Friday, September 26, 2014

Big Fish on the Fall Feed

Take a look at the gut on this
twenty pound plus carp landed
today.  It was short and had a small
tail, but the gut was huge.  Large
carp are on the fall feed and hitting.
Today was the first day in a long time that I was able to land more than one twenty pounder in the same outing.  I actually landed two fish of 20 and 22 lbs. along with a couple of teen size fish.  The two large fish that I caught had the same profile....short in length but huge guts which really contributed to their weight.  It shows that they have been feeding heavily.  In the past that time period from late September into late October (and even later) has been prime time to land a real big fish. Several years ago I beat the state record twice (33lbs., 2 oz. and 36 lbs.) while fishing in the fall.
Today's two large fish were caught on different baits.  One fish hit a doughball and artificial corn combo (see last post) while the other fish hit a maize/artificial corn combo bait.  Both baits were hair rigged and fished ahead of a method ball.
If you are looking for a big fish the window of opportunity is open right now.  The next month should be prime time.

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Doughballs Hot Bait this Week

The hot combo  bait lately has been
a doughball with a kernel of plastic
artificial corn on the hair rig.
I am back to consistently catching carp here in RI.  The hot bait in the last few days for me has been doughballs with a little trick added.  I am adding a colored artificial pop-up corn to my doughball.  The best color has been orange. I've gotten a good number of commons up to 18 lbs. using this bait combination.
Doughballs are probably the most widely used bait for carp.  Carp love feeding on bread especially in those places where people feed bread to ducks and geese.
Here's how I make my doughballs.  It is just the white part of a slice of bread.  Roll it and knead it until you have a ball about the size of a small marble.  Then I set it in the sun or just air dry it until it is fairly hard and firm.  I then hair rig it.  It is durable and works terrific.  With the pests (turtles, bluegills and horned pout) being less aggressive in this cooler weather, doughballs are a good bait choice.
This is one of three good size commons landed this morning on doughballs.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Disappointment at the NEYC

Jerome lands the biggest carp
for MA at 17 lbs.
Don holds the biggest carp for Team CT
at 20 lbs.
Sometimes, no matter what you use for bait or where you fish, the carp are just not interested in feeding.  Such was the case yesterday at the New England Yankee Challenge on the Merrimack River in Lowell, MA.  Seventeen highly skilled anglers fished a venue that was a well known carp producer and only 3 guys hooked and landed fish.  Those three guys landed a grand total of 5 fish.  And, the seventeen guys who fished put in a long 8 hours of trying. We did see fish jumping and lots of bubble trails, but not many biting. So, that is how it goes in carp fishing....sometimes they hit, sometimes they don't.
The CT team ended up winning once again (fifth year in a row).  None of our CAG members from RI landed any fish though Jason DiChristofaro did have a fish on and lost it.
However, we did get to meet a lot of good fishermen and established some good contacts.  I got invites to fish with some of these guys also.  And, some of our members do plan to revisit this spot and try again. So, all was not lost, but still disappointing.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Heading off to the NEYC

Tomorrow I will be heading off to the Merrimack River in MA to fish the New England Yankee Challenge.  This is an eight hour tournament in which a carp team from MA/RI competes against a team of carp fishermen from CT.  It will feature some of the very best carp fishermen in New England.  Many are also nationally known for their skills at catching carp. The RI representatives on the MA team include myself, Todd Richer, Jason DiChristofaro and Bob White.  These guys are all RI CAG members, skilled anglers and diehard carp fishermen.
We will be competing for points.  Each carp landed is worth one point.  There will be 1 bonus point for a carp over 10 lbs., 2 bonus points for a carp over 20 lbs., 3 bonus points for a carp over 30 lbs. and 1 bonus point for a mirror carp or a koi.  Fishermen will be paired up with other fishermen from opposing teams.  You will draw a peg number for the place you will be fishing for the day. Two rods are allowed.
Watch for a write-up on the results in the next day or two.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

500th Carp of the Year

This carp is number 500 for the year.  It was caught after
dark tonight on maize.
I landed my 500th  carp of the year tonight after dark.  This fish was a mirror of about 6 lbs. that was caught on maize. In the last five years I have been able to average about 650 carp a year.  From the way it's going I should get into the 600's in the next few months.  With a bit of luck, I could even get to 700 fish. In my carp fishing career, there have only been two years in which I have broken the 700 mark.
September thus far has been uneventful.  It's been a fish here and there with very good days yielding 3-4 fish and poor days giving up the blank.  I attribute this mediocre fishing to this beautiful weather we are getting.  I've seen fish cruising around in the daytime, but they are lethargic.  The water is still warm, the ponds, lakes and rivers are very shallow and the weed growth is significant.  Get a little stormy and cold weather, and I would guess the carp fishing will really improve. Hey, it's fall, an inconsistent time of the year for carp fishing.

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Review of Fox Warrior S Carp Rod

This 18 lb. common was landed
with the Fox Warrior on its first
day out.  The rod will get the job
done with efficiency!
Fox is a name that is associated with quality carp fishing tackle. It is a big tackle company in the UK that makes everything carpy from nets to alarms to shelters to rods. I own a lot of Fox gear and am more than pleased with everything.  So, when I decided to upgrade to new rods I did not hesitate to order a couple of Fox rods.
The rods I purchased from Big Carp Tackle ( ) were Fox Warrior S rods.  These are supposedly entry level rods but there is nothing entry level about them. I bought 3 lb. test curve Warriors in a 12 foot length.  The model I bought had a full cork handle and sold for $129. So far I have caught numerous carp from 10-18 lbs with these rods, and I have really been giving them a workout in the last week or so.  In short, I will tell you that there rods are high performance, have good looks, and are a top value in rods.
Performance- This is a great casting rod.  It has the backbone to cast heavy sinkers loaded with method a good distance. Yet, at the same time the rod has a soft tip with some give that allows you to play a fish and bring it right up into the net with no problem.
Good looks- The rod sports a quality reel seat and quality and durable three footed guides right up to the tip (see photos at left). The rod has an attractive matte black finish.  It is a fairly thin but lightweight blank.
Value-  My guess is you would have to pay double to find comparable value.  The regular rod (no cork) sells for $99 while the cork handle model sells for $129 at Big Carp Tackle.
The final word......HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014


Note the red artificial corn
in the lip of this good size common.
We know from studies that carp are attracted to certain colors.  Those colors tend to be warm colors like orange, red, pink and yellow.  Back in the spring I was catching big time using a pink pop-up artificial corn in combination with other baits.  I have continued to experiment with different colors and in the last couple of weeks red has been the hot color.
Red artificial corn matched
with a chick pea has been a hot
combo bait in the last two weeks.
Funny thing about colors......some work better in certain spots than others.  In one place I fished last fall, orange was working really well.  In anther spot I fished this spring, pink worked well.  But, this past couple of weeks I have been fishing multiple spots and red has been the ticket.
I am using one kernel of red, artificial ESP corn along with either one kernel of maize or one chick pea on the hair rig.  This is catching from two to as many a six good size fish an outing.  If I experiment with other colors like yellow, white or pink, they are simply not working.
So, think about adding some red to your bait choices.  It's a hot color right now.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Fall Fishing Starting

Little by little fall is taking hold.  The days are getting shorter and the nights have been cool. Oh, daytime temperatures have been warm this week, but I sense the carp are starting their fall feed in anticipation of colder weather coming.
I had a real good morning today catching 5 carp and having another one on.  The biggest of the bunch was a 15 lb. mirror.  I'm back to using combo bait on the hair rig that centers around that artificial pop-up corn.  Sometimes I use maize with the artificial, sometimes chick peas.  Chick peas have been hot for me lately in a variety of spots.  I like to buy the chick peas (also known as garbanzo beans) in a dried state and boil them for exactly 20 minutes.  I am using one chick pea on the hair rig along with an artificial plastic corn.  Both yellow artificial corn and orange worked well this morning.
So, there has been an uptick in the carp feeding in the last couple of days.  This decent fishing has replaced very slow conditions of late August.  Hopefully, it will continue.
This good size mirror carp hit a combo bait that consisted of yellow
artificial corn and a chick pea. The carp were on a fall feed this morning.