Margin Fishing

How many of us inspect the margins when we arrive at a lake?

You might want to, if you want to improve your catch rate. Fishing for carp in the margins can be extremely productive if you find the right places and apply good angling tactics. How many fishermen/fisherwomen ignore the margins when fishing? They see all that water out in front of them and think that the fish must be out there. I often see anglers using three fishing rods with all of them cast out to the far bank. With so many anglers casting out far it makes the margins a safe place for carp to hang out. In fact, the margins can even be the best places to target the bigger carp in the lake.

Fishing in the Margins

As long as you’re quiet when setting up and fishing, you can take fish from the margins in most lakes. Carp have great hearing and will be able to pick up vibrations from the surrounding bank, so you do need to be as quiet as possible.

Centre Pin Fishing Reel

When it comes to margin fishing I tend to use a small 8ft rod and centre pin reel; this allows me to fish in-between trees, and other places where it would be hard to use a 12ft rod. It’s best to wear dark green or brown fishing clothing, or better still, use camouflage clothing, as you can blend into the surrounding. I like to find the more subtle features rather than the obvious ones such as overhanging trees, island banks, etc. I like to look for features like undercut banks, posts or trees sticking out of the water, small bulrushes, bushes, lily pads or inlet pipes all these can be ideal feeding spots for carp.

Carp taking bait

I like to use a small float, 8lb fluorocarbon line and a size 10 hook partnered with good quality bait. One of my best methods is to wrap paste around a small boilie, many fish have taken using this approach, as the carp are not wised up to these methods. So as the weather starts to warm up go out and have a go, this is a very rewarding way of catching carp guaranteed to provide a good fight whatever size fish you’ve hooked into.

Landing the Carp

All the best and good fishing!

Fantastic result!

A Day Session Success

I decided to go down to the new lake I’ve started fishing this year and complete a short five hour session on the bank, just to get to grips with the water and hopefully locate any moving carp. This seemed somewhat a difficult task as the lake is 75 acres with just under 100 known carp to its name. So expecting no great achievements for the foreseeable future I set up for the session. As I was doing so I surprisingly caught a glimpse of a carp roll about 50 yards out by a small weedy patch. As any carper would probably do, I decided to put a bright coloured bait and a PVA bag filled with 10 boilies and a small amount of pellets over the top of it. Then all I had to do was wait line tightened and Delkin bite alarm turned on.
In the meantime I put some of my favourite rigs together ready to put my other two rods out.

I always prefer to fish the withy rig in the margins usually over a bed of hot chilli hemp. I find this is a good method for picking up carp patrolling close in and it is easy to get all the hemp out in the required spots.

For a long distance rod I like to paste up 2 boilies on the hair and pair it with a PVA bag cast out as far as I can. The paste starts to leak flavour the moment it hits the water providing an ideal attraction needed especially on a shorter session. I enjoy picking fish up from the depths of the lake they always seem to fight that little bit better

Then it was time to get my other rods out, I landed the second rod to the left of me about 20 yards out in the margin and the third one 80 yards out in front of me. All was set and I was ready for a cup of tea as I sat down, with my son Rhys, watching the water for any movement of fish.

Not too many minutes later I had 2 bleeps on my margin rod, then it stopped, within ten minutes the rod scream off and I was in to a hard fighting fish. It soon gave up and in the net it went, at last my first fish on the bank and it wasn’t looking like one of the smaller ones either. Out came the scales, then to my surprise it weighed in at 32lb not bad for a few hours even if I do say so myself.

I was on cloud nine, but I still had time to catch other carp, this time I wadded out and dropped a few handfuls of hemp in the same place and slowly lowered my hook bait over the top of it. Then I spent the next 20 minutes watching the water hoping in anticipation for any more action.

As I looked out to the lake I noticed some bubbles about 70 yards out, not far from my bait, I watched and there seemed to be more than one fish feeding in the area with bubbles coming up all around. Numerous thoughts were going through my head shall I pull one rod in and put a bait over there? Or do I hope the fish will stay in the area and get onto my bait later? I went for the second approach. Well I waited and waited but no sign of them coming out. It was time to pack up and go home, I was putting my second rod away when out of the blue my last rod screamed off. I was into my second fish, and was a bag of nerves for some reason playing this one. What a fight! As it pulled more line form my clutch, rod bent over I started gaining distance and the carp was getting closer. Then it made for the surface and rolled over when without warning the worse feeling you could ever have – a hook pull. I was so mad but then that’s fishing, I carried on packing away and took the long walk back to the van…