Carp fishing in the summer can be magical…

This is a hard question and not that straight forward as there are many factors involved in picking the best carp bait.

Carp are very greedy especially in the summer months and will pretty much eat most baits that are put out in front of them. That said, in my view one of the main factors to consider is choosing a bait that you have the most confidence in. Stands to reason right? Sometimes you just get a gut feeling about fishing with a certain bait and from my experience like anything, trust what your gut is telling you!

 Single boilie pop-ups and multi grain sweetcorn pop-ups.

Single boilie pop-ups and multi grain sweetcorn pop-ups. Click image to view Mainline’s Fluro Pop-ups.

For me though the best all round summer bait has to be boilies. I’ve definitely had the most success using boilies and it’s the bait that I have the most confidence in. There are many advantages of fishing with boilies but to find out more check out my boilie review here.

My favourite rig has to be the critically balanced snowman set up – this is basically a regular boilie and a pop-up fished on a hair rig. This basically makes the rig more sensitive so it can be hoovered up by the carp more easily. Click on the above image to view Mainline’s Fluro Pop-up range of boilies.

Carp Fishing at Dawn

Carp Fishing at Dawn

There are definitely certain situations though when natural baits such as worms or even sweetcorn will work better than more modern baits such as boilies. For example if I’m fishing in the margins then I will usually bait up with hempseed and I might fish sweetcorn on a critically balanced set up (one piece of tinned corn and one piece of fake corn). Click on the below images to view Amazon’s great bait listings for each product.

Mainline Baits - click to view full listings
Fake Corn - click to view full listingsCarp Pellets - click to view full listingsHempseed - click to view full listings





Basically I think that carp are less cautious feeding on these types of bait when feeding in the margins compared to fishing with boilies or even large pellets. Another great bait which should never be overlooked is tiger nuts because this is still a very underused bait and carp absolutely love them!

There are no right or wrong answers but it’s more a case of experimenting with different baits. If you’re not having any success with one particular bait then try something different!

Carp fishing in the summer…the best time of year!

Carp fishing in the summer months is without doubt a very exciting time of the year – probably the best for me, other carp anglers might disagree though 🙂

Not only are the fish a lot more active because of the warmer conditions but the days are obviously a lot longer as well which means more daylight fishing. You can’t beat fishing for carp on a summers morning at dawn or at late into the evening from dusk. These are the best feeding times of the day and in my opinion is what makes carp fishing so exciting and still gives me such a great buzz!

Carp Fishing at Dusk

Carp Fishing at Dusk

Also the fish tend to fight a lot harder especially after they have spawned. Playing a hard fighting carp for 20 minutes makes it all worthwhile. But even if I don’t catch (which happens to all good carp anglers) I still love being on the bank because carp fishing is always evolving and you’re learning about new stuff all the time, whether it be new rigs or simply trying out new baiting techniques.

The only downside to carp fishing in the summer is the when the weather gets too hot. When this happens it’s very difficult to get the carp feeding because most of the time the fish just prefer to bask in the upper layers of the water and usually feeding is the last thing on their mind

I love fishing for carp off the surface…

When I first started carp fishing I used to fish for them off the surface all the time. I would always go to my local duck pond which was small in size and only about 4 foot deep. This meant that I could get the carp feeding off the top quite easily in most weather conditions, believe it or not even in the Autumn months and early winter if the weather was still mild.

Check out the below carp landing net kit, which comes with an unhooking mat, weighing sling and scales. This is a great bit of kit for any angler at a bargain price!


This is a super bit of kit – 42″ INCH CARP FISHING LANDING NET, 2M HANDLE & UNHOOKING MAT SLING SCALES NGT £28.89 – Click image to view details…

There’s something special about surface fishing for carp; for me it’s definitely the most exciting way to catch carp!

As I didn’t have a lot of money back then, all I literally had was a rod and reel filled with 6lb line and a landing net. I would take a loaf of bread with me and fish free line crust of the top! Don’t get me wrong after fishing it for so long I knew the pond like the back of my hand. I must of caught most of the carp out of there! Haha.

They weren’t monsters by any standards, fish up to about 10lb, but as a kid it was great, I loved it! That’s how I became totally fascinated with catching carp. I just wanted to catch more carp and bigger ones at that.

Fishing for carp in the margins…

I first discovered fishing for carp in the margins when I started out carp fishing. Basically as I’ve already mentioned I used to fish for carp off the surface using floating bread. To start with I would fish as far out as I could cast the bread – which at times wasn’t very far especially if the bread come off the hook 🙂 I would fish next to the lily pads which the pond was full of, or next to some overhanging trees on the far bank.

Common carp caught off the surface using dog biscuits

Common carp caught off the surface using dog biscuits

Then one day I was fishing my usual method when I happened to notice out of the corner of my eye a large carp feeding on bread literally two feet from the bank! The crafty carp was only feeding on the bits of bread that I was chucking in before putting a fresh piece of bread on the hook. How cheeky is that I thought 🙂

From then on I never neglected the margins and I went on to catch more carp but appreciated the fact that being discreet and quiet is everything when you’re carp fishing.

When you’re searching for feeding carp on the surface or in the margins then using polarised fishing sunglasses is an absolute must. Click on the link to read my post to find out more. Or click on the below image to find out more about this great pair of polarised fishing sunglasses which I have selected.

Black POLARISED ANGLING / FISHING SUNGLASSES with Interchangeable Polarized Anti Glare and Low Light Lenses. For Men and Women. UVA / UVB (UV400) Protection. TR90 Sport Frame

Black POLARISED ANGLING / FISHING SUNGLASSES with Interchangeable Polarized Anti Glare and Low Light Lenses. UVA / UVB Protection £37.99 – Click image to view details…

To this day wherever I go fishing I will always fish at least one of my rods in the margins. Carp will always patrol the margins for food – fact! I’ve seen it time and time again! How many times have you been sitting there nice and quiet and a big carp swims under your rod or a fish boils right in the edge? Or when you go to stand up you spook a carp that has been feeding or cruising right by you!

NOTE: All prices are correct at the time of publishing this page.


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