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Bait
31 Oct 2017
by CARPology
How to pimp up your hookbaits for winter
Bait expert, Keith Sykes on pimping-up your hookbaits for the winter

Before you even think that I am going to discuss the application of pimping-up your lures, those mega bright, over-flavoured single hookbaits, then think again, nor am I going to mention the seemingly in-vogue washed-out, low-flavour baits that appear to be mentioned by everyone. And maggots… heaven forbid, the last thing on my mind, even though they can be deadly in the winter months. No, lets have a look at bringing out the best by other means, some that the carp you are angling for may never have seen, in a word: nailed!

Stimulation doesn’t mean in your face, over-powered baits, quite the opposite in fact, so try to think subtle, and often additives that as an angler you might barely detect from a smell perspective.

So without putting everything on a plate, excuse the pun, as you will need to experiment, lets look at things that can and do provide big, and different edges.

Come the cold-water temperatures we are looking at localised pH changes, this will get them feeding, or not as the case may be, and one of the best additives to achieve this is citric acid, which can be dissolved in your own food dip, or into a dip of your choice. You can also ‘wet’ the hookbait and then roll around in a pot of citric acid prior to casting out; this also works really well with Betaine hydrochloride or Finnstimm.

Marinades seem to be frowned upon by so many, perhaps it’s because they can be a little messy, and smelly, but a nice smell if you happen to be a carp I hasten to add. Marinades not only give a different perspective to your hookbait, they can alter the texture and increase the life expectancy in the water. Some of the best marinades consist of heat-sensitive products that would normally be destroyed in the boiling process when making either hookbaits or boilies, these include many natural additives, amino acids, yeasts etc. So why not consider making a good alternative soak, pepped up with some nice additives to provide a long lasting food message in the water and the water column?

A liquid yeast is a good base on which to build the marinade, this is a fish-catcher in its own right. Then add a small amount of glutamic acid and MSG to this, with a good level of rock salt. This is your base mix to which you can add no end of other additives depending on personal choice. Here are a few though worth looking at, and do keep to the supplier’s recommended dosage when it comes to the essential oils, such as clove, cumin, asafoetida, geranium and black pepper to mention a few of the better ones.

You can also add other liquids such as Sense Appeal, Nashbait’s Squid Powder (devastating), spleen bi-products, amino acids, etc., the sky is the limit. Also worth noting is that the hot spices, chilli powders, flakes, etc. seem to come into their own in the cold weather conditions. I also know that there is going to be some stunning, and very different, exciting additives available from Nashbait in the New Year so look out for these as well.

Give them a treat and you may well end up tricking them onto the hook!

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