The Compleat Angler Store

Mugs and Stuff for Anglers and Fishing Tales For Everyone


My New Lightweight Kit

Yesterday’s fishing wasn’t just a trying experience with parking problems and a singular lack of good fishing action. It was also a lesson in having too much gear to lug around. A rod holdall, a large bag with bait, landing nets and other sundries, a fishing seat box with reels, end tackle and hook baits, a bag with the keep net. It took two trips from the car to get everything to my peg.

And so…today I decided to set up a very lightweight set of stalking tackle. Here are the ingredients:

Bag/seat combo, small tackle box with weights, hooks, a few floats, disgorger/loop tyer, 4 piece Fenwick GT Travel Spinning Rod, 4ft landing net handle with small scooper landing net head, bait box with lobworms. And that’s it…the whole lot could fit into an Aldi shopping bag with only the landing net handle sticking out a bit. You could also fit everything into a Waitrose shopping bag but Waitrose customers do not go Coarse Fishing. They’re more Salmon and Trout sorts.

The reason for the box of worms is inspired by this brilliant video by Ian Futcher, an expert specimen angler and keen blogger with great knowledge of the waters of the North West U.K. who I have yet to meet.

Apart from the amazing perch catching action which Ian says lasted about an hour, I think it’s great that the only sounds you hear are those from the action in question. I dunno about you but Country and Western music blaring over a coarse fishing video showing beautiful countryside and Nature in all Her Glory is bloody irritating. Disclaimer: I am prepared to admit that the underside of a Shropshire Union Canal road bridge does not fall into the category of “Beautiful Countryside” or “Nature in all Her Glory.” But the action in that video! Fantastic!

Ian has already invited me to join him for some fishing on the Dee at Farndon when the waters recede a bit and I can’t wait to listen and watch attentively as he attempts to educate me with his fishing expertise. This will be followed by me screwing it all up as I attempt to put new found knowledge to work.

OK, but why did the video inspire me to put together a lightweight stalking gear set? It’s because Ian is using nothing more than a rod, a reel, a landing net and essentially that’s about it apart from the bait and hook. And he had LOADS of fun, considerably more fun than I had at Telford’s Warehouse yesterday! OK, he did use two rods but if I tried something as crazy as that I’d be certain to step on one while falling over with excitement at catching a fish on the other. Proof that you can have awesome fishing action without carrying hernia-inducing amounts of fishing gear.

A word about the GT Fenwick Travel Rod: I can tell you this lightweight travel rod caught some big fish in Thailand. My wife actually landed a 30lb Striped Catfish on it with just 8lb line and 6lb hook length. And she doesn’t even fish. I hooked the fish and gave her the rod and it spoke to her in soft tones and allowed her to land the fish. OK, that might be an exaggeration, but not by much. It has a very forgiving action. It’s a brilliant 4 piece rod, about 6ft long, and it packs down to under 2ft, ideal for travel. If I have a complaint about it it’s the price…if you stomp on it it’s an expensive accident.

light tackle wife
Here it is, that little wisp of a fishing rod and Mrs. The Compleat Angler playing her large Striped Catfish.
light tackle wife fish
And here’s the Wife with The Fish.

I’m pretty sure the rod will handle British Perch although it remains to be seen whether I’ll actually hook many. If I do catch some Monster Perch I’ll crow about it in this blog. Watch this space!