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tonymgarner

Speedy Swim Set Up & Take Down

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My fishing, if and when it actually happens, is usually squeezed in between work, family and generally a whole load of other things that need doing. I guess I am not alone there.

 

When I look back at where I started, I used to take a 2 man bivvy, over wrap, a bag for bait, a bag for clothes, a bag for cooking/food, a bag for tackle and the kitchen sink.

 

I am down to a brolly and 1 bag (Barrowlogix small cube) and a bucket for bait (I have a sponge pad, that sits on the bucket as a make shift stool/chair) and a modified Q-Dos rig wallet that holds my rigs, bits and other end tackle. However it still takes be a couple of hours to set up (excluding the time to select the swim). I usually fish 3 rods from a pod, use measuring sticks, delkims etc.

 

I suppose I was hoping for ideas on how to get the set up time and then take down time down to a minimum, so that my actual fishing time or more precisely the time my lines are wet is maximised.

 

Thanks in advance for any constructive advice.

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My fishing, if and when it actually happens, is usually squeezed in between work, family and generally a whole load of other things that need doing. I guess I am not alone there.

 

When I look back at where I started, I used to take a 2 man bivvy, over wrap, a bag for bait, a bag for clothes, a bag for cooking/food, a bag for tackle and the kitchen sink.

 

I am down to a brolly and 1 bag (Barrowlogix small cube) and a bucket for bait (I have a sponge pad, that sits on the bucket as a make shift stool/chair) and a modified Q-Dos rig wallet that holds my rigs, bits and other end tackle. However it still takes be a couple of hours to set up (excluding the time to select the swim). I usually fish 3 rods from a pod, use measuring sticks, delkims etc.

 

I suppose I was hoping for ideas on how to get the set up time and then take down time down to a minimum, so that my actual fishing time or more precisely the time my lines are wet is maximised.

 

Thanks in advance for any constructive advice.

 

I was getting all excited about my answer until i got to the line in Red.

 

Now i got nowt :(

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My setup usually takes half hour or so to get gear together and organised. Add that to an unditermined amount of time for finding fishing spots/baiting up etc. Can be 30 seconds, or can be 1/2 hour per rod. Take down pretty much from the morning that I'm leaving until I leave. I hate having to go from fully set up to leaving a swim quickly. I usually start packing what I won't need again as it gets used for the last time, and pack away things like bed chair/marker gear etc well ahead of time. I take a few bags. One for fishing gear, one for "personal" stuff. Cooking/food/iPad/torch etc. And many bags inside for different items so I can always grab them quickly. Rigs box, leads bag, one for leaders and PVA stuff, one for Spod and marker items. Just makes them quick to grab when I k ow where they are.

 

In terms of speeding things up for you, I have a padded buzz bar bag so all of my alarms are pre mounted with snag ears mounts, and a hockey stick/bobbin cradle attachment. Takes a couple of mins to add the snag ears, bobbins, cradles, bank sticks and pod. Looks a full on setup but takes literally minutes to get out. Rod hold-all / sleeves which I'm guessing you have that can have the rods mounted and rigged saves ages, IF you have a good idea what method you'll be using before you go. I used to turn up ready rigged, but have stopped now because of the amount of time I changed my mind on the bank. If I'm turning up late now Like after dark I'll have PVA bag rigs ready to go for the first night, But if you have rigs ready to go it doesn't take long to put together. Keeping everything in the same spot and having a system saves me time. Also have my sleeping bag(s) already in the bed chair so that's just a case of opening it and it's done.

 

Really though if you want to maximise fishing time it's just getting the rods out quick isn't it? I like to get the rods and fish care gear out quick then take time over everything else. Unless it's raining, in which case bivvy first, everything in, then rods, or if it's dark, then it's rods and fish care gear out, bivvy, bed and kettle out, everything else can wait till morning. :)

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With the gear you have I'm surprised it take two hours to set up, but when you say set up are you finding depth areas to fish in your swim? As that sounds about right, if not longer....

 

I like your bucket seat combo something unthinkable about but never do as I never fully use a chair, am always perched on the edge, so a bucket would be fine!

 

Could you describe your usual proceed for setting up? Ie once in your swim what do you do? Are your rods/rigs already set up or do you tie them when at the lake? If you have marker sticks do you make a note of how many wraps for each spot so you know this for next time?

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My fishing is generally limited to overnighters, and there are a few swims on my lake I know really well so I generally pick one of those depending on conditions etc.  Distances to spots are marked in my phone, so I can be fully set up and fishing in around 30mins.  I use a brolly which is up or down in less than 5 mins, take minimal gear (one rucksack), bed chair, and some bait.  Cradle and sling stay in the car unless I catch something! (its drive to the peg)

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This time of year when it's dark everything is prepared. Even plan where I'm fishing as the lake is a ghost town this time of year and seem to find fish holding up in the same place etc. I have my rods all clipped up to the spots with my marker sticks (do this in my garden,actually just done it now for the weekend) then just Clip the rig on when I get there. If I'm not use a chod or a hinged stiff I'd also clip the rig on at home. My alarms are all ready to go on there buzz bars so just need to but the bank sticks on. So I'm fishing with in 15 minutes of arriving at the swim, the rest of the stuff can take asking as it needs. I tend to have a beer then start doing the bivvy.

 

Then when packing up arrives through out the day everything is packed away except from fish care stuff,bivvy,bed hair and tackle box.

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I tend to fish sporadically, so I am out of practice when I arrive. They are mainly overnighters and come to think of it I cannot recall the last time I spent 2 nights on the bank (I'll have to discuss/bribe the wife). I have just bought rod bands with lead pouches so can save a few minutes with that. I am fishing a new and difficult lake, so I tend to see/guess where the fish are when I arrive, so although I like the idea of "pre-wrapping" the rods, at the moment this probably isn't gonna work. I have tried pre-preparing the rigs but have fallen out of the habit for this (sometimes my fishing is decided the night before, so not a huge amount of prep time). I have only one bag, so might break that up a bit so I know better where stuff is. Also PVA bags sound like an good start for any swim, if I don't know what I am going to face (probably on a stiff boomed pop-up).

 

My issues sound a little more common than I maybe thought, so maybe I don't have things as badly wrong as a my post suggests.

 

Having said that, any other suggestions greatly appreciated.

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When I was Foster Caring I couldn't stress to the boys strongly enough how important it is to be organised whilst on the bank and in the Bivvy too .

Especially at night when more prep work has to be done at home before you even leave.

 

That's why my first job on arriving at my swim was to put the kettle on whilst the boys set up my gear :)

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Tony after you've set up could you make some rigs specifically for your next session, could do that each session and you'll always be ahead of the game.

 

Is it a case of changing your perspective and using the time your setting up to really get a feel for the swim? If you've chosen your swim and it takes an hour to get a rod in but in that time you've seen carpy signs in the same spot a few times surely that's got to be good for confidence?

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I'd have to say; first thing you do is get your rods in the water and the last thing you do is take your rods out of the water. It's then irrelevant how long setting up or putting down 'base camp' takes as your fishing during both of them :wink:

Edited by dalthegooner

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My fishing, if and when it actually happens, is usually squeezed in between work, family and generally a whole load of other things that need doing. I guess I am not alone there.

When I look back at where I started, I used to take a 2 man bivvy, over wrap, a bag for bait, a bag for clothes, a bag for cooking/food, a bag for tackle and the kitchen sink.

I am down to a brolly and 1 bag (Barrowlogix small cube) and a bucket for bait (I have a sponge pad, that sits on the bucket as a make shift stool/chair) and a modified Q-Dos rig wallet that holds my rigs, bits and other end tackle. However it still takes be a couple of hours to set up (excluding the time to select the swim). I usually fish 3 rods from a pod, use measuring sticks, delkims etc.

I suppose I was hoping for ideas on how to get the set up time and then take down time down to a minimum, so that my actual fishing time or more precisely the time my lines are wet is maximised.

Thanks in advance for any constructive advice.

I think a lot of anglers are in the same boat to be honest. I often get to the lake after dark so have to get set up in a hurry, this does not mean I don't have a look around first though!

 

My rods are rigged up and ready, all I have to do is attach lead and bait.

I attach lead, have a cast to get my area right (now remembering to remove previous stop knots :!: ), then set up stringer and bait to go.

 

I often have bank side markers in various swims, so I can walk the line out, clip up and know it's on the mark. I can do the same with spod and marker rod for a quick feel around and putting more bait in. I also know how many boilies I can put in a throwing stick and hit then distance.

 

I treated myself to a trolley at last but I have rod sling with rods and bivvy, rucksack with food and clothing inside, tackle box and bedchair.

An umbrella based bivvy is quicker to put up than many domes, so I have gone back to that.

 

Packing down is sort bedchair and sleeping bag, put extras back in rucksack, then take bivvy down. Last is always reel in rods.

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Get a book. Mark out every spot and write down every bit of useful information on each swim so that you can turn up. Know what bottom youre fishing on. How many wraps to the spot. What you aimed your cast at. What rigs etc. Turn up with pva mesh bags ready tied/ solid bags already on leaders etc. Basically do as much before hand so that when you get in the peg you can choose a spot out your book. Choose a rig and bait. Mark up and cast out even if its pitch black! Fish off your barrow if its not chucking it down aswsell . Its all in the planning my friend

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I try and pack everything I need to get rods in the water in the most accessible place possible. I use a barrow most sessions but I'm now organised in a way that means my rods can be in the water without actually removing anything at all from the barrow. This is also good if you think you might want to stay mobile. If it basically stays on the barrow (with exception of chair and bait perhaps) then there is not so much time or agg involved in upping sticks and moving swim. I've stopped using a rod pod, just as long as the ground is soft enough bank sticks only. So no time mucking around putting a pod together. Leads/marker sometimes rigs attached to rods in rod bag. A case of rigs tied before I arrive to hopefully cover what ever bait or rig I decide to use once I arrive. Inside my rucksack, I have 5 or 6 plain black toiletry bags that I got for 99p each. Each has a different coloured cable tie on it and I've learnt through repetition what kit is in which by the colour of the cable tie. It's all the little things!

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I must admit I do always have the rod pod in my gear, but rods usually get cast out first and laid on the ground, with Baitrunners on, then I can decide if I can get away with buzzers on banksticks or pod.

 

I don't leave leads on rods, I have chipped and damaged blanks by doing so, even with rod wraps on the rods!

 

Unfortunately, moving swim is always a nightmare as I daren't leave barrow with anything on it outside the bivvy, there are thieving ghosts around at times. (Not to me I might add, but I do make sure that no-one can get into the swim easily, and put unused tackle safely in the bivvy).

 

 

I try and pack everything I need to get rods in the water in the most accessible place possible. I use a barrow most sessions but I'm now organised in a way that means my rods can be in the water without actually removing anything at all from the barrow. This is also good if you think you might want to stay mobile. If it basically stays on the barrow (with exception of chair and bait perhaps) then there is not so much time or agg involved in upping sticks and moving swim. I've stopped using a rod pod, just as long as the ground is soft enough bank sticks only. So no time mucking around putting a pod together. Leads/marker sometimes rigs attached to rods in rod bag. A case of rigs tied before I arrive to hopefully cover what ever bait or rig I decide to use once I arrive. Inside my rucksack, I have 5 or 6 plain black toiletry bags that I got for 99p each. Each has a different coloured cable tie on it and I've learnt through repetition what kit is in which by the colour of the cable tie. It's all the little things!

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I'm in the same position. I get 2-4hrs fishing as and when I can. What I do is have my rods ready rigged with rigs that are simple and effective that I have total confidence in. (Helicopter rigs with hinged stiff links and source pop up hookbait) I stay in constant contact with the local tackle shops to find out where the fish are being caught. I spend the 1st trip down with a marker rod and a note pad, searching out the best swims and measuring distances and depths to likely looking areas, no rods, just a few hours with a marker rod mapping out the place and writing it all down. Sometimes if I fancy one particular swim, I will take my carp rods and use them as marker rods before marking the line with pole elastic or electrical tape. Then put a bit of tape with "left" "right" etc on each rod then when I cut the marker off and attach the rig, its set to the feature. Turn up, bait up, cast the rod marked with "left" to the left feature etc. Either way, knowing distances to marks means you can quickly measure and clip up the distance and cast out.

 

If the lake is close to your home, try to pop there on the way home with your chosen bait and start trickling it in regularly this only takes a short time and it allows you to keep tabs on the pond and have a chat with anyone fishing, get your face known and find out where the carp are coming out from and on when. If you mark up another swim or 3? Well while your there!!

 

All my gear is set to go. Buzzers on bars, pod out of its bag and easily fetched. When I arrive, the rods go out first and leave them on the floor while I get the landing net set up. Then the buzzers, pod etc is set up. My main aim is to get there, get found to a swim I know has produced, rods quickly measured marked and clipped up and baits to the spot. If I've been prebaiting beforehand then singles or stringers will be enough bait, your fishing to nick a quick bite, not go all out with a spod. The carp will be more amenable to half a dozen baits then a single bait under 10kg of spod mix! Fish a mouthful for a bite, then top up after each bite. I try not to fish all over the pond, but concentrate on a few swims that I feel most confident. Location is paramount, especially this time if year when the shoals tighten up. Prebaiting is a real bonus as the carp can feed on baits without a hook in it. This helps raise their confidence and once they are happy to search out the bait and accept it as a food source, then it makes your job easier. Sometimes I look at other baits than boilies, peanuts is my other go to bait if allowed, they are so rarely used, but I don't recommend a massive prebaiting strategy with them as they can cause weight loss and loss of condition according to many sources. Boilies wlthat are well balanced and highly nutritional are ideal, make your own baits keeps the cost down. Or you could bulk it out with pellet but again, try and avoid the high oil content ones. Preserved ready-mades are not my first choice but they can be good for quick bites. I like old favourites such as banana ester, strawberry jam, tutti fruitti, monster crab, mulberry Florentine etc. The old "traditional" flavours are effective, and everyone seems to skim straight past them for the newer "in vouge" flavours that are out there. So there is a good chance those flavours that are ignored, (where people think they have "blown") will be more effective than Carper's may give them credit for.

 

It all comes down to location, find them, feed them, catch them. Simple rigs. Re evaluating the gear you do take. Why fish 3 rods when only 2 will do, that sort of thing.

 

My gear consists of 2x carp rods + reels, with the landing net and unhooking mat and brolly in a quiver. Rods already set up with rigs I know work, as opposed to the latest wonder rig, in my rucksack is a small tackle bag with rig bits, needles, pva bags, leads etc another small bag with hookbaits, a small bag of pellet, small bag of prepared hemp, small bag of trout pellet powder, catty, bag of pop ups, bag of food + drink, buzzers, bars, pod strapped to the side of the rucksack. All fits in one small rucksack. Jobs a good in, tip up, rods out, net set up, pod set up, sit on my unhooking mat. If needs be, I can be up and moved in 5mins.

 

To maximise time on the bank, reconnaissance is never wasted. By leaving the rods at home on the first visit, and plumbing, mapping and marking each swim will help in the long run as you will be able to walk into a swim and know where your baits will go for the best. If you have prebaited beforehand, even better. Fishing up to known fish holding features such as islands bars etc will help and never ignore the near margins, I've caught more 20s & 30s from a few feet from my rods tips its always worth a look. Where does all used bait end up? In the margins under your feet! The carp know this and will come looking for it.

 

Set your rods up at home, rigs and all.

Get to know the pond, take a walk and map the swims.

Prebait your chosen areas with your chosen bait, stick with it don't chop and change.

Pick a few swims and work them.

On arrival, rods out first, net, then buzzers, pod etc. Leave the beer and fags until the baits are placed.

Lay out all your fishing gear at home, pick out all those bits that you never use, just take the essentials. Do you need a bivvy when a brolly will do. Three rods may be 1 rod to many, don't go mad with baiting, fish for one bite at a time, not 10kg in a hit before you have even begun.

Keep tabs on the lake grapevine and work out the fish movements. On your little mso you drew when mapping the lake, mark on captures, sightings, predominant wind directions, bars, gullies etc. As you fish more your little bible will help you square your swim choice out a lot quicker. Don't be afraid to copy the lakes top rod either, any hints and tips from regular catchers will help your own fishing as you can implement what you do.

 

Lastly, get down there, a 3hr sesh might not be long, but I've never caught a carp from my sofa, you only need a bite. If all else fails, tell your wife your at work, take that day off your leave card and get a whole day on the pond!

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