Alex Dockerty: Bomb Fishing Hookbaits

England International and all-round match fishing ace Alex Dockerty talks us through his favourite hookbaits for bomb fishing on commercial fisheries and why each one has a place on his side tray…

Alex says… 

Now this is a topic you could talk forever about and one that is hugely based on confidence. However, when it comes to selecting a hookbait I have a few rules I try to stick to and although it is important to have a selection I do feel you can also have too many – but I shall talk about my favourites and why they’re worth having in your armoury.

First up, (and this is a combination that 99% of anglers will be using on commercial fisheries nowadays), is standard 6mm and 8mm fishery pellets. These are my starting baits when fishing methods such as the bomb where I will be loose feeding pellets over the top.

Early in the session, this can be the way to go when there isn’t such a large bed of bait on the bottom. You can mix and match your feed and hookbaits for the size of fish you’re targeting too – so use 6mm on the hook and as feed for smaller carp and F1s, or an 8mm on the hook to make your hookbait stand out from the smaller 6mm offerings.

I also like to douse my fishery pellets in an Evolution Oil and when it comes to carp, I’ve found Dynamite’s Tiger Nut flavour to be a brilliant additive for both the bomb and when fishing up in the water with the waggler.

On bigger waters with carp that have a higher average weight, fishing with just 8mm pellets is a great tactic and you can even double-up your hookbaits to create a super-bait, as so to speak.

My second tip is to use a contrasting hookbait and for me, Robin Red pellets often score above all else – especially later in the session when there is a large spread of pellets on the bottom and a contrasting hookbait can help the fish find your bait a lot faster.


Often if I’m getting plenty of liners and no true bites, a change in hookbait can soon see the net being slipped under a fish.

Another nice aspect to have in your armoury especially in clearer water conditions is the use of Washters and Wowsers on the bomb. By trimming the bait and testing this in a bait box filled with water, I can achieve a really slow-sinking hookbait which in the cooler weather might score massively and help to grab the attention of those fish that aren’t really feeding and loitering in the peg.

By just giving them slightly longer to see the bait fall through the water, this can be a real winner in winkling out those extra bites on the hardest of day.

Wowsers and Washters work just as well on the bomb as they do on the Method

The last hookbait I tend to opt for are the Durable Hookers.

Being soft but still quite resilient in their make up, I find they offer a perfect alternative to the standard hard pellet hookbait. They also come in a multitude of sizes colours and flavours so you can have a bait that is unique to you and one that contrasts with your feed.

My personal favourites are the F1 Sweet and Source flavours and I’ve found these help create a different taste and texture to what is already in the peg. Whilst they’re not something I’ll always start the session with, I will use them later on once there is an abundance of bait on the bottom. They can prove invaluable in the right situation. Another nice tip is they create the perfect method hook bait as micros stick to the Durable when they melt in the water.

So there you have a few quick tips regarding hookbait selection for the bomb. Be it colour, size, buoyancy or texture, these are all important factors and given the level of changeability in fishing, are all important and worth considering to help get you more bites. Simply by ringing the changes as opposed to sticking to the old faithfuls might just see you slipping the net under those extra fish.

– Alex Dockerty

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Alex Dockerty: Bomb Fishing Hookbaits
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