When I think of fat winter perch, I immediately feel the tingling in my hands. The striped knights of the underwater world are not so easy to find in November / December, but depending on the type of water, you can generally locate them a little faster when on a fishing kayak. When I search for the bottom hugging winter predators I have to keep in mind the wind forecast, it is by far the most important factor. For me the most effective method is vertical fishing for those perch, and with vertical, the speed of the drift is of huge importance. Too little wind is a disadvantage, too much wind too. When the wind force settles somewhere between 4 to 12 knots ( 2 to 5 m/s) then dress very warm and off to the water!
A fishfinder with a chartplotter is quite clearly an advantage: once you’ve found a larger shoal of baitfish, you should set a waypoint immediately, the perch are likely to be around. Once you’ve drifted away from the shoal you can find them much easier again. With a little luck, the shoal will stay in the same place for a long time. Most of the time you will get bites as soon as your bait is under the shoal. Once the shoal has disappeared from the fishfinder, you should keep drifting a few meters further, since the perch also like spending time beside the shoal. Also othe predators like to hang out near the baitfish shoals. I have outwitted many beautiful pike vertically in recent years. Therefore I use a thin steel leader, which is connected to the 0,10mm PowerPro. My favorite combo is the Sportex Styx with the Shimano Stella 2500. Pure fun and absolutely reliable.
Let’s talk about my favorite bait. In winter the 3.2 inch Bait Breath TT Shad is unbeatable for me, Glow / Lime chartreuse or Glow Pink with glitters. In conjunction with a stand-up Owner jig head (see photo) it is the absolute killer when fishing vertical. In my waters I generally fish clear with 25g heavy jighead. Personally, I’m not the fisherman who often changes his bait. I know that the TT shad works almost always, so I fish it actually for hours. And there’s definitely nothing better for winter fishing than a tough vertical bite under the Kayak! BAM!