Wednesday, June 15, 2011


So I am still not really sure where to go with all of this. The truth is, we slayed 'em. We caught tons of really nice carp and a few really big carp, and a couple of really monstrous carp. The trip was an amazing success regardless of conditions if you look at just the numbers, but carping is certainly about more than just the numbers. Fishing is about more than just the least to those that really love it.

There are always those particular moments that hit you when on the water. I remember in particular the smallest fish that I caught all trip. We were walking back for a last ditch effort and what was supposed to be a travel zone turned into a carping zone. We spotted fish way up in some grass and caught one or two each...small ones like I said but one that I caught was a take that will replay in my mind. I was crouched at the waist with the fish slow cruising to me through pockets of grass. I dapped a fly into the opening to which the fish was headed and when he cleared the debris the fish reached up like it was picking an apple and grabbed my suspended fly. This was in about 6 inches of water.

I remember Mctage sticking a 16 lb athlete on the open river. Another slow cruiser (my favorite targets) out on the deep edge of the deep and flooded flat. I am not sure how he saw the fish or the take...I just remember the smile as that rocket took off into the depths of the Columbia.

I remember the grass. We fished two kinds of grass...stuff so thick and field grass high that the name of the game was picking an opening and hanging your fly there, hoping the target chose that particular path. And we fished cropped and manicured grass next to picnic lush and vibrant and green that it was distracting to see these big, dark alien shapes cruising and tailing where families should have been playing frisbee and eating potato salad. In many cases the fish were tailing so vigorously that we simply couldn't get the fly through the grass to the fish's level.

I remember slowing down and taking a moment to look at several of the fish we caught and marvel. Carp are amazing creatures. Big fins, massive tails and broad shoulders...they truly are fascinating. So efficient. At one point, after releasing the big, 31 lb female I grabbed my rod and took a few steps back to the water and stopped. I looked up Mctage and said I needed to take a few minutes to really enjoy that experience properly. I sat on the bank and watched him fish. After a few minutes, I got up and waded back out into the carp. I don't remember if I caught another one that night.


e.m.b. said...

Carp really are amazing creatures...I saw one doing flips and loops in the water last weekend. Just for the heck of it! Was the neatest thing I think I've ever seen....almost like a dirty dolphin or something. Well anyhow, I am really enjoying your memories of this trip, whether you know "where to go" with them or not. Great stuff!

Ty said...

Stellar! I have really enjoyed the posts by you and McTage about this trip. Some of the coolest fishing I've seen in a long time. And that 31 pounder - good friggin' grief.

John Montana said...

Thanks Ty. You should come out west some time. And I dig the carp shirt!

testflycarpin said...

And John seems to think it is even cooler when things are normal...I cant imagine. I was frantic enough as it was at brain might explode in that case.

John Montana said...

Carp are amazing. I always see something cool when fishing for them,

Ty said...

Glad you like the shirt John! I've been getting some pretty hilarious looks and comments when I wear mine into local fly shops.