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Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Carp fishing frustrations

There are some massive carp in a pond near me and least one of them likes to jump. I got a good look at her when she leapt tonight and I'd guess she's at least 20 lbs. and about a yard long. She jumped in the same spot several times over the course of three hours. Sometimes it seemed as if the jumps coinsided with me casting my bass lure, as if in response to the splash of my lure hitting the water. (I'm just guessing about the fish's gender. Female fish are usually much bigger than males. This is true of most fish species.)

I bought some carp bait a few months ago and hadn't tried using it until this week. Carp don't hunt live fish, therefore carp do not chase lures. (Well, except insect representations, i.e. flies.) They aren't equipped to chase down finny prey, but they probably eat dead fish and crawdads as long as they're small enough to fit in that vacuum cleaner nozzle mouth that most carp possess.

Today I used a carp tactic I saw a Brit using on youtube. He used dog food kibble as chum, so I thought I'd try it. I scattered the kibble in the water along the shore, hoping to attract carp to the area where my baited hook was positioned. I did this in a cove where the wind had been funneling flotsam. There was a slick of foam building up in this cul-de-sac cove apparently containing dead bugs, etc. In the shallowest part of this cove I had seen carp browsing, their dorsal fins waving in air.

It was a cool, drizzly evening but I did see a couple of carp where I had seen them the day before; in a cove where the wind had been funneling all sorts of foamy flotsam. "Sight fishing," i.e. stalking fish you can see in the water, is great fun but tricky because it's easy to spook a carp or trout. All it takes is one heavy footstep and your quarry flees. This water in this pond is the color of coffee, stained dark with tannic acid from rotting vegetation, so spotting fish here is not easy.

Just as I had my chum line set up a flock of Canada geese paddled over, assuming the kibble was for them. They snapped up whatever kibble they could find. When they were done eating my chum, they stared at me hoping I would deliver more. So help me, I threw rocks at them which probably scared the carp away too.

Oh well. I should probably bring my fly rod next time because sitting on the bank staring at the water and waiting for "the take" is too boring, far too passive. Hell, I don't even own a lawn chair.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

a couple of firsts

Last night I landed a 5 pounder-ish LMB at the reservoir closest to where I live. I'm getting used to landing bass in this weight range but this time I caught one on a Koppers Live Target rubber frog. This bait doesn't have any action whatsoever. You just drag it through the grass in 2 - 3 foot bursts. I worked this bait in a cove where the frogs were singing and wham, fish on. The water must have been 6" deep where the fish struck.

The other first was, first fish caught on a Slug-Go. I had a white, 7" Slug-Go rigged on an EWG worm hook. Smallish pickerel took it. 

Monday, June 4, 2012

Elusive giant at the landing by the power lines.

It's evening on the reservoir.

I cast as far as I dare push my rod, and the instant the plug lands ten yards from the opposite shore the water erupts with a thrashing fish. Something big was right under the plug when it landed, but it missed my plug. I reel the lure in quickly to see if she'll strike again, but she's not interested.

By the time I have my plug back and cast again, there's another explosion 15 yards left of the first and ten yards left of my latest presentation. This time the fish leaps clear of the water, and I'm able to see it's pale belly. A few seconds later there's another rise, but it's not quite an explosion. Now all is quiet again, and the fish has moved on.