Tuesday, 23 March 2010

My Top 10 Tips For Catching Specimen Winter Roach

 With the bivvy boys moving in fast,my winter Roach fishing is at an end.I will be looking to catch Rudd,Tench and Crucians in the next few months.
I feel I have done quite well for the Roach in the past few weeks with
this being the best result.I am definitely no expert,in fact I'm quite a novice Roach fisher.However,I believe these tips will help you to put a fine specimen on the bank.

1) Don't use Groundbait-It invariably attracts Bream which in turn bully out any Roach.

2) Use Red Maggots-Other colours will work,as will worms and bread but red maggots are best in my experience.

3) Fish Stillwaters-Rivers are very unpredictable by their very nature;in Winter you need to know the fish are there to be caught and the only thing stopping you from fishing will be ice.

4) Fish Open Water-The larger fish will feed more confidently in open water,the snags and margins will be full of small fish and predators.

5) Use a Feeder-You can bait your swim and fish at range and the quiver-tip is a sounder form of indication when the wind is blowing.

6) Cast Around-When it's cold the fish will be very sluggish.It's probably best to try to find them,rather than waiting for them to come to you.

7) Have a Lay-in-When temperatures can go sub-zero overnight,the fish will take longer to get into feeding mode during the day.In my experience the hours between Midday and 5pm are best.

8) Brave the Elements-The best fishing can come in the worst of weather.

9) Use Flavours-I rarely fish for Roach with unflavoured maggots,the best results have come from the old favourite Turmeric(1 teaspoon to 1 pint)..Other good flavours are Garam Masala,Pineapple,Vanilla and Aniseed.

10) Fish a Water Known for Predators-I believe that in waters that hold large predators,many of the silverfish are culled naturally,leaving relatively few larger fish instead of many stunted fish.

There you have it then,my top ten tips for specimen Roach in Winter.Hope it is useful.


  1. Gurn, some interesting stuff there particularly fishing through the winter on stillwater. I always struggle to buy a bite on stillwater after the first frosts, hence have no confidence, etc etc. It is ever decreasing circles to the point where I hardly bother in the winter but you're tips are some food for thought.

  2. Dave,trust me,there have been days this winter when I've questioned my sanity and I've had some fishless days.However,those days when everything came good are the ones I will remember.Regards Gurn

  3. Must give it a try, the sight of a big roach on a winters day, warms you through.

  4. I agree with you on 9 out of 10 of the tips well maybe 9.5, while red maggots are good I find they are often picked up by perch, and so I find that caster or bread flake works just as well. I fish a large Loch in Dumfriesshire, with a good head of predators and no carp but lies in a fertile valley an is rich in nutrients. A great venue from November and best from dusk onwards. ( Still miss the glory days of the Tweed around Coldstream )

  5. Poppop. Have just got back from best days fishing in ages. Wind was cold and blustery, full in
    your face. Personal best of a rudd of 3lb.14oz on bread . A day I will not forget.

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