I haven’t done a lot of carp fishing this winter, but with time running out on the traditional angling season, I wanted to get a session in on my favourite venue for the winter months. While the overwhelming majority of stillwaters are now open all year round, this one still follows the March 15-June 16 closure period. Like other anglers, I have my views on the close season, but ultimately you just go with the rules laid down by the venue owners.

I was there for an afternoon and the action (three carp on the bank) is captured on the accompanying video. I had the place to myself, which is pretty much how it is in the visits I make there in the winter. I do tend to fish midweek though and that certainly helps. Plus it’s the winter and that definitely sorts the men from the boys, with no slur intended of course.

This is the time of the year when the two seasons of spring and winter battle with each, neither wanting to give way. The latter wants to hold on but the former is determined to take over. This was evidenced on the day, when on one hand I saw a flock of winter-visiting redwing feeding on the berries and yards away the likes of blackbirds and dunnocks chased each other in mating ritual.

It was also noticeable with the water temperature, which although the day itself was very spring-like, the home of the carp was still firmly living in winter. That’s why, on arrival I put out a certain amount of bait and then topped it up as I saw fit. The problem is if you pile it all in at the start, and it turns out to be a very slow day, you can’t take it back out again.

It was a tough session in that the fish weren’t exactly on a feeding frenzy. The lake is very shallow and silty and the carp give themselves away by the presence of feeding bubbles. This time though there were none, so the five runs that I had, I considered to be a result. I don’t get many hook-pulls but this time I began and ended with one. Fortunately though, the three runs in the middle all resulted in fish on the bank.

The choice of boilie was M1. Although not listed on the SBS site as a specific all-year-round bait, nevertheless I do have lots of confidence in it during the winter months. That’s the key really to fishing in general, and in this context, bait in particular. Combined with M1 pellets and pop-ups dipped in M1 glug – I do like the coordinated approach – I was more than confident.

I also, as you can see in the video, put some Flumino groundbait out. There are lots of smaller fish, of various species, in the venue and I for one don’t mind them in the swim. In fact I positively welcome them. I’m a great believer that a crowd attracts a crowd. Get roach and so on feeding and the bigger, more wary carp, will feel more confident themselves about getting their heads down.

The lake I fished, by the way, is at Dudmaston and is on the Kinver Freeliners ticket. There are no day tickets available but you can join the club. The downside to that, however, is that there’s a long waiting list. You can always put your name down though, it will definitely be worth the wait.

Last weekend, following a 4-0 victory against Bangor City, The New Saints wrapped up a sixth consecutive Dafabet Welsh Premier League title. It was the eight trophy I’ve seen the club lift since I’ve been there. Below is a link to the piece I wrote on the club website following the game.

Finally, away from fishing, I do quite like a selfie. Below is a selection of shots from this week – all football related – that have appeared on my Facebook account. I like the fact that I can embed posts here on this blog. It’s still angling-focused but once I’ve written about the piscatorial goings on I like to include some other stuff. That’s why it’s now more of a personal all-round blog rather than exclusively fishing.