It wont be long before the TF Gear team turn their attention to barbel fishing – and the long awaited June 16th river opener!
In the TF Gear office we are literally counting down the days when we can get onto the river bank straight after work, and fish into the late midsummer evenings.
Luckily we are within a fairly short distance of the river Wye, one of the best barbel fishing rivers in the UK. For what the Wye fish lack in size, they make up for in sheer numbers, with fish in the 4 to 8lb class being very common with the odd sprinkling of double figure fish.
TF Gear make plenty of fishing tackle for the barbel angler – for example our Nan-tec barbel rods, which combine power with finesse and stunning good looks. Available in 1.5lb test curve and 2lb test for ‘big river’ flood water condition these lovely rods come with full cork handles.
Another staff favourite are the Banshee barbel, which in 1.5lb test curve are ideal for low summer flows – such as we find at the season’s start. With an Airlite freerunner reel in size 40 completing the deal, this set up is often what we throw in the car for an evening on the Wye.
For mainline the Nantec mono in 12lb is simply unbeatable – this stuff is very strong and abrasion resistant, so you need not fear a break off or fish loss in a snag or weed bed.
We like to keep things simple and use basic cage feeder and groundbait tactics with a hook link of 10lb Airflo fluorocarbon with a hair rigged trout pellet. There is no need to use a ridiculously heavy winter feeder in summer – a 23 gram cage feeder is more than enough in low water conditions.
Often, we see anglers turn up in a swim and automatically lump out a cast to the far bank, with no regard to fish location or snags present in the swim. This looses tackle and results in less fish on the bank.
We like to scout out swims and loose feed a handful of pellet before carefully and quietly casting the bait just a few yards out, looking for side creases, bankside drop offs, dips in teh river bed and gaps in the weedbeds on the our side of the river.
A short accurate cast also helps ensure your presentation is spot on. If there are fish present expect a ‘3 foot twitch’ – sometimes within minutes, provided you haven’t spooked them when approaching the swim. Make a move if nothing happens after an hour – keep roving the bank until you find them and the rewards will follow.
Good luck and may you have a successful June 16th!