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Winter Pike Fishing.


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Having not done much Still water pike fishing, I was wondering how active they were once the temperatures drop? I intend having a rod out for pike this winter with a dead bait approach. How often would you re-cast if you had no action?

I've fished for pike on rivers where I have kept on the move and on still waters with lures and spinners. Not done much dead baiting on a still water.

It would be nice to see a decent sized pike on the mat. Haven't fished for them for over a decade. Caught them to low doubles in the past on the river.

But one of the carp anglers landed an 18 on a fish meal boilie in June. Think this lake has the potential to do one or two big pike. But they are largely ignored.Any suggestions most welcome.

cheers.

Edited by Big Common
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As it's going to take 2nd seat to your carp rods it's just about picking a spot out the way really & maybe not the pikey bit of the swim . Don't treat it any different to your river set up mate apart from lead size maybe . personally I always prefer popped up dead baits deadly especially if there not fished for :wink:

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I tend to keep my pike fishing and carp fishing separate :wink:

 

Deadbaits on my local Stillwater I leave one out pretty much for a couple of hours, and the other I recast every hour if I haven't had a take.

 

If I haven't had a take I do tend to change deadbaits to try something else, or simply a different area.

I have my favourite deads, Mackeral, but have found some waters there are preferences for other baits. One lake I caught more on blueys, in fact every fish except one, a mate and I caught came on blueys, the one exception was a take on a half herring.

 

On the adjacent lake we only got takes on Mackeral.

Next strange piece of info is that on the bluey lake, most takes came on float paternostered set ups, and we fished one ledgered and one paternostered every time.

The Mackeral lake, every take came on bottom fished, ledgered baits.

 

Considering the two lakes are separated by a spit of land that is weird!

 

Someone in PAC commented that a pike may ignore a bait you have cast right next to it for hours, then just decide to take it, so if you move it you could be knocking your chances, although I think in many cases if you land a bait next to a fish you will get a quick take.

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Thanks Nick. I'll probably just start by putting a third rod out with a popped up Mackeral to start with. The carp are still on the munch at the moment. But when they slow down I'll have a little dabble at the pike. I'm sure there's quite a few in there.

That is odd about your lakes. I expect there are many tricks to learn as with all species, light levels, air pressure , topography , thermals etc.

I have stubbornly stuck it out solely for carp in winters past. But when things go really quiet , it's all to easy to miss the odd trip. And having just started enjoying myself on the bank again this year, I really don't want to slow it down too much.

Bit of pike fishing might help keep the toes warmer.

Cheers for the tips.

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I would go with Nicks approach, go carp or pike, you risk gorging a pike if you leave it too long before striking, split attention is never good, different approach though, most of my pike angling has been done on the river, sink and draw deadbaits scored highly, on the reservoirs, drift floats with a bait suspended below at 4-6 feet, if you have ever seen a thousand roach exit the water with a noise like an express train you would understand why, the pike attack from below, and sometimes a  porpoirsing crocodile will explode through the surface, the drifter covers a lot of water and is very visible, if cats are present the dead bait approach balanced with balsa spears, running rigs in an elastic band at the rod butt, a cat will drop if it feels resistence.

Edited by carpmachine
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Good advice CM. It shall be One or the other....

I can always remember float fishing a sprat at about half depth on the river as a kid. This huge pike, must have been all of 6lb, came up through the cabbages from beneath.

It was around the time the film "Jaws" came out, and it's exactly what it reminded me of. One of those sweet moments that you never forget, growing up.

Needless to say it missed my sprat and on telling the tale it was more like 30lb.

There are no cats present, but I'll take the advice from this thread and just do one or the other.

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Thanks Nick. I'll probably just start by putting a third rod out with a popped up Mackeral to start with. The carp are still on the munch at the moment. But when they slow down I'll have a little dabble at the pike. I'm sure there's quite a few in there.That is odd about your lakes. I expect there are many tricks to learn as with all species, light levels, air pressure , topography , thermals etc.I have stubbornly stuck it out solely for carp in winters past. But when things go really quiet , it's all to easy to miss the odd trip. And having just started enjoying myself on the bank again this year, I really don't want to slow it down too much.Bit of pike fishing might help keep the toes warmer.Cheers for the tips.

I think I know why the two lakes fished so differently.

 

The larger lake was more heavily fished by more pike anglers, and I think that the pike had been pressured on most deadbaits, with the exception of blueys, so where Colin and I were being different, and casting regularly we simply picked up on a group of fish a big quicker than other anglers, although eventually we had a blank or two as well.

 

The small lake is bowl shaped, with a ledge around it. We got our takes with the Mackeral deadbait landing on the edge of the ledge, basically perfectly positioned for the pike to pick up from underneath.

 

Sadly I can't remember the weather pressure during most of the trips, but it wasn't too cold, until the final trip on the smaller lake we managed when it was only just above freezing and with showers, and my mackeral was picked up by a 20+.

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I've always done well with deadbaits and the sink and draw method. Pollen is a good buoyant bait, smelt as sink and draw. Funny thing is, I've never caught pike at night, and I have done enough of it in the past. This winter may see me sticking both rods out for pike during daylight hours and carp at night.

I've used all sorts of bait, but I wouldn't give an area any longer than an hour or so, keep searching, you'll find them eventually. Look for ambush points, where there used to be weed or a narrowing of some kind. Pike love structure to hide in, as they are mainly an ambush creature try and think where you would be waiting :)

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  • 3 months later...

My pike fishing this year has been a blank. I've spent 6 trips on a new lake that has not had much pressure or form, and have not yet received a single take, despite trying various baits, float fishing, paternostering, ledgering on the bottom or popping them up.

A guy who comes into the shop drifted a deadbait right across the whole lake a number of times and had no takes!

 

I was going to go this morning (Sunday 22nd January), but heard reports the local lakes are frozen, and the local river is not fishing at all well, and areas have been fished out.

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My pike fishing this year has been a blank. I've spent 6 trips on a new lake that has not had much pressure or form, and have not yet received a single take, despite trying various baits, float fishing, paternostering, ledgering on the bottom or popping them up.

A guy who comes into the shop drifted a deadbait right across the whole lake a number of times and had no takes!

 

I was going to go this morning (Sunday 22nd January), but heard reports the local lakes are frozen, and the local river is not fishing at all well, and areas have been fished out.

 

It's a shame that you haven't been able to wet a line on your weekend off Nick , but maybe Sky is getting some long walks ? .

 

You could always try Husky Racing  :wink:

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