Playing and Landing fish

Zerkalo

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Just a couple of thoughts about playing and landing fish…

On rod and line do you keep the rod high or low? It looks more ‘professional’ to me with the rod low and to the side. Whereas more ‘traditional’ with the rod high.

And on landing fish, do you scoop at the fish on the first sight of it to get it in quick, Will Raison style? Or do you keep the net fairly still and bring the fish over the net?

Or different depending on situation? If so which situations and why?
 

ukzero1

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I always net with rod high and bring the fish to the net. Just something I've always done.
 

rd115

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Always rod low where space allows until netting range, and try to scoop the fish because mine never seem to come in a straight line to pull the over the net :)
 

Zerkalo

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I was thinking about it the other day when Bream fishing. I was fishing just past a ‘rocky ledge’ that the feeder was getting caught on occasionally when bringing fish in. I had the rod up high to get the fish over the ledge, but I’ve also been told if I had the rod low and to the side the fish would have naturally risen in the water.

I generally bring the fish over the net but don’t match fish at the moment so in no rush. It’s quite impressive to see the scooping technique done well but it doesn’t half put a bend in the landing net handle.
 

carphauler

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When catching carp match fishing I would play low then try to scoop, on the river I do the opposite and keep the rod high normally because there is vegetation on the bank and maybe more snags in the water.
 

Neil ofthe nene

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From my blog Obviously with a swim profile as you describe you need to keep the rod high to get the fish over the ledge. So with that in mind, read on.

Play Time
I think we all know the popular image of an angler playing a fish - rod in the air, bent with the line cutting through the water. Thing is that in my opinion this is the wrong way to play a fish. Yes you need to lift the rod to net the fish but first you need to get the fish to a netting position. I'm not talking small fish here.

To me the best way to keep control over a fish is to keep the rod or pole low. When playing a decent fish I like to try and bury the tip as far under water as I can. Why?

Once a fish is hooked it senses it is in danger. Ignore the pain debate for now. But the fish knows something is trying to force it where it doesn't want to go. That place is the surface. A frightened fish will seek the sanctuary of the river or lake bed. Once there it feels safer and becomes compliant. So as long as it can hug the bottom it will then succumb to the pressure of rod or elastic. The moment you try and lift it towards the surface it will get scared again and try and dive for the deck and head out into the lake. At that point drop the tip underwater again and you will find the fish will accept the pressure and come towards you.

If you haven't experienced this then try it. It is particularly noticeable on the pole. Once you are down to the topkit lift and let the fish run then dip the tip and you will feel the pressure come off as the fish comes towards you and the elastic retracts. Its the same when playing a fish on a rod. If hooked at distance keep the rod low, at least level with the bank or even with the tip underwater. The fish will be reeled or pumped in easier. Again, when lifting to net and it runs then drop the rod to the side and feel the pressure come off. Repeat this a few times and the fish will tire and become docile for netting.

Finally on this subject. I haven't used a drag or clutch on a reel for at least forty years. Ivan Marks advocated backwinding. I copied him and have never done anything else since. By backwinding I give the fish line when I want to not when some unfeeling, mindless device decides to. I can control how much line a running fish takes and at what speed. Its never let me down so I guess I'll never change.




When netting the fish I like to have the rod pointing upwards, alongside my head or even further back. This then allows me to drop the rod quickly if a large fish gives a final lunge at the net.

I can never understand when I see others wind down so there is two foot of line between the fish and rod tip. The rod is 13ft, the landing net 10. Invariably they have to ship the rod back, hold it by the first joint and try and net the fish (or get a friend to net it.

Whether to scoop or draw the fish over the net depends on how the situation presents itself. But mainly I still like to draw the fish over but am prepared to scoop.
 

MarkW

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With chub on the rivers keeping the rod low lets them into the snags and weed and one of the tricks to beating them more quickly was to get their head out of water gulping air. They seem to give up then and can't see the snags either.
 

nejohn

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I will generally keep the rod low when playing a fish but it depends on what the fish is doing, I wouldn't discount having it high especially at distance. I will always draw the fish over the net with the rod high, I keep a long line and draw the rod over my shoulder. I would never lunge with the landing net as soon as it breaks surface as I have seen to many lost fish by people doing that
 

Zerkalo

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Good points on not winding in too far and not having enough line to get the fish in close enough.

On the backwinding/clutch thing I’ve always used the clutch, don’t think I’d master backwinding now, and was watching a video the other day, I think James Robbins, where he advocated the clutch as it tires the fish out quicker.

I think scooping at fish is mostly a commercial match man thing. If I remember right it was Will Raison who started the trend over 20 years ago when he was renowned for it. Whereas others will say they have always been told to bring the fish over the net.

90% of my fishing is done with the rod held high but watching top anglers on youtube the rod low seems to be advised.
 

tipitinmick

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Just a couple of thoughts about playing and landing fish…

On rod and line do you keep the rod high or low? It looks more ‘professional’ to me with the rod low and to the side. Whereas more ‘traditional’ with the rod high.

And on landing fish, do you scoop at the fish on the first sight of it to get it in quick, Will Raison style? Or do you keep the net fairly still and bring the fish over the net?

Or different depending on situation? If so which situations and why?
Did you catch yesterday Zerkalo ? ?
 

Zerkalo

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Did you catch yesterday Zerkalo ? ?

Not much but lots of bites. Bleak for the first half of the session then a shoal of small skimmers moved in. Wrote a little report in that other thread. Still a long way away from my target weight of 10lb of Silvers from the Severn. But I'm enjoying doing that kind of fishing. Hopefully out there again next Saturday with some company from the forum.

Slowly learning things like mending the line so when I strike on rivers it's not into thin air. :ROFLMAO:(y)
 

tipitinmick

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Not much but lots of bites. Bleak for the first half of the session then a shoal of small skimmers moved in. Wrote a little report in that other thread. Still a long way away from my target weight of 10lb of Silvers from the Severn. But I'm enjoying doing that kind of fishing. Hopefully out there again next Saturday with some company from the forum.

Slowly learning things like mending the line so when I strike on rivers it's not into thin air. :ROFLMAO:(y)
We've all done a few Zoro's in our time pal. I still do. ?. Good luck next weekend matey. ?
 

ATTICUS FINCH

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Try and get a fish over a ledge with the rod held high the fish is going to be swimming down ,directly in opposition to the pressure being put on it ,keep the rod low and the fish will come up .every time,
I fish bough beech Res and it has a big ledge ,keeping the rod low gets them over it where as holding the rod high they are staying deep and the ledge comes into play big time .
You all might see it different but it works my way so that's how I do it ,trial and error was the way I learned it.
 

OldTaff

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Generally play low and raise to net - don’t rush to get a net under as I’ve spooked and lost too many doing that. Of course if the fish has different ideas then I’ll adapt.


Karl
 

Backwoodsman

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Most of the time I fish with a centre pin reel (spedia) if a fish is strong and running deep or away I control the run with my thumb on the reel rim.
I find that way you can sense the strength and power of the fish, possibly not so using the clutch on a fixed spool reel.
 

robert d

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Just a couple of thoughts about playing and landing fish…

On rod and line do you keep the rod high or low? It looks more ‘professional’ to me with the rod low and to the side. Whereas more ‘traditional’ with the rod high.

And on landing fish, do you scoop at the fish on the first sight of it to get it in quick, Will Raison style? Or do you keep the net fairly still and bring the fish over the net?

Or different depending on situation? If so which situations and why?
I always play the fish low and steady ,i lift the rod only when its in netting distance ,i find the fish dont fight so hard keeping the rod as low as possible .
 

chefster

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When bomb and pellet fishing , I’ve lost a lot of fish playing them with the rod low, the last match I played them with the rod high and didn’t lose a single fish ??‍♂️
 
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