Thursday, July 28, 2011

On a mission for carp

Yesterday I set out on a mission to catch carp on a fly.  I have only fished for carp once before with my friend Justin (see his blog here), and I came up empty.  That trip, he caught one Asian carp by hooking it in the back on a low back cast with a backstabber (coincidence?), but since then, he has been racking them up left and right with solid takes.  I was inspired by his persistence and decided to strike out on my own in search of carp.  The night before setting out, I methodically prepared my gear and tied up several carp flies including the Carp Carrot, Backstabber and a Rubber Leg Hare’s Ear.

The following day I drove out west to a slough that sits adjacent to the Missouri river.  This body of water had flooded into a neighboring field of soy crop, which made for a nice flat to wade fish in and sight cast to carp.  I rigged up my 6 weight outfit with floating line and put on a 15' fluorocarbon leader with 6 pound tippet.

I fished for several hours, sight casting to carp that were rooting, tailing and cruising, and sometimes just blindly casting out of frustration.  It was a blistering day with temperatures touching nearly 100 degrees and the water I was wading in felt like a hot tub.  

Cast number 528 (approximate), I pitched a carp carrot out to to a mud puff about 40' away and made a short strip ... resistance ... another longer strip and the water boiled, carp on.  Immediately he bolted, and my reel made a painful noise I have never heard before.  I applied continuous pressure by alternating between palming the spool and retrieving line , and intermittently the fish would make a powerful run.  This dance continued for several minutes until he was close enough to lip.  The beast clocked in at 4 pounds, what a fight, what a fish!