I love spending the last days of August fishing with a feeder. The mornings are chilly and crisp and the days grow warm and sunny so it’s easy to relax by the water and there are still many great fish.
I start each session by getting my groundbait and pellet ready. Some people prefer to get it ready beforehand to save some time on the water. However, I believe that it’s better to soak the groundbait in the water from the fishery. I chose a place with many big crucian carp, which were my main target. I prepared 2 kilograms of groundbait and added 0.5l of pink worms and the same amount of cut up red worms. I poured boiling water over the pink worms because there was a lot of mud on the bottom. They still lure the fish in when they are dead and they don’t crawl deeper into the sand and destroy the balls. I also added 0.5kg of 2m diameter pellet to the groundbait. When it’s wet, it makes the groundbait stick together better and leaves a layer of bait on the bottom. Once that was done, I was free to start setting up my spot. I value comfort highly so I use the Mikado Otium chair. It has a couple of interesting features that make transport much easier, such as a large pocket in the back and a shoulder strap.
After adjusting the legs I attached a shielded platform to the left side. It protects the pellet and boilies from rain and sunshine. I put a small bowl next to it for pellet to refill the feeders. On the right side there was a neoprene rod rest that fit two rods no problem.
I saw some pretty big carp fish in the water with the crucian carp so I didn’t want to make my rigs too delicate. The main lines were 0.24 Mikado Method Feeder and for the leaders I used size 8 hooks with a 0.20 mm line.
I use rigs with a push stop or a rubber for the soft pellet and boilies. For hard pellet it’s always a rig with a “hair”. I didn’t know what kind of lure the fish would prefer that day so I used a quick change connector. I completed the rigs with 40 g Douglas feeders. I prefer them to the open Aperio feeders for long distance fishing. Aperio are better for shallow fisheries and short distances.
After everything was ready I started preparing the pellet. 4mm was the perfect diameter for the warm water. I put it in water for 2 minutes and then strain it. Well-prepared pellet should have visible cracks but it shouldn’t become too wet. If it’s too goopy it will not come off the mold and the water will not wash it out of the feeder. The pellet also shouldn’t fall out of the feeder as you’re casting. When the feeder hits the bottom the mix absorbs water, gaining more volume and releasing aromas. This is what makes method feeder fishing so effective.
I put some more moisture into the groundbait with a spray bottle before the first round of baiting. Spraying distributes the water evenly so there are no clumps. I made average-sized balls. It’s important for them to be as uniform in size as possible. It makes it much easier to use the slingshot precisely. I put around 20 egg-sized balls to start with. I knew that there were a lot of fish in the reservoir so I wasn’t afraid of overfeeding them. I put my rigs in the water soon after the groundbait. One with spicy sausage flavored pellet and the other with a few red worms on a push stop. I didn’t have to wait long for the first bite. The fish found the food quickly. After only a while I had a big crucian carp in my landing net, follow closely by a few others. It turned out that the way I set up my feeders helped. It signaled the delicate bites very well.
After more than ten delicate ones there came a fish that wasn’t kidding around. It almost pulled the rod out of my hand. I was sure that it would be a large carp. It a lot of fun to haul a fish that size with a delicate method feeder rig. I could control the quick moves of my opponent that is to the parabolic bend of the Black Stone rod. This was especially helpful once the fish was close to the bank. When I finally saw it I realized that it wasn’t a regular carp but a beautiful grass carp! And it didn’t want to have anything to do with my landing net.
I was very thankful for the precise drag system on the Keino, which prevented the fish from ruining my rig. Keino is a new free runner reel from Mikado and will be available in the 2018 season. I’m not giving you any more spoilers just yet :).
It was the quintessential method feeder trip. You have a lot of fun with average-sized fish and then suddenly a bomb hits! You get a real fine specimen. You never know what to expect.