Surface Fishing For Carp - Tips and Advice
Camo Fishing Line
Carp fishing from the surface is a fascinating and can be a very rewarding way for catching Carp. Sometimes fishing the bottom of a lake simply doesn't work; the fish are not biteing and you are bored waiting for your alarms to buzz off. To put it frankly, more people should try fishing "off the top".
Fishing off the top is done using a bait that floats on the surface of the water. The most popular baits used for this are usually bread, dog biscuits and floating pellets or boilies. If the weather is right and the fishing are showing then it can be an absolutely devastating method and bring home some great results.
Tips & Secrets
Get your line right. A lighter colour line will get you better results when fishing off the top. The sky is lighter than the water so therefore it will be less noticeable to the fish. Also make sure that you get the strength of the line correct. You want a reasonably strong line with a small diameter - You want the line to be as invisible to the carp as possible. I personally do not go above an 8lb line when topping for carp. I find by doing this that I get more takes than when i use heavier lines.
Hook Size matters. It is important that you use the correct size hook when topping the surface. Your hook should vary depending on the size of the bait that you are using. If you are using a big bit of bread then your hook should also be large. It you are using a small floating pellet, then your hook should be slightly smaller.
Pinch the bread on the right way. Lots of people make the mistake of pinching the bread on at the top of the hook, and making a mould so that it will not come off. If you do this you will find that the fish eat everything else on top exept your bait. By doing this you are are weighing the line to point down into the water which is an instant turn off for any fish. The best way to pinch on your bread is to lay the line right through the middle and simply pinch the middle. Make sure that some of the hook is still showing, but not too much. This will allow the bread to lay flat on the water and the line floating on top of the water also.
Feed up. Start by giving some free feed to get the fish interested. You should not over do it as you always want the carp competing for the bait- therefore making them more prone to slip up and take yours. Do not overfeed.
Plastic Baits for moving surfaces. If you find yourself fishing on a windy day it can be hard to keep your floating bait on the hook, and it can become quite frustrating. You can buy some very good plastic floating baits that will not come off the hook. Best results are found with floating dog biscuits. You should make sure to feed the swim with real dog biscuit and then allow yours to float in the middle of the free feed. The carp become confident with the bait and will take the plastic one. If you are sceptical of this, then you should honestly try it in windy conditions, it works a treat.
Keep Quiet. Don't crash and bang around the area you are fishing. This will alarm the fish and they are very unlikely to feed close in if you do wished to do so.
Look for features. Carp find spots on a lake where they feel comfortable feeding. Look out for lilly pads, overhanging tree's and other areas where natural bait might be found.
Follow the wind. Sometimes when fishing the top the wind will blow the free baits down the swim. You should always follow the bait to see where it is ending up. You are likely to find that the fish will scoop up the bait once it remains in a still position for a little while. Most people are easily put off in windy conditions when it comes to fishing off top, but if done in the correct way it can be very rewarding.
Times of year. There are certain times of the year that you will get the fish feeding on top better than others. From April through to late October are the best times and the water is warmer. On a sunny day the top layer of the water will warm up first, so the fish like to come up to feed. In the winter you will very rarely see any fish coming to the surface for bait and they go deep to try to keep warm. A common mistake is that most people give up fishing off the top too early, you can still catch off the top in October.
Have fun fishing..... and don't forget, don't be lazy, try these things and you will find yourself surprised with the results. Thanks for reading and i hope you enjoyed the tips.
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