Saturday, May 21, 2011

PDX Carp-a-rama! Fishing Was Happening With the Sunny Bright Weather

Common Carp Near Portland Oregon
The past couple of day I was out with friends/clients, and we had wonderful days in the sunshine stalking common carp in the grassy flats. My friend Bruce, Blaine, and Brian were out there picking up carp with regularity, and it was awesome watching them have a blast out there; while I was stalking away for these challenging fish.

Bruce D. with a nice golden PDX carp
The fish have been very active; patrolling around the flats seeking whatever food may be drowning or vulnerable in the flooded land. They are super opportunistic feeders, as they root around, swim around, and look around seeking nourishment to sustain their powerful rock hard bodies. They are not the lazy logs that most people think they are, and they happen to be a fine gamefish that takes the most talented of anglers to catch them.

A smiling angler with a hard bodied common carp
When you find the carp, you have to crawl like a slug, whisper with no impacting audibility, and you have to observe them before making your cast at them. All while anticipating where they are about to move to. Then you have to hope you do not spook them, and that they will want your offerings. Carp are about the toughest fish to stalk around!

Pretty Scale Patterns on the Common Carp
 Sometimes you can get a carp to bite with your leader and a few feet of fly line; while other times you have to make a 60'+ cast right on their nose. They are constantly moving around too; so you are putting your cast on the dime of a moving target. Pretty good casting practice for the bonefishing trip you have planned next year.
Carp and Human Battle in Progress
 Once they are hooked, they pull line out of the fly reel with serious authority, and you will see fly line backing quite often. Then some of the fish do not give up, and will not yield to your pressure until you fully are worn out on "your" end of the line. Again, these carp are a fine game fish, and not the sluggish logs that people perceive them as.
The Carp are literally on flooded Fields....
 Friday afternoon (5/20), I managed to spot out two large fish cruising the shallows and I got a few good shots at them. Finally after about a 65' cast threaded into a little pocket in the grass, the line was tight on the first little strip. The end of the line erupted and the reel screamed as my line spilled out into the backing and then some. A long battle and two times the fish took me long into the backing before it budged and I was worn out. The largest fish I have taken on a 8'6" four weight with 3X tippet. Yeah!!!

Common Carp Taken on Dumbbell Eyed Softhackle
Carp flats fly fishing is a wonderful way to get out when it is bright sun and crystal clear skies. A lot of fishing slows down when it is bright out with high pressure, but carp fishing seems to shine when the sun is out and bright. Get out there and challenge yourself and feel the big pull.