Five tips for using PVA in winter - Steve Ringer

1) Bag size is important - when fishing with PVA I am looking to try and catch just one fish at a time, as opposed to building a swim. Therefore, it’s a case of small being best as far as bag size goes. As a guide, I am talking about using a PVA bag roughly the size of a pound coin and certainly no bigger. The Guru Speedmesh system is perfect for making bags this size.

2) On the bait front I like to use a mixture of 2mm and 4mm hard pellets - these are wetted down in advance so they soften up. Normally, I will use two-thirds 2mm and one third 4mm, the idea being to give the carp two sizes of pellet to pick up so they don’t just get preoccupied on one.

3) In terms of hook baits at this time of the year, I like to use bright baits such as sweetcorn or mini fluro boilies in the form of both pop-ups and bottom baits. The reason for this is that the water tends to be clear, so I like hookbaits that stand out and give the carp something to home in on.

4) To give my bags a boost in the cold I like to just tag them with a tiny amount of Tutti Frutti Power Smoke Goo. This just gives them a little bit of extra pulling power as the Goo gives off a fish attracting cloud that helps to stimulate carp into feeding in even the coldest of conditions.

5) In terms of the fishing itself, in the cold location is key, so when fishing small PVA bags I like to cast about and look for fish, as opposed to repeatedly casting to the same spot and waiting for them to come to me. I like to give each cast 20-25 minutes and, if I get no signs of activity, I simply cast to a different spot until I find the fish!