Quick Bites – Craig Ridge

I have limited time to fish due to family and work commitments. 90% of my fishing is done on a day ticket, usually for 24 hours or less. Quick bites can be the key to me catching a few fish. For this, I have a couple of tactics to start my session, including solid bags and zigs.

These can be chucked into the lake and fished over most bottoms at long or short range and in most weather conditions. A few days before I go, I tend to tie up a few solid bags on small leaders and a few zigs.


This allows me to maximise my fishing time when I arrive at the lake. I often find that fish on busy lakes will congregate in certain areas. In order to get an advantage, I find that a quick search of social media allows me to discover the location that the fish have been coming out of. I do this by noting certain swims, peg numbers or other notable areas such as tree stumps or life buoys that I can see in any pictures that may have been uploaded.

Traveling light to move at night!


Upon arrival, to the lake I try and find some fish or a look for a area of lake that I found in my social media search. To get a quick bite (and once I have found an area I would like to fish), I will flick out a solid bag (these are injected lake side with liquid flavouring, dipped in hemp oil and rolled in ground bait. This creates a trail in the water that leads toward the bag). I do this to showing fish or promising looking spots like “snags”.

Result of moving in the dark!

I will then use a zig because this will allow me to set the depth and scan the water columns. In order to attract the fish further, my zigs are soaked in a sticky sweet zig liquid. This first cast I will leave for approximately one hour before having to refresh. I will continue to scan the lake for fish activity and will happily move swims if the fish dictate.

On the occasion that I have more time or fish over night, I like to put out a spod mix bait which I make using 60 percent corn, chopped/whole boilies and a sprinkling of hemp. If the lake will allow, I will put a pint of maggots in. This may attract “nuisance fish” although I tend not to worry, as doing this encourages activity which entices the carp to investigate. 

Another tip I like is to look out for anglers with wet nets on my arrival, this indicates fish having been caught in that spot. If I feel the need to relocate swims at night I can make this easier by first trying to get a swim that is central to the whole lake. This allows for a good viewpoint of showing fish. Having made mental notes of the best areas in the daylight, I have a good idea of where to try even after dark. Waking at first light provides a great opportunity to spot fish activity such as bubblers and rolling, this allows me to maximise any time I have left on that trip, I usually leave around lunchtime after night fishing. Good luck on the bank!

Quick Bites result in multiple catches!

Craig Ridge


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