When I think of late season goose hunting, I think snow, and sleeper shells!
Drive around any refuge and when it starts to get cold out, the geese head out to eat and are quickly belly down feeding or sleeping. The funny thing is that most decoy spreads are still full bodies. Often huge spreads of full bodies.
I always like to be different, and when I can be different from my competition and match what the geese are used to seeing in the field, it is a ticket to success. Whenever there is snow I am using at least 25% sleeper shells in my spread. And as the temperature drops, I start to use more.
I prefer a one piece sleeper shell because they stack so nice and are very durable. I set the decoys in large pods of 6-10 geese, with the birds facing into the wind. I space each decoy about 6 ft apart from one another, unless it is really cold and then I tighten them up. On ice I prefer to stack them right on the edge of open water, and if I am hunting a completely frozen pond, I treat it just like a field.
Calling over sleeper shells should match the tone that your decoy spread is setting, and that is a spread of calm geese. I start off finesse calling, but quickly change if the birds are not responding. Another thing to try is no calling at all over a large sleeper spread. The no one is home sound can be deadly on heavily pressured birds.
Try some sleeper shells on your next cold late season goose hunt and you will become a fan of them also!
Making YOU a better caller,