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Joe Chappell

Spicing Things Up


In my fishing, attraction is everything. I’m a big believer that all fish, coarse or sea are more likely to take a bait that has greater attraction. This can be with scent and flavour, but also colour and even sound. (When lure fishing). Last week had been a bit ill so there had been no fishing for me. Instead I’m going to talk you through some of my baiting tips when it comes to coarse and sea fishing.

My first tip is to dip your baits before every cast. I really do think that this can help draw fish down to your bait throughout the water column. As the bait hits the water, all the glug or liquid attraction you have dipped it in leaks off. By the time the lead hits the lake bed, your bait has let off a fantastic stream of scent to diffuse through the depths of the water. 

A beautiful carp caught using the tactics mentioned above

Another tip when it comes to carp fishing is use pva. I still fish singles, and have done well on high attraction single hookbaits but for me pva is at the top of my essential items list. Weather it’s a solid bag, mesh bag of crushed boilies and pellet or a stringer of five baits i’ll always glug it up a bit too. 

Sometimes, sitting behind 3 rods isn’t the best approach and I’ll opt to use a method feeder. I prefer to use a ground bait, sometimes with pellet or corn mixed in. With ground bait I will always add a good mix of spices. Chilli powder and turmeric are two favourites of mine but garlic powder, ginger, cumin, paprika and just about anything works well. I will also always add some glug or liquid attraction to my ground bait too.

I will sometimes use big spreads of ground bait when carp fishing too. When doing so I will mix more pellet, hemp and corn in then if using with a feeder. Then you can throw balls of ground bait to places you may not have been able to get to with just pellets or corn. When fishing the method feeder, a bright hookbait that stands out from the ground bait can work well. My favourite is the pink tuna mainline match dumbbell wafters. 

Surface fishing is a great way to catch carp, however sometimes when the sun isn’t bearing down on the water is can be hard to get the fish feeding. Putting mixers out is the best way to get the fish feeding on the top. You can do this with a throwing stick, catapult, spomb or throwing them out. Adding oils to your mixers helps to create a slick on the water surface, making it easier to see.  You can use plain vegetable oil, however using something chilli oil, garlic oil or halibut oil adds a bit more attraction and can help get those fish feeding in the tougher conditions. 

Now I’m not expert at all when it comes to sea fishing, so I can’t give you all top tips. But I’ll tell you some mistakes I’ve made before and hopefully it means you want make the same mistakes as me. The first mistake we made was not using fresh bait. We would always take fresh worm, as well as frozen squid or crabs or fish. Every time the worm would devastatingly outperform the frozen bait. Now if bait is fresh frozen then it still has lots of the good attraction that bring the fish in, however when using squid and fish from the supermarket, sometimes it has been dead for months before being frozen and squid is often washed and cleaned. Buying squid, herring and mackerel from a tackle shop is usually fresher and unwashed. 

A beautiful bass caught on rag and fresh squid cocktail

Luckily this week I’m feeling much better so I will be on the bank and hopefully have some fish to show you.

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