Winter carp rigs can be difficult to get right if you don’t know what is available to you.

Winter carp fishing can be an exciting and rewarding experience.

With the right equipment and technique, you can catch some impressive specimens.

One of the most important pieces of tackle for carp fishing in winter is a rig that is able to withstand cold temperatures and icy conditions.

In this article, we will explore the different types of rigs available for carp fishing in cold weather, as well as the best techniques for successful winter carp fishing.

We will also provide tips for selecting and setting up effective rigs in order to maximize your catch.

So grab your warmest coat, and some hot cocoa, and let’s get ready to brave the elements and tackle some winter carp!

There are lots of different winter carp rigs that are perfect for use in the cold winter months. 

Here are a few of my favourite maggot, pop-up, and Bottom bait presentations.

Maggot Rigs

Lots of rigs work just as well in the winter as they do in the summer, however, some such as Maggot Rigs, are more popular in the winter when the nuisance fish are less active. 

Carp also seem to favor them more because they are easier to digest in the cold than some baits.  Here are two versions of maggot rigs that have caught me lots of fish.

Maggot Clip

This is a quick and easy-to-tie rig that works well to present a ball of maggots on the bottom.  Using the maggot clip makes this rig much quicker and easier to rebait than other similar presentations.

Balanced Maggot Rig

This rig is a more difficult rig to tie than the Maggot Clip and must be balanced carefully to get the best results, as it must waft enticingly just off the bottom but with the hook still just touching.

When used correctly it will fly up into the mouth of any fish that sucks at the bait much easier than a non-balanced bait, catching the fish by surprise and resulting in more hookups.

Pop Up Rigs

In winter I tend to fish a lot of pop-ups either as single hook baits or over small spreads of boilies. 

Bright pop-ups are easy for the fish to see and I think they are often taken first so even if the fish are not feeding enough to clear a bed of bait you will often get a bite where a standard bottom bait would be missed. 

They also work well as single hook baits, where they stand up off the bottom keeping clear of any debris. 

Being very visible to passing fish these can work well either cast to showing fish or cast to likely holding areas like deep spots in the lake or snags where carp feel safe and are likely to visit regularly.

Chod Rigs

You can present the Chod rig in several different ways; the chod rig is my favorite winter carp length.

The popular method of mounting on a length of the lead core, or on a pre-tied type leader is available from several different manufacturers.

These have the added advantage of weighing down the end of the rig-aiding presentation. 

There is also the naked choddy on the line, which is a far more subtle presentation, however, must be fished with a very slack line or the rig will lift off the bottom and not sit right.

One of the advantages of the Chod Rig is that it works well when cast to showing fish, as it presents a bait well over most lake beds and is also relatively tangle-free.

However, as with all helicopter-style rigs, every consideration must be given to safety (can a fish get rid of the rig if it gets broken off).

Hinge Stiff Rigs

I use this rig a lot over small spreads of boilies as it presents a bait clear of any bottom debris and is very visible to fish in the area.  It presents a bait in a very similar way to the chod rig, but because of the boom section, it gives the fish something different to deal with which means it can work well on waters where the chod rig is used lots and it can be fished on a lead clip so is very safe.

Combi Rigs

The Combi Rig works well as a single hook bait or over small spreads of bait.  It is a more subtle presentation than the other two as it keeps the bait closer to the bottom, which I think, sometimes the fish can be less wary of.

Bottom Bait Rigs

Bottom baits can still work really well in winter especially if the carp have been caught lots on pop-up rigs. 

I think they can become nervous about baits off the bottom so can shy away from them.  I still like to have some form of color on my bottom baits

Either in the way of artificial corn on top of the boilie or in a snowman type of presentation, which can be used with a whole boilie bottom bait and a pop-up or fished ¾ bottom bait to ½ a Pop-Up.

These can work well because they give a bit of color but are slow sinking the rigs that set themselves better and also taking away the weight of the hook means they are often taken more confidently by the fish. 

Another way of achieving this is to use wafters, which are now available from most bait companies.

KD Rigs

These work well as a snowman rig or any slow-sinking presentation.  It can also be used with a pop-up by placing a split shot on the hair under the bait to counteract its buoyancy.

Blowback Rig

This is probably one of the more versatile winter carp rigs.  It can be used with a straight bottom bait as a snowman rig or even as a pop-up rig by placing a split shot on the line under the hook.

How to tie a Blowback Rig


Whether you’re a seasoned veteran or a beginner, having the right winter carp rig makes all the difference. By understanding the different types of rigs and their benefits, as well as learning some essential tips for setting them up correctly, you will be able to maximize your success and enjoy a rewarding day of winter carp fishing! With a little preparation, the cold weather won’t be able to stop you from catching some impressive specimens. So put on your warmest coat and get ready for an adventure – it’s time to go winter carp fishing!


What types of winter carp rigs are available?

There are several types of rigs specifically designed for winter carp fishing, including the Chod Rig, Bottom Bait Rig, Maggot Rig, and the KD Rig. Each type has its own benefits and application, so it is important to research and understand which one is best suited for your needs.

How do I set up a winter carp rig?

Setting up a winter carp rig properly is essential to having successful fishing trips. Start by selecting the appropriate type of rig and bait, then adjust the size and length of the hook link depending on the water depth and conditions. Be sure to add a PVA bag for extra security if needed.

What are the best baits to use for winter carp fishing?

Boilies, maggots, and sweetcorn are all popular choices for winter carp fishing. Experiment with different types of bait to find out what works best in your area and conditions. Additionally, adding dips and enhancers can help to boost the attractiveness of your bait.

What are some tips for successful winter carp fishing?

Patience is key when it comes to winter carp fishing – take your time and wait for bites. Also, make sure you have the right clothing and equipment to stay warm and dry, as well as a sturdy rod to handle the cold. Finally, use appropriate rigs for your location and conditions – this will help you maximize your chances of catching some impressive specimens!

Are Ronnie rigs good in winter?

Ronnie rigs can be an effective option for winter carp fishing. The rig is designed to keep your bait near the bottom of the lake or river bed, which is beneficial in cold water when carp tend to stay closer to the bottom. Additionally, the rig is versatile and works well with a wide range of baits, making it easy to experiment with different options. To get the most out of your Ronnie rig, make sure to adjust the size and length of the hook link for optimum results. With a little bit of preparation and experimentation, Ronnie rigs can be an effective solution for winter carp fishing.

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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

Last Updated on February 2, 2024 by Shane