My autumn margin rig – don’t fine down!
EVEN in the cold I don’t tend to fine down my rig in order to try and get bites, as I feel this is counter productive.
Margin carp are big fish, and every one you hook needs to come out, so I see no point in fining down line and hook size.
To be honest, I don’t actually believe that going lighter produces more bites in any case.
A great tip for edge fishing when the water starts to go clear is to use a longer-than-normal length of line between pole-tip and float, up to 18ins or more.
This enables you to hide the poletip from the fish, which can make a big difference in clear water.
With longer lengths above the float I backshot the rig with three No11s to ensure I stay in touch with the float.
For fishing in 3ft of water my float is a 0.2g Mick Wilkinson Margin Diamond. The body shape and stem make it a nice, stable float while the thick tip ensures bites are very easy to read.
It’s also pretty much indestructible!
For edge work I rig up with 0.19mm Guru N-Gauge to a 4ins hooklength of 0.17mm in the same material.
This is a size 14 Guru XS spade, which is a strong wide gape hook with an ultra-sharp point – ideal for single or double corn hookbaits and big fish!
This is a strung bulk of No 10 shots with the bottom shot 5ins from the hook and the rest of the droppers spaced at 1.5ins intervals above this.
With the water being clear I always feel that carp rely a lot on sight to feed, so a slow falling hookbait can produce more bites as a result – hence my spread-out shotting patten.
My choice varies a bit from venue to venue but at the moment, for fisheries like Meadowlands’ Lambsdown Lake, I’m happy to stick with Red Hydro. This gives me the power to get the fish out of the swim quickly and with minimal fuss.
In another month or so, when the water temperature really starts to drop and the fish become a bit more sluggish, I’ll consider dropping down to Black Hydro.
Hookbaits to try
When it comes to hookbait choice it’s all about sweetcorn.
Once the water starts to clear I really don’t think there is a better bait in terms of catching big carp.
This is of course purely down to its colour, as being bright yellow it really stands out and gives the carp a bait they can home in on.
As a guide I will look to kick off fishing a single grain on the hook, but if I feel there is a fish there and I can’t catch it I will switch to double corn on the hook.
For some reason, two grains can be better than one at times, my theory is that carp just home in quicker on a bigger, more visual hookbait at times.
Work your rig
Something I always do when fishing corn in the edge is to try and keep the bait on the move.