Thursday, July 5, 2018

Being There Yesterday

Carp fishing in the East means long periods of observing, stealth, mosquito bites and making one cast count. Usually. But every once in a while, you might find yourself there yesterday. The mythical day, usually the day before you arrived, when the fish happen to be strangely cooperative.

Mark invited me to go out for carp on a creek that he's caught fish at before and I was more than up for it. It had been more than two years since I'd landed a golden bone and I was looking forward to something that would pull. I put on some overcast colors and we rigged up one rod to share. We quickly found ourselves on an elevated stream bank overlooking a flat that bordered a deep flowing channel. Carp were cruising out of the channel and onto the flat with purpose.

Towards a cruising fish I made one cast from the bank and danced my carp crab downstream in the water column. Headed in the same direction, the fish accelerated and engulfed the fly. I forgot how hard these things pull as I fought it on the shin deep flat with our 6wt.

Minutes later I made another cast at another cruising fish and had it pounce. Two carp on two casts was not what I was used to or expecting. They weren't even good casts. On any normal day, I'd have spooked them both. It was the mythical yesterday, as the rest of the afternoon proved.

There were so many carp in the channel that commotion from one brought the others out to investigate. It looked like pre-spawn behavior. They lost their inhibitions. A third carp came on probably my 5th cast.

And then a fourth. My arm was legitimately tired by this point and I had a bruise forming on my stomach from the fighting butt. It had only been about half an hour. I forced Mark to take the rod as we moved upstream to find some more interesting holes.

We watched some fish show themselves from across the creek and were so sated that we didn't even move to cast. It was enough to just see them. Later on, some fish presented such appetizing opportunities that we couldn't resist.

Mark waited for just the right fish before making that one cast count. He then dropped down the steep back to battle the fish around a fallen tree. He landed his first as it began to rain.

His fish was flawless.

An overhanging tree trunk provided an excellent vantage point to make another cast count, but from this place might have been the only time we were unable to entice a fish.

Mark picked one off as we walked back towards the first flat.

Then it was my turn again and I landed my last fish of the day as it began to rain again.

Mark took the rod and got another before being broken off by a big one on a root ball.

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