Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

If there’s a rig and bait that stands out when it comes to catching big gravel pit tench at this time of year then it has to be the worm kebab. 

Setting a target

I started using this a few springs ago and set myself a target of twelve tench from a very difficult gravel pit over a six week period. This may not sound a difficult challenge, yet I know some very accomplished tench anglers that have walked its banks and come away with little to show for their efforts. Adding to this my lack of time, probably just two, maybe three morning sessions a week, twelve was probably being somewhat ambitious. 

DA - Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

Fish on.

Switching over

The first four sessions fishing red maggot on helicopter rigs, a method I have 100% confidence in only produced one tench. I was using 5lb hook lengths and a size 16 hook so scaling down when the chance of a double figured tench showing was just not an option, however talking to another angler who landed three tench one morning whilst I was there revealed that he had caught them on worm! Change was slow, yet after a few more sessions and with the worm rig producing I finally switched both rods over to the kebabs and what happened over the next few weeks was breathtaking. The best morning session produced fifteen tench plus a bream with most other sessions producing on average five big tench! 

DA - Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

Irresistible to a tench.

Tench everywhere

Location wasn’t a problem as arriving at dawn and scanning the water soon revealed where the tench were, in fact they seemed to be everywhere and although I fished many different swims, the result was usually the same, plenty of tench. The one thing that was noticeable straight away was that the fish weren’t close in but around fifty yards out so this was where I was dropping my baits. 

DA - Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

Double hook ups weren’t uncommon!

Being organised

Baiting up was also easy, simply a big handful of dendrobaena finely chopped, including the soil they came in, along with a handful of reds then the mix slightly dampened and accurately deposited at twelve wraps by means of a spod (quieter and more respectful to the overnight anglers than a spomb). Having my rods made up and clipped up, also at twelve wraps soon saw them following the baiting up. It was then a case of sitting back, recasting every hour or in most cases less as usually the tench would soon turn up. 

DA - Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

Baiting up.

Unwanted species

The rig itself isn’t that complicated, just a scaled up version of my standard helicopter rig but with the weed becoming a problem a length of lead core was finally introduced. This also acted as an up-trace and avoided losing everything, including the feeder, if a pike was accidentally hooked, which happened more often that you would think!

Get riggy

Rods were my old faithful 1.75lb barbel rods; reels were loaded with 10lb mono and after a bit of fiddling around a 2oz inline block-end maggot feeder attached to the leadcore. Coming off the leadcore and attached to a micro swivel trapped by a couple of float stops was a five inch hook length created from 8lb fluorocarbon. Covering the swivel is a small tapered sleeve that creates a boom effect and a size 10 barbless hook tied knotless knot leaving a longish hair completes the rig. 

DA - Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

It’s a messy job

A messy method

The worms are attached to the hair simply by initially threading a plastic caster onto a fine baiting needle followed by four or five halves of worm. These are pulled onto the hair and secured simply by placing a bait stop next to the plastic caster. In the feeder I add chopped worms, a few red maggots and some of the soil the worms come in. It’s not the cheapest of tactics as worms do come at a cost, yet so does groundbait, which I recommend you don’t use, especially on crystal clear gravel pits. It’s also a messy method, yet it’s certainly worth the cost and effort if you are serious about catching big tench.

DA - Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

You got a love a big tench.


Without going into too much detail, I walked away from this mini campaign with one hundred and sixteen specimen tench, simply unbelievable and it was all down to the worm kebab!

DA - Blog 009 | Tench On The Worm Kebab!

Another one nailed.

This rig on big venues is now my go to rig, something I would never have thought a few years ago and I’m just about to embark on a new venue, one that has done some truly massive tench in the past. 

Keep checking out the website as I will let you know just how things went in a few weeks time.

Duncan Charman

About Duncan Charman:

As a capable and talented angler, Duncan is widely regarded as one of the most successful all-round anglers in the UK with personal bests including a 31lb pike, 16lb 5oz barbel and 140lb catfish alongside breaking two separate British Records (silver bream and pumpkinseed). 

In the public eye, Duncan is an Ambassador to the Angling Trust, a regular writer for the biggest magazines in both the United Kingdom and Europe (Anglers's Mail, Blinker etc) and has also made appearances on Sky Sports’ Tight Lines. Duncan is also an author having written his own book - Evolution of an Angler.

Follow Duncan Charman:

Related News
1 Comment
  • user anonymous
    Stefan / 

    Hello, you can fish at your lake, where you are

Submit comment