Summer Piking Guide
The PAC, being a club that has members throughout Great Britain, realises that pike waters vary widely in their condition and the amount and type of angling pressure they receive during the summer months. A remote Scottish Loch, deep, cold and fished by a few experienced pike anglers will present a completely different scenario to the busy environs of a shallow, weedy, water in the south of England being fished by numerous ‘casual pike anglers’. To be fair to all pike anglers in Great Britain, the PAC does not seek to recommend a national summer pike fishing close season. Each water should be looked at as a special case and a decision regarding closed times made according to the specific situation.
The fishing and handling guidelines which are outlined in the PAC Recommended Code of Conduct and in other pages within our web-site should always be followed when pike fishing, but in the warmest months it is acknowledged that extra care needs to be taken. We suggest the following guidelines to anyone thinking of pike fishing in the summer:
- Use strong tackle – a minimum of 15lb mono is recommended matched with 2 ½ – 3 ½ lb test curve rods for bait fishing. Do not worry about going even heavier. Many experienced summer pike anglers use 20 or 25lb mono when fishing rocky or weedy venues. Heavier breaking strains in braid are also used.
- When bait fishing strike very quickly when a run develops. Pike swallow baits faster in summer than they do in winter, and the time taken removing hooks which are deep will increase the time the pike is out of the water.
- Do not play pike for any longer than is necessary. Using strong tackle helps in this.
- Take pike from the water for the absolute minimum period. Unhook them in the water if you can, and retain them in the landing net in the water before weighing and photographing them. Time out of the water is the real killer of pike in summer time. Take as few photographs as possible and return them straight away.
- When lure fishing always be ready to cut hooks in order to speed the return of the pike to the water.
- Do not retain pike in tubes or sacks in shallow water, nor in direct sunlight. It is preferable not to retain pike at all during the summer.
- When releasing pike in the summer, always ensure they are fully recovered before allowing them to swim off.
The PAC Summer Piking Guide is available as a PDF file here. PAC Summer Piking Guide