Preparing for spring is something I start looking at as the new year starts.  If I’m sticking to the same waters as last year, you would think that it’s just a continuation of last year.  However, it’s always good to look back and analyzing your results – there are always areas of improvement.  Don’t just look back at last year, take into consideration results from other years, when you may have changed or tweaked your rig, when something noticeable happed and your catch rate dropped or increased.  Over time these small changes can be forgotten.  I’ve always kept a log book since I started to fish, it’s very simple on noting conditions etc, if I switched bait or alter my rigs.  This is how I ended up starting my website as a way for recording a lot more information.  At one time, I had a spreadsheet on excel to analyse this information to try and spot the obeserved changes.  Unfortunately, this went in the bin at some point at a time when work was manic in the shipping world and I had started to progress up the career ladder.  The kids had also arrived and there wasn’t time anymore.  Unfortunately, I lost the data.  This is a shame as I’m sure I could of cobbled it together and back into something usable.


Sorry, I rambled on a bit there and of track somewhat.  My point is, that any small change can alter your catch rate and if you can work out when and especially why, this will give you a greater start for the coming session.  It can be a time-consuming process, but the rewards can out weigh that easily.

If you’re starting on new water, a lot of people like to search for as much past information as possible and study when the big girls come out to maximize their chance.  I don’t disagree with that process. However, I personally like the challenge and there’s always the new to spot and new thoughts on how the lake will work.  We have all seen the new members come along and start catching immediately because they have done something different or do something that was done before but everyone has all found themselves using the current method regardless.  Your bait and approach needs to stand out from the others and give you that edge.


I love to know that new water has the type of carp I’m after and that’s as far as I go.  I don’t Google search all the carp a look at them as target fish anymore, simply because it can take off and become an obsession within my obsession for fishing.  This isn’t good for me anymore.  I like to discover the beauty of the carp as I go along the way and often don’t really want to know their names (if they have them).  I’m not a fan of that either, but I suppose it’s a necessary thing to promote waters and encourage other anglers to go hunting after them.  I grew up fishing for the unknown and do my best to carry on that theme with my carp fishing as best as possible.

My approach to new waters, is simply about confidence in your abilities, self believe.  Start with the bait and the rig you have the most confidence in.  How many times have you been going through a hard patch and you pop onto a club water to bang a few out and your confidence is high again?  You then go back to your syndicate and start catching, simply because there was nothing wrong with your approach, you just need that confidence boost to shows you can do it and you will!


But and it is a big but.  Keep your eyes open and do lots of observation, as I’ve written about before, things may need to be changed, but don’t rush those decisions, you can send yourself off in the wrong direction and it takes a long time to get back to where you started.  If you feel the need to change things about, do it gradually and one step at a time.  If you do multiples things you will never quite know which is the key factor in your lack or gain in catching carp.

Remember to discretely, keep an eye on other anglers, but please no asking.  Give it time and the information will flow and should always be both ways.

screenshot_20201125-145052_video player8076310463657623348..jpg

The real obvious choices; are look in the swim with no carp in, if you get told they don’t like something or if a swim is overgrown, these can be good starting points.  Walk around a lot (this is not so easy with the modern lifestyle of people always), lead about and maker or even use a Deeper sonar.  Please remember to respect other anglers.  If I’m going to do any other these, I really like to do it when the lake is empty or if it’s a large lake, head down the other end away from people.

Time of the bank is a real help, but not always possible.  If you can team up with a friend and fish at a different time of the week, this is a real game-changer on many waters.

In the early sessions on new water, I really like to position myself in a swum that can view as much water as possible, and you can sit all day watering the water.


It’s all about observation in many forms that will bring you success.

More rumblings soon!




UK Fishing Blogs
Use my code for 10% discount The discount code applies to the entire order when purchasing the Deeper Sonars PRO, PRO+, PRO+ 2, CHIRP, CHIRP+, CHIRP 2, CHIRP+ 2. The code is valid in all countries. CODE = DEEPER-H-9OCSF
See the source image
Get 30% off WW5KFTK @checkout


About richardhandel

I would like to give a brief snap shot of my life and introduce myself; My name is Richard Handel and was born in 1965 in Suffolk. I have worked as a UK Operation & Intermodule Manager for a shipping company. I live in Hampshire now and am married with 2 young children, both girls so I am a bit outnumbered even the cat is a girl! I have been fishing since I was about 7 years old. I started on small local rivers in Suffolk, then moved onto gravel pits and then carp fishing. My personal best is a 39.08 mirror, over recent years I have started river fishing again, on the Hampshire Avon, this is a nice break from the carp lakes. My life has turned a big corner this year, the company I was working for relocated their Operation centre to Estonia. I was offered a job at the head office in London. This would have meant a 5 day commute and working in Stratford. As a family, we did not fancy this, as I would hardly spend any time with the children (and the Mrs). So after 22.5 years, I was given a nice redundancy package and with my wife is working full time. I became the house husband. This has meant a complete turn around in my fishing, as I can pick and choose when I go. I have found a splendid new syndicate to fish this year, which includes 5 lakes and some 8 miles of river with only 150 members. It's an amazing change to the way I am able to fish. I am now trying to start my own tackle business and make a bit of a name for myself in the world of fishing, as I have retired from real work. Richard
This entry was posted in Carp fishing and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.