Catch Carp Using the Method Feeder

Author: Team CCM
Categories: Tactics

Master the Method- Todber Manor Live Session- Jordan Rimmer

It is now the height of the summer and with many anglers now going back to work, the lakes have become a little quieter and as a result, fitting short sessions in here and there has become feasible. We had planned to meet up for an evening session with Jordan Rimmer, down at her local venue; Todber Manor. 

It wasn’t until now that we had been able to fit this in, with the lakes down at Todber being fully booked up. Thankfully, there was a slot come free over on Little Hayes lake, so we got a call from Jordan for the go ahead to join her out on the bank.

We met Jordan around 5pm, down on the banks of Little Hayes; a small pressured venue on the Todber complex, with a good stamp of fish averaging between 15-20lbs. Jordan had been fitting in short trips over the past few weeks, opting to fish the much overlooked flatbed method, a tactic that is mainly adopted by match anglers, but is hugely successful on the carp fishing scene too. After watching Jordan punch another method out to the clip, we were keen to find out what drew her to this tactic in the first place…

‘I guess for me, the main attraction of the method is the speed at which you can get fishing; having my rods prepared before I get down to the bank, with rigs tied and a small bucket of bait prepped I can be fishing within minutes of getting a swim. When fishing the short sessions, usually only 3-5 hours long, I can be quick to get my rods out and make the most of feeding spells when they do come around. It is quite remarkable just how much quicker the method is compared to tying up solid or mesh PVA bags, taking literally seconds to load up and get out into the lake’…

To begin with, we were interested in Jordan’s ‘flatbed’ presentation- a type of method feeder that has a weighted base, with the bait loaded directly on top ensuring that it falls bait side up every time…

‘The flatbed method is awesome, I can use the supplied mould to pack my bait onto the method, loading my hookbait onto it in the process. I know that every time I position the rig, the flatbed will fall weight down, leaving that small, highly attractive pile of bait sitting perfectly on the lakebed. I nestle the small 10mm Pacific Tuna hookbait into the mould to begin with, before adding the mix and squeezing down. This ensures that the balanced hookbait is in prime position once the mix has broken down; leaving a discreet trap that fools the carp every time’. 

It was quite clear just how neat and concise this tactic was, creating an almost missile like shape of bait which easily flew out accurately and hit the clip every time! One of the biggest aspects to method feeder fishing is getting the mix the perfect consistency every time to ensure it grips well to the feeder itself…

‘Exactly that! The mix is key and takes some preparation to get right, but I have now found a mix I can quickly knock up and it will be perfect and ready to go within an hour. Small pellets are the key to this; I add a mixture of small coarse pellets and Pacific Tuna bag mix, which contains 2mm Tuna Pellets. I mix these at a ratio of 50:50, before adding the liquid/ water mix that needs to cover the pellets completely. I leave this for around 30/45 minutes so that the pellets can fully absorb the water, leaving them soft and tacky to the touch; this is perfect! The key here is to have a tacky mix; not too dry and not too wet, this will ensure it binds perfectly when squeezed in the method mould and maintain on the feeder during the cast. In some situations, you could be punching these feeders 80 yards+, so getting that mix to bind and cling to the feeder is paramount’. 

Shortly after re- doing one of the rods, it was away. After a short, scrappy battle, Jordan slipped the net under a lovely Little Hayes common and proof that the tactics and hungry carp had just turned up…

‘One thing you will notice is that when feeder fishing like this, I am using balanced tackle; a barbel/ avon style rod is perfect and you can get away with using slightly lighter lines too. These rods not only cast a small flatbed feeder with accuracy, but they are also great fun when playing fish under the tip, especially when targeting small venues such as Little Hayes. 

One vitally important piece of kit is a reel with a tough line clip; I actually leave my line permanently in the clip and cast a rod length or two back from the waters edge, giving me enough line to wind on to the reel for when the fish does take. Having a good quality clip is important too, as when you are feeder fishing, you are repeatedly hitting the clip in order to build the swim and maintain accuracy’. 

After slipping that lovely common back, the evening pushed on a and bites had slowed down a little…

‘You usually notice peaks and troughs in the activity throughout the day, you will often get a flurry of action and feeding activity, signs of fizzing and then it will go quiet. A lot of the fish in this lake move around in shoals and are receptive to sounds of bait hitting the surface. One great tip and something that I regularly do is to pult a handful or two of pellets around my baited rod. Firstly, the sound of those larger pellets hitting the water can often draw fish back into the swim quickly and secondly, pellets break down quickly, releasing lots of food signals into the swim, which again draws the carp back into feed’. 

Around half an hour after introducing the pellets into the swim, the left-hand rod was away again, hooping the light rod over and trying to make an escape towards the island in front. After clamping down, Jordan managed to steer it clear and get the upper hand as it approached the waiting net. 

‘It doesn’t surprise me that this rod has gone; that pellet usually does the trick and get the carp’s interest back, enticing them into the area for another feed. I generally tend to re- cast around every half an hour; the mix I am using does break down fairly quickly and by re- casting regularly, I can ensure there is a consistent stream of attraction going into the swim. I guess by doing this, the method feeder itself is actually the way of baiting up, as opposed to a spomb. Another key point to make is using far bank markers, such as trees and objects to line the cast up; my main aim is to repeatedly hit the same spot every single time, drawing fish to feed on a tight area and thus increasing the competition and the speed that bites do come…’ 

Carefully, Jordan steered what looked like a pretty mirror towards the net cord, before finally scooping it up. The fish was a real lovely one for Little Hayes, close to the 20lb mark and a real result after just a couple of hours fishing. 

‘It certainly shows that even if you are on limited time, you can still get out and get bites and for sure, the method is one of the best ways at quickly building a swim and fishing effectively on short trips. I do like to come prepared on these trips and I will tie up a number of short hooklinks, around 4 inches in length, that I can quickly switch over to if I need to change the hook. Prep is key in my opinion, when I get down to the lake, my priority is on the fishing and feeding; I ensure I have rigs and bait all sorted beforehand, allowing me to focus on building the swim and catching the carp!’ 

After rattling off a few pics of the lovely mirror, Jordan slipped is back and got her rods re- baited; we noticed on this occasion she was using two rods as opposed to the typical one rod when fishing the method- so we asked why…

‘Two rods in my opinion is optimum when feeder fishing, I can focus on two different spots and adapt accordingly. It can be unpredictable at times here, on some trips they will prefer the margins, others tight to the island and in some cases, the open water, so by having two rods and switching throughout the day, seeing where the bites come from, I can make the best of any situation by using two rods. If one of my rods is doing the majority of bites, I may choose to fish two on a spot, or rove one rod around to see if the fish are feeding elsewhere in the swim; it is always about being adaptable!’

As the evening drew to a close, Jordan began to slowly pack down for the day; a couple of fish for the cameras was a nice bonus and on a short session too, which made the hard work certainly worth while! 

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