Luke Stevenson - Autumn Boilie Fishing
Late Summer and early Autumn might just be Luke's favourite period on the big carp calendar. A period that's seen him catch plenty of bigguns over the years, many on his favoured boilie approach. Here, he discusses how he goes about his Autumn angling.
Late Summer going into Autumn, is traditionally a brilliant time in the big carp calendar and a prime time to give the carp some food, with boilies being at the forefront of my approach.
I fish boilies all year round, being as they are so easy and convenient to use. You can be fairly versatile with their use i.e., by using them whole, as chops or crumbed up.
I tend to use boilies right the way through the Autumn and will only change things up when I’m really struggling for bites, which often happens as the water cools and temperatures begin to plummet, in which case I’ll start applying bits and pieces such as boilie crumb, corn and naturals.
September onwards, I like to target the deeper, silty zones as I often find these are the areas the carp spend longer periods of time and its these areas, they tend to do most of their feeding, as they harvest the naturals that reside within the silt.
Ultimately though, I still let the carp tell me where to fish and put all my effort into finding them. Staying up late into the night and listening for shows, then getting up at dawn to look for areas of bubbling is so important when it comes to locating carp through the Autumn. Once I’ve established where they are doing their feeding, I’ll then begin to focus on those zones.
Ultimately though, I still let the carp tell me where to fish and put all my effort into finding them.
Once the area is located, I mentally note exactly where the bubbling or shows have been and then when I’m confident the fish have stopped feeding and moved off the spot, I’ll then cast a marker set up to the area and check it marries up to exactly where the signs were, often by looking from different swims as a reference point. Once I’m happy I’m on the area and have found a presentable bottom, I’ll get some bait out, which typically, through the Autumn, would be my favoured Krill.
If I can, for ranges up to 60 yards, I’ll use the Medium or Heavy Katapult, which I feel gives a better spread and is also slightly more discrete and subtle than baiting with a Spomb. If the seagulls are a pain, I’ll cast the Spomb past the spot, and leave the SLR braid floating across the surface and then bait via catapult. This massively puts the seagulls on edge and allows you to get bait out.
The quantity of bait I apply is totally dependent on the stock and situation, so it’s all about reading the situation and acting accordingly. Typically, I’m a big baiter and like to give them a good few kilos. Once the carp have a taste for your boilie, you can really get them tuned into it. The lake I’ve been fishing this Autumn is quite small, with a good stock of big carp to well over 40lb. This coincided with mild Autumn weather, I’ve not been shy with my bait, giving them several kilos on a regular basis and have been getting consistent results for my efforts.
When it comes to the technicalities of this style of angling, I generally try to use a match the hatch hookbait, just something less blatant for those old weary ones to spook from. A Chod or Hinge is my go-to presentation, rigs I know will always have me presented, something so important in my mind.
This Autumn, I've been fishing over relatively smooth silt, so I’ve gone in with my trusted Hinge Rig. This I set up with super slack 12lb Kontour straight through to a Hybrid Lead Clip and 2.5oz Lead. To this, I fish a long 30lb N-Trap Soft Hooklink. I tie a big loop at one end, and loop to loop onto the Hybrid Lead clip. This long loop acts like an Anti-Tangle Sleeve, not only kicking the rig away but also allows me to quickly change rigs.
At the other end of the N-Trap, 12 to 14 inches away, I connect 25lb MouthTrap via an Albright Knot, and fish a section of around 1.5-2 inches to a size 4 Kamakura Choddy, in my opinion, the best hook out there. I strip a small section of coating off the N Trap before I tie the albreight knot, just giving some flexibility at the hook end, as well as moulding a neat blob of Dark Matter Putty around the knot, anchoring my pop up in place.
As mentioned, I favour a match the hatch hookbait, and by baiting consistently with boilie, I get them really tuned into my bait so a match the hatch is what they are after.
It’s been said countless times, it’s almost become a bit cliché, but these simple tactics just always work for them bigguns every Autumn. Super simple stuff, it’s about putting the effort in to find them, and then the baiting and rig side of it can ben stress free and super simple.