Angling Times (UK)
ADAM PENNING Solving the weather puzzle
Adam Penning explains how atmospheric conditions impact on our carp fishing and the changes you need to look out for…
ONCE we’ve examined how to best practise ‘The Craft’ in a variety of different arenas, the final part of the puzzle is examining how various factors out of our control affect our chances. These are principally the moon, air pressure and wind.
There’s probably no other angling subject that’s the focus of such debate. Does it make a difference or not?
The bottom line is that most of us have limited windows in which to fish, and as we often can’t pick and choose those times, the last thing we want is a negative vibe because we’re hitting the bank when the moon phase is supposedly shocking.
If you’re able to be a bit flexible and choose your timings, then I’d say it’s something you should pay attention to. While there are some waters that it seems to have no effect on, there are others where it absolutely, beyond any question, has a huge influence.
My old mate, Joe Morgan, places complete faith in it and he’s always telling me the peak times – the number of occasions he has been bang on are uncanny. If it’s of interest, then check out the app called Fishing Calendar.
Whether the carp are going to follow the wind or not is often as unpredictable as the wind itself! Again, I have to generalise, but not only are new winds (up to perhaps 48 hours) of most interest, but particularly those which come from unusual compass points. Our prevailing wind is from the South West, so often (not always!) that is the wind that is of least interest to the carp.
Directions such as North East, North West or South East often provoke strong reactions, and attention should be paid to them.
In the height of summer, if the weather has been unusually cool and cloudy, and then the wind turns to a northerly direction, very often you can expect to find the carp on the back of it, seeking warmth. Contrastingly, if the weather has been still and hot for an extended period, then the fish are likely to move on to the end of a strong, cool and oxygenating wind.
A question I often get asked is: “What does ‘end of the wind’ mean?” This refers to the area that the wind is blowing on to, whereas the ‘back of the wind’ is the area the wind is blowing away from.
Likewise, Southerly simply means the wind is coming from the South, blowing towards the North. It always pays to know the layout of your lake in respect of the relevant compass points.
To sum up, I’m finding increasingly often that the more ‘carpy’ the weather, the worse the fishing is. This is a perplexing trend, but I’ve seen it on several waters. In fact, the more I think about it, the more I can find examples of good fishing in calm, high pressure, blue sky, sunny conditions. That said, I still feel ultimately confident in low pressure, light drizzle and a gentle South Westerly – I’m just programmed that way!
Again, as a generalisation, in really high pressure you could expect to find carp on or near the surface (even in winter), on shallows and in sunbathing spots out of the wind. In low pressure conditions, deeper water and bites on the bottom are more likely. These are guidelines only – I can think of many times when the carp have broken the rules!