This month, our fy-fishing expert Bob Goble offers his advice for adults wanting to introduce young fishers to angling - it's all down to having appropriate equipment and a suitable venue
This year I have seen an increase in the number of youngsters having a go at fishing, especially coarse and fly. There are now many more lakes and ponds to choose from. Many of them offer carp but you will also find fisheries stocking silver fish as well - a very good thing in my book.
It’s great to see the youngsters fishing with their parents or guardians, but I have spotted one small problem. Far too often, the tackle they are using is totally inadequate! The rods and reels are far too heavy, lines too thick, hooks too large and so on. This is only going to cause problems, with all manner of tangles, lines getting stuck up trees and the youngster getting bored not to mention poor old Dad’s frustration. All this leading to an early cry of “Come on, let’s go home”.
The best thing a parent or guardian can do, if they are keen for their children to take up fishing, is to seek advice from a fishing tackle store. It would help to have a basic understanding of what to use and how to tackle up. This is very simple. Purchase a 3-metre whip, (I know, my picture is of a 4-metre whip). At a cost of £10-20 they are cheap to buy, are very light and are telescopic, so will fold down to 1-metre and take very little storage room.
Please make sure you have a connector on the tip (pictured). This is attached to a short length of elastic which runs through the tip section. Once you have attached your rig (float and hook) through a loop of nylon to the connector it’s just a matter of unfurling the rig from its holder. Make sure the rig length is the same as the whip’s length, so you can bring the fish to hand for unhooking. A 4-metre whip needs a 4-meter rig etc.
Be very careful with over-hanging trees and please do not fish anywhere near overhead power lines as this is very dangerous. Find a nice, comfortable, open swim and of course have a landing net available just in case of a larger fish. This is where the elastic comes in - it will stretch quite a way, to absorb the fish’s pull. There are of course limitations, it could be broken off by a brawny specimen, but you will be surprised at the size of fish you can land, with practice and patience.
If you are interested in fly fishing, that is great, but it takes a little patience and time to learn how to cast. Seek professional advice on this. I would suggest waiting until the age of 12 before you give it a try but once you have become accomplished the world is your oyster. You can fish for all manner of species and that includes carp! With fly gear you will appreciate the power of these fish.
Fly fishing for carp is great fun and more and more waters are coming around to this method, which can only be a good thing. During the summer months trout fishing gets a little tough but this way you will always have a bend in your rod. You can purchase a good fly-fishing outfit that will cater for trout and carp from a good tackle store. Again, professional advice is the key.
That’s all for now. Be safe have fun, Bob G