Mormyshka on the course

Moscow fishermen rarely fish from ice on rivers. And the point is not at all that such fishing is more difficult. Just suitable rivers in the Moscow region can be counted on one hand: these are the Oka, the upper reaches of the Moskva River, Dubna and several smaller ones. Meanwhile, it has long been known that during the course any fish is more active, eats more and, of course, bites better. Perhaps the main difference between fishing on the current is that fish in different rivers behave completely differently and choose often radically different conditions for stopping. For example, on Dubna, it tends to areas with strong currents, while on the Nerl it is easier to find fish in bays, calm areas and in areas with return flows. Nevertheless, in fishing on all rivers there are general laws regarding the choice of place, bait, tackle and fishing technique.

Seat selection

The location of promising points on the river depends, of course, on its features, but you can understand them in an unfamiliar body of water only by trying to fish in various places, both on the stream and in lulls. On stagnant water or the weakest current, you can feed several holes and check them periodically, but during the course this method is not very suitable, since the water quickly erodes and carries away the food. You have to rely more on coastal landmarks. It is highly desirable to determine where the border of the streams passes – this is a favorite place for fish stopping on any river. There are always very good places in the bends of rivers, where the stream, hitting the shore, is reflected, and a little bit below a section with a very weak current is formed. In such a place, it is worth feeding several holes at different strengths. It is possible to determine at different points the relative strength of the current under the ice by the speed of rolling of the same jig, that is, how much it pulls. Usually holes are drilled with a chain from the shore; channeling generally works best. On most rivers, fish adhere to certain places throughout the winter. Moreover, even with a change in the strength of the flow, these points remain.


On the course, the fish is always more active, reacts faster to bait, resists more when playing, and most importantly, it is very undemanding to tackle. Not so long ago, at a competition held in Dubna, I was faced with the fact that the fish reacted worse to sports tackle than to “amateur” tackle. At the end of the tour, many participants tried to catch the perch off the coast using the smallest lures on a line of minimal diameter. And I, on the contrary, took a fishing rod with a line of 0.1 mm and a jig 4 mm – such a tackle is more suitable for fishing from 5 meters. However, 3-4 large bloodworms performed better than the smallest baits with a single feed bloodworm attachment. Perhaps the fish, accustomed to the current, simply did not see, or rather, did not pay attention to the very weak vibrations from the shallow bait. In these conditions, by the way, the rewinder works well, creating much larger vibrations than the jig. Of course, it is impossible to say that you can fish with coarse tackle on the current, but the use of relatively large lures is quite justified.

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In strong currents, float gear is rarely used, only when it does not lift the sinker from the bottom. The float is moved upward until the current stops pulling the sinker. This method is usually used when fishing for bream using stationary feeders and abundant bait. But this tackle does not allow you to fish by rolling the jig, and this is the most effective way. During the course, the role of the jig is reduced to the delivery of the nozzle to the bottom. As I noticed, neither the color nor the size of the bait really matters. Weight is another matter. It often happens that a jig that is too light simply does not lie on the bottom and hangs. We have to put a heavier and, accordingly, voluminous, but this fish is not alarming. It is necessary to select the weight of the jig, focusing on the gatehouse, which clearly enough captures the touch of the bottom.


On recreational fishing, the most effective way to feed bait is a stationary, lead-bottomed mesh feeder. One filling is enough for a long time. If there is no such feeder, you have to use soil, clay or sand. It is better to buy clay for bait in advance, otherwise you will have to look for soil on the shore, and in winter it is not easy to do this. The use of clay gives an additional effect in the form of a long trail of turbidity that attracts fish. The starting food depends on the duration of the fishing. For example, at competitions where the time is limited to three hours, it makes no sense to feed so that the fish comes up after the same three hours, and then pecks all day. Here you have to look for a way to quickly attract fish. And on a regular fishing trip, you can wait a couple of hours, for example, at this time, fishing a perch off the coast.

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It should be borne in mind that after feeding the fish, rising along the stream of bait, line up downstream from the bait hole. If there were bites under the hole, and then they stopped, this does not mean that the fish moved away – it just stands lower. In this case, you can either drill down below, or roll the jig. Following the first path, you can drill a whole chain of holes and fish from distant approaches. But the difficulty lies in the fact that it is necessary to very accurately calculate the direction of drift of the bait. This is not so easy, since the upstream current often does not coincide with the bottom one. In addition, there may be local obstacles at the bottom that deflect the jet. Rolling the jig is more reliable, since it moves exactly along the path of the feed.

Unlike bait used in stagnant water, there should be no light fractions on the stream, which are quickly washed out. The easiest options are clay, bread crumbs, and bloodworms. Feeder groundbait can be used: it is the most sticky and, in combination with clay, erodes very slowly. Most of these baits are flavored. Unlike fishing in stagnant water on the current, you can not be especially careful with them, even the summer option is quite suitable. A relatively high concentration of odors for winter allows you to attract fish from afar, and directly at the point of fishing it is kept by bloodworms. It should be added to the bait a lot, much more than in stagnant water, since more than half of the bloodworm will be washed away much below the fishing point. As soon as the food is eaten, the fish leaves, so you need to feed it immediately if the bite starts to weaken.

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Sometimes there are situations when it is possible to catch by rolling the jig under the snag. Then you can get by with a minimum of bait. Ideal options also happen. So, once, when fishing in a strong current, the jig, having passed two meters, ran into some kind of obstacle. What it was, I still did not understand, but bites at this point were constantly going on, since all the bait was also delayed there.

Fishing technique

The technique of catching with the rolling of the jig is simple. We wind about half a meter of fishing line from the reel, and release the jig along the bottom so that the gatehouse is constantly tense. All movements of the jig along the bottom must be clearly controlled, since it is at the time of rolling that most of the bites occur. The fish always stands with its head against the current and sees well the rolling jig with a nozzle and takes it for natural food. But the jig takes a little slower, and it is easier for the fish to react not to it. However, it is also worth playing on the reel: playing along, pull the bait up to the length of an arm, and then return the line back, at the same time reeling in the line.

The jig can be released along the stream by 3-4 meters; I had to release more than 6 meters. The bait drifts far away, so do not be afraid that the jig will go further than the bait. It happens that bites occur only in one short section, and then she has nothing to do but drive the bait along this section until the effective bite. Fishing on the current is much more dynamic than in stagnant water. We have to search more, feed more and constantly work with tackle. However, catches on the current are often more significant, and the species composition of fish is very diverse: from the ubiquitous perches to bream and chub. And playing large fish in the current brings incomparable pleasure.