I found a really informative set of posts on the Fox Blog today. The series of four pieces called “Safety Zone” by Stéphane Hanff offers some really useful information about Carp Fishing safety that is relevant to both UK and Continental fishing.
The piece that caught my eye was the article on SAFE AND EFFECTIVE RIGS.
Reading this I find myself agreeing with most of what is written. I find the pattern of long shank hook very effective indeed, and have used it with great success, both with a bottom bait and a pop up presentation. I find it gives a secure hook hold also and I agree absolutely that this is the key to minimum mouth damage.
I feel these long shank hooks are better in the larger sizes and for big fish. I find they turn and rip on smaller specimens, so I prefer different patterns. They have indeed been banned on a number of commercial waters.
One last point though, and I won’t go into the barbed vs barbless debate here, but I prefer to use these hooks barbless. I have never found that they tear or move once they are in. On the contrary my experience with them it that they go in and stay in. I believe Tim Paisley landed his massive Raduta common on this type of hook.
Stéphane goes on in his subsequent posts to look at rigs and bait safety also. All these articles make some essential points that experienced and novice anglers can learn from.