Carp Fishing – Carp Fishing Tips for the Surface Angler
The key thing that makes for a good surface angler is one that can recognize when to make the hook bait drift faster and when to slow the hook bait down. The whole point is to get the hook bait right among the fish that are feeding without spooking them off. It has to deal with when you should leave the bow in your line and when you need to mend it. It is also about when you should use a horizontal and fast drifting controller as well as knowing when to change to a vertical slower drifting controller. Of course, ther eis no magic trick that is going to make it all happen perfectly, because it simply comes from experience. Here are a few carp fishing tips that might help you out.
If you happen to be watching the carp gulp down your freebies while your controller is dragging your hook bait off in a different direction, you know something is wrong here and it means that you may need to think of changing say from a braided main line to a mono line. Or if you have a horizontal controller you may want to change to a vertical controller. Or you may want to change to a zig rig. No matter what the situation, you want to make the effort to change things up so that it works. Once you get it right your fishing is going to be excellent and a lot more fun.
Be aware that you shouldn’t cast on top of or even too close to fish that are feeding because this is sure fire way of spooking them off. The best way to handle this is to cast upwind of the carp and then let your controller slowly drift over their heads. If you happen to be carp fishing in calm conditions where your bait won’t drift then try to cast past the carp that are feeding and then try and pull your hook bait back to the group of feeding fish.
When you use a zig rig, you are hoping that you can avoid regular recasting. So if you are doing close-in fishing you should use a small inline lead and if you are going for a longer distance or if there might be weeds in the water, you should try using a lead clip with your zig rig. You can easily fish with a zig rig in water that is up to about 9 feet deep. If the lake is any deeper then you should use a 10 foot plus hook link. You also might want to put your hook bait in a bucket or on the unhooking mat and add some dissolving foam over your hook point. This will help you to avoid snagging it on the cast. You should attach your bait by using a streched pellet band or use a knotless knot so the hook will sit tight with the bait.
It is possible to still use a zig rig when you are carp fishing in deeper waters. To do so, you can add a small, buoyant controller in between your lead and the hooklength swivel. Then it will be possible to pay line out and get yoru controller to come to the surface of the water. Although this works, it should be used as a last resort, because it can tangle.
If you want to make changing baits easier and have a hook that hangs below the bait, using a reverse hair rig could be the ticket. It is a knot that can take awhile to master but in the end, it is well worth it. You can learn to tie these and then tie up a few at home prior to your carp fishing. Here are the six steps to making this rig.
- Use fine braid for this rig.
- Tie a pellet band to your length of braid with a granny knot.
- Next hold the band next to the eye and form a loop in your braid.
- Now whip the braid through this loop, up your shank towards the hooks eye.
- Pull on the tag end gently to tighten the knot around the shank of the hook.
- To finish, trim the tag end.
If you want your hook to sit flush against your bait then a good rig to use is the stretchy Hair rig. With this rig you just attach a pellet band to the hooklength and then tie a knotless knot so your band sits in place of the hair. Next use a baiting needle to pull the band through the hook bait and then slide a boilie stop through the pellet band. This is great for floater cake and pop-ups you can use for zig rigs.
If you are carp fishing on pressured waters with regular sized mixers, you may quickly discover that the carp become suspicious and will ignore your bait. This is when the smaller types of baits like mini pond pellets will often be better to use and will get the carp feeding when your bigger baits failed. You can start by trying to get the carp to feed competitively on your small bait. Once that happens you can then introduce the bigger ones slowly. As the carp are competing for the smaller bait, you should be able to get the larger bait in there and they won’t be as cautious because they will already be involved with competitive feeding.
It is important to try and boost the confidence of the carp. So, before you cast out your hook bait, you should drift some bait over them. You need to be patient and keep feeding as you watch for how they react to your bait. It is always a good idea to wait for the fish to feed confidently and then start your carp fishing. Often times if you spend about an hour feeding them before you start casting will end up with multiple catches instead of spooking the fish and ending up with no bites.
Remember, if the carp are swimming near the surface of the lake and you can see them, this means that they can see you too. So try to move very slowly, try to keep out of the skyline as much as you can and try to use all the bank side cover you have available at your swim. If you try to conceal your approach you are going to catch more carp.
Implementing some of these carp fishing tips should lead to an enjoyable carp fishing experience for all levels of anglers.