Last time I had a fly rod in hand was October. The long, cold winter, combined with a nasty shoulder injury has kept me on the sidelines, but I busted out in a big way today. The sun was out, so I took a gamble on a spot I know that usually has the first active fish of the year. They were there...a crapload of carp filled the shallows. A few were tailing, but most seemed to just be sitting there in the cold water, soaking up the rays in the shallows, bellies resting on the warm bottom. I was elated to just see some targets, but it didn't take me long to gear up and have at em.
The first fish I took a shot at was tailing. I made a short cast, dragged and dropped a hybrid (tied with Cohan hare line carp dub) within a few inches and the fish SLOWLY turned its head to eat. I set the hook prepared for reel screaming run, but instead the rod bent double, the fish rolled to the surface and just laid there. I dragged it in, took out the fly and cast at the next target.
Finding targets was easy. There were fish everywhere. In some cases I didn't have to move between releasing a fish, and casting at another. The only downside...the fish had no zip. The water was really cold, and their metabolism just hadn't fired up. I caught tons of carp, but none of them really fought. They could rouse enough energy to eat a fly two to three inches away, but that was all they had today. Still early, but just seeing so many takes felt great.
I think it is going to be a fantastic year!