Posted by Aqua Products Wednesday 18th January, 2017
Andy Ormrod - My Autumn / Winter 2016


I'm sat at my desk with the heating on, looking out over a very frosty garden, everything is frozen, winter is here. During the last three months I've been out on the bank trying to make the most of the autumn and catch a few carp. The transition from autumn to winter is always a tough one for me mentally; knowing that the fish fish are at their best weights and in beautiful condition makes our prize that much bigger both in a physical and metaphorical sense is one thing, however knowing each passing week is likely to be colder than the one before, making it so much more difficult to catch the fish we prize so highly, is another. Call it what you want “The Big Feed Up" or "The Autumn Harvest" really can be feast, if you get it right, or famine, if you get it wrong.



I know that's a bit of a bold opening and in reality my fishing has been pretty average if I'm honest. I haven't broken any pots or caught any particularly big fish but having said that I have caught carp on most sessions and more importantly I've enjoyed my fishing in some beautiful surroundings. Back in September I spent a few days under my M3 down at the iconic location of Wraysbury which turned into a titanic struggle with the vast amounts of weed in front of me. I fished a swim called The Lawns and after a good plumb around I found two open gravelly spots out towards the end of Cigar Island which were bordered by some pretty significant weed. I fished a wafter rig on the spots which felt the most clean and a pop up rig on the areas which felt a little less trustworthy. I had seen fish before and after plumbing in the general area and so I my baiting approach was little and often so as not to make too much noise all at once. I Spombed a mixture of hemp, corn and Krill boilie and fished a variety of Sticky Baits pop ups and wafters over the top. I was lucky enough to land a fish soon after dark on my first night and carry on getting the odd bite here and there. I didn't inconvenience any of the big scaly Wraysbury residents but a 23lb common was enough to make me happy when it rolled into my landing net on the first night.



In my work fishing I've had several carp tutorials on a variety of waters during the autumn months of September, October and November. I fished down at Linear fisheries on one of my favourite lakes. My client Ryan joined me to fish Smiths and Hardwick on the famous Oxfordshire complex and during his tutorial Ryan went on to land a new personal best carp of 32lb. This session took place in September and again the tactics were clear, after introducing a bed of bait Ryan was to top up his spot with three or four Spombs of hemp, corn and Krill after every fish, it worked a treat and he's arranged another trip for next September with me! I've also run a number of beginners or introductory carp fishing tutorials on my local fishery Bradshaw Hall. Several anglers have joined my there recently but none faired better than Sam who banked 11 double figure carp in a very busy day with me a couple of weeks ago in early November. As the weather has been slowly getting cooler my tactics have changed and instead of fishing for numbers of fish I have guided my customers into more of a "one bite at a time" routine, especially as their sessions have been based around a day session approach rather than having several days to build a swim.



In my own fishing I've concentrated on day sessions here and there, I've seen my fair share of captures mostly by staying mobile and casting single baits at showing fish or fishing over a few free offerings. I did spend a couple of very cold and wet nights in late November on the bank of a syndicate water over in Yorkshire with a good friend, I popped the Supa Wrap on my M3 which gave us plenty of room to get out of the worst of the weather and have a good catch up. We unfortunately blanked, which can happen to all of us, however this was more frustrating than normal as I did get a chance when one of the resident carp picked up my hook bait, only for me to fluff my lines and lose the culprit in a weed bed. On a more positive note I've been out on the bank with Dan from Aqua HQ, we've been having a crack at a bit of filming. With a bit of luck you may be able to see the fruit of our labours on Aqua's various social media platforms.



Looking forward to the real winter, my plans are based mostly around day sessions on local waters which have good winter form, I might get the odd night on a new water that I've managed to get a ticket for and I'll definitely be spending a few days up in the Lake District in search of a pike or two. 


Andy Ormrod


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