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James Armstrong Bait

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Jimmy Armstrong has a couple of tricks to ramp up your single hookbait fishing this winter...


ith the depths of winter fast approaching, and that long anticipated autumnal feeding spell nearing the end, it’s not long before those regular frosts and cold winter days are among us. Winter, unlike other seasons of the year, has much greater effect on the carp’s feeding behaviour and response to bait. The colder water temperatures see the fish’s metabolism slow down, their movement and energy expenditure drastically decline and their feeding intentions change significantly. This time of year can get slow at best, but with the right method and bait approach the odds can be stacked in your favour during the precious time spent out on the bank.

Single, high attractive hookbaits have long been a firm favourite for many anglers during the colder months, the instant appeal that the bait offers can often be the critical difference between catching and not. Although, with carp becoming increasingly pressured, and many anglers employing single hookbait tactics all year round, buying a bite on a standard ‘high-attract’ single in the winter can prove slightly trickier. Boosting your single hookbaits by adding complementary liquid and powder additives can add an extra, advantageous dimension to your single hookbait approach. Incorporating these feed-inducing additions to your baits can greatly improve the chances of a bite from those cautious, less inquisitive winter carp.

The following steps outline the process of transforming your standard pop-ups, to a super boosted bundle of attraction, in a simple but highly effective way.

A late autumn stunner taken on a high-attract single

The first step of the boosting process involves adding a complimentary concentrated liquid to your pop- ups. For this example, the Dairy Supreme pop-ups and matching liquid booster have been used, but this can be applied to all high-attract pop- ups throughout the CC Moore range. Start by adding a few squirts of the booster to the standard pot of pop-ups, only add a little at a time, and then shake the pot to evenly disperse the liquid. Check the pop-ups to see if all baits have been covered, and if more liquid is needed, add a small amount and give the pot another shake. At this stage, it is important that the baits are only lightly glazed in liquid, as too much liquid can potentially affect the pop-ups buoyancy. When all baits are evenly coated, you’ll be left with a beautifully glistening pot of super boosted hookbaits.

Stage two revolves around adding a further dimension to these already power packed hookbaits. Now take a powdered additive of your choice to compliment your pop-ups. In this case, Lactose Concentrate B+ has been chosen to add to the Dairy Supreme coated baits. Lactose Concentrate mimics the naturally creamy palatants of the Dairy Supreme, but being a powdered version, it releases an instant soluble scent trail when submerged in water. The key once again is to add a small amount of the powdered additive, just enough to dust the surface of each hookbait in order to form a light skin around the pop-up. Give the pot a good shake to ensure the powders are dispersed evenly, and add more powder if necessary.
The following process can be applied to other pop-ups, but tailored to match the baits characteristics and attraction levels. For the Northern Special pop-ups, the matching booster liquid can be incorporated alongside the Fruit Zest Concentrate to deliver a potent, well rounded and extra attractive hookbait.

The fundamental behind boosting your hookbaits, with a combination of concentrated liquid and powder additives, is to generate more responsive bait signals when submerged in water. The powder diffuses from the hookbait very quickly, creating an instant leaking of attraction through the water columns. These powders fizz and move around in varying water densities, providing an active temptation to fish, increasing the opportunity of receiving a bite. The thin liquid applied to the bait soaks into the skin of the hookbait, offering longer levels of slowly released food signals within the water. Combining the two products to boost your hookbait will no doubt increase the effectiveness of your hookbaits, especially coming into the colder winter months. It may put that long awaited winter fish on the bank for you this year.

How to prep up Jimmy's 3D hookbaits

1. With the Dairy Supreme Booster Liquid, Jimmy opts for Lactose Concentrate B+.
2. The first job is to add some of the Booster Liquid to the baits – only a thin layer.
3. Next, give the hookbaits a dusting of the powder – again, just a thin coating.
4. Now you need to give the baits a good shake to evenly distribute the powder.
5. Here’s how the baits will look after their shake: liquid and powder attraction.
6. It’s now time to mesh them up to help retain that attraction, so grab some mesh.
7. Cut off a piece of the mesh, place it around your hookbait and pull it tight.
8. Next, take a piece of bait floss and tie everything down tight around the mesh.
9. With the mesh and knot secured, take a lighter and blob everything down.
10. And here’s your completed 3D special single hookbait: a real winter edge.