Barbel Fishing

Barbel Fishing on the River Avon – 25/2/11

I needed to test a new feeder rod so sneaked a couple of hours this morning on the River Avon at Barford.

As the river was carrying two foot of extra floodwater the conditions would prove a good test and I hoped that some barbel might feed.


Rod = MACH 3 XT 13ft Heavy Feeder (Available October 2011)

Reel = Prototype MACH 3XS 50 size

Line = 8lb Berkley Big Game

Hooklength = 6lb Berkley 100% Flurocarbon

Hook = Size 14 Drennan Star Point

Feeder = Med Kamasan Black cap with 1oz extra lead

Hookbait = 10mm Halibut Pellet / 12mm Squid and Liver Boilie


Whenever I fish a short session like this I always travel light and aim to quickly fish 2 or 3 likely looking spots for a period of 30mins each.

This gives you chance to cover the water and also maximize the time you have.

This morning all I had with me was my Rod, landing net, bait bucket and a small tub with terminal tackle.

I didn’t even take a rod rest preferring to hold the rod or rest it on the bank.

The first spot did respond and I felt the flow was a little to fast due to the extra water.

So I moved to a deeper / steadier peg on the inside of a bend.

I made two or three quick casts with the feeder containing a mixture of 3mm and 4.5mm Berkley Halibut Pellets.

I open the holes up on the feeder to ensure the pellets disperse from the feeder quickly.

After the initial casts I then like to leave the feeder out for 5min+ and see if I can get a bite. I think this method is effective as the small pellets introduce a good amount of scent into the swim and attract any fish that may be about quickly towards the hookbait. Obviously there is little actual food for the fish available and the hookbait stands a great chance of been taken!

I was casting the feeder past the main flow into some steadier water and was rewarded with a bite after about 15 mins.

The fish was obviously a good barbel and fought hard in the flow. I managed to land it at it weighed 8lb 12oz, a great way to christen the new rod!

Actually I was very impressed with the action of the rod whilst playing the fish. It was powerful but with a lovely progressive through action. I don’t like stiff rods and find that rods with a through action like this play fish far more effectively and also reduce the chance of hook pulls. For me this will make a fantastic feeder rod for fishing at range on lakes (40-70m) and also when fishing on rivers where a longer cast is required with feeders up to 4oz (120gms).

I’m now giving the rod to fellow Superteam member Tony Barker to test. Tony is an awesome feeder angler and will test the rod to its limit on his local lakes but also in Ireland.

I decided to stop in the same swim and was rewarded with another smaller barbel just 10 mins latter.

I love this style of smash and grab fishing and had caught two nice barbel in less the 1hours fishing. Simple but effective!

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Categories : Products testing