Basic pole rig shotting patterns

Hi all


I’ve often get asked by newcomers to pole fishing about shotting patterns.

Now, I know there’s always slight differences in patterns, in as much as what type and size of shot is used, i.e. using fine droppers, using more ‘smaller’ shot, or fewer ‘heavier’ shot, styles vs standard shot etc., but the basic principles still apply.


*And of course, not every rig is built using 5 shot – that’s just my illustration of patterns below ;-)


Anyway, hope this helps you to start setting up and tailoring your own rigs, if you’re a beginner!


All the best


xx.. GORTINI rig shotting.jpg

Rig 1 - Bulk and droppers


Probably my most used shotting pattern, if I’m honest. The main bulk ensures the rig gets down to depth quickly, while the two droppers allow for a slower fall of your hook bait.

Basic, simple, but very effective, and still has capacity to show gentle lift bites – especially if you’re using a short enough hook length; say four or six inch


Placing your dropper shot’s and bulk shot all equally about six or seven inches apart will also help prevent tangles.



Rig 2 – Positive Single Bulk


Rig no. 2 is a nice positive shotting pattern, for fishing dead depth.

Great for getting your bait down to the deck fast, and locking it in place. Also good when smaller fish are likely to disturb your rig line, higher up in your swim.



Rig 3 - Spread Bulk


Still a pretty positive shotting pattern, but will also show early bite’s before your float fully settles. Evenly space the shot between one and three inches apart, starting right above the hook length.


A good pattern when pellet fishing as this will keep your bait fixed at the bottom.



Rig 4 - Strung Out Slow Fall


Spreading your shot out over the length of the rig will allow for a natural, slow, even fall of the hook bait. This will allow you to explore all depths of the swim and read the float as each shot registers when it settles.



Rig 5 – Over-depth Double Bulk


A good go-to pattern for fishing over-depth, and one I use frequently.

The first bulk allows you to set your float as normal, with the second bulk placed at almost at full depth and dotting your tip down perfect. This allows for bite detection as a fish takes your hook bait up off the deck.


As the hook bait is picked up by a fish, the second bulk with rise with it, resulting in a ‘lift bite’, shown by your float tip rising upward.

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