A Thermal base layer is always a good start. Then followed by 3 or 4 thin layers on top of it, rather than a couple of thick layers, thermal boots and socks, keep your feet nice and toasty. On top of all this goes a 1 or 2 piece suit, I much prefer the 2 piece.
Up until the first frost arrived I continue to use my Pioneer Ultralite, In my opinion, one of the best bivvies ever made (no longer made). You only have to look at the second-hand prices that they fetch, if I could ever get a full winter skin for mine I would be very happy to use it right through the winter.
After the first frosts, it's time to get out my second bivvy which is an old Fox International Frontier 12 years old and still going strong. I have 2 wraps for this bivvy, 1 being a winter wrap and the other an extended wrap which basically turns it into a 2 man bivvy, very handy if a mate wants to come along for a night.
For summer use I have a 3 season sleeping bag and come Autumn I also carry a thermal cover all for that night that is a bit chilly but does not warrant a larger sleeping bag.
My winter sleeping bag is a 5 season type but I do something that I have never seen anybody else do before and that is as both of my bags have bedchairs hoods top and bottom with a center retaining strap. I leave my 3 season bag on the bedchair and place my 5 seasons on top of it using the 3 season as a sort of underlay, if you like it stops the cold air under the bedchair from rising up through the bags to get to you.
Talking of sleeping please don't fall asleep just after the sun goes down try to stay active within the confines of your bivvy by reading a good book.
or watching a DVD personally I read a book
Falling asleep at say 5 pm and having a full 8 hours sleep will find you waking at 1 am and the coldest part of the night fully refreshed. Also, remove 2 or 3 layers of your clothing before going to sleep as you will not feel the benefit of the extra clothing first thing in the morning .
Food and Drink
It seems to me that when in winter fishing my kettle is always on a rolling boil for coffee
(i don't drink tea as i hate the stuff)
If doing more than a day session where sandwiches are fine then hot food becomes necessary gone are the days of cold cornish pasties, can of soup and the like a whole warm meal can be done in a matter of minutes
Always tell the closest person to you whether that be your partner, mum ,dad where you are going and when to expect you back so as they know where you are yes we all have mobile phones these days but if you run out of battery life fall in the water ( as i have done a few times) with it in your pocket it will not do it a lot of good.
One final thing before I sign off from this blog
Please, please please remember that fishing is a hobby, not an endurance test.