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UKCARP MAGAZINE 18 JANUARY 3RD 2012PLANNING18It takes motivation to drag yourself out fishing in the depths of winter. The banks are muddy, the landscape bleak and, worse still, the carp don't want to throw themselves on to your hook. The result is that slowly but surely the urge to get out and fish declines and you become yet another solar-powered carp angler who only surfaces when the sun is out. But with a little bit of thought and planning you can still catch. The first thing is to pick a venue with winter form - no point in banging your head against a brick wall on a water that's tough in summer, let alone winter. The next thing is to decide how you are going to approach the water. Are you going to bivvy-up for days on end or fish short sessions? For short trips it's mega-important to understand the weather because it can alter your approach to your day or evening. We are an island, and two things affect our climate more than anything - the first is the sea, the second is Europe's land mass. The best thing you can do is find a good weather website (there are loads out there) and this will give you a big insight into what will be happening over the days ahead.LOW PRESSUREA low pressure weather feature generally has a number of things that go hand in hand with it. When such a front moves in it is often from the Atlantic, and this brings wind, rain and generally fairly warm weather. These are the sort of conditions when the carp will feed -this is true all year round, but more so in winter. Strong winds from the south or the west, which will have been warmed by the sea, should see the carp feeding on your lake. If this type of weather is forecast, then plan your fishing. Decide on the best area a few days before the front is due to arrive and trickle a bit of bait over the spots you are planning to fish. This means that as the weather changes with the approaching front and the carp start to feed there will be a little bit of food there to tempt them. When you arrive you won't need to feed and will just be able to fish singles or small bags, and hopefully catch a few carp. Always remember, low pressure is generally good for fishing.HIGH PRESSUREWhen an area of high pressure dominates our weather it generally means bright sunny days, light winds and cold "When an area of high pressure dominates our weather it generally means bright sunny days, light winds and cold nights"WEATHER UKCarp explains winter weather and how to plan Wind speed, temperature and air pressure will all influence how carp feed in the winter.

UKCARP MAGAZINE 19 JANUARY 3RD 2012Weather apps are available for your mobile.nights. So long as it doesn't settle for ages (which is usually the onset of a freeze) you can also plan your fishing accordingly. Under these conditions the fish don't normally feed very hard, so single hookbaits are the order of the day, but one huge factor to consider is that the carp are often high in the water. This in turn means that zigs can often get a bite or two when all else fails, so be prepared. It can also be surprisingly warm on high pressure days, and it is often worth seeking out those sheltered areas that don't get the cold breeze. The weak winter sun can often create little hotspots where the fish will briefly sun themselves. It is well worth doing your homework and seeing if you have any potentially warm areas on your venue. High pressure often means tricky fishing, but by understanding this and choosing the right tactic or area to suit the conditions may well put a bonus fish on the bank. So there you have it - by understanding the weather basics, you can up your catch rate this winter. PATTERNSn your fi shing accordingly by being your own forecaster