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My last three sessions have all been heartbreakers. Today and one other session though i had what i thought were bites. Today i had a maggot taken of two on the hook and what i thought at least were two really definite slow suck downs. Again on the other session pretty much the same. If i had to guess i would say the bites today were maybe bream, the water was cloudy from yesterdays rain. It was the third spot working down stream, i was float fishing over depth and holding back, but it definitely wasn't the bottom as after the second bite i increased the depth by an inch and run through the swim holding back the same amount to test if it was and it ran through fine. Nothing for the rest of the day. I'm averaging two bites every other session, but hooking nothing!

 

I tackled down in the autumn to 2.4lb mainline and 1.5lb hooklength and generally speaking 16 and 18 hooks, is this too heavy now? there's always the possibility of 4lb + bream so i don't want to go too much lighter

 

Any other advice on shy biting winter fish?

Give a man a fish and he will live for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will live forever

 

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My method is 22 or smaller hooks, Barbless fine wire. 1lb mainline 8oz bottom, One pinkie on a link ledger. trickle say three pinkies increasing to four or five if u catch. Everyhting has to be so fine that you are just after getting any fish.

HTH

Benacre.

I'm lucky to go fishing everyday (when the FPO allows me)

 

East Anglian Fishing Forum

 

http://www.easternanglers.co.uk/

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Hi far bank stalker

 

Much as I would like to make a suggestion or two I cannot, for I would need much more information.

 

What river?

 

How deep?

 

Whats the flow like?

 

How wide is the river?

 

What are the banks like (e.g. tree's bushes etc.,)?

 

What species are you after?

 

What sort of float are you using?

 

How are your weights/shot set up?

 

How much over depth are you fishing?

 

What is the river bottom like?

 

How far out are you fishing?

 

Are you groundbaiting and with what and what pattern of spread and loose feed are you using?

.........................................

 

However even without knowing that, I will make the following very wild suggestions.

 

Try fishing no more than 9" - 23cms over depth - switch your last shot to a number 6 - have the smallest amount of your float showing

 

If that fails try fishing no more than 4" - 10cms over depth - switch your last shot to a number 8 - have the smallest amount of your float showing

 

If that fails try fishing 4" - 10cms under depth - switch your last shot to a number 8 - have the smallest amount of your float showing.

 

If that fails try fishing 9" - 23cms under depth - switch your last shot to a number 8 - have the smallest amount of your float showing.

 

Try a piece of breadflake on either a number 16 or even a number 14 hook.

From a spark a fire will flare up

English by birth, Cockney by the Grace of God

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My method is 22 or smaller hooks, Barbless fine wire. 1lb mainline 8oz bottom, One pinkie on a link ledger. trickle say three pinkies increasing to four or five if u catch. Everyhting has to be so fine that you are just after getting any fish.

HTH

Benacre.

i'll give the line weights and hooksize a go definitely, thanks and i'd be happy with a stickleback at the mo'!

Give a man a fish and he will live for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will live forever

 

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Have I been away and landed back on a different planet where technical fishing is part of the curriculum

 

Forget about going fine and 8 oz bottoms you'll only get yourself more frustrated especially when you try and analise things to the nth degree

 

Sounds like all thats happening is that the fish have switched off due to cold weather and what roach are about are attracted to your maggot BECAUSE its overdepth but all they're doing is sucking the maggot and you can't see the bite because you're overdepth and the fish are'nt swimming away with the hookbait, fish caster and you might be a bit luckier but my guess is they'll shell those just the same

 

I'd be fishing with a bigger bait offering hard on the bottom, a big lob or a big pinch of bread in the hope that your bait is big enough and tempting enough to fool a fish into thinking its worth expending lots of energy in order to snaffle your bait

 

At this time of year and with the temperatures we've just experienced theres still too much cold water in the river systems to make fish active so they shut down and don't move much and as a rsult of that don't feed much

 

It'll all change for the better in a few weeks if we get a steady period of warmer weather and then you'll notice your catch rates go up even with smaller baits

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Hi far bank stalker

 

Much as I would like to make a suggestion or two I cannot, for I would need much more information.

 

What river?

 

How deep?

 

Whats the flow like?

 

How wide is the river?

 

What are the banks like (e.g. tree's bushes etc.,)?

 

What species are you after?

 

What sort of float are you using?

 

How are your weights/shot set up?

 

How much over depth are you fishing?

 

What is the river bottom like?

 

How far out are you fishing?

 

Are you groundbaiting and with what and what pattern of spread and loose feed are you using?

.........................................

 

However even without knowing that, I will make the following very wild suggestions.

 

Try fishing no more than 9" - 23cms over depth - switch your last shot to a number 6 - have the smallest amount of your float showing

 

If that fails try fishing no more than 4" - 10cms over depth - switch your last shot to a number 8 - have the smallest amount of your float showing

 

If that fails try fishing 4" - 10cms under depth - switch your last shot to a number 8 - have the smallest amount of your float showing.

 

If that fails try fishing 9" - 23cms under depth - switch your last shot to a number 8 - have the smallest amount of your float showing.

 

Try a piece of breadflake on either a number 16 or even a number 14 hook.

hi watatoad and thanks for the reply. fishing my local canals at the moment, the Llangollen canal and the Shropshire union where it meets the Llangollen canal. The Llan' canal is fed directly by the Dee and really has all the characteristics and species of a small river ( barring the Salmon family and Barbel, none in the Dee here either, they were introduced but never took) the same is true of the Shropshire union for at least 6 miles, past that i'm not too sure, but i think it becomes more canal like. The bottoms are strating at the Llan end stones with patches of weed and silt getting more and more silty as it reaches the aqueduct. Where i've been fishing about 50/50 silt and stone. The width varies from 15ft to 25ft and the banks are mostly concrete with small area's of natural earth bank or rockface. I tend to fish these natural banks as the fish holding spots are easier to identify

 

The area i have been fishing recently, on the Shrops end due to the dreaded E.A. hopefully not vandalising the Llan end, it varies in depth from two to four feet probably averaging at around three and a bit. lots of Dace, some decent Roach, small chub (up to about 2lb, that subject will make another thread actually) specimen perch and pike and i'm told Ruff in some tucked away spots. Oh, big bream in any of the marina's or basins too. I don't really target these due to the 'snotty bin lid problem' but i get a few now and then. They seem to be all a large percentage of the local anglers are after and to be honest living in the current seems to make them fight well.

 

The cold weather has made me a bit lazy and i've been fishing pot luck for dace and chub, which i was getting up until the first big snow. I've been using either 50/50 brown crumb/dynamite baits silver x river or 50/50 brown crumb/van den eynde river ace and baiting in my usual method which is three or big balls of groundbait followed by smaller regular ones for half hour or so then start running through the swim with one or two maggots (colour usually on a whim but red and white or plain white have proved best) with a small ball of groundbait on every cast, switching to just a few maggots once the swim is on. As i write this it's actually occurring to me that that's probably alot for winter?

 

I tend to fish about two to three inches overdepth and maybe move an inch or two either way, i will definitely try all the suggestion regarding depth. i've been using crystal loafers mostly for awhile but i found an old broken crystal stick which i was thinking of modifying as a very small stick, will it work in a slow current?

 

I know where the chub hang out, i think i probably need to target them more specifically. Past experience seems to point to them not really accepting some of the more obvious meat baits, just worm and maggot, but that i think is just due to size, not sure really. Anyway thanks for the suggestions

Give a man a fish and he will live for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will live forever

 

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Have I been away and landed back on a different planet where technical fishing is part of the curriculum

 

Forget about going fine and 8 oz bottoms you'll only get yourself more frustrated especially when you try and analise things to the nth degree

 

Sounds like all thats happening is that the fish have switched off due to cold weather and what roach are about are attracted to your maggot BECAUSE its overdepth but all they're doing is sucking the maggot and you can't see the bite because you're overdepth and the fish are'nt swimming away with the hookbait, fish caster and you might be a bit luckier but my guess is they'll shell those just the same

 

I'd be fishing with a bigger bait offering hard on the bottom, a big lob or a big pinch of bread in the hope that your bait is big enough and tempting enough to fool a fish into thinking its worth expending lots of energy in order to snaffle your bait

 

At this time of year and with the temperatures we've just experienced theres still too much cold water in the river systems to make fish active so they shut down and don't move much and as a rsult of that don't feed much

 

It'll all change for the better in a few weeks if we get a steady period of warmer weather and then you'll notice your catch rates go up even with smaller baits

Ha! Guilty as charged! I am an insufferable nerd! Some times it helps, other times not. I've been going out on days when the temps three or four degrees above the previous day, which i suppose is more hopeful than realistic.

 

At the risk of sounding even more silly i don't know how to fish any other method than trotting and i only own centre pins and two float rods ( built cane for the river and carbon for the canal). pretty sure i can fish the bottom with my cane rod but really i'm relearning to fish after twenty years of absence. I got put off a bit in the mid 80's when it was all going super tech and i like the simplicity of float fishing. I have thought a few times though that i might be missing a trick so maybe i'll look at some simple ledgering rigs

Give a man a fish and he will live for a day. Teach a man to fish and he will live forever

 

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You could try something very simple like hooking the maggots across the middle :) Someone once commented on AN, that that was the best bit of advice he had ever read.

 

Den

"When through the woods and forest glades I wanderAnd hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees;When I look down from lofty mountain grandeur,And hear the brook, and feel the breeze;and see the waves crash on the shore,Then sings my soul..................

for all you Spodders. https://youtu.be/XYxsY-FbSic

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You could try something very simple like hooking the maggots across the middle :) .

Yes, or thread a single maggot onto a size 18

 

The other simple thing is the distance from bottom shot to hook. This bottom shot is very important - it is the tell-tale shot that governs bite indication.

 

Start with the shot at about 8" from the hook

 

If you get sucked maggots and don't see the bites, move that shot a couple of inches closer to the hook.

 

Conversely, if you get snatches and miss them, move it a couple of inches further away from the hook.

 

...and try at different depths/different lengths of line laying on.

 

If all else fails, try a different month :lol::lol: .

 

 

RNLI Governor

 

World species 471 : UK species 105 : English species 95 .

Certhia's world species - 215

Eclectic "husband and wife combined" world species 501

 

"Nothing matters very much, few things matter at all" - Plato

...only things like fresh bait and cold beer...

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