Why use boilie dips and soaks
Boilies were banned when I first started
fishing at one of my local waters some years ago.
It was a fairly new complex at the time and was
relatively easy, and so baits such as luncheon
meat, sweetcorn and trout pellet paste were the
order of the day. After a few months of catching
plenty of carp though, they soon began to wise
up to these basic baits and blank sessions resulted.
I was chatting to a fellow angler after one particular
session and saying how difficult it had become
to catch without being able to use boilies. He
told me that he was still catching plenty and
asked what bait I was using. Luncheon meat I replied,
there's not a lot else you can use except for
worm and maggot, which simply attracts the smaller
species. What, plain luncheon meat he questioned.
You won't catch on that anymore, you need to dip
it. Dip it in what I asked. He fished in his pocket
and pulled out a pot of strawberry cream flavouring
and a small pot of honey. That was my first lesson
in dips and glugs. The next session saw me dipping
luncheon meat in strawberry and coating it in
honey, resulting in more fish again and renewed
confidence in my fishing.
Of course it wasn't long before the
carp were wising up to these new flavours as well,
but with a little experimentation and a few trips
to Tesco I was soon back into the fish again.
Nowadays of course, dips soaks and glugs are readily
available in a thousand different variations from
every tackle dealer. But why not have a go at
making your own. It can save a few bob and can
be a lot of fun as well.
A few ideas
Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Once you have tried them you will be itching to
try out your own combinations and maybe it will
help you put some more carp on the bank.
The first thing you will need is a
base liquid. This can be an oil such as olive
oil, or a frying oil such as vegetable or sunflower
oil, some specialist stir fry oils come with added
flavours like garlic, or a favourite of mine is
sesame seed oil. Oils for dipping bread are also
good. Another good base liquid is the juice from
a tin of sweetcorn. This is a flavour that carp
are familiar with and lots of good carp are caught
every year on it. If you want to go for a fish
flavour, try adding the oil from a tin of pilchards
Once you have your base liquid, you
can add your flavours. For sweet dips, try adding
almond oil, or baking flavours such as strawberry,
vanilla, peach, chocolate or whatever you fancy
trying. Nesquick powders and honey also work well.
Also syrups are a useful addition, glucose syrup
can be bought at the supermarket to add a sweetening
effect. A spoonful of golden syrup has a similar
effect and helps to thicken it all up. If you
are aiming for a savoury dip, then pepper, chilli,
curry powder, paprika and garlic are all favourites.
For summer fishing when the water
temperatures are up, I would go for a fish oil
based dip, as these oils will leak easily from
the baits and cause a slick which will attract
the carp. In colder weather I would be more inclined
to go for a dip which will not drift away but
will stay concentrated around the baits. In this
case, the sweetcorn juice base is a good bet.
Corn steep liquor is also a good base for winter
As far as quantities go, it is going
to vary considerably depending on the chosen ingredients.
Remember you don't want to make it too runny,
it should finish up as a fairly thick liquid which
will soak into your baits. If you want it to really
soak in, try soaking a few boilies, freezing them
and then defrosting again. As they defrost, more
flavour is drawn into the boilies. Then soak again
and use or freeze again for later. Just remember
not to overdo the flavours. It is possible to
put the fish off completely. And don't forget,
it's not just boilies you can dip and soak, any
bait works, and you can also try it with your
chum mixers. Also try coating your baits in honey
and marmite, both said to be good carp attractors.
So, have a look in your cupboards,
take a trip to the supermarket, and see what you
come up with. A little experimenting can save
you a fortune on the ready made dips and may also
give you that edge over the other anglers on your