Carp Fishing Tips

Many people that fish would like to catch carp, but it is not always that easy to know what to do in order to catch them effectively. It could be that your general fishing technique needs some improvement or that you could do with some specific pointers with regards to carp fishing specifically. Whichever it is, you have come to the right place!


Hooks do vary and it is important to make sure that you do have the right one for the job. The hook design can be vital to making sure that not only, it attaches, but that it stays in place while you are reeling in. A sharp hook with a thicker wire can be a good idea. One rather like a Kamasan low water salmon hook but with a longer shank. There and others with a similar design will work well, especially if using the technique that follows to catch your fish. Sharpening hooks might seem a little old fashioned to some anglers but it will make them more effective and more likely to take hold. You can do this with different brands of hooks and it can make them more effective. A blunt hook will mean that you will lose fish and so by always ensuring it is sharp, you will never be taking this risk. If the hook does not work, then the fish can take the bait and escape and the angler may never realise it had a potential bite there. So, you do need to make sure that you so everything that you can, to make sure that the hook works its best. Do not assume that when you buy a new hook that it will sharp enough, have a go at sharpening it anyway. A longer point can be more effective as well, so you may need to adjust this in the hooks that you buy. There is, of course, a risk that the hook will split if you over sharpen it, but you are likely to lose a lot less fish this way compared to not catching them ay all due to it being blunt.

Treating the Hook

A newly sharpened hook has a taste and I will shine which could be a give away to fish. Therefore, it can be a good idea to cover it with paste. Not only will this disguise it, but it will raise interest from fish. If you use different types of baits on it and use ones that break down in the water at different rates, this can also help to arouse their curiosity.

Heavy Leads

Many anglers will choose a heavy lead in order to help them catch more and it can work but it is worth considering whether a lighter lead but with a longer hair and hook link might give more fish and perhaps even be more successful at catching bigger fish that tend to be warier.

Hook Technique

The angle of the hook when penetrating can make a really big difference and it is through that 26 degrees with an in turned eye is perfect. This will hold securely and keep hold. This can even work in the winter when the fish are very still and will only move if you can really tempt them. You do not want to lose them in these situations and so making sure you have the right technique is key.

Trial and Error

For you, you may not feel that this will work. However, the only way to really find out is to try it out for yourself. Trying it on different days or in different locations is never going to be a fair test This means that you should try to set up two lines near each other. Set up one as normal and follow the tips above for the other and this should help you to be able to compare how many bites you get with each. You will need to invest in a sharpener first, but these will not be massively expensive and if they give you great results then they will be well worth the investment. It is likely that you will find a diamond sharpener the best and one that is a bar shape could work the most easily. It will take time to do all of that sharpening, but you can always do it when you are sitting in front of the TV and so it will not take up time when you would otherwise be doing something useful!


There are often adverts for bait, recipes and all sorts of information, which can lead you to think that this is the most important consideration when it comes to catching carp. Although there may be some differences, it is worth making sure that you have your technique sorted out first, as described above. Without this, any miracle bait, however much the manufacturer hypes about it, will not work for you.

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How to Catch Big Carp

Catching big carp is an ambition of many anglers. There are now books, magazines and articles available to help you with getting the right tactics, but it is still not really that easy. It is tricky to get access to all of the information and to find out what might apply to you specifically. You may even absorb it all, have a go and find that you have no success. This can be demotivating and many novices may even give up because they just find that they cannot get the right technique. This is a shame, as it is possible to catch big carp as long as you work at it.

Magazines and Books

There are many magazines, books and shops such as which will recommend certain tackle and bait and if you buy these, then you may just assume that you will then have everything that you need to catch the carp. However, this does not always work. Having all the right lines and hooks, buying the best brands of bait (according to the manufacturers) and things like that will cost lots of money. This can further impact the frustration if you are not catching anything because you can feel cross that you are spending all this money and not having any success. This tends to either lead to you buying different or more expensive items in the hope that things will improve as a result or just giving up entirely because you just feel defeated. It is so easy to fall for the adverts, telling you how good the products are, it is easy to forget that it could actually be a different technique that is needed rather than more expensive products.

Perseverance and Tactics

It is really important to understand that carp are not easy fish to catch. They are not easily fooled, especially if they have been hooked before, they will not want to be hooked again. You, therefore, need to make sure that you understand them and respect the fish. Think about things from their point of view. An older carp will be knowledgeable and it will notice a hook and so you will need to work hard to make sure that you fool it. Just having an expensive bait will not normally be enough. You will need to think hard about what will work.

Make Your Own Bait

It can be wise to actually consider making your own bait. Not only will this usually be cheaper but it will give you the opportunity to experiment. You can try different spices herbs, flavourings and colours to see what works the best. You could even try two different baits on two hooks in the same water at the same time to compare them. You may find what works one day may not work on another and it can be much harder to catch anything in the winter months so you will really need to think hard about what might tempt them then.

Try Different Locations

It can be tempting to keep trying at the same point. This might be because it is easy to get to, it comes highly recommended or it is a pretty place to spend time. Of course, these factors are really important when you are fishing, but if you end up not catching anything then you may as well go there for a walk rather than bothering to set up your fishing kit and waiting for a bite.

Talk to The Experts

You may find that some anglers are not keen to share their knowledge of fishing as they want to keep their knowledge to themselves. However, there are others that are generous with their knowledge and are happy to help and share. It can be great to chat to members of your angling cub or others that happen to be fishing in the same location as you. You could also find online forums where you may be able to get helpful knowledge and advice as well. Obviously, it will not all work for you. This is because location can determine some of the tactics that will work. However, it is worth trying things out. The advantage of talking to individuals is that they are not plugging a particular piece of equipment. If you look in a magazine, you will often find that articles are advertorials where the manufacturer of a particular hook or bait wants to persuade you that their brand is the best so will do everything that they can to sell it to you.

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Winter Carp Fishing Myths Busted

We can often have some preconceived ideas about fishing especially for carp in the winter. It is a good idea to have these fact-checked as it could mean that we are doing things incorrectly and therefore not making the most of our fishing opportunities. It Is good to make sure that we understand these facts so that we do not make mistakes as a result of misunderstanding them.

Carp Do Not Hibernate

There are many people that believe that fish and especially carp will hibernate in the winter. It is easy to understand why as they are seen less and as the water is cold or even has ice forming around it you would imagine that hibernating would be a good idea. However, they do not hibernate but merely slow down. Their bodies will be doing what they can to reduce energy use so that they stay warm and so they will have a slower metabolism and digestion and they will not swim or move very much. This does mean that they will be less likely to be found and be caught but it is not impossible. You will have to hunt them down and be a lot more deliberate in your techniques so that it is easier to catch them. It can be quite a challenge but for some people, that makes it much more fun catching them.

Carps Still Feed in the Winter

Some people believe that carps do not feed at all in the winter. Although they do slow down, as mentioned above they will still feed to some extent. They will have filled up on protein-rich food in the autumn and so will not need so much of this. They take it in when food is easier to find and the warmer water helps their enzymes to break it down. They can then store fat to sustain them in the cold which is more energy-efficient than easting. They will still feed some of the time though, just less often than in warmer weather. This means that it is possible but you may need to make it much more tempting for them.

Carps do not Always Stay in The Same Deep Water in Winter

It is thought by some that carps will seek deep water and then stay there all winter. It is true that water will be at different temperatures and it would be favourable for them to stay in the warmest one. However, there will be safety concerns as well and they will want to make sure that they feel comfortable in their location. They may tend to stay in groups as well and so if you can find a group of them then you will be more likely to be able to catch one of them. If the lake they are in is about to freeze over they will notice by the change in density of the water and will feed a lot and so it can be good to take advantage of this.

Wind will be an Important Factor

Some people believe that if there is a strong cold north-easterly wind then it will help you to have more success when you fish in the winter. This is probably not really going to help you. If it is really cold then carp will probably be conserving energy rather than feeding and so you are probably less likely to catch any. They are probably more likely to feed if you pick a sunny day and you will feel more comfortable than sitting on the bank freezing cold!

Free Bait Should not be Avoided

Many people feel that if you use free bait then fish will eat that, be satisfied and then not bite. However, they can still be used, but you will have to choose what you pick carefully. You will want to see if you can temp them but you need to make sure that you choose something that will be suitable for the fish. In the winter high protein boilies will not be good as they will take too long for them to digest. However, ones with low protein will be a lot less filling. Choose hook bait too, that will be more easily be digested in the winter. Fish will be more wary and less hungry in the winter and so you will need to tempt them with something and so if you do not use a ground bait at all, they may just not be attracted to you. It can be tempting to use less bait so that they do not fill up on it but then you could risk that all being eaten by other occupants of the water and there being one left to attract the carp, so you could find that you will need as much as at other times of the year.

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