I took two "new" guys fishing two days ago. These two guys, Eric and Jack, were very experienced salt and freshwater fishermen, but they had never tangled with a carp. I have known Jack for quite a while, and last year we had planned to carp fish. I had my doubts about how we'd do since the weather was not favorable. To make a long story short, we hit it big, landed 7 good size mirror carp from ten pound up to the high teens using chick peas on the hair rig. We also had several more hits and fish on.
Jack Sprengel, one of the guys I took out, is a well known Charter Boat Captain (East Coast Charters) who has fished all over the world. Below is a part of a blog entry he sent me describing a small part of our day. It tells you a lot about carp fishing.
"Enthusiastic but skeptical, I was prepared for a long miserable soak in this fine example of New England Spring Cold front weather. So imagine my surprise a mere 10 minutes later when one of the rods started dumping as if it just got smashed by a Wahoo on the troll. To amplify the surge of adrenaline, the audible mayhem that the strike indicator emitted as the line peels off, is enough to raise the hairs on the back of your neck. I sprinted to the rod while there was still line on the reel and came tight. All I can say is what a bad ass fish for freshwater: Deep sounding, riding the current, Grey hounding, Bulldogs and even Tail walks. As the fish (probably around 12lbs) began to tire and came into the shallows, we were treated to another fascinating aspect of this unique fishery. “Real Dealers” like Dave use massive nets for cradling these juggernauts in place then you use the mesh of the net itself to safely lift the fish from the water.From there, the fish is placed onto its own special landing pad, specifically designed to support the fish’s weight out of the water and prevent it from damaging itself against the rocky shoreline when flipping around. Once on the pad, the hook is easily removed from the lip and then you can pick the fish up for a few snap shots before returning it to the water, and that we did.
Euphoric over the swift success, Erich and I shook Dave’s hand and began to admire the shots we just captured. Our celebration was cut short when yet another rod begins to dump with that spine tingling scream of the strike alarm. On again! I sprinted to the rod and again came tight, another great battle this time on a lighter rod, and we had another beautiful Mirror Carp in the net. This guy was a few pounds heavier. Snapped some shots and released the fish unharmed. We neatened everything up, re-rigged and had a sandwich. Just when it seemed like the day was about to slack up, B B B BBRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR one of the rods strait DUMPED! With the line half way down river Erich ran over and came tight on a beauty in the high teens. This fish was really photogenic and had a cool more rounded shape to its head. As the fish came into the shallows I took the rod from E as he ran back to the pack and grabbed his cam for some sick in the water footage. I wrapped up the battle, Dave scooped up the fish, a few more shots and with that we decided to give this spot a rest. "
The photos in this post were provided by the other "new" guy, Eric Medenbach, a top notch and talented photograher.