trent barbel advice

hi. Im moving to nottingham soon and have had the chance to fish the trent at beeston a few times last summer. over 3 trips ive managed 3 barbel to 9lb 3oz on pellet and meat using basic scaled down carp tactics. would really like some help with info about flourocarbon hooklengths (brands and rigs) , backleading on a big river , and any good clubs waters to have a crack at next season. Would just like to get a few fish under my belt to start with so anywhere with a large head of fish rather than a few big ones would be good (although the 9 did wet my appetite , nearly lost the rod with that one , the take was incredible.
have found a lot of the threads i have read really useful so if you guys with the knowledge have any more hints and tips they would be most appreciated !

Tim Ridge

Well-known member
I don't think there is such an area Dan, but I suppose it depends on what you call a big one. Certainly odd doubles seem to be spread throughout. With regards backleads you can simply trap a coffin lead between two float stops if you are fishing close in, in an area with no rocks but if there are rocks this is not practical. In this situation I use a long hooklink pinned down with small blobs of putty, as I've said on other threads. I've also found that if I pay a big bow of line out in the flow I get far less liners. I presume this is because the extra line lays hard on the riverbed. I wouldn't like to comment on flouro's because I've found them universally unreliable.
Hope this helps

Ron Troversial Clay

I too prefer a long hook length for the reasons time has mentioned.

Tim is another who has found Fluorocarbon lines unreliable.

Some Fluoro lines are terrible. Others are excellent. A general rule of thumb is to buy your fluorocarbon only from game fishing outlets. The best makes I have found are Sightfree and Stren. You can get Sightfree in strengths up to 15 lbs bs at most shops specialising in fly fishing. Stren, which is the very best of all and only costs USD 8.00 for 250 yards, you will only get in the USA.
Thank you both for the tips. Do you find using a long hooklength when fishing the feeder has any affect on the bite rate with the bait being further from the feed than it would be on a shorter rig or is it better to avoid spooking fish with a line coming up off the river bed ?

Tim Ridge

Well-known member
On the contrary mate, I would say I catch 70-80% of my floodwater barbel on the downstream rod cast some 20-30 yards below the point of feed introduction,

The trent is a fast flowing river it rockets through in a flood. It stands to reason that a lot of the feed you introduce is going to end up somewhere downstream.
Even in normal conditions a lot of the feed is going to disperse.
Don't worry about these fish finding your hookbait. I've caught a lot of trent barbel using no feed at all.
So long as your hookbait is somewhere along the line of feed the barbel will find it.

The only point of concern is if someone cut's you off from the fish by introducing feed between you and the position which the fish are stationed. For this reason I avoid other anglers like the plague. If they sit a bit close to me, I move.

If you fancy it I will gladly have an evening with you and show you how I do it. Don't expect anything fancy though because everything I do is very, very simple.