Evening Stroll

27 08 2020

After chucking streamers at Smallmouth Bass for 16 hours, this past weekend, I thought a casual stroll for carp would be a nice change of pace.  We received some rain earlier in the morning so I was hoping the levels would be up some.  They were but not enough to fill up my favorite spots.

I started at my usual area and sure enough there were silt clouds all out in the deeper water, just out of casting range.  While I stood there debating what to do I saw a tail through the clouds of a feeding carp in range.  I made a cast just ahead of him and much to my surprise, he swam out of the cloud and sucked it up.  He was a little guy and didn’t fight much so I got him in pretty quickly.

From there I went on to my next spot only to find that it was pretty shallow, about 6 inches of water in most of it.  I did see one smaller carp out in the center but he was swimming right towards me.  I waited for him to turn around and once he did I got into position, made a cast in front of him and then hung on as he took the fly and headed straight for the main river.  He wasn’t much bigger than the first but once he got that current working with him he was off like a bullet.  Eventually I worked him into shore and landed him.  I didn’t bother with a picture, he was the same size as the first so I kept my phone in it’s waterproof case.

From there I went to my last spot, on this stretch, that would hold fish with the levels being this low.  As I walked up I could see the silt clouds from several fish and one within range facing away.  I waited a few minutes for him to turn and once he did I dropped the fly right next to him.  He pounced on it and once I set the hook the splashing commenced.  Eventually he got his bearings straight and ran out of the hole and into the river, all the way across, into the weeds.  Once he made it to the weeds he slowed down but I wasn’t able to pull him out and eventually the hook came loose.  No biggie, my favorite part of this is watching the eat.  It still amazes me how sometimes they will completely ignore the fly and swim away like it’s poison and other times they attack it likes it’s the first meal they have had in weeks.

After that I went downstream to another area I discovered a few weeks back.  I’ve been waiting for some rain to help fill up one spot to help draw the fish closer into shore.  As I was walking to it I spotted some movement among some lily pads.  I worked my way closer concentrating on the pads to see if there was a carp underneath them.  I was so focused on that area that I never saw him swimming towards me.  he turned around and swam away.  From there I went to my next spot and as I was walking in I could see the back of one carp out of the water and about 15 feet from shore.  I got in line with a large tree on the shoreline to block his view and got into range.  After a little maneuvering I was able to place the fly just ahead of his nose.  He shot forward but since I couldn’t see the take I slowly lifted up, as I did he felt that hook and spun around.  I set the hook and held on expecting him to make a run for the river.  Problem was the water was so shallow he couldn’t get any traction so he just splashed and rolled right in front of me.  Eventually I waded out to him and picked him up.  I removed the hook and waded through the muck to some deeper water where I revived him and let him go.

It was getting late so I started back towards the car.  As I walked by I saw movement again at my first stop.  I snuck in again using the trees for cover and spotted another carp feeding with his tail to me.  I got into range and dropped the fly just off to his left.  He turned to his left and sucked it up.  Once I set the hook he took off through the lily pads.  I had tried to stay somewhat dry all night but I had no choice now.  I jumped in and started to clear my line from the pads.  He was already in the main river and pulling line so I was in a hurry to get it clear.  After about a minute of pulling pads out of the way I was clear.  I can’t believe I kept tension on him the whole time.  Once I gained some of my line back he just played around in front of me for the next 5 minutes or so.  Every time I would try to net him he would take off for about 10 feet and just bull dog me.  This went on for quite some time.  After about 5 or 6 attempts I finally got him in the net.  I got him on shore where I could take a quick pic and then waded back out into deeper water to revive him and send him on his way.

After that one I headed for home.  I was soaked up to my waist and in need of a shower.  I wasn’t going to complain, I went 4 for 5 tonight and I was only hoping for maybe 1, 2 if I was lucky.  Hopefully we will get some more rain this weekend.  Once we do I will be back out there.