FREE LINE 03 - Page 175



Winter Carp Fishing
of keeping the lower back protected
thus avoiding kidney chills so don’t
overlook these in your search. Both
options usually come with matching
jackets of the same spec material.
Again with a jacket or coat, make
sure that there is ample room for
under layers and freedom of movement built into the cut. Obviously
waterproofing is a must, but a certain
amount of breathability is desirable to
keep the moisture wicking away from
the skin thus avoiding damp undergarments. A hood is a must too, as is
a high collar and a useful amount of
pockets, and don’t skimp on quality
because your bankside misery will
make you wish you hadn’t.
As with any clothing, several thin
layers are better than one thick one,
so thermal underwear might be an
avenue worth exploring, but again
remember the A factor (ACCESS Factor)! You don’t want to be rummaging
round in your clothing trying to find
that important opening as that inner
burning sensation reaches a
crescendo as your bladder tells you it
is about to explode! With 90% of body
heat being lost through the head, protection in this area is a must, and a
good quality fleece or woollen hat is
an important addition to the clothing,
as are a pair of thermal mittens or
gloves, because the extremities are
the first areas to lose blood if your
core temperature starts to drop.
With all the personal thermal protection covered, let’s take a look at
some of the supplementary items of
kit that can make or break your cold
weather carping sessions. If we are
going to be out in the elements day
and night a viable shelter is extremely
important, as this is going to be your
home for the duration of your session.
Primarily it needs to be fully waterproof, easy to erect, stable, and be big
enough to accommodate the extra
kit. A good groundsheet is a major
part of the shelter as this will keep the
damp from penetrating from below
and help seal out the elements. As far
as shelter styles go, the current range
on offer covers everything from brollies with overwraps or infill panels,
self contained domes with integral
inner compartments, to the pram
hood style systems, one of which I
have actually used, and in my opinion
is one of the best the best of the
bunch, the Trakker Armadillo, which
is extremely stable and ticks all the
right boxes.
For that added thermal protection
(Top) A good quality hat is essential in
winter, as 90% of your body heat is
lost through your head.
(Middle) A good quality bivvy is a
must in winter, as well as a sleeping
bag cover.
(Right) My personal choice of bivvy is
the excellent AI Airframe.
FREE LINE 175

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