Despite colder nights there are still lots of fish to be caught in the edge – using a more cautious approach…
EASY ON THE FEED
WITH summer now just a memory, piling in lots of groundbait and dead maggots down the edge has no part to play. Success is all down to how much – or rather how little – bait that ends up getting fed. Be wary of overfeeding the carp. Precision feeding with tiny amounts always catches more fish in early autumn.
Opening feed should barely cover the bottom of a large pole cup – effectively a small handful of dampened micro pellets and a few bits of meat and corn.
After that, switch to a Kinder pot holding a few micros and bits of meat and corn.
PICK A HEAVIER FLOAT
Provided that the peg is snag-free, there’s no point in fishing stupidly strong lines. A 0.17mm mainline to an 0.15mm hooklength will land pretty much every carp in a commercial fishery, teamed up with a hollow elastic around a grade 12-14 and a size 16 Barbless carp margin-style hook.
The float is important. Diamond-shaped patterns taking roughly 0.3g are popular. This heavier weight will deal with the additional depth but also keeps the rig still in one spot – when feeding with a Kinder pot, it’s vital to ensure that the rig and bait are sitting right on top of that small helping of bait. For that reason, gently lower the rig down on to the feed to ensure pinpoint accuracy.
FISH DEEPER WATER
In terms of depth, forget the 12ins of shallow water that produced in the summer. Very few fish will move into this depth to feed so instead, try edging the rig out into the lake to try and find 2ft 6ins of water. Any deeper there’s the risk of foul-hooking carp as the fish will still be quite active.
Feed both margins if you have the room in order to double your chances of catching. The water is starting to clear now, so you want to fish as far away from yourself as you can, at roughly 13m. You’re not going to be feeding by hand as you would in summer, so this longer distance shouldn’t pose a problem in this respect.
NO BITES? DON’T PANIC!
If nothing happens when you drop in, the panic button shouldn’t be pressed. Instead, leave the margins alone for 10 or 15 minutes before having another look. When the carp do decide to move in close, bites occur within seconds.
Have just the one drop-in without a bite before leaving things alone – if a carp is there, it should pick out the bait quickly.
MEAT FOR THE HOOK
Meat is a bait synonymous with autumn, fished as 6mm cubes and more often than not with two cubes on the hook to present a slightly bigger bait to grab the attention of the fish.
Corn can be a good alternative, especially in very clear water, fished singly or as double grains.