In light of a post i read yesterday about someone using an echo sounder in winter and discovering that some fish tend to congregate in mid water, i pondered on the thought of zig rigs / polaris rigs used in winter.
I know of no one that has tried this or any validity to this subject and was wondering what everyone elses thoughts were on the subject ?
General concensus is that fish stay fairly low in the depths for the warmer layers in winter but is this typical for all carp and all waters ?
I've noticed fish hanging mid water when it's cold in my pond. They seem to congregate mid water rather motionless!
I dont think zigging is really gonna pay because this behaviour rarely coincides with any kind of feeding! Could be wrong of course! I just think the fish will feed on the bottom during slightly warmer spells....
On a lake I fished for a bit last year I was casting out with a light lead, until I started bumping it off the tightly shoaled carps backs, and then sticking two zigs at various levels in that spot. Had a few doing that on high pressure, sunny days.
the general rule that i have found using thecho sounder are the carp about 1/2 the depth of the water, ie 12' then the carp would be about 6' off the bottom.
am not saying that all the carp are at that depth, some could be on the bottom or near to the top, but 75% of the time which i have done in winter the carp have been 1/2 way.
some of the carp can be found in shoals, on the lakes i have done this in max of 4), but this is due to the stocking levels. in some cases i have seen carp in 4' in the middle of the night (opps ) when using the echo sounders, and some times on the same lake the carp could not be found in the same areas the previous week, where they went i have no idea.
of course when weed is involve, this balance does change slightly.
I've read articles saying the opposite, ie bright is best. I really don't think it matters that much - try both! It's just the fact there is this thing floating and they just think "WTF is that!" munch!
no just plain black foam.Personally have caught on balsa wood, cork, pop ups & foam.Nick Helleur also wrote some articles about zig rigs not so long ago was shaping cork balls to look like water snails.
I could be wrong but I think there is a significant temperature barrier at 8' depth or thereabouts, and I have always used 8' as a rough guide for zigging in winter. I tend to try to get the bait just above this temperature change level, the theory being that the fish will sit as deep as they can without going into the colder depths. Had a bit of luck fishing 7' or 6' deep over significantly deeper areas. Always with dark baits - more visible from below.
3 grains of black popup corn looks very like a snail. i have seen many fish from the boat cruising the mid / upper layers in the depths of winter using the glass bottomed bucket. from my experience, if they are moving about, they will be up for some food eventually. it depends on the day / venue but i wouldnt rule zigs out at all....
there are some very good points made on this thread.
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if they are moving about, they will be up for some food eventually
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And that's the key to using zigs in winter. Find where they are moving and you are always up with a chance of picking one off.
One of the lakes I fish is over 20' deep in places and quite often the fish are hanging above this in around 6' of the upper layers. Presenting zigs in these situations takes a bit of thinking and messing about but there are ways and means . . . suss that and you may have big edge over those fishing only on the bottom
Lots of lakes seem to 'switch off' over the colder months . . . . but do they really or have the fish just adjusted their habits and patterns to suit. The carp will surely tend to reside in the depths/areas in which they are most comfortable.
My own view on this is that we, the anglers, must change our tactics to suit the conditions and what works well in the warmer months is not necessarily the best approach in the colder ones.