Marc Coulson has compiled his list of the best carp baits to use in 2017. These are the baits that have been catching carp and flying off the shelves this year...
STICKY SIGNATURE SQUID POP-UPS
RRP: £6.50 | www.stickybaits.com
Following in the footsteps of the original and hugely popular Signature Pop-Ups, this squid version has quickly proven to be a phenomenal carp catcher.
Produced in the same light pink, yellow and white colours as the originals, they offer enough visual attraction but retain a washed-out look.
The real attraction comes from the blend of flavours; the most predominant, of course, being the squid.
It’s the closest I’ve come across to the original, and now legendary, Squid & Octopus from Solar, and results on the Signatures are already comparing favourably.
As you’d expect, the 16mm versions are buoyant enough to keep a chod rig up for longer than most of us fish for, or at least than most of us leave a hookbait out there, but they’re not restrictively buoyant.
By this I mean you don’t need three SSG to weigh one down, which sadly can be the case with some modern pop-ups.
There are also 12mm and 14mm available, the latter being my choice for their versatility.
If you really want to, and are brave enough, there’s also a dedicated booster spray available too.
CCMOORE TUNA LO30
RRP: £13.99 | www.ccmoore.com
LO30 (L-Zero Thirty) has long been a hugely effective carp attractor and when CCMoore decided to add the ever-reliable tuna flavour it looked certain to result in something very special.
Packed with aminos and other attractors, and with a yeasty, fishy taste and plenty of salt content, it packs a serious punch.
It’s also extremely versatile and can be used in boilie ingredients, as a dip or soak, added to a spod mix or as a PVA-bag-mix addition, given that it has very little water content and so is PVA friendly.
The other bonus is that it can’t really be overused and you can be as generous as you, and maybe your budget, allows.
That said, it doesn’t necessarily have to be used in large quantities; often just a little added to a hookbait, a bag, before casting can be enough to nick you an extra bite.
MAINLINE BAITS PASTEL BARREL WAFTERS
RRP: £6.75 | www.mainline-baits.com
If it’s only to negate the weight of the hook and some of the restriction of the hooklink, therefore making the hookbait behave a little more like your freebies, then you should be using wafters for at least some of your fishing.
These new balanced baits from Mainline come in five exceptional flavours and in washed-out pastel colours, again another modern and very popular trend in the bait market.
My particular favourite at this time of year is the Fruity Squid, which Dave Levy first showed me and which I often use inside a PVA bag of pellets.
The Mulberry Juice and Peppered Peach are old classics, and the Blackcurrant and Liquorice combination also has undertones of some very good baits of yesteryear, but in a contemporary format.
Finally, the Cranberry Orange is one that I can’t wait to use once the water cools and fruit flavours come into their own.
Each bait is well rolled and also consistent in buoyancy, which is vital for your peace of mind, especially when tying up lots of PVA bags before your session.
They can also be used when fishing over boilies and even as a single attractor bait with a difference.
Not many anglers use anything other than pop-ups as ‘singles’ so maybe there’s some food for thought right there.
DYNAMITE BAITS COMPLEX-T BOILIES
RRP: £10.75 per kilo | www.dynamitebaits.com
If you fancy using a boilie that has been designed from top to bottom by a living legend then this might be right up your street.
With carte blanche to design a big-fish boilie that he would (and does) happily use, but which the public can buy in genuinely the same form, Dynamite Baits let Terry Hearn loose on what proved to be a long-term project.
It culminated in the Complex-T, a rich red boilie made up entirely of Terry’s list of ingredients and to his exact recipe.
They might not thank me for saying that I haven’t been particularly drawn to any of Dynamite’s boilies since the original Source (another designed initially by Terry) and Tiger Nut, but this one has definitely grabbed my attention.
It’s obvious that some of Terry’s favourite ingredients are present, Robin Red most notably, but the final aroma has a tone which is difficult to label.
Ultimately, all baits are rated by their success and this boilie has matched up to all of the hype.
It was responsible for some considerable and significant captures during testing and has continued in the same vane since its launch earlier this year.
Available in multiple sizes in both freezer baits and shelf life, along with a large range of dedicated hook baits and liquids, there’s plenty to get your teeth into, regardless of where and how you fish.
It’s also a genuine year-round bait too, so whether you buy a bag now, next week or next month, it’ll be just as effective.
BAIT TECH NUTTY SPOD MIX
RRP: £6.99 | www.bait-tech.com
There’s no doubting that 2017 has been the year of the nutty carp bait, be it in boilies, stick and bag mixes or, in this case, particles.
I’m a big fan of these jars, as all of the cooking is done inside them, so freshness is retained as much as possible.
Packed with a selection of whole and crushed nuts alongside tiger-nut meal, it’s hugely attractive on its own or in other spod combinations.
A milky trail is left from the surface right down to the lakebed after even just a spodful and lots of the particles sink very slowly to the bottom.
The Nutty Spod Mix is not PVA friendly and is not preserved, which might not make it as convenient for some, but personally I prefer this as it’s an indicator that nothing alien has been added.
It’s basically just a jar of perfectly prepared, oily, sticky nuts which carp absolutely love and that’s exactly what I want from such a product.