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Stenhill Tips & Tactics

We get asked a lot on "what are the best baits and methods to use at Stenhill?" and as with all venues, there are no hard and fast ways of catching the inhabitants of the lake. Keeping it simple is always the best way here, and we have compiled a few basic suggestions that we have found over the years to work perfectly fine. If you choose to follow them or not to follow them, you will not be far away from "cracking the puzzle".

  • Keep things as simple as possible. There is no need for the latest fandangled "use every piece of terminal tackle in your box" rig. A simple hair rig with a small piece of silicone as a "kicker" will catch you carp from the smallest in the lake through to "Mr Angry" & friends. If the rig turns when drawn across the palm of your hand 10 out of 10 times, then you minimise the risk of getting "done" by the fish. A simple feeder rig will catch you the big roach and tench that are present in the lake also.
  • We have taken pictures of the rigs that Brian uses when he gets the chance to fish the lake: Brian's Tench Rig - Brian's Carp Rig - Brian's Big Roach Rig
  • Make sure that you hook is SHARP. A blunt hook or one with a damaged point will cost you fish as the hook can be easily ejected before any positive bite is registered or may drop out during the fight as it ihas not penetrated in to the mouth to the bend. A hook costs pennies compared to other items of tackle, so if you are not keen or confident in sharpening your hooks, change it. If someone said to you to throw your rig away and they will put a 30 on the mat for you, you would throw the rig away!
  • If you prefer to fish with a float, make sure that you weight the float so that the bare minimum of tip is showing for the given circumstances. If using a large or heavy bait, leave a little more float showing than you would if using a small bait such as maggots. If it is windy and there is a bit of chop on the water, leave a little bit more of the float showing and lay some line on the bottom to stop the float from moving the bait.
  • Check that you knots are moistened and bedded down well and, that there is no damage to the line above the knot (or anywhere else along the line). You do not want to travel for several hours to get here only for your knots to let you down. The most commonly used knots are simple to tie, and if not certain, ask Brian to show you.
  • Don't put in too much bait initially. As the old saying goes, "you cannot take out what you have put in". Building the swim gradually is more advantageous than piling it in as it does not put the fish on edge.
  • All good quality baits will catch fish here at Stenhill

When you are on a holiday here at Stenhill Lakeside Holidays, I am only a phone call away for advice, and I like to see our visitors catch fish, so will help out as much as I can to make your holiday one to remember.

Brian Cox


Email: | Telephone: +44(0)1884 33707 / 07719 961293 |
Stenhill Lakeside Holidays, Little Coombe, Old Village, Willand, Cullompton, Devon, EX15 2RH
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