The Tale of Two Carp

crystal gardens carp02-10 5 11I went out to the normal urban haunt to chase some carp this morning. As some have reported a lot of the ponds are very blue from being treated for algae etc, the fish activity was way down. I quickly made the rounds through my usual ponds with nary a fish even making an apearance and decided to see if some of the ponds I haven't fished in a few months were as blue.

Got there and they were looking pretty good, scummy as usual, just the way we like it! Saw a few of them sucking the surface about 100ft away, and a few swimming together about 50ft off. I clipped off the Simi Leech and tied on one of my Soggy Bread flies and cast in front of the pod closest to me. The splat on the water of the fly got them to start to rise up and suck a little. Casting topwater to a group of carp almost always seems to get them competitive for whatever could have landed, and this time was no different. 2 of the 4 fish turned their heads and came up to the surface almost bumping eachother, one of them sucked it right in nice and easy...

 

I raised the rod tip quickly and set the hook and BAM he was off! So much for the recent reports from a couple friends that the carp they had caught just kind of rolled over, no fight. I went for my camera to record the fish taking line as proof to these guys that they do indeed run, by the time I got the camera out and on he had already peeled off all of my fly line and was about 20ft into my backing. Some one handed recording for a minute or two then fought him back in close for some more video.

Nice fish, overall a 9 minute fight on the 5wt with 5x tippet and furled leader.

Short little video

 

crystal gardens carp01-10 5 11

crystal gardens carp01-10 5 11

 

And after release I saw some more fish in the distance sucking at the surface. Sent some line out and dropped the fly about 6in from the face of one of the fish and again, sucked in, hookset! But this one felt different, it was like dragging in a wet boot, not much fight, just heavy on the line. As it got close to the surface I could see that it was a Grass Carp, not the common carp I usually catch. My first grass carp on the fly, so that was cool, but as I've heard from others that have caught them, pretty much a wet rag for a fight. Too bad. About the only runs he would make was when I tried to net him, he'd get close and run about 5ft, then stop and let me drag him in again... we did this a dozen or so times before I could get the net in front of him. 

 

crystal gardens carp02-10 5 11

crystal gardens carp02-10 5 11

 

At least I can cross that species off my list...

Later that same day....

Hit the same spot, got into 3 more tonight in the same 30ft stretch of water.

Got there, first cast to a fish sitting shallow, he turned and ate the soggy bread fly that was still tied on from earlier. As I was fighting him close to me 4-5 other fish were chasing him around with that "What cha got there Fred?" look on their faces... So I was in a hurry to land him and get the fly back out there for another fish, put a little too much pressure on him and he straightened the hook after about 3min of fighting... damn...

Clipped the fly and put on a new fly I tied about 5min before I left, glue was still drying on the drive out. Cast it back into the group that were chasing ol' fred there and one of them SMASHED it, I thought at first it was a bass that hit it because of all the splash, nope, another nice carp! He took me for a ride for about 5minutes an came to net.

 

crystal gardens carp03-10 5 11

crystal gardens carp03-10 5 11

 

The Grass Carp were sucking away all over the place but I was trying to focus on the pod of common carp at the end I was working with. I kept casting out the new fly and after a bit it lost its floatability and started to sink slowly. It was also full of water and made a big PLUNK! when it hit the water now. It was starting to get dark, hard to see much of anything anymore. On last cast before clipping it and putting on a bread fly, cast it out infront of a white and orange guy that was crusing and rising often to the fly, but just wouldn't commit. Got it about a foot in front of him and it started to sink slowly. That must have been the trick for him, bam! he hit it and the fight was on. I didn't get a photo of the last one as the battery in my camera couldn't handle the recharge of the flash, guess I should have charged my batteries after the weekend...

So another good time at the ponds...

The new fly has been named Snozberries...

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