Using the pole in windy conditions can be frustrating and annoying. It makes it very hard to present your bait properly. It’s key for any pole fisherman to have a wind array of pole floats in their fishing tackle box.
Sometimes you have the wind blowing one way and then a tow under the water moving your line and bait under the water in the opposite direction.
So, what is the best float for fishing in the wind?
Ideally, the deeper and more wind there is, then the heavier float you will require. If it’s windy then I will look to fish a 4×16 float. If you are wondering what a 4×16 float is then float sizes start at a 4×8, then a 4×10, and so on.
What about the shotting pattern? Does this need to change in windy conditions?
Shallow Water in Windy Conditions
If I am fishing in shallow water and it’s windy then I will fish with 1 group of bulk shot that’s close to the hook length.
E.g. if I am fishing in 2ft of water and its windy then I would want a bulk of 4 or 5 number 8 stots or shots as close to the float as possible. Probably 3 to 4 inches
My favorite float for shallow windy water is a 4×16 Preston Innovations Edge float. These are a short float but the body is quite round which helps keep the bait stable. I believe these have been key for helping me catch carp in the edges, especially when the weather hasn’t been great.
Deeper Water in Windy Conditions
In deep water, I would be looking at fishing a 4×16 float or bigger. This is so that you can keep the float stable and the bait will stay well presented on the deck.
The shotting for this could be an olivette as this is 1 big shot that is suited for fishing in deeper water. This allows the bait to get to the bottom faster and the olivette acts as an anchor.
If you don’t have an olivette then I would look at fishing a bulk and 1 dropper, or bulk with 2 droppers.
What about the stem of the float?
Wire stems are the heaviest and sturdiest stems you can pick for a pole float. Therefore when it’s windy you want to look at using a wire stem.
A good example of this is the 4×16 Preston Innovations F1 pellet float. Using a wire stem means that the float sits upright a lot quicker in the water. If you used a carbon stem then this takes a few more seconds to settle and there’s a bigger chance it’s going to get dragged to one side when it’s being moved by the wind.
A float with a long stem will always work better in the wind vs a short stem float.
What about the body of the float?
A bigger, bulkier body on the float will always cope better in the wind. I know I mentioned the F1 pellet float above which has a thin body. This would be ok for low to moderate wind, but if the wind is bad then you definitely want to look at using a rounder fatter body of the float.
I would recommend the Preston innovations diamond float. These generally have a long bristle at the top which means the bigger body of the float is further down in the water which means it’s further away from the wind.
My second recommendation would be a pole float with a round body such as the Preston Innovations inter carbon float.
Does the tip of the pole floats matter?
With it being windy I would always choose a slightly bigger tip. It just makes it easier to see, especially if you are fishing at distance on the deck.