"Mr Venator, speaking in the Compleat Angler: "And if I
may descend to a lower game, what pleasure it is
sometimes with gins to betray the very vermin of the
earth! as namely, the Fitchat, the Fulimart, the
Ferret, the Polecat, the Mouldwarp, and the like
creatures that live upon the face and within the bowels
of the earth."
Norm - I did assume you were not speaking of the polecat critter and my bit was by way of a joke.
However, I had no idea what you were really talking about.
Fishing the long pole is very, very rare in the US. The few folks who do it have to order all their equipment from the UK. In fact, I think that most of the pole anglers we have are ex-pats.
All I "know" about it is from reading UK angling boards and this is the first I remember anyone mentioning this particular piece of gear.
I have been fishing for well over 50 years now and have never even seen a pole - much less watched folks using them.
If you are in a US tackle shop and mention that you fish with a pole, they will assume you use a 10-12 foot length of bamboo cane with the line tied to the tip - or that maybe you are real fancy and use a fiberglass telescopic "whip" pole of up to 16 feet and very limber (used for crappie which like a very light, small presentation) but still with just your mainline tied to the pole tip. And that you bait up with lives, deads, or very small jigs.
The whole idea of baiting up a swim is very foreign to US anglers. Not even legal in some states. And only done regularly anywhere by carpers who are familiar with UK or SA styles.
Most US anglers would consider baiting an area to be "unsporting". Which would have to seem an odd attitude for those raised on UK tactics.
And hopefully Trev will get enough information and pictures next month to post his thoughts on the topic as well.
I've been amazed (and pleased) in the couple of years I've been active on UK angling boards to see the massive increase in tolerance by UK anglers for countries/cultures who do things a bit differently.
I am still getting educated on how to fish from the bank. I grew up fishing fresh water from boats. Started when I was around 2 y/o and almost never did anything other than boat angling except for trips to the sea and some surf/pier angling.
So the very refined techniques you folks take for granted are still mind-boggling to me. Such things as long poles, tiny hooks (anything smaller than a #6 is tiny), light lines (anything under 10lb is light and below 6lb is hard for me to understand), long rods (8ft here is considered long except for a couple of specialist species where they do use longer ones routinely).
I am nearly 60 and have been fishing all my life. I saw my first bite alarms and first bivvy a couple weeks ago. Some of the serious carpers at a South Carolina carp fish-in were using rod pods and bite alarms. One guy who is from France had the whole works with bivvy, rubber boat, marker floats, bags of boilies, and the like. I knew what I was looking at only from knowledge gained on MD, AN, FW, and carp.net before it died.