Friday, September 26, 2008

Carp Days Winding Down

Some limited carping hours were logged recently. One of my favorite 2008 waters produced a couple of great fish. Here is the quick story:

The cyprinids had stone-walled me the last couple times out – to the point of literally looking at my flies and pulling 180s on me. Half-bolting away. I took to coloring the brass bead chain eyes with a black permanent marker, in an attempt to tone down the gaudiness factor of the LOD. That didn’t work. The Carp Carrot spooked them too. I can’t explain exactly why some days the fish spook easily and other days they don’t. Likely a product of a multitude of factors. Anyway, I knew the fish I’d encounter would be on a silt plain, most likely with heads down. My original thought was to use Wooley – a subtle fly. I decided against it though because even it struck me as a bit too spooky for these guys. I put on a San Juan Worm with a black bead – no flash whatsoever, and very fast sink rate. Immediately I saw a nice silt plume (couldn’t see fish). I put the fly down in the water near shore and counted off the rate… guessed at depth of water at fish location… dropped SJW on plume and counted to three. Picked up the rod and the fish was on. That’s about as good as it gets right there. Battle was good, although I had to hold her a little tight because weed beds were in play. Second fish was also feeding, but I could see this one… SJW up and to the side a bit and this one put on a nice show of a cat pounce. Took off like a flat bottom boat – much more energy than first fish. That ruckus bit spooked pretty much the entire joint though, so that segment of fishing was done.

Please offer your estimate of the weight of this fish. I have set up a poll on the Rochester Angler Forum. For reference, the rod is a 7 wt. Both pics are of the same fish. If you're not a member of the RAF, post your estimate as a comment here, or on the Carp Anglers Group thread.

Another segment came about though. A new water. Big flats and carpy looking. I walked some very interesting pieces of the river and was treated to a number of sights. I actually had to put waders on to get to some of these back corners… I concluded that not many folks have tread on these routes. The flats looked good, but they were empty. I believe that during slightly higher water, there would be carp feeding on them. Too low now though. The carp seem to be gravitating to deeper slots and pools where they feel safe. I looked all over hell, and eventually I found the one deep slot at this location… and there I put eyes on quite a few carp. They were hanging in current, moving to and fro and into and out of the cover of the tree in the pic. Near impossible to get a fly to… I played the heron and waited. Two came out, into my rod’s reach. I put the fly on the big one, and as she deliberated, this pip-squeaker came in like a rocket and ate the LOD. Oh well. I heroned on the rest of them for a while, keying on a pretty damn big fish the entire time… But it was one of those deals in which they were “half on to me” and thus not really confident about the prospect of eating flies. It was so because I had to get pretty close to even consider presenting a fly to them. Didn’t land another fish or even hook one for that matter. Really cool to watch them though. I know where they’re at during low flow now… and I’ll be back.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


12:04 AM  
Blogger John Montana said...

tough first reaction is 11 lbs, but he is pretty deep. those fish out there seem to be shorter, but thicker than columbia fish.


10:16 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

14-15# It may be on the high side but that fish is a chunk

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Blogger Harlan Wallach said...

that fish is 13 lbs.

i linked you punk.

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