In a word...they suck. At least around here. The water out here is big, and the carp have plenty of options to find the water temps they want, so finding them in the accessible shallows is tough. I usually get a few each winter by hunting around some ponds, but Columbia River fish are pretty tough to find in the winter. I drove around a bit this week and found this:
All told, I saw about a dozen tailing carp, but the light was pretty good and it had been warm and sunny for a few days. I went back after those tailers this weekend, and saw no fish in the shallows. A few days of cold rain dropped the temps down, and the fish went deeper. I stuck it out though...waded the deep edge and peered into the mirror like water for a glimpse of a fish and lo and behold, it worked! Good things happen when you keep your boots in the water. I managed three carp, two little guys and this nice humpback guy.
That fish doesn't look it, but it tipped the scale at 18 lbs...must have been pretty dense...maybe it is that weird hump. The fish were lethargic and barely fought, but it was rewarding nonetheless. Plus, I managed to christen the Orvis Helios 2 with a few carp! Review on that rod coming soon, but let it be said...it is a hell of a fly rod.
Still a ways to go before it heats up, but this was a nice appetizer.