For any serious carp fisherman, there’s nothing like the feeling of landing a huge carp. To optimize your time fishing and to increase your chances of constantly pulling in big carp, most fisherman never stop fiddling with their rigs. One trick many fisherman use to land that extra big carp, is to use a snowman rig.
A snowman rig is the combination of a pop-up bollie with a bottom bollie. It gets the name because of the shape it resembles once it’s all put together. The two bollies are stacked on top of each other, and look just like a snowman.
One of the benefits of the snowman rig is that you won’t have to spend countless hours doing your rig over and over again. Also, the tangle-free nature of a snowman rig makes it a very good choice for any big carp angler. It’s also a fairly easy rig to tie and can be pretty versatile as well, making it a favorite for many fishermen.
You’ll need a sinking bollie and a pop-up bollie. That said, they don’t need to be the same flavour or even the same colour. In fact, in many situations, it would actually be better if they weren’t the same. If you have a lighter pop-up bollie sit atop a darker bottom bollie, it will definitely help everything to stand out more. Also, by having two different flavors, you have the opportunity to present the fish with a smell they have never experienced before, allowing you entice, and hopefully catch, more fish.
Tackle and bait choices for a snowman rig
Many people find great success using an 18 mm bottom bait paired with a 16 mm pop up. Many people in carp culture are focused on fining down, but a very large hook bait like this works well for the snowman rig.
For bait, you can use chopped and whole bollies in 15 mm and 18 mm. You could also add in some hemp or other types of attractants.
When choosing a hook, you’ll want to make sure you choose one that is both strong and sharp. While this probably sounds fairly obvious, all too many hooks only do one or the other well, and are lacking in either strength or sharpness. Try to find one that does both well.
How to tie a snowman rig
To tie the snowman rig, the first thing to keep in mind, is that the mainline needs to be strong enough to land the carp you’re fishing for. In most places a 12 lb line will do just fine, but if there is the opportunity for lots of snags you might consider using a 15 lb or even an 18 lb line.
Then you’ll want to use a semi-fixed helicopter rig set-up. You can make one from a lead clip pack that are easily available at tackle shops. Then you need to thread the tail rubber into the line followed by the plastic lead clip. The lead’s swivel is then attached to the clip so the components can be pushed together in a secure way.
The best results can be attained by using a braided hook length around 6 inches, using a colour that matches the colour at the bottom of the area you’re fishing. You will attach it to the mainline with a swivel that fits inside the lead clip. Then you can use a knotless knot to make a hair rig on your hook. This should match the size of the hook to the size of the bottom bollies. Finally, when attaching the bait to the hair, you need to thread on the sinking bollies and follow it with your pop up bollie. Then lock the baits onto the hair with a bait stop or using a small piece of grass.
Optimizing your set up
We mentioned earlier that one of the benefits of the snowman rig is that it can be tangle free. Especially when doing very long range casts, keeping yourself free of tangles can be essential to pulling in carp.
In order to keep yourself tangle free, you should think about using a lead clip set up. This will push the rig away from the leader. The most important part of this set up though, is the long shrink tube kicker. This is 4 inches of shrink tube over the swivel that comes off of the lead clip.
Some people will use an anti tangle sleeve instead, which can work as well, but aren’t always stiff enough or long enough to hold away heavy baits.
While you don’t have to play around with a snowman rig too much, you should still do a bit of experimenting to see which set up and combination of features will work best for you. Before long you could be pulling in some of the biggest carp you’ve ever caught.