you turn the handle sometimes, after a couple of years use. Hopefully it just needs a clean out and it’s not on its way out. But I wasn’t happy with the braid on it. I had some 15lb sunline something or other braid on and it was ok to start, but after a while seems to fray really easy. I know, i’m like most Brit’s who never seem to change their braid as often as we should. It also seemed to be a bit chunky for the tiny rings on the Gunki Iron T198 rod. For you guys who like your diameters of braid, I think it was something like 0.205mm if my quick Google check got it right.

Now for my braid choice, i’m not really one for going too light. Many of my waters are snaggy, and i’m a tight arse and don’t like losing lures, so I go heavy enough to hopefully bend a few hooks out. Usually the lightest I go is about 10lb but since I’m using cranks with trebles I bottled it and decided to stick to 15lb for that little bit of added strength. But what braid would I choose. For well over a year now I have been using two new braids from American Tackle, Nano X and Bushido Combat. I’ve used heavy and I’ve used light on a variety of rods and this time choose the 15lb Bushido Combat braid to go on my little Revo SX.

So what made me choose this braid? Well for a start, it’s only 0.16mm diameter so that’s a massive chunk less in comparison to my old 0.205mm I was using. Bushido Combat braid is an 8 strand PE braid that is silky smooth on the cast and I wanted something that wasn’t going to have me in knots every fifth cast while casting smaller lures on a baitcaster in the bloody wind. If you’ve been there, you know what I mean. It’s super strong with a 15lb Test and 23lb breaking strain so would offer me plenty of protection against those snags. I’d used it in 10lb on my spinning reel for ages now, and also used some 50lb on a BFT Instinct X7 reel and it was just lovely.

So only one thing left to do and that was to have a quick test the day before fishing. I nipped out and the weather couldn’t have been any more challenging with strong winds a plenty. Trying to seek some form of shelter under a bridge I had a quick few chucks and in no time I was rewarded with a fish.

If you fancy giving the Bushido combat or the Nano X braid a go, then pop along to the riverpiker shop and take your pick.