Keep to the rig that has worked for you during the rest of the year. If it works well in summer it will work just as well in winter. Try balanced bottom baits in the winter. A snowman set up as shown here is a great starting point. You don't necessarily want a hookbait that stands up off the bottom.
Fish running leads on slack lines (Fluoro or sinking braid ONLY!!!). You need to know as soon as a carp mouths the bait, something that isn’t necessarily the case with helicopter rigs, in-line leads or safety clips.
A running lead gives you the best indication of a take at your end and every pick-up count when it’s freezing cold!
Small waters are easier to fish in winter than big ones. If you are going to pit your wits against big-pit carp in winter, you are going to have to work doubly hard at getting your location skills honed to a fine edge.
Don’t listen to those who will tell you to avoid fishmeals during winter; they work brilliantly! Try our Robin Red & Fishmeal base mix. Rather than roll the paste on a rolling table, simply use an extruder gun to produce 'sausages' of paste.
These should then be boiled whole for 3 minutes.
Remove the boiled sausages from the pan and dry them for 24 hours on a clean towel or newspaper. Once dry but the sausages into 'chop's like these.
You will note that the finished baits have a nice open (porous) structure to them. This makes them idea for a treatment with a glug of some kind which can permeate to the heart of each bait.
I use litres of this stuff. It is crammed full of aminos, which leaks into the surrounding water on the lake bed.
Here you can see chopped Robin Red & Fishmeal baits that have been glugged with Tamari.
If you leave them like this overnight, the next morning they will appear dry as a bone.
Put the bulk of your free offerings into the lake when you leave, not when you arrive.
Have a Carpy New Year.