Not Just For Carp - Daniel Williams

I have always been an all-round angler and ever since graduating from Carp Academy in 2008 my fishing style has changed dramatically and I now use scaled down tried and tested carp tactics in order to put more fish on the bank. Being different can give an angler a huge edge and I am always trying different methods in order to outwit fish. I put my faith in the Korda range of tackle whenever I wet a line. Every item of tackle has been thought out and makes a huge difference to peoples angling. I take items that are intended for carp but use them for other species and have received some cracking results:

Tench and Bream:
Tench are one of my favourite species and I spend hours, even days at a time trying to outwit these stunning looking creatures. I tend to fish lakes where bites can be hard to get so when I finally get a run, I want the fish to be landed. Therefore, I need a hook which is sharp enough to go in and strong enough to stay in during the fight - 90% of my fishing is done with size 10 and 12 hooks, quite big compared to other Tench anglers but I am being different and a big hook is more likely to catch in the fishes mouth.
In recent years, I have only ever used the Wide Gape pattern and have had some awesome results. Last year I never blanked on one particular lake and I landed over 80 quality sized Tench in just a couple of weeks. The Wide Gape hooks can be used with numerous hook link materials, which is great as you can present different baits in various ways. I love using maggots as bait and the Wide Gape is ideal for fishing the “Medusa” or Mag-Aligner – rigs which are based on carp fishing.
This year, I joined a low stock, low-pressure 100-acre Oxfordshire Syndicate in search of a personal best Bream. I had not done any bream fishing before so had to come up with a way of trying to catch a specimen or two. Learning from carp anglers, I found that a lot of the top anglers don’t include pellets in their spod mix on some venues because they attract bream - great! I now had a bait sorted, now I just needed a way to fish it.
I fancied trying the method feeder, but using light rods meant casting a 3oz feeder + bait was out of the question. Luckily, Korda sell 0.5oz and 1oz feeders, ideal for lighter rods and smaller species. The lake I was fishing gets very weedy and I didn’t want the hook to get caught on any weed so I wanted the hook bait in the method. I needed a supple hook link and the Korda Supernatural in the lowest breaking strain was perfect.
When using the method, I chose to change hook pattern. I decided to use size 10 and 12 (bait size depending) Kurv Shank hooks. This hook turns brilliantly and gives a superb hook hold. I was doing a lot of quick overnighters before work with minimal gear and I would not have a kettle for shrink tubing so the Kurv pattern gave me the same effect (if not better) and I did not have to lug a kettle and stove around.
I will always incorporate a small piece of silicone tubing on the shank/bend of the hook to help add weight to the point and in turn create an even more effective turn. I always use IQ material to make leaders by safely tying two loops at either end - you can quickly lasso on a swivel and thread on a lead/clip/feeder. You can also decide how short or long you want the leader, which again is being different. The best thing about this material is that it is virtually invisible in water. Since learning from the Korda Team at Carp Academy, I don’t think I have ever cast out a rig since, without having a flying backlead on. I get really paranoid about the line scaring fish away but by using a backlead and slack lines, my mind is put at ease.
When I am bream or tench fishing, I tend to fish over large beds of particle and the Skyliner spods are by far the best on the market, it allows you to put out a bed of bait in a short space of time. Korda PVA is always in my bag, it’s great for holding maggots when tench fishing and sticks can be made if long range bream fishing.

I also love fishing for predators with pike being my favourite. Although pike aren’t that hard to catch, there are venues where pressure has meant the pike get wise. Resistance is a major factor when catching pike, especially when using ledgering tactics. A weight is needed to help the bait sink and for the trace to be wound up to so that an effective indicator can be set up.
Some Pike feel the weight and back off - you could freeline but this can lead to deep hooking, which is a very bad thing! However, all this can be combated by using a one piece of Korda tackle - the Marker Float Stems. Buoyant at one end with a big ring meaning low resistance and because it can rotate, whichever way the Pike moves with the bait, the weight won’t be felt and an indication will be received. Korda Beads are also an important item, placing them between the Marker Stem and trace protects the swivel and stops the Stem moving onto the wire trace. I use the flying backlead beads if I am using an inline float in conjunction with a stop knot. I always use a Korda Swivel when crimping wire traces for pike, because they are ultra strong but not blatant on the lake bed. The marker floats themselves make excellent Pike floats.
They are extremely sensitive showing even the most subtle bites which is important when fishing for Pike. I usually use various baits, and if I’m using a big bait and a slightly delayed strike is needed then the different colour interchangeable flights for the floats tell me which bait is on which rod - for example, I may have a smelt on a black float and a sardine on a yellow float. The colours are really bright and can be seen at long range, they cast well which is a great advantage over other anglers.
I always use Korda tubing on the main line. I thread a few feet above the trace because this protects the line against any snags such as boulders/rocks on large reservoirs or boats on rivers and marinas. I sometimes go wandering up the Thames for some fun fishing, just freelining a big juicy lob on a size 10 Wide Gape - this hook is ideal as it keeps the bait on but the Wide Gape catches hold in a chub or perch’s mouth superbly. Eel fishing is not everyone’s cup of tea but the super strong Wide Gape X is ideal in the larger sizes and can land the strongest eels, the Marker Stem (as above) system is also fantastically effective when eel fishing. Always test your crimping or twisting before casting a trace out, the Pulla tool is the best thing for this.
I am looking forward to using some of the new Lines coming out but in the meantime, I wonder if Danny can be persuaded to fuse three Wide Gape X together to create an awesome treble hook for Pike?
I like to keep my fishing simple but am always trying different things to gain that little edge which can make a huge difference. Korda is probably the best Carp Fishing Tackle company in the world but they also play a huge part in the landing of other species. Keep Learning and Tight Lines....

Daniel Williams