Blue River Fly Classic

Blue River Fly Classic
A One Pattern Fly Event

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Carp Redux 2011 - The Day After "I Do!"

Charlie has told me a good number of times to seek out the shallows after a rain.  Of all the fly fishers I know, Charlie is one of the finest and the one that owns the keenest sense of observation - he studies these carp like a student prepping for a test.

Early this morning, about midway between the midnight hour and dawn, a thunderstorm tumbled across this prairie ocean.  It was loud with bright flashes and brought rain.  It didn't bring a tremendous amount of rain; a drought-buster my no means, however, it was a much needed rain and enough to turn the creek brown.

I decided to take Charlie up on his advice, and like I should have known, his advice was solid as a rock. With the creek being discolored, I dismissed the white Mysis Shrimp from duty and tied on an olive and orange Carpolo Charlie. Within thirty minutes I had battled and brought to submission three carp... including two of those fascinating looking Mirror carp.

It may be my imagination, but, Mirror carp seem to have more spunk than the Common carp does.  The Mirror just never quit and make run after run.  Sometimes I have to simply bulldog these Mirror carp and beach them.

Today the carping by fly was a mixture of sight fishing and blind fishing at the same time.  The creek wasn't dingy to the point the image of the carp couldn't be made, but, once the fly pierced the surface it was gone from sight.  I depended on the behavior of the carp to know when it was time to set the hook and if the creatures suddenly moved forward and stopped, or gills flared... I went for the hook-set.  This practice worked like a charm. 
First Mirror of the day.

Fascinating looking Mirror.

Fishing today was a total muddy mess.  The usual structure of felled trees and root balls were certainly present and today there were additional tree limbs that had been washed down the creek.  How the fish and I came through all that without a break-off amazes me.  Although it was fun, it was a work-out and in the end my rod was dirty, the reel was dirty, I was dirty, and the Carpolo Charlie looked like it had been through a meat grinder.
Speaking of Charlie again, I think he come up with the perfect coinage about fly fishing for carp.  In a dispatch I received from Charlie last year in regards to fly fishing for carp, Charlie said, "This ain't pretty fishing."  Charlie my friend, you're absolutely correct - this is sometimes down and dirty in the trenches fishing. 
It's not pretty fishing.

While I was having fun battling the carp, I didn't realize the creek was on the rise.  It wasn't a threatening rise or anything like that.  However, within another thirty minutes the creek had become unfishable, discoloring even more with a significant increase in flow. 

I gave thanks and left the creek. 

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