As we all know winter carp fishing is much harder then spring, summer and autumn which to most of us makes it all the more rewarding, the fish are bigger, more colourful and much harder to catch but to some less enjoyable ,although for a lot of anglers the difficulty out dose the rewards ,which convinces anglers to pack there rods away for the colder parts of the year and wait for the spring to come around .
This has always been a confusion to me , the surroundings have always been part of my fishing and catching fish in winter is just an extra prize ,bit like an extra present at Christmas ,however eventually the passion for carp has grew which now days see’s me working ever so hard for a bite in winter –keeping active and finding fish .
This isn’t going to be an article, were I tell you my tips and what’s right or wrong . This is going to inform you on my opinions on how I go about my winter carping and if you pick up tips etc. that’s even better .
In winter I like to have a choice of waters, this winter only being three .I have a high stocked water were I can hopefully go and get a bite or two, a fairly medium venue were there is a chance of a few 20s low 30s and a hard gin clear venue were there are a few chunks to be caught if you put the right effort in!
On the 17th of December I went for a short session with my dad, to the easiest of the 3 venues. (still hard to get a bite though)on arrival I looked around the lake but sore nothing ,it was cold and sunny morning so I opted to choose the bank with the sun on it ,thinking that the fish would follow the warmer water .At this time of year on venues like this were I have not got time at my disposal I like to keep active and try things ,once set up I put a 2 ft zig out on a yellow Hellraiser trimmed down pop up this was put out at 15 yards were the sun was gleaming on the water ,I like to take a wide variety of baits during the winter to keep the carps buffet fresh ,preferably high leakage pop-ups!
The second rod was put and about 30 yards on a small chod rig with a 15mm white Hellraiser pop-up ,around this rod I put two spods of the sweet nut cloud just to colour the water up and hopefully draw one or two fish into the area .I then turned around for 30 seconds when the zig rig roared of into life after a short un eventful fight I popped the hook out while the fish was in the net then fired the rod back out again putting no mix over the zig .The fish was a low double common with its winter colours well and truly showing .It got to about 1 o’clock and nothing else had happened , I kept the cloud going in over both rods but started to get itchy feet and I came to decision to real in the zig and try it a longer length of about 3 ft I also glugged the trimmed down bait and tried it at the same distance but a bit further left –keeping active!
The chod also got reeled in and I put a small red hell raiser pop-up out on the trusted blow–back rig with a small bag of crushed live system and two spods over the top. Just like before I didn’t wait long when the pop-up rig roared off, again the result being a small common, just goes to show that small differences make big difference ,if I would have left the chod rig out there maybe I wouldn’t have caught that fish .
By 3 o’clock id caught two more and I was well happy .Dad hadn’t caught on the zigs, .Although the sun sunk behind the clouds and so did the fish so it seemed a change was calling, now, I don’t usually experiment too much and tend to follow the ‘if it aint broke don’t fix it’ term but the chod rig is to good of a rig to be snuffed at so income the zig, and out come the chod I was determined to catch one ,but this time rather than put the mix over the top, I winged it in the direction of a showing fish, feeling rather unconfident ,but on the drop I felt the fishes fins touching my line so I knew I had found a group of fish, I just hoped they didn’t decide to move off .We had to leave at 5 so the session was coming to the end. I was getting ready to settle with how the day had gone when the chod rig was off ,and although having a good idea that it was another common, like the rest of us I hate loosing fish and in winter I do get a bit nervous ,knowing that it could be your last of the winter before the lakes freeze, so I made the most of it, and I landed the low double humped common which I had never caught before ,then while that was in the net the other rod went ,resulting with two fish on the bank – I was amazed !!
So that was it for now ,ended up with a fair few stunning fish and very cold hands for that matter ,but it was all worth while ,just get out there on the bank because there’s always a chance the more you put in the more you will get out of your fishing .I’ve got a few more sessions lined up so maybe next time ill have a winter chunk to tell you about (or not )!
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