Our crew has a pretty standard plan for fishing off Sydney, during winter. Watch the forecast until it predicts an early morning westerly which lightens up, by the middle of the day. Head for Brown’s Mountain, 22 miles east. Stopover for some kingfish jigging on the way there and back. When it all comes together - like it usually does - it looks like this:

 

 

 

But it hasn’t looked like this much, in winter 2017. Strong winds and big swells have kept us inshore - or even, off the salt water - four times out of five trips over the past few months:

 

 

What’s a mad keen fisho gonna do, when this happens weekend after weekend? Look for alternatives, that’s what. Which brings us to carp:

 

 

Fishos either love them, or hate them. But as mentioned above, it's not always about our preferences. Family and friends requirements need consideration, too. The real story with carp is, most fishos are interested in knowing more. And there’s good reasons for that. Firstly, they are not weather or tide dependent. You can fish for them any time, including after dark. Next, they are accessible to almost everyone, in the southern part of the country. Here’s a little Sydney carp map I ran up:

 

 

Check this out. Seventeen seconds of gold, showing big carp in a stream within a few miles of Sydney city centre:

 

SUBMARINE CONVOY

 

Most importantly, they fight so hard. If you’ve ever battled a big one on light gear, you’ll know what I mean:

 

 

Here's today's Sydney forecast. Seven straight days of fifteen knot westerlies. For saltwater fishos like me - and maybe, you - what are the options? One. Sit at home cursing the bad weather. Two. Battle your way offshore with the boat banging like a dodgem car through the swells and copping a face full of icy cold spray every so often. Three. Get on the fresh water  - maybe with the kids, or friends keen to try fishing - and do battle with some tanks. I know which way I'm going:

 

 

You don’t need to go 20 miles offshore like you do when chasing tuna, or clamber down a cliff face like you do when after drummer. You can fish for carp on grassy riverbanks and in park lands, just a short drive from home. Which is why, this year, I’ve been taking friends and overseas visitors carping:

 

 

 

Not only did they have a ball catching carp, they got a big buzz from the local wildlife:

 

 

SURF AND TURF

 

It’s worked out so well. When you’ve got people visiting, or family members you want to take fishing, it would be hard to come up with a better option than carp. No seasickness issues. No weather issues. No boat launching. Just go straight to your planned spot and get it happening. If you’re thinking of giving it a try, and you're in Sydney, Kangaroo Valley is hard to beat:

 

 

Carp will take many types of bait. Bread, worms, corn being three of the most popular. They are bottom filter feeders and can reject a bait in a split second-if any resistance is felt. In Europe - where carp are the number one target, even bigger than trout - they have developed a fantastic tool which increases the hook up rate by a huge percentage. It’s called the bite alarm:

 

 

An electronic bite detector with both lights and buzzer, triggered when a fish moves away with your bait. The big plus with bite alarms is that you fish with an open bail. The fish feels no resistance at all, as it picks up the bait and moves away. We have two types. Firstly, the bank stick:

 

 

This is a collapsible polished aluminium pole which holds a bite alarm on top. You simply adjust the length to your preferred height and push the pointy end into the dirt. Cast out, open your bail arm, and rest the rod on the bite alarm stop when a fish picks up the bait and moves away, you’ll know:

 

 

SCREAMING CARP RUN

 

A suggestion? Don’t do what I did, last month. That is, ignore the fact there’s so many rocks on the lake bank you can’t stick the spike into the dirt more than an inch.  Did it anyway, because I’m lazy. J Here’s how that turned out. And yes, I did get the fish:

 

WHOOPS

 

Bank sticks are just $30 each. That includes the extendable pole, the bite alarm with buzzer and LED flashing light, standard rod rest ears, and battery. Awesome. Going up a level, we offer the rod pod:

 

 

 

This is a big step up. Rod pods are a collapsible rod holder set up. You can keep your tackle up off the ground and ready to detect the slightest bite. The pod holds three rods meaning you can cast one to the left, one to the right, and one straight ahead. Meaning your baits are covering a lot of ground. The alarms are adjustable for tone and volume meaning you can even identify which rod is getting attention. So much more effective than a forked stick pushed into the mud or rods propped up on the wharf. When big fish are around that’s a recipe for disaster:

 

 

Don’t risk it. Propping your rods on the rails is an accident waiting to happen. Losing tackle is bad enough, losing a good fish is heartbreaking:

 

 

The rod pod set up includes rod pod with adjustable legs, three alarms with LEDs and buzzers, AND BATTERIES, all packed in a zippered bag with handle:

 

 

Setting up is quick and easy. Your gear is off the ground and the buzzers will detect the slightest touch:

 

WE'RE ON

A big benefit is that you can do something else while waiting for a run. But when it does happen, you’ll know it:

 

YEAH BABY

 

Price? Would you believe just $110 plus $20 postage. Click here to order:

ROD PODS AND BANK STICKS

 

includes battery

 

Or send me an email, if more details needed.

Thanks for reading,

 

Andrew Hestelow

Managing Director

www.downriggershop.com.au

Tel. 0402075000

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