This article first appeared on the Quest Baits Blog & is reproduced with kind permission.
I must admit I went to bed last night not particularly expecting to be doing much fishing this week-end. I re-loaded the open fire in my bedroom with logs before climbing into bed thinking I would have a nice leisurely day to-day.
I’d been unable to do a night this week-end due to the bitterly cold weather we have had these past 2 days and not having a dog sitter – I simply couldn’t get out. It never stopped me in the past but I have to be fair to Brook my carp dog. It’s simply too cold for her at the moment.
My body alarm woke me and got me out of bed at the usual time, so much for the lay-in I had kidded myself I’d have. Downstairs and I sat at my table drinking the first coffee of the day and watching the sun in the East start it’s morning ritual.
There had been a covering of snow during the night and my garden pool was still frozen as it had been for the previous 3 days. I finished my coffee before Brook slithered herself out of bed and awkwardly walked her way to my side. She does seem to take a few minutes to get her joints working properly first thing in the morning these days. Then again I guess I’m the same.
Suddenly she noticed the snow and demanded to be let out. What a transformation that was from being seemingly too stiff to walk to behaving like a manic puppy bolting around in the snow. She hates the cold but loves the snow – strange.
I decided to take her down the river for her morning walk. I’d semi got it in my mind to do a spot of chub fishing, late afternoon and into dark so it would be good to go have a sneak look first.The river didn’t look too inviting at all with a strong wind blowing up it. The walk ended up on a local gravel pit and as I past one particular swim it simply ‘looked right’ for a fish. Difficult to explain really but I’d gone out with chub on my mind and now I was looking across a gravel pit thinking carp. Back home I cooked a late breakfast and mulled over in my mind what to do. that swim really did look right for a winter carp. That was it, I don’t get the chance very often to catch a carp in the snow so it was going to be back at the pit for a few hours.
I didn’t get in the car until 2pm but I have caught so many winter carp over the years on very short 2 – 3 hour sessions that this didn’t worry me one bit.I fished halved Rahja Spice boilies butterfly style on 2 rods with a sprinkling of halved baits over the general area, then set a 3rd rod up with a Fruity Trifle 6mm Pimple Pop to fish on the edge of the bait before snuggling down in my chair trying to keep the cold wind off my neck. I must have had a premonition for I set my video diary camera up and trained it onto my rods.
I decided to call it a day at that. Just that little bit of effort had resulted in what will probably remain a rather memorable capture. It was the 6th venue I have been lucky to catch carp from in the snow.
Soon I was back in the motor and heading home with a real contented feel. so many anglers tell me they would love to catch a carp in the snow but so few seem to actually have a go once the snow comes. Strange really, as you can see from the above, I hardly put myself out at all but just that little bit of motivation and little bit of effort I have been blessed with another fond memory.
Then again, I had put myself where I was sure there would be a fish. I had given myself the option of the two best winter baits I know – Rahja Spice and Fruity Trifle and had presented them on my ever faithful home tied combi-rigs which just keep on working year in and year out.
If you want to catch a winter carp in the snow you need to be on the bank in the snow. Those often quoted words – ‘You’ve got to be in it to win it’ have never seemed more apt.
Best fishes, Shaun Harrison