My problem is fishing in silt. Can you please give me some expert advice on how to fish for carp in silt, as the lakes I am currently fishing have a very soft bottom. What would you recommend in the way of rigs and how would you go about baiting up in silt?
I am not sure whether using boilies is best or particles, or would PVA bags be better? Finally, would you suggest pop-ups or bottom baits?
I would be very grateful for your help in this matter.
Ron Bull Thanks for the question, Ron. When fishing silty lakes, or silty areas within a lake, there are a few things you need to think about. Firstly, I would go about finding the smoothest area I could, by having a thorough feel around with a marker rod and lead. I would be looking for the cleanest silt possible, like a sheet of glass. This would suggest to me that fish frequently feed on this area. Secondly, I’d give serious thought to which lead set-up and rig to use. My first choice would be a helicopter lead set-up. As far as hookbait choice goes, this would either be a pop-up or criticallybalanced bait. When it comes to baiting up I would use boilie crumb as this is very light and very slow sinking so would settle lightly on the lake bed.
If I was turning up at the lake and I saw signs of fish, I would opt for a chod rig. This virtually guarantees your rig will be presented properly every single time. You also mentioned solid
PVA bags. If I was going to use them on silty areas I would keep all the air trapped within the bag, so do not pierce it. This method is commonly-known as the parachute bag and it allows everything to settle a lot slower, preventing the bag and rig sinking into the bottom as the lead settles. Another idea would be to use hemp/ particles, alongside a small wafter hookbait. The carp will root around, eating all the hemp and particles and with a small hookbait sitting nicely amongst them, it shouldn’t be too long before you are playing a large carp. If you keep this method going for a few weeks the area will become nice and firm as the carp clear all the silt away whilst looking for food, creating a perfect feeding spot.
I hope this helps.
All the best,
Balanced Wafters are my first choice hookbait when fishing over particles
Boilie crumb works great when fishing over silt
A Chod Rig, perfect when the carp are showing over an area you’re unsure of