How do you use a bait boat effectively? Here are some top tips on how to use a bait boat properly to catch more fish.
Bait boats are an incredible invention that has opened up a world of opportunity for anglers across the world. In truth, bait boats have been around, in some form or other, since the mid-90s, but only in recent years have the advancements in technology made these gadgets a viable tool for carp fishing. But, bait boats are not a cheat code. Nor are they magical carp-catching devices that render the angler a spectator. In fact, a bait boat is useless in the hands of an angler that doesn’t know how to properly apply it to their fishing. Yes, from the humble beginnings of the bait boat that struggled to take a handful of bait 30yards, to the modern prowess of the likes of the Rippton Catch X Pro, bait boats have come a very long way. This article will explore how to fish effectively with a bait boat, to help you make the most of one of carp fishing’s brightest products.
Why use a Bait Boat?
Carp waters range from tiny clay pits to gargantuan gravel pits, and bait boats are just as effective in either. Typically, bait boats were used to reach distances that were unreachable by casting, and on large waters, this was the ideal solution without jumping into a row boat. However, as the savvy angler always does, some began to realise that bait boats had many more functions.
For one, you can fish more accurately with a bait boat than you ever could by hand casting. So instead of baiting up a spot across 10m2, you could channel all of your bait and rigs onto a beer mat, meaning that all of the free attraction was focused on a bite. This type of accurate angling is now considered almost essential to make the most of your time on the bank and to convert more bites into fish in the net.
Another key use of a bait boat is to access areas that are inaccessible by casting, and not necessarily at distance. Old, wily and often large fish know where they are safe, and that may be under thick tree cover that almost reaches the surface of the water or incredibly tight to the bank. To completely eradicate the chances of snagging and disturbing the water, you can use a bait boat to access these spots, which is a surefire way to get some big target fish on the bank.
Ever cursed the dive bombing ducks that plague the angler just trying to put some bait on the dance floor? Well, a bait boat could be the solution to your problem. Subtly, silently and efficiently bait spots with a bait boat without the performance of catapulting or spodding that is sure to attract the wildlife of the lake.
We’ll delve more into bait boat tech further along in the article, but the new tech included in some top-range bait boats enables you to map lakes for depths and bottoms, save spots and some even let you find fish.
How to use a Bait Boat effectively
Ok, so that’s the why – but how? Well, there are a few things to remember for fishing effectively with bait boats:
1. Tight lines – Slack lines when fishing with a bait boat are a sure fire way to snag and tangle, so always make sure you have a tight line. You can do this by setting your drag right. You want to be able to take line easily without spinning your spool too much. Ideally, your fishing buddy would help with this, but a few bank sticks do the job too.
2. Be accurate – Always try to use far bank markers and power gum on your line to mark out distances and directions to ensure that you are fishing as accurately as possible. Of course, some new bait boats will have GPS that allows you to save spots. If yours does, make sure you use it!
3. Battery – Before every session, make sure your handset and bait boat is charged up fully to avoid any issues on the bank.
4. Keep your bait boat clean and clear – If you are accessing difficult spots, you may find that they are weedy or have a lot of surface leaves in the area. When your bait boat returns to the bank, clean your rotors and blades to ensure no blockages.
5. Use them often – If you’re fishing a water that has very ‘spooky’ fish, why not use your bait boat all the time? Even if you can make the cast by hand, why make all the noise and disturb the feeding fish? Instead, drop a rig carefully on their noses and your alarms will be singing in a flash.
6. Use it all – If you have a new bait boat that has a lot of great features, don’t ignore them. When you get to the lake, take the boat for a few drives and check the fish finder for underwater features and any feeding fish. Then, bait up sensibly with the boat, before dropping your rig on the money. Once in place, find some backup spots and save them with your fish finder and GPS. Active angling will catch you more fish.
Bait Boat Technology
New bait boat technology is almost as important as the product itself. New, top-of-the-range bait boats such as the Rippton Catch X Pro, feature a ton of technology that take your angler to the next level again!
From fish finders to cameras, GPS to autopilot, technology in angling is a good thing. It makes everything more productive, maximising your time on the bank and ultimately getting more fish in your hands.