When to go Carp Fishing

When to go carp fishing

30lb 2oz common. One of Six carp caught that same day during a 4 hour session.

Koi Carp Feeding

Carp collecting at the mouth of my garden pond stream

If only there was an easy solution of working out when our favourite species of fish feeds.  There are triggers that we are all aware of such excessive low pressure fronts, new warm winds and thunderstorms.  For those who can bare it out in extreme weather conditions the results can be quite productive.  But do we all want to go to these extremes to catch a carp.  I am sure the answer is no!

So what else can we look for that will give us some indication as to when to get those long sticks out of the shed and down to the waters edge?

One of the best tools that I have got is my shoal of guinea pigs that swim around in my garden pond, my beloved koi carp.  At various times during the day as I am going about my daily routine I will drop a few morsels of boilies into the pond.  How immediate, if any, the response is from the carp, can give an indication of how our wilder species would react.

Generally if the carp are swimming mid-water there is a chance that they will feed immediately.  If they are all lying in a line on the bottom of the pond the food could be there for days.  Cruising carp will feed but not as quickly as the mid-water fish.  The food will disappear eventually but after a few hours rather than an immediate response.

Feeding Koi Carp

Within minutes the carp are on he feed. It’s time to go fishing!

It is the immediate response that I am looking for. This is the time to get the tackle into the car and head off for a lake.  These days I only fish short sessions at my local lakes and I generally do fairly well, a quick hit and away.

My day fishing tackle is light and easily fits on my back so that I am mobile.  On arrival at one of my local lakes my first task is to try and locate fish cruising mid-water or feeding fish by looking for vortex movements from the fish and colouration in the water from the bottom being disturbed.

If I find all three this could be a winner.  I will introduce a few individual boilies by catapult, one at a time so as not to spook the carp.  Once I am confident that they are staying put I will cast out to the side of the fish with the lightest lead that I can possibly get away with.  I use slack lines and I will move down the bank from the baited area as far as possible so not to disturb the fish while they feed.  Generally if this method works, it is within minutes.  If the fish move on you might as well do the same.  Sometimes you get lucky and others you fail… but isn’t it fun!

Paul Cooper

Carp Fishing in France with Angling Lines


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