A lot of factors can determine how close you need to fish to the surface during the cooler months. On overcast and windy days, I’ll always start mid-depth, however, on bright, sunny days I can fish as close to just 6ins below the surface.
We’ve got to remember that carp are cold blooded animals and any ray of sunshine will bring them to the upper layers which warm up quickest.
As far as colour is concerned, I generally fish a black hookbait as this silhouettes perfectly against the sun or bright backdrop like the sky. This makes it easy for the carp to spot.