Stay positive and win on paste in autumn
Big weights prove it’s still good
THE leaves on the trees have an orange tinge and the morning temperatures will leave a chill down your spine – but those autumnal signs don’t mean you need to abandon your positive approach.
Once the calendar leafs over to October, anglers almost feel obliged to scale down their rigs and feeding. One recordbreaking matchman, though, believes it’s definitely not yet time to take that negative step.
GOT Baits-backed Colin Spencer has racked up numerous big weights this year, and his run of success is showing no signs of letting up.
While many of his competitors have overhauled their tactics, he continues to work with what has been tried and tested in the heat of summer.
“I love paste fishing, and while it has served me so well throughout the warm months it is just as deadly at this time of year,” explained Colin.
READ YOUR BITES
During his winning streak, Colin has taken numerous huge hauls to over 400lb and insists that when numbers of fish come into the swim it is vital that you are able to spot a genuine bite.
“One of the most frustrating elements of paste fishing is trying to work out what a bite is. The float will bob around constantly when there are carp around the hookbait, but you are looking for it to dip quickly,” he said.
“Practice will help give you a feel of when to strike, and if you are struggling at the start of a match it’s best to persevere. You’ll soon get the hang of when the fish has swallowed your paste.”
Colin uses a rig that has no shot down the line, with the weight of the paste alone cocking the float. A fairly slimline float works best, a 0.2g version threaded on to 0.17mm mainline straight through to a size 16 Guru Pellet Waggler hook.
“A few fisheries I visit limit the size of hook you can use and I have found this pattern keeps the paste on for longer,” he said.
“It’s important to use a piece of paste that complements the hook. Use a bait that is too big and you’ll keep missing bites.”
At the start of the session Colin adds four pints of water to one bag of Dynamite Baits Green
Swim Stim groundbait.
This instantly makes a sloppy mess, but by mixing it vigorously with his hands it soon thickens up to make the perfect paste hookbait.
“I will start the match using this consistency of paste but it is important you are versatile and can make quick changes,” he said.
“If you are being plagued by small fish or are having to wait a while for bites it’s best to get a bait box and add some of your paste mix to it before adding a little more groundbait to stiffen a small batch up.
“If the fish are coming thick and fast then you can do the opposite and add more water to the batch to make it slightly sloppier. These small changes make all the difference when paste fishing and are the key to winning, rather than just catching a few carp.”
Janson’s Fishery in Notts is one of Colin’s favourite haunts, and having smashed numerous match records at the complex this year, he thinks the feeding is just as important as the hookbait.
“There are lots of fish in venues like Janson’s. If you lash the bait in you will draw big shoals in but they’ll get over-excited and you’ll be dogged by foul-hookers and line bites,” Colin said.
“I place a small amount of corn and pellet in a pole cup, place my paste hookbait on top and cup it all into my target zone.
“This makes sure my hookbait is right on top of the loosefeed, so the carp can take in the lot in one mouthful.”
This process is repeated after each fish, although Colin will cut out the loosefeed if he has a run of foul-hookers in order to force
the fish into taking his paste hookbait.
Trial and error is also important with loosefeed.On some days corn will draw in the bigger fish, while on others more pellets will be effective.
“Paste fishing is much more than a tactic for the heat of summer. You’ll keep the match wins coming if you rely on the approach this autumn,” concluded Colin.
Colin has had 400lb-plus hauls from Janson’s.
Corn and pellet feed is topped by paste.
Vary the paste’s consistency during your session.
A fine bag of carp from Janson’s Fishery.