I just cannot get on with pulley rigs, on rough ground I prefer to use a fixed paternoster rig with a snood of 12 inches , a rig body of 18 inches from paternoster to lead weight at bottom and a weak link, I seem to hook a lot more fish like this.
I worry about the casting and safety when using a pulley rig I must be honest, I fish rough ground and there are doggies galore here in south wales, funny because I alweays thought they likes a smooth sandy bottom, on a fixed paernoster they give one hell of a tug and almost always hook themselves, I find conger, rockling etc do the same.
I also prefer to use a single hook, most snags are the hook and by using a hook with a bit of bend you have two weak links to get your tackle back, I use breakaway escape links for the lead.
I have seen local anglers thump out a huge squid bait, on a pennell into rough ground then complain when they lose tackle!!!!???
My preferred option is lob out rather than cast miles, use larger single hooks and medium sized baits.
Interesting topic. I fish with anglers that always use pulley rigs over rough gound and can see no advantages gained over the standard paternoster. Has to be said though that I tie my paternosters with powergum stop knots, so if a decent fish is on, the snood slides down towards the weight anyway. I can see the point of a pulley rig if fishing over rough ground with a shallow slope coz the chances of snagging during the fight are high. However, we tend to fish from rocks into deep water so once the fish is off the bottom there aren't any snags for the lead to get into.
I do suspect that under some circumstances pulleys give better hook-ups than paternosters as they act like a delayed action bolt rig - perhaps when the fish are shy - giving them time and space to run with the bait. Other days the paternoster is best. I'd say carry both and switch between the two.