Today we will go through how to be successful at carp fishing in silkweed and fishing lakes full of Canadian pondweed. How many times have you blanked when fishing weedy lakes? Your catch rate is about to get better from reading this article.
This morning, I was fishing a weedy estate lake in Sussex and it’s probably a situation that many of you will face in the next couple of weeks or couple of months as all the vegetation starts to grow. You will find it harder and harder to catch fish and more importantly land fish.
Fishing weedy lakes can be horrendous, many lakes up and down the country are full of weeds. So the tackle I use is really important because you don’t want to hook a fish and then instantly lose it.
Which Rod to Use on a Weedy Lake
The rod I use for weedy lakes is a Terry Hearn model, although it’s got a strong test curve, it’s very forgiving so I don’t get a lot of hook pulls when I’m fishing. I’ve got an onyx big pit reel and that is also important.
I don’t need the big pit reel for casting, but it gives a lot of cranking power and I can gain line quickly. So if I’m holding fish back from burying their heads into the vegetation, this setup really helps.
What Fishing Line to Use in Weedy Waters
The line I use on this reel is horrible, I hate using it, it is awful to cast with, and I can only get about 60 yards because it’s 25 lb fluorocarbon. But, it is so strong, it will never break on you because it’s like having a leader straight through.
It also sinks really quickly and when you have got weed beds in front of you, it will actually sink between the weed because it’s so heavy.
Many people think when it comes to fishing lines and with fluorocarbons in particular, that they will be better off if it’s a thinner line but you’re actually better off if it’s thick, the thicker the line, the heavier it is and it sinks down to the bottom.
My standard fishing line is ESP 15 lb Syncro XT, but for extremely weedy waters and also small venues where I only need to cast short distances, it’s unbeatable at 25 lb.
I will warn you though, if you try it expect terrible tangles, line twist and casting with this line will be severely limited, but if you’re prepared to overcome all of those issues, it will give you an advantage over any other line that I know of, so hopefully, that won’t put you off.
Best Rigs for Weedy Lakes
The best rigs for weedy lakes are simple rigs. If you overcomplicate things, there are more things to go wrong. You should always use pop-up rigs for weed. Moving on then, the terminal tackle is really simple. I’ve got a bit of tungsten party round a float stop with just a few more further back and that just pins everything down to the bottom.
The fluorocarbon, like I already said, is so thick it will sink quickly, but this just helps to get it absolutely pinned, because as I’ve already pointed out when you’re fishing weedy waters, you need to ride over the weed beds and sink between them, otherwise you’ll get a tight line, carp come in to where your rig is and no matter what you do at the rod tip, the will be a taut line in the swim, flank the carp and they will be gone.
I like everything pinned down, as you have probably noticed. I’ve got a piece of tungsten tubing on here, the heaviest 1.75 mm and then I’ve got an ESP lead clip system and when I am putting the lead on, I’ll just ever so slightly squeeze on the tail rubber so the lead can be ejected immediately.
I don’t want to lose leads all of the time on many venues because it will cost a fortune and like you, I have to buy leads, but on waters when it’s really important and that’s in vegetation, then lose your lead at all times.
I’ve then got a little boom section and then this great stuff, it’s fairly new to the market which is the loaded semi-stiff from ESP. It’s just enough to keep kicking the bait away if a carp sucks it up and ejects it, it is just stiff enough and will reset itself every time.
My rigs are always very simple, I never complicate anything and as you can see here, the most basic of bottom rigs. I’m fishing over a clean substrate, it looks very weedy behind me, but there are clean spots and I’m finding a size 5 gripper hook and a big point, is also key.
In weedy waters, I use a big point and at times when you have got weed all up the line or maybe a bit of slack that you can do nothing about, when you are trying to sort the problem out and get the weed off your line, the big point will hold far better.
Fishing Bait For Silkweed
The bait I use for silkweed is a sticky krill boilie, that I put great faith in.
I’ve caught a lot of fish over last few months to over 40 lbs. A little bit of shrink tubing on the hair and a piece of string tubing on the bend as well, to just make sure it comes off exactly where I want to, so the hook turns every time in the mouth. Simple stuff, not complicated, dead, easy.
I had fished for the last 24 hours, I’ve had 6 fish to mid-twenties, so it’s all working. Don’t complicate anything, fish strong tackle, so you don’t lose fish and buy using the kind of equipment I am showing you and I’m sure you’ll have plenty of fish this summer.
The Best Carp Rigs for Silt and Silkweed
There’s been a very special rig on the top secret list up until very recently, this one is called the Ronnie Rig, or, how we know it locally as The Twister Rig. It’s a very efficient, low pop up rig by combining a curve shank hook, in this case a size 4 covert dark mugga hook, just fishing the pop up on the back of the shank, sliding with a little target kwik lok swivel along the hook.
You can can tie up a rig that is phenomenally effective for big fish and it just fishes the popup at the height of the bend of the hook and the length of a size 12 quick lock flexi ring swivel, which is how we attach it on to the hook length.
It twists and turns as good as a long curve shank hook, but when you hook a fish, it straightens out and you’ve got none of the problems associated with potential mouth damage, depending on whether you believe that train of thought.
It’s lovely and flush the bottom, so if you are fishing for weary big fish or finding clear spots in amongst the weed where you are confident you will get away with a low pop up like this, there’s nothing better in terms of hooking mechanics out there at the moment as far we know.
How to Tie The Ronnie Rig
The Ronnie Rig is the best rig for carp fishing in silkweed. I will quickly talk you through how to tie the Ronnie rig. Start off by cutting off a centimetre of large covert supa shrink tube, push it over to the shank, it’s easier to get that on at the start than after you’ve put the quick lock flexi-ring through the eye.
Then obviously kwik lok flexi-ring through the eye, it distorts the gape of the crook on the hook side because of the wire gauge, you just have to bend the kwik lok loop back around a little bit using pliers, or your teeth if you are brave. Then you pull the shrink tubing back down over, shrink it over your kettle, that bit is done.
Next, it’s a simple as putting on with ready-tied pop-ups, a little size 20 targets swivel.
It’s best to use readymade pop up because when you are pulling them into the pop-ups it’s ready to blob the other side, you can’t really do that with the cork balls because you’re reaching a solid face.
If you want to use a cork ball, I’d recommend just putting a large rig ring on the shank instead of the swivel.
To balance them off, you just mould a little bit of critical matter putty around the shrink tube and as you can see it looks tidy and neat and you can just pinch bits of the putty off so that it’s a nice slow sinking presentation.
You can get a few of them tied up in advance, just tuck them into the back of your packet hooks and that way when you come to different situations where you need to pick a different hook link material, it’s very versatile. You can tie it with subdiffusion or a bit of tricklink if you want a monofilament. If you want something to lay over light debris or maybe in silt, a soft hooklink like the ultraskin is absolutely perfect, it sits beautifully and flush on the bottom.
It’s been responsible for an awful lot of big fish catches over the last couple of years, it’s been kept quiet and for good reason, but it’s out there now and you heard it here first, you should have a look it’s brilliant rig.
I have made a lot of mistakes during my fishing sessions and don’t want you to make the same mistakes. I’ve learned the hard way over 20 years of fishing most weekends, testing, tweaking, and testing again and now want to help you excel with your carp fishing.
If you need any help, you can reach me at Fishing Again’s Facebook page