This didn’t start out to be a post about my first carp caught on a fly or about using the world’s ugliest streamer to do it. The trip was originally supposed to be the opportunity to test of a new popping bug. But over an hour into it I realized that despite my best efforts and some great new poppers, there was no chance of catching a bream, bass, or other moderately desirable fish on the surface.
This is where I turned to the world’s ugliest streamer. Up until recently I fished this lake regularly. It is a productive place, but has a bottom full of grass and other vegetation. I wanted to prospect subsurface, but knew that I would most likely lose my streamer or nymph somewhere in the process. Not wanting to risk too much, I tied on a green woolly bugger, or at least my version of it.
A few months ago I went to a local fishing association meeting and took advantage of free fly tying lessons. I ended up tying two green woolly buggers, neither with any weight or bead head. Later I wrapped some solder around the head of each and colored the solder with a red Sharpie. I threw them in my bass fly box figuring that one day they might come in handy. Today was the day.
This is where the carp comes in. After about a dozen casts with a slow retrieve I hooked up. The fish fought me from the start and peeled off line like a trout. I could easily see that it wasn’t a bass or bream, but what was it? I had heard that there were some pickerel in the lake, but didn’t think that I was going nearly deep enough to hook one of them. Then I saw the sides. Shiny with golden tint and well defined scales, I started to think that I had hooked a carp. when I finally saw the mouth I knew that I was right.
I reeled it in and took a couple of pictures for this post. Then I removed the streamer and gently placed the fish back in the water. Instantly it took off like a rocket.
Although I probably won’t target carp on future trips, I can see why there are those that do. Enjoy!
The next few photos are all early spring prizes. Not because of their girth, length or overall size, but rather for the way that they were caught or the way that they fought.
Some were netted quickly, while others spooled the reel, taking line effortlessly, refusing to be retrieved until fatigued by a bowed rod and taut line.
A few were found in lakes and ponds, some in large rivers, and others in the small no-name locations discovered only by wandering through dense woods, soft muddy marshes, and small unrecognizable trails.
All were released without incident to grow into future trophies. Enjoy!