As most carp anglers know, carp will spend a lot of time in the mid layers - the upper surface of the water, sometimes making them quite hard catch off the bottom. As carp are also known for feeding throughout the whole water column, this is where the zig rig can turn a session into a red-letter day.

Technically developed in the late 1940's, the Zig Rig started from the members of The Carp Catchers Club using anchored bread crusts as a way to fish off the bottom. Then much later in the 1990's, the legendary carp angler Zenon Bojko started using, cork and foam, which then later became known as the Zig Rig. Now in modern day angling, there is a range of baits, zig tackle and other accessories to consider when fishing with zigs.


Guide to Zig Rigs

The mechanics of a zig rig is very basic, making it an easy to pre tie zigs before your session, or to tie up the rig on the bank if needed. Use floating line as this will make your zig more boyuant which will help in giving your zig the best presentation possible. You want to make sure you're fishing your hooklink straight to your mainline, any leader or anti tangle tubing will result in tangles on the cast due to the length of the hooklink. It's always worth adding an anti-tangle sleeve to your hooklink as well to reduce the risk of tangles. A long hooklink is always more likely to tangle.

When it comes to hooks, the smaller sizes of hooks are better, something in the range of a size 12 to a size 8. The best hooks are those with a wide gape and short shank, as these hooks are excellent for turning and catching hold once they are in the fishes mouth, and due to the shape of them they stand out to the fish a lot less on the rig. The gape of the hook can be increased further still by adding either shrink tube over the eye of the hook, or using a Zig Aligna.

You always want to use a lead clip set-up whilst fishing with zigs, as the fish will instantly come into contact with the lead with this set-up, maximising hooking potential. As well as this, the leadclip makes it easy to drop the lead which is beneficial, a mix of a long hookink and the weight of the lead can result in hook-pulls . To ensure the lead drops every time, you can use PVA tape instead of a tail rubber on the lead clip as this ensures your lead is secure for the cast, but the lead is garenteed to drop when you get a bite.

Zig rigs can catch fish all year throughout, however one of the best times to use them is late winter or early spring. In spring insects start to hatch in the water and this draws more carp off the lake bed and up into the mid / upper layers of the water collum. Black foam usually works really well as it can mimick an insect.

It is always worth taking a marker rod when zig fishing, so you can figure out the exact depth of the lake, as this may determine what depth you decide to fish your zigs. Fishing zigs without knowing the depth of water you are fishing in is a massive disadvantage as you don't know how close your rig is to the surface, or if its even midway in the water colum. For an example if I was fishing zigs and decided to change my zig so it would be fishing 2ft under the surface, for me to achieve that I would have to know the depth of the spot, otherwise I could end up fishing 4ft or 1ft under the surface which could stop me from catching. If I know what depth the spot is, I know how long to tie the zig so it is fishing in the desiered depth of water.

Zig fishing can definetly catch you a couple extra carp if fished effectively. To get the most out of your zig fishing keep changing the depths and the colour of your bait until you catch, as the fish could be anywhere in the water colloum and its a known fact that different colours of bait works differently on waters. If fishing zigs with muiltiple rods, I would recommend having the rods set at different depths and different colour and see what variation gets you the most bites so you can eventually switch all your rods to the variation which works best for you!

Pro Tip: make sure to use a booster spray or liquid additive on your hook bait to give your zig maximum attraction.

LiquiRigs - Liquid Zig Full System

These Full Zig Systems are perfect for fishing with foam. The Zig alligna makes it a lot quicker to change your foam than the traditional hair-rig style zig. They also ensure that your foam is always sat as close to the hook as possible, resulting in better hook-holds and makes it more of an areo-dynamic rig. The alligna also protects the knot on the hook and holds it in place, making it a stronger rig. As well as this, this sytem features liquid booster cylinders. Not only is this uniqe for this system, these cylinders will turn your zig-rig into a something irresistable for the carp, fishing zigs with liquids is one of the best combinations, with lots of flavour going through the water column, it is bound to draw the carp to your rig which is guarenteed to result in more bites. The Cylinders allow for a consitent leak of the liquid for a longer time, which makes your zig rig a lot more attractive rather than just soaking the foam with liquid before the cast.


LiquiRigs Zig Foam Black Yellow And White

As well as the full system kits, packs of white, black and yellow foam is available. The pack comes with 4 of every colour, making it 12 pieces of foam in total. These bits of foam can be used with the full system kits, or they can be used seperate.