Tuesday, May 30, 2006

My first Mirror Carp!

Check it out...the rare "carp double." Justin and I hooked and landed these two carp at the same time. We actually were hooked up with doubles quite often, but this is just a great picture.

Monday, May 29, 2006

Some more pictures...

Anytime you have the opportunity to fish with a good friend, you know the trip will be a great one...combine that with great scenery, eager fish, the NBA playoffs, and a wide variety of species that a trip like that quickly leaves the territory of great and becomes unforgettable. Justin and I had a special couple of days fishing in MN. We hit trout streams, tailwaters, and warm water rivers. We caught 22-23 species at last count with something for everyone thrown in there somewhere. The last day alone brought a huge variety of fish, all taken on flies while blind fishing nymphs in a tailwater river. We caught predators such as brown trout, brook trout, catfish, smallmouth bass,even northern pike! We caught roughfish from carp (35-40 carp caught between us!) to redhorse, quillback, even the elusive buffalo! At one point on day 4 I hooked and played 2 carp at the same time, eventually losing the fish on the bottom fly when i grabbed for the fish on the top fly (for the record, the top fish was the bigger of the two!) It was simply put, one of the best trips of all time.

Here is just a quick sampling of some pictures and fish that we caught. I will put more up over the next few days as I recover from vacation and prepare for Justin's trip out here to OR. While I doubt I can match the few days of fishing we just had, I am sure we will once again have a great trip together.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Kelly, Elia and I are off to MN tomorrow. We get to attend my friend Marcus's wedding, fish with Justin for several days, and visit Kelly's parents. It is going to be a great trip! Here is a shot from a few years ago fishing with Justin down near Rochester...more of the same this year!

Saturday, May 13, 2006

A couple of more pictures from today...taken by David...

A good shot by KB...

Good company can turn any day on the water into a great day, and today I was fortunate enough to get to fish with David, KB, and Elia. It was a beautiful day for carp fishing!

With Elia in the backpack we hit our first stop and the carp were active, so we spent much of the morning chasing tailers in the shallows, and casting to fish feeding in amongst the rocks. Everyone hooked up or landed fish including a couple of nice ones. I got one great take in about 8 inches of water where the fish practically leapt straight up and turned while out of the water to grab the fly. I'm sure that is not what happened, but it was a really great take.

I dropped Elia off at home for a nap and headed back out to another spot where David was fishing. KB didn't join us either so it was just David, myself, and about 50 carp. We cast at sunning carp for a few hours. Sunning carp are really tough. If you don't put the fly right on their nose, they ignore it. If you are too close the spook. With large pods like we had around us this afternoon if one fish spooked the entire shoal would bust out of there. At one point a low flying bird sent 20-30 carp fleeing in one big mass. It was really a challenge, but we both managed some fish. I caught 3 or 4, with one great 11 lb fish. David caught a nice carp on a rubber legged hare's ear.

All in all a great day, made only better by fishing with some great people. Elia had a good time in the morning talking to the ducks and helping her dad spot fish! For the day I ended up with 8-9 carp, the biggest was 11lbs, and I did see my backing at least once today!

Thanks David, Elia and KB for a great day of carp fishing!

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

I found a couple of hours to take Elia out today after a few carp. hit one of my favorite spots and the fish were active, but mostly cruising around, not a lot of feeders. elia rode in the backpack and we walked slowly around the pond until I finally spotted a feeding fish about 30 ft out. Generally on this pond, that is too far to hook up. I use a small size 14 hares ear (no bead or legs) and it is just too tough to detect the strike from that distance. elia told me to cast anyway by pulling my hat back against my head really tight (at least I took that to mean..."dad, cast at that fish!") I lined up the cast and made a good one...Dropped the fly about 2 ft in front of him, and about a foot past him. I made one quick strip, and he picked his nose up and eased forward. I didn't see his head move again, or gills flare, but the way he had looked, then just slowly moved toward the fly made me suspicious, so I made a quick strip set and fish on! I was fishing my 4 wt in this pond (lots of small fish) and he gave me a great battle before coming in...About a 5 lb fish. on the way out I checked another little pond across the street that I'd never fished. Right away I spotted two nice fish in the shallows, just a rod length away. I dropped the same fly right in front of them and immediately hooked up...This was a better fish, around 9lbs! Great afternoon!of course I couldn't leave well enough alone, so I went to see how highway cone was doing. Found him, threw flies at him, and he laughed his little fishy laugh and swam off. I did hook one nice fish on that same hare's ear, but he broke me off on the hook set...I think the tippet was frayed from fighting the last fish...They do rub that tippet on their fins while running! Great day with elia, not only did we catch a few fish, and chase highway cone around, but we saw a bunch of baby geese. Now elia is a smart little thing, and she can say baby (she says all kinds of words) and she can also say geese (whenever she sees one she goes "honk...honk"). She knows a lot of words, but today she saw the small geese with the big geese and pointed at them and said "baby geese." like I said. It was a great day.

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

I fished sunday with a buddy, and we only saw a few fish. Fortunately my wife is a saint, and could tell that i needed some more decompression before monday, so i headed out sunday evening to highway cone's lake to see what i could find. To make a long story short, I hooked 3 fish, all of which broke me off. two of the three were big fish in the 20 lb range (one female was really big.) I was fishing a bigger leader than i normally do (3x instead of 4x) and still managed to lose 3 fish.well, that meant i just had to take a vacation day tuesday. i had heard rumors of 20 lb fish in a pond about 30 minutes from the house. the rumors are true. i hooked the biggest carp i've ever seen...probably close to 30 lbs. i had good control of the fish but he made a final run to the lilly pads, and i had to put the breaks on him...pop...that was that. a 4th fish broken off. i hit a few other spots, and landed a small 5 lb fish and an 8 lb fish (great take...i jigged the fly in front of him while hiding in the bushes and he sort of jumped through the water column to eat it...really cool.) i also sawsome more big fish in the high teens, maybe 20 lbs...hooked 3 of them, broke them all off. so i've now broken 7 of the last 9 fish off...i would say 6 of these fish would be 15 lbs minimum...several i know were 20 and two really big ones. this week i'll chuck all my tippet spools and leaders, and buy all new stuff. still, i can't help but think it is not an equipment failure...more of a case of lost mojo...i'll bet highway cone stole it...he looked smug today ignoring my flies...heh heh...