Choose life. Choose a lake. Choose a swim. Choose a bait. Choose a rig. Choose sleepless nights under the stars. Choose the nocturnal music of branches creaking in the wind, leaves whispering, and the eerie night-calls of owls and wildfowl. Choose bright moons shattered in the rippling surface of lakes, and purple skies at sunset perfectly mirrored. Choose silent mist-shrouded pools at dawn. Choose visions of white-flowering waterlilies turning green-gold in the half-light. Choose the flashing bronze flanks of carp, twisting below the surface, on the edge of visibility. Choose a heightened heart-rate. Choose an emotional rollercoaster. Choose the psychological assault-course of planning, watching, locating, preparing, casting and waiting. Choose the endless hours of strung-out anticipation. Choose the rush of striking, hooking, fighting, and landing (or losing) the fish. Choose to walk the tightrope between desperate failure and the adrenaline-inducing, life-enhancing triumphant high of success. Choose life. Choose obsession. Choose Carp Fishing.
"Greg Freestone, Carpspotting 2011"

Monday, 10 December 2012

Winter is on its way

Winter time can be the hardest time of the year to catch carp. The problem being that the colder conditions slows down the fishes metabolism.Therefore the fish doesn't need as much food to survive.

Not so many years ago it was thought that carp were almost uncatchable during the colder months and spent most of my time in bars and pubs instead of on the bank, but this time last year i had some great fishing and was rewarded with some stunning carp - Breaking my PB twice in as many weeks. This has changed my mind on carp fishing in winter and if you put in the time and effort you will get your rewards.

PB Commons Slipped up on Classic Nash White Choc's

I plan to do alot of fishing over the coming months in the UK and a few trips to Spain, empty lakes and the thrill of catching a big carp gives me a great buzz. Times have been slow for me the last few overnights I've done only landing one carp since the end of September. I have lost a few due to hook pulls which gutted me a bit but i hope things will change over these coming months.

I have been playing around with alot of different tactics this year and some have worked and alot haven't so i will be going back to what worked for me last winter. Alot of people say fish singles or just light bait that does work sometimes but i found a nice pile of mixed bait got them going when everyone else wasn't even getting a beep.

When fishing for carp in winter i always tend to fish boilies. Particle baits such as peanuts , tiger nuts and maples tend to lose their effectiveness possibly due the viscosity of the attractive oils these nuts contain (as the temperature decreases they thicken considerably). Also particles seem to work better in bulk. The most important thing about winter fishing is that you must have the right protective clothing. If you are cold you will not fish well.You will be too busy trying to stay warm and will miss clues which will help you put that big winter fish on the bank. Winter fishing has some advantages in that the backsides are empty so you can pick where you want to fish without competition from other anglers . Some waters in winter have beauty all of there own , just being there makes you feel good even if you don't catch. Winter carp fishing is without doubt a big challenge but the rewards in beating the odds are great .

Mark with the friendly common that we both had over the winter months


There are so many factors which influence carp and carp fishing in winter. There is no single answer to being a successful winter carper. A combination of elements must come together for you to succeed. As the average temperature begins to fall through September, October, November carp will often be feeding hard because instinct will tell them that colder, harder times are coming. This time of the year can be very productive. Eventually though, the carp will slow down and head to their winter area, for make no mistake, carp have their preferred holding areas through the winter. On many lakes this holding area will be around the center of the lake, especially if weed is present. This may be different on your lake, but its the best place to start. If I where a carp I would want to be in the quietist area which is less likely to attract attention but also close to a food source and with relatively consistent water temperature. Consistent water temperature means the deeper areas. This is because, through the winter the deeper water is the most stable temperature wise. If I where fishing a big pit where I couldn't reach the center area then I would fish as close to it as I could, preferably around some feature, be it weed, gravel bar, patch or even just a deviation in the lake bed if I could find nothing else.

I cannot over emphasis the importance of weed beds in the winter. If your lake has weed beds, especially in the deeper areas, then you must place your bait in or close to the weed. Carp love weed beds in winter. Weed beds will provide the carp with security, oxygen through photosynthesis and they will still hold food even through the depths of winter in the form of zoo plankton and invertebrates. To find the weed beds, tie a 3 ounce lead on, chuck it out and slowly retrieve feeling for resistance. You will learn through experience the difference between weed, gravel and other features

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