Pike fishing doesn’t mean you have to cart loads of kit around like a lot of carpers do. You don’t even have to fish two rods.
Here Angler’s Mail features editor Richard Howard highlights some basic kit that, popped into a carryall can still see you catch plenty of fish.


SOMETIMES just grabbing a pike rod and going on a bit of a wander for a few hours can bring a big reward.


It was a few seasons back, but on the water I had this ‘thirty’ from, I would happily fish nine swims or so in a session. Travelling light.

But pikers tend to be more of a static bunch.

It’s a great approach on small to medium sized rivers covering a lot of water and with it a lot of fish.

But it can work just as well on small stillwaters, as it identifies holding areas.

If you drop on fish you can find that takes can be quite quick in coming, with others to follow. And you’ve identified a ‘hotspot’.


Here’s a run down of the basic kit that needs to go in that carryall from traces to unhooking gear…


SLIDERS. Use the smallest float you can get away with, for either supporting the bait or laying on with, coupled with swan shot or egg sinker loadings. The less a pike has to tow around on the take the better. A handful of different sized sliders should be ample.


TRACES. Half a dozen traces should do it with a spool of wire and some spare swivels and size 6 and 8 trebles if you get caught out. Whether you store them in a rig bin or in a sleeve.


LEADS. A few flat leads, some swan shot and egg sinkers, will keep you out of trouble. They’ll cover you for float fishing, laying-on, float legering and a bit of sink and draw. Pike don’t take too kindly to a lead that’s bouncing on the bottom and a jerky resistance on the take, so err on the heavy side – 2.5 – 3 oz plus, if you are float legering with a running set-up.


DEADBAITS. I would be happy with a packet or two of smelt and some naturals in an insulated wallet. Either bait can be cast out with just a trace on and maybe two or three swan shot and twitched back to the bank head first ‘sink and draw’ style, flicked out to lay on the deck, even trotted beneath a float.


FLASK. At this time of year especially, a hot drink can work wonders to give you that much needed lift. It doesn’t have to be a big heavy Stanley flask either for a short session. You’ll get away with a couple of good cups from this compact design.


CAMERA. Don’t forget that camera and remote control. If you take a bank stick attachment and single rod rest with you, you’ve got something to rest your camera and rod on, whilst roving. And secure your landing net with that big fish in, whilst you set the camera gear up.


CAUGHT A BIG FISH? Email pictures and details to: anglersmail@timeinc.com