Even in a strong downstream wind this float allows you to slow the bait down without the float dipping. The smaller sizes are shorter to cope with shallower waters.
What better way to catch Barbel, Chub, Roach and Dace than to trot the swim, whether it be a slow meandering river or the fast and deep Severn or Wye. All can be fished using the present day floats. Shotting capacities across the range of Speci-Waggler floats go from 3SSG up to a hefty 5SSG. Rods can vary in length from 11ft up to a long 17 footer, depending on the depth of the swim. The top needs to be on the soft side as this will pick up line quickly and aid casting. Main lines, depending on target species, would normally be from 3-6lb.
When the swim you are fishing is to fast or the wind is to troublesome to run a stick float through successfully, then the speci-wag is usually the answer. Because the float is very buoyant and has a thick tip, it is the perfect float for fishing fast shallow water with a clean bottom, with the advantage that the float is highly visible at distance. The thick buoyant tip lets you slow the bait down by dragging lots of line and droppers along the bed of the river, without dipping under The shotting pattern for this float is normally shirt button style using a combination of No.4, No.6 and No. 8,s as droppers, with the main bulk up under the float. Larger baits may call for more shot down the line, in this case, still keep the shirt button style but move it down into the bottom half of your rig. With this method you will probable be fishing further out, or even close to the far bank, for this reason the rod should be on the long side, as this will give better control and pick up the line quicker, especially as the bites will be fast. The key to trotting is to keep in touch with the float at all times.
Let the float move downstream in a controlled manner ensuring that the line is never allowed to overtake the float. This is easy when the wind is blowing directly upstream but unfortunately perfect conditions are not always present. In these situations you may well need to go to a larger float. The extra weight will keep you on line and give you better control. Back shotting the float with two or three No8s helps to avoid an adverse wind from pulling the float off line. Most anglers when trotting control the float by allowing line to pull off the spool, slowing or stopping the float with their finger tip. Whilst this works it tends to give an erratic movement to the bait. A far better method is to move your rod upstream, trap the line against the spool and follow the float down at the speed that produces most bites. If you need to travel further down simply repeat the process, in this way you are in control allowing you to slow the float down, or speed it up.