Thursday, October 30, 2014

Just Been an Average Fall So Far

The weather has been great this fall, but the carp fishing
has simply been average.
I've been describing this fall's carp fishing as simply fair.  Well, I'll throw another word out there....average.  In the last ten years I have averaged about fifty fish in each of the months of September and October.  This year I landed 57 carp in Sept. and 55 in Oct.  Pretty average in my book.
Fall fishing for carp can vary greatly.  Last year, my best early fall ever (September and October), I landed 163 carp in those two months.  Way above average.  However, back in 2010, I landed only 52 carp in those two months. Way below average. Note that I am fishing about the same number of days and times.
I thought this would have been one of those very good years because the weather has been warm so far.  But, I guess the weather has not been much of a factor.  The big issue is that I can't seem to find a hot venue.  I'm talking a place where I can rack up some big numbers in a short period of time.  Those hotspots are just not happening this fall for me. Maybe something hot will turn up in November.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Best Hour of the Fall

This is one of six carp landed in
just one hour of fishing tonight.
This has not been a banner fall.  I've written a number of times about how the carp fishing has only been "fair" thus far here in RI.  So, when I went out tonight locally for a short session of only hour or so I was hoping for maybe a fish or two.
I got a surprise.  The fish were active and hitting.  In a short hour or so I landed 6 mirrors.  This was the best hour of fishing I have had all fall.  The fish tonight started hitting a half hour before dark and continued hitting after dark.  I landed all the fish on maize fished on the hair rig. I will also tell you that I prebaited the area I fished earlier in the day. Prebaiting always ups the chances of catching fish.
I suspect that the recent cold nights have gotten a fall run going and gotten the carp feeding in anticipation of winter as water temperatures are on the way down.  Let's hope this sudden good fishing I had tonight continues.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Even Bad Weather Not a Turn-on

This decent size common was
landed yesterday in some rainy
and windy weather. The fishing
has not improved in the nasty
weather of the last few days.
In the past I have posted numerous posts about how lousy, rainy and stormy weather was a turn-on in carp fishing.  I have had spectacular days of fishing in some of the lousiest weather imaginable.  I'm talking fishing in hurricanes, tropical storms and windswept heavy rains.
However, the northeaster of the last two few days has had little effect on carp fishing.  I'm still getting them, but I continue to rate the fishing as only fair.  The bad weather has not made the fishing any better or any worse. For instance, I fished a good spot this morning in the wind and light rain and landed just one carp.  I went back to another spot tonight in pouring rain and got one decent size carp after dark.
So, what's wrong.  I believe that the current northeaster is bringing with it a lot of cold weather that is dropping the water temps.  Sudden drops in water temperatures are just not good at this time of year.  There is no question in my mind.....if we had a south or southeast wind with warm temperatures in the 60's and 70's with rain, we would have some terrific fishing. Warm rain tends to be a turn-on for carp in the fall while a cold rain at this time of year has little effect on the fishing.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

After Dark Working

In the last three nights I have fished a lot in the evening into the night.  The carp have been active at and after dark.  The daylight has produced very little when I fished in the morning lately.
Most fishermen don't associate nighttime fishing with carp fishing. I will tell you that they do feed well at night, sometimes just as good as they feed in the daytime.  Fall is one of the prime times to fish at night, although some fishermen like RI CAGer Kev Wasliewski gets them throughout the year at night.
The approach at night is the same as fishing in the daytime.  I think bite alarms are almost a must at night since it can be mighty dark in some spots, and the sound and light on the alarms are great to alert you to a hit when you can't see a thing.  Baiting is the same as fishing in the daylight.  Wear some warm clothing and bring a quality headlight and you are set for night fishing.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

New RI CAG Tournament in Progress

RI CAG member Bob White holds a good size mirror
carp that he entered in our fall tournament. Nice looking fish!
The RI CAG is running a new tournament this fall for its members.  It is called the Common/Mirror Combo Tournament.  Here's how it works.  Members enter the biggest common and the biggest mirror they catch in the fall months of Sept., Oct., and Nov. in RI waters.  The combined weight of the two fish is your total number of points. First, second and third place will be awarded medals.
Already we have had some impressive fish entered.  These are carp with weights in the teens and twenties.
We have an active RI CAG club of carp fishermen here in RI, and we run our own fish-ins and tournaments. To join our group, you must be a member of the national Carp Anglers Group (CAG). The national group also runs a number of tournaments, photo and writing contests and fish-ins.  It also puts out a magazine four times a year.  Members also have total access to their popular and informative Forum. Information on joining is on the CAG website at .

Friday, October 17, 2014

Stormy Weather Fails to Perk Things Up

I landed only two
carp in 8 hours of
fishing yesterday. I
expected better fishing.
I was all excited when I saw yesterday's forecast.  Stormy weather in years past meant big days of carp fishing with lots of fish and big ones.  Not yesterday.  I spent 8 hours fishing two different venues in the wind and rain and came away with two carp in the low teens along with a large horned pout.  It was just not that good. And, I saw little activity with only a few fish jumping.
So, just as my previous post describes the fishing for the month, yesterday's results were just "steadily fair".  It should have been better for this time of year. Maybe we need some cold weather to perk things up.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Consistently Fair

This large common measured 34
inches and was landed this morning.
It was one of four decent commons
landed in a 3 hour short session.
The carp fishing thus far in October is typical of what I've seen in other years.  I would describe it as consistently fair.  Carp fishing in the fall is kind of like the weather.  Hot one day, cold the next and somewhere in between on other days.
I've been fishing mostly short sessions in the morning. I usually get out for two or three hours.  On just about every outing this month I have been getting one to four fish. Not great numbers but consistently fair.  However, I have been getting some hefty fish this month with numerous 20 lbers. coming to the net.  This morning I got a beast of a common that measured 34 inches long.  While I didn't weigh the fish, I'm guessing it was in the low to mid twenties.
Many novice carpers try to equate fall fishing with spring fishing.  Well, that is like comparing apples to oranges.  During the spring months of April, May and June, I generally average 100 or more fish a month.  At the other end of the calendar in the months of Sept., Oct. and Nov., I average 50 fish a month, half of what I catch in the spring.  Realize, though, big fish can be caught in both the spring and fall.  The largest carp ever caught in RI was a gargantuan common that tipped the scales at 36 lbs. I caught that fish in November.  So, it can happen in the fall.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Tough Choices

Where to fish, what to fish for?? This is always my dilemma in the fall as I am fishing both salt and freshwater.  It's a time of the year that I fish more for striped bass than I fish for carp.  Nevertheless, I am still carp fishing, mostly in the mornings and on very stormy days.
Today was typical of my schedule at this time of year.  I left the house at 9:00 AM and headed for one of my favorite carp spots. I had my saltwater gear with me along with my freshwater gear.  I fished freshwater for about two and a half hours, and landed one good size carp.  I left my freshwater spot about noontime and headed for Narragansett.  I slugged it out there in some rough water but was rewarded with a 40 striper day. I got all schoolies and no keepers although last week I had two big stripers over 40 inches from shore.  Tonight I fished until dark in Gansett then headed to another location to try for a big one after dark.  Got nothing in the second spot.
I ended up getting home about 9:00 PM.  This has been my schedule for the last month. Tough choices.....I'm sure many of you would love to make these "tough choices"!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Fall Nights

This good size common was
recently landed at night.  Fall
nights are productive for carp
If you have never fished at night for carp, now is prime time to get out and fish in the darkness.  The fish are on the fall feed and with the days getting shorter and shorter, carp often feed heavily at night at this time of year.  Once the real cold weather sets arrives in November, the nighttime bite will subside.
There are no different techniques involved in nighttime fishing. Just make sure you have a good headlight.  Bite alarms are also just about a must since it is very difficult to see your outfits in pitch dark blackness.
I will admit that I don't often fish at night for carp. My nighttime fishing is often done at saltwater for stripers, yet in the fall I often fish at night for carp when not striper fishing.  I have gotten out carp fishing several times at night in the last couple of weeks and caught fish each time. My bait of choice has been combo baits of maize and artificial pop up corn.
With darkness arriving earlier and earlier, nighttime is about the only option for working guys who want to fish for carp.  Pick out a safe location and give it a try.  You might just be surprised at how good it can be.

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Strange, but True....Blind, Eyeless Carp Landed

Look closely.  You see the fish's
nostrels, but no eyes on either side
of the head.
I've caught one eyed carp in the past, but never had I ever caught an eyeless carp.  This totally blind carp was landed today on a combo bait of maize and an artificial pop up.
The fish had no eyes whatsoever on either side of its head. In fact, when I released the fish it sort of felt its way along the shallow shoreline and made its way slowly out to deeper water. It's amazing that this fish could survive and flourish in this state.  I estimate the fish was at least fifteen pounds, had a good size gut, and looked very healthy.  I suspect this fish used some highly sophisticated senses to live its life. Don't underestimate a carp's senses.  They are the most highly developed of any fish I have ever caught in freshwater.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Crazy Looking Mirror

I landed this mirror this morning along with 5 other good size carp in some very stormy weather.  This mirror had a lot of smooth skin along with smallish scales all over its body in very random places.  Very unusual, but then again, all mirrors are unique in appearance.