As with hobbies and interests, the world of carp fishing can seem confusing to the uninitiated. There's a vast array of equipment and accessories available and then on top of that there's all the jargon to deal with! If you have friends or family who enjoy angling then they can help you out but what if you fancy taking up carp fishing as a hobby but don't have anyone to turn to for advice?
Fear not! The first piece of equipment that you will need to invest in is a carp rod so here's how to make the right choice.
There is little point in spending big money on top of the range equipment when you don't have the skills and knowledge to get the best out of it. Not to mention the fact that when you are first starting out, you don't even know if you are going to enjoy carp fishing.
On the other hand, the cheapest equipment will be of poor quality and won't serve you well. When selecting your first rod, choose an entry level model from a high-quality range. You can find rods for as little as £25 but it is worth spending as much £70 on a rod that won't let you down and which will enable you to develop your skills.
most carp rods are 12ft-13ft in length. You should choose the length which feels most comfortable but bear in mind that you will need to be reasonably tall and strong as well as having a good technique to get the best out of a 13ft rod.
In situations where there are overhanging trees, a longer rod can be a hindrance. A 12ft rod may well be the best choice and provides sufficient length for good casting whilst enabling you to control your catch.
You will find detailed information about test curves. In short, the test curve is the weight that's needed at the tip of the rod to flex it through 90 degrees as measured against the rod's butt. On most waters a 2. 75lb test curve rod is sufficient. This will enable you to cast over 100 yards and the rod will be forgiving.
This test curve will also make the experience of playing fish enjoyable. Rods with test curves over 3lb are specialised models which are best suited to experienced anglers with specific requirements.
You need to decide whether to go for a rod with a through action or a fast taper. The former makes for a good all-rounder and so would be an excellent choice when you are just starting out. Rods with a fast taper are designed for long distance casting and are stiffer models. They will require more practice to master.
Specialised Carp Rods
Spod rods possess a powerful and progressive action and are used to accurately cast spods of bait which can weigh up to 8oz. Spods can be vital to your success when you are fishing on waters where it is necessary to create beds of bait to draw in the fish.
Marker rods enable you to discover what is on the bottom of the lake. These rods are stiff and when partnered with a braided mainline and marker float, they will tell you what you need to know about the feeding areas in the water.
How many Rods?
A standard rod licence covers two rods and two will be sufficient to get you started on your adventure. Some lakes only allow you to use two rods anyway. As you learn and develop, you can invest in more sophisticated and specialised tackle and create a collection of rods so you are equipped for the various waters and conditions.