Switch to corn for winter carp

Steve Ringer explains why sweetcorn is such a great bait in cold water and how you should use it

Switch to corn for winter carp

by Angling Times |

When I think back to my early days of commercial carp fishing, one bait always springs to mind –corn. If I wanted to catch carp in the cold it was always the bait I went for.

I wasn’t alone in this thinking either, I might add, as it’s a bait that everyone seemed to be using back then and it’s also won me a lot of matches catching big carp in winter. Pellets may have become ever more popular since then, and the recent arrival of wafters has dominated feeder and bomb fishing, but good old corn still has a big part to play in winter fishing on commercials.

There are a few reasons why corn works so well, number one I think being the colour.

It’s easy to find in clear water and, when a fish picks a grain up, it’s light and relatively soft compared to a pellet.

Corn can be fished in a number of ways, for example as a stack on the tip or even just the skin on the pole for catching wary F1s.

Even something as minor as picking out the smallest grain from the tin can make a massive difference to how well you catch!

Good old corn still has a big part to play in winter fishing on commercials
Good old corn still has a big part to play in winter fishing on commercials

Double ’em up

A single grain is always my starting option, but if bites are hard to come by I’ll switch to two. I’ve always found that, when it’s rock hard, two grains produce more bites – maybe because it’s a bigger, more visible bait for fish to home in on.

Double ’em up
Double ’em up

Switch to small

On some days the biggest grain in the tin will bring the most bites, but if you’re missing bites a switch to a small grain can solve that. Try to put a bit of thought into what you are looking to achieve when selecting your corn for the hook!

Switch to small
Switch to small

Just skins for F1s

I’ll often fish a corn skin on the hook, especially for F1s. This is a grain with the middle squeezed out, leaving the skin and a few softer fleshy bits. This is a slow-falling hookbait which, on snake lakes, will bring bites when all else fails.

Just skins for F1s
Just skins for F1s

Keep it moving

With corn, always keep your hookbait on the move by lifting and dropping. Bites will come just as the float settles. I catch very few carp sitting there with a motionless bait, waiting for one to find it, so that bit of movement is very important.

Keep it moving
Keep it moving
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