What to expect when angling in autumn: catches, bait and general preparation

What to expect when angling in autumn: catches, bait and general preparation

Autumn is seen as one of the best seasons to try your luck at, no matter which fishing method you choose. This is mainly because of such things as weather and conditions in which fish find themselves during the less warm times of the year.

However, even though more opportunities arise, you need to know the essentials of how to prepare, what tactics to use and know about the fish you can catch when you’re out there.

In this article we will summarize everything you need to know about angling in autumn.

Why autumn is considered to be a good time to fish

Autumn is typically known for its quite gusty winds, periodic rain, cold nights and only sporadic periods of sunlight. This lasts for a couple of months until the much harsher winter weather comes along.

The mix of conditions tends to produce some amazing fishing sessions, regardless of preferred angling method, which is exactly why autumn is seen as one of the most productive seasons of the year.

Anglers see success both along the coastline as well as banks, predators are being more active as well, searching for feeding opportunities before the winter hibernation period.

Fish you can catch in Autumn

As already mentioned, Autumn is seen as one of the most productive angling seasons of the year, with success found across all of the main disciplines.

Here are some major species you can catch in Autumn.

  • Carp - while the summer is typically seen as the best time to go for carp, you might want to hold onto your setup a bit longer since autumn can produce great results as well. This is because the fish are preparing for the winter and will be looking for feeding opportunities.
  • Bass - bass is another species that can be caught during autumn. Typically, the same lures that you used for mackerel can work wonders in this case.
  • Mullet - these species tend to be much more active before the winter period and are especially so during the months of October and November. Your best bet is to a harbour or cove area.
  • Pollock - typically found in calmer, weedy water areas, they can be successfully caught during earlier parts of winter, before it's schools migrate to hide for the winter.
  • Pike, perch and other predators - these freshwater species are at their peak when it comes to their weight just before the winter. The species will be ready to feed before their hibernation period, so be on the lookout if that’s what you’re aiming for.

What bait works best for autumn fishing?

Even though Autumn is still considered a relatively warm time of the year, some difference in your bait choice will still be needed as mornings become cooler and the sun settles down faster. 

Pellets and boilies both work fine during autumn, however, it’s important to choose ones that better dissolve in colder conditions. Typically, bird food boilies and low oil pellets work much better than fish food boilies and high oil pellets used during the summer.

Of course, you can also use additives to enhance the smell and flavor of the mixture. For most effective results, let the enhancers overnight to make the bait extremely attractive.

Natural options like sweetcorn or maggots can do wonders as well. As fish look to stack up on nutrients before the winter, mixing up an attractive from natural flavors can also be very effective.

Some more tips for preparation

Right rig setup

Autumn rigs typically tend to be simple and compact with a light weight to keep disturbance to a minimum. Stiffer rigs meanwhile, work better if you go for a bigger catch, while blowback rigs do their best job for bottom fishing.

Of course, you can always talk to locals in the area or a shopkeeper to understand what’s typically better to use for autumn fishing.

Locating your catch

Come autumn time, most fish will be held up in deeper areas in the water. That’s where you should ideally aim for. Most anglers tend to overlook this, however these mushy waters are often very attractive for carp in terms of natural food sources.

Finding an area like this can be a good way to keep fish concentrated with your own food and increase your chances of success.

Some anglers agree that fish tend to be more active during darker times of the day, which means you might need to be more patient and spend more time anticipating the movement of fish.

Choosing the right clothing

Since autumn is typically a calmer time of the year in terms of water movement, experts recommend choosing stealthier clothes that offer at least some level of camouflage, especially if you’re planning on going for carp.

Of course, make sure that your clothes can keep you warm and protect you from water as well. Multilayer options are generally agreed upon to be the best option overall.

All in all

Today we’ve talked about autumn fishing and how it’s different from other times of the year. All you need is the right preparation and some additional know-how and we’re sure you’ll have a great time angling.