Sunday, May 28, 2017

Photo of the Day......First Carp

This young angler landed his first carp today.  In fact, this was his THIRD
carp today, and it was the biggest at 12 lbs. Nice going!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Bad Weather, Good Fishing

Here we go again.  The weather turns nasty and the fishing turns very good. I know it sounds like a broken record but this has happened countless times for me. I had another banner week of carp fishing as the big fish continue to hit.  Biggest one for the week turned out to be a 27+ pound common while the biggest mirror tipped the scales at 22 + pounds (see photo).  I had at least 25 fish over 15 lbs. while fishing venues in RI, MA and CT.
The big surprise of the week for me turned out to be a big channel cat (see photo) that I landed in the Connecticut River while fishing for carp on a rainy and miserable day. Yup, the carp hit there in the rain also and apparently the catfish like the nasty weather too.
The hot bait for the week continues to be a combo bait of maize and artificial corn fished on the hair rig.  The hot color of artificial corn this week was a kernel of pink ESP corn. I was also fishing a method ball packed around my sinker.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Targeting Big Fish

My biggest carp this spring is this
28+ lb. mirror. I've landed very good
numbers of carp over 20 lbs.
As I have written in a previous post, I am currently taking part in the national CAG Big 4 Tournament. My goal was to get to 100 lbs. for my total (combined weight of four biggest carp) and I gotten to that today. So, I have been on a quest to catch some big fish in the last three weeks.
In those three weeks, I have landed many fish from 15-28  lbs.  Just today I had a great day with 7 fish from 13-27 lbs.  I had three carp over 20 lbs. today so pretty good with the bigger fish.
One interesting thing about chasing down bigger carp is that you have to target those spots that have them. For instance most ponds and lakes in RI can not support large carp. Many of our RI venues do not even hold a 20 lber.  I have been fishing mostly places in which I could potentially land a 30 or even 40 lb. fish. To hit those some of those well known big fish spots my travels have taken me to waters in MA, CT and RI.
While I have landed numerous 20 lbers. this spring, I have not tangled with a 30 yet.  But, still time as the Big 4 runs until June 15.  In addition, it will be a late spawn this year with the cooler weather extending the big fish possibilities into June.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Onto Maize

Maize is used as both chum
and as a hook bait. After
preparing it, store it
in zip lock bags and
This is one of four fish landed in a couple
of hours this morning on maize.  In this case,
two kernels are fished off the hair rig.
Several cans of sweet corn sit on a shelf in my basement, unused.  It has been several weeks since I used sweet corn. There are just too many pests (turtles, sunfish, horned pout) around right now that can easily take the bait off the hair. So, I've moved onto the more durable maize. I'll save those cans of sweet corn until late fall.
Maize is really a larger, harder na more durable corn than sweet corn.  Before using it, it must be prepared.  I buy my maize in a dried form at Tractor Supply stores.  It comes in 50 lb. bags and sells for about 9 bucks.  It is listed as "whole corn" in the animal feed section of the store. To prepare it, I put a good amount in a large pot and add water.  Just let it sit overnight or for several hours in the water.  Then, boil it.  Once the water is boiling, set a timer for exactly 35 minutes. When it's done, I let it sit for a while since this is when the maize soaks up a lot of water.  Finally, I package it in zip lock bags that I put in the refrigerator until I am ready to use it.  It will now be used as chum or a hook bait.
I got out for a couple of hours this morning and landed 4 nice fish.  I got them all on maize as I used two kernels on a short hair. I also use maize a lot in combination with artificial corn.  That has been a big fish producer for me in the last few weeks.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017


This 18 lber., landed this past weekend is my 400th carp
of the year.  It has been a fantastic spring so far.
I have never caught so many carp in the spring as I have this year. I landed my 400th carp of the year this past weekend.  This is the earliest I have ever logged in my 400th so I am off to a personal record start to the year.
For me, this spring's carp fishing has been nothing short of fantastic.  If you fish for these things long enough, you know you can really get on a roll, and you can't seem to do anything wrong.  The spots you pick really produce, the fish seem to be always hitting and the bait choices work out every time.  Well, I am on that kind of a roll.
What's unique about this spring for me is that I am not only getting numbers, but I am also getting good size fish.  In the last couple of weeks I estimate I have gotten at least 50 fish between 15 and 23 lbs., real good size fish for around here. These have all been taken in RI waters.
The only thing missing so far is that real big one of thirty pounds or more.  I am looking for that hog, and I am hoping I find it in the coming weeks.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

CAG Big 4 Tournament

Here is one of my entries at 18 1/2 lbs., which was caught
yesterday. I'm looking for bigger!
The Carp Anglers Group (CAG) is running one of their signature tournaments right now.  It is the Spring Big 4.  Many of our RI CAG members have registered for this event and are competing. For the next six weeks (ends June 15), CAG members from all over the US will be trying to catch four large carp.  Your four biggest carp by weight will be your point total. CAG will award some impressive prizes for the top ten finishers.  At this point 40 of the best carp fishermen in the country are taking part in this event.
I've done this tournament just about every year for the last six or seven years and have placed in the top ten every time.  The best I was ever able to place is second place.  My goal every year is to try to get to 100 lbs. (average of 25 lbs. a fish), which is not an easy task.  My other goal is also a top ten finish.
At this early stage of the tournament, I currently have 78 + pounds for my four fish, but that will likely change in the coming weeks.

Friday, May 5, 2017

In the Rain.....Best Outing of the Year

This good size common was one of 14 carp landed in today's
torrential rain. Note the combo bait.....maize and a white
pop up artificial corn.
Most of you who frequent this blog know I like to fish in the rain and nasty weather.  I've fished in northeasters, tropical storms and even hurricanes.  But, I can't remember a nasty weather day in which it rained harder than today.  For three to four hours, it absolutely POURED.  But, past history tells me the nastier the weather the better the carp fishing, and today did not disappoint as I had the best day of the year in terms of bigger fish.
I landed a whopping total of 14 carp.  But, here's the catch....ALL of them went 12-19 lbs. There were no small ones.  While I didn't get a real big one, I will say that these were all quality fish that averaged about 16 lbs.  I got 9 of them in late morning and early afternoon, went home and took a supper break, and went back and landed 5 more.
The fish were super aggressive today as they usually are in nasty weather. They would zip off the alarm big time on the hit, and the drag would scream on the fight.  It was real terrific carp fishing and made me forget just how lousy the weather was.
I got all my fish on a combo bait of maize (2 kernels) and a white, pop up artificial corn on the hair, the bait combination that has been so effective in the last couple of years.
So, once again, the nasty weather delivers.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

April Results for RI CAG Big 3 Tournament

New member Josh Sanville landed the biggest carp
for April at 23 + pounds!
The first leg of our RI Spring Big 3 is in the books and the RI CAG members who entered landed some impressive fish (once again). Our Big 3 runs for three months.  Our guys enter their biggest fish each month (April, May and June). All fish entered must be caught in RI and the fish must be released.
 The total weight becomes their points.  Medals provided by the national CAG are awarded for first, second and third places.
The results are listed below:

April results for RI CAG Big 3
1.      Josh Sanville  23 lbs.,  2 oz.
2.      Tom Perron   21 lbs., 8 oz.
3.      Jake Ayotte   20 lbs., 9 oz.
4.      Brandon Dee   20 lbs.
5.      Ryan Bunker   19 lbs., 11 oz.
6.      Todd Richer   18 lbs., 14 oz.
7.      Mike Stevenin    18 lbs., 8 oz.
8.      Brian Savage   17 lbs., 11 oz.

9.      Sean Reed   16 lbs.