Tuesday, May 24, 2011
5/23/11 - "Chasing Tail..Carp on the Fly"
Lately I've found myself with this driving obsession for catching carp on my flyrod. Last year I gave it a little time and found some areas where I had success but the majority of my results were less than stellar for sure. That being said ,a big part of my lack of success was simply due to the fact that those damn fish just outsmarted me. No matter what your ideas are about carp, in my mind they're one of the more difficult species to catch on the fly in my area of the world. They're spooky beyond belief when encountered in shallow water and I can't count the number of times my poor casting has cost me shots at fish. After all that, once you do fool one you've got the equivalent of a mack truck attached to the other end of your line , if that doesn't sound like fun then I can't help you.
I've already had a couple of unsuccessful outings this year but still felt the urge to give it another go yesterday. The wife was at work and after a gray start the day turned out to be a sunny calm one , my favorite conditions for chasing carp.
I threw a rod , a flybox and a couple spools of tippet in the truck and Joe and I were off for the day. We hit several locations ranging from small city lakes to large reservoirs and a couple smaller creeks and spillways that I've fished previously as well.
Some places we saw fish and others we didn't. At Hillsdale I found a few fish up in the weeds but they were obviously starting to spawn and had no interest in anything else than each other. One of the creeks produced a small fish but it wasn't until late in the day that I found the spot I'd been looking for. A shallow flat on a point with a long rocky shoreline. I couldn't see any fish actually feeding actively but for some reason there were single fish passing through this spot with some consistency.
I tried several flies with no success and then finally on about the second cast with an olive pine squirrel sculpin I got a taker. The water was just clear enough to make out the fish changing his direction and checking out my fly hopping slowly across the bottom and then it was on. Not a big fish by carp standards but man what a fight!
I ended up catching two more fish at this spot including my first ever mirror , I was stoked to say the least. Just goes to show, persistence (and a little luck) actually does pay off. With a busy work schedule through memorial day I won't get another opportunity to fish for a while, but when I do you can bet I'll be back out chasing those "golden bones" again just waiting for that one shot that makes all the effort worthwhile....
Posted by HighPlainsFlyFisher