Carp Diem = Fail

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ChezJfrey

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Tigard, OR
So this lake I've been going to has carp. I've seen 'em and they are sizable.

Since I've caught 4 species of fish from this lake, I decided I wanted to make it 5. I've also heard that they can put up a good fight and was anxious to see for myself what that might entail.

I scoured the internet last night and learned about their tendencies and rigs to combat their sensitivity and skeptical nature. I tied up a hair rig, rolled up some bread balls with ground nuts and brought some corn.

I knew from many outings where they tend to forage so I threw my line out there. They liked the bait. I missed 7 of them in my time out there - they are quite tricky and they dined well at my expense!

Since this was a scouting mission, I brought limited supply...I was down to my last dough ball. Within about 10 minutes, I saw the tell-tale slight line draw from my un-bailed reel. I picked it up and waited just a bit...then the line starts going out...it's gotta be another.

So, I'm ready to set and whoops...it stops. Hmmm? I figure it must have made off with my bait before I was prepared. No...wait, my line is now moving around sideways. I think there's a fish with mouthful of hook but doesn't know it? I slowly tighten and give a firm pull.

Holy moly, that got its attention. Yep, I've got one and am finally gonna see what this fish is about. And so far, it's reputation seems deserved as it's headed across the lake like a bat outta hell!

Unfortunately, my other problem is I've only got light gear...my rod is doubled over and my drag is screaming! That fish is hauling and my stuff isn't even slowing it down, LOL!

Then a dreaded snap! My line recoils back. Nooooooooo! I reel in and find that my knotless-knot had failed right at the hook. I can only surmise that I may have inadvertently crossed a coil rather than stack them neatly...perhaps concentrating too much strain creating a cut point in the line. Or, perhaps my drag was just a bit too high for my line. Anyway, somewhere out there is a carp swimming around with my hook lodged its mouth.

Oh well, I'll have to give it another go with a more carefully constructed rig and a bit beefier gear. Those few volatile seconds have definitely piqued my curiosity about this fish even more.
 
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Drew9870

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Nice Job,

I say that because it took me awhile to believe in the hair rig and to have any success with it.

Carp rigs are really touchy, there are many different hook patterns to use for different situations, and serious carp fishermen only use the sharpest hooks. When your using a hair rig, you can use your heaviest setup, I use 50lb Powerpro braid as my mainline and 15lb Powerpro for leader, braid is the way to go for leader, mono is way to stiff and you need specific hook styles for mono leaders.

I'll post some pics of my gear in a bit, like hooks and rigs. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. If you ever want to head down to Salem, I could set you up for fishing the Willamette.
 
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john montana

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Nice. Glad you had some action. I got some with the flyrod this weekend, but my season is ending with the cool and cloudy weather rolling in!
 
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Drew9870

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I'll bet you got some corkies and cheap flies, right? If not, then all you need are some corkies and fly hooks, a lot of fly tying hooks are the exact styles for really technical Carp rigs, but they won't last as long, the hooks get really dull after one fish.

This rig is the first hair rig I had faith in, it is actually a pop-up rig, but the bait still hangs from the ''hair''. It is a Corkie tied off where the bait would be, you would slide the hook on your leader, then tie the corkie before tying the knotless knot so you can measure exactly how far you want the bait to be from the hook. I wrap a thin, very tight layer of bread around the corky, the sparkled corkies have pores, so the bread holds on better. The hooks are longshanks for tying streamer flies, I believe a size 6. I caught my 35lb Carp on this rig.
 
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C

ChezJfrey

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Tigard, OR
Nice Job,

I say that because it took me awhile to believe in the hair rig and to have any success with it.

Carp rigs are really touchy, there are many different hook patterns to use for different situations, and serious carp fishermen only use the sharpest hooks. When your using a hair rig, you can use your heaviest setup, I use 50lb Powerpro braid as my mainline and 15lb Powerpro for leader, braid is the way to go for leader, mono is way to stiff and you need specific hook styles for mono leaders.

I'll post some pics of my gear in a bit, like hooks and rigs. If you have any questions, feel free to ask. If you ever want to head down to Salem, I could set you up for fishing the Willamette.

Thanks.

I must admit I was still a bit leary of the hair rig, but I figured the majority of carp fishing resources swore by it, so I figured, "what the heck, why not?" :)

I definitely need some heavier gear for the size and strength of these carp...my 6 lb test just ain't gonna cut it for those beasts in that lake, I figured that out real quick!

I rummaged around and found some bent long shanks (which might work better?) in my tackle and I carefully crafted a few more rigs with 10 lb mono...might not be ideal, but seems better than what I tried the first time and I might just make it out for another shot before I get a chance to pick up some heavier braid and a sturdier pole. I'm thinking of picking up a rod/reel setup suitable for steelhead/salmon (next on my list of quarry as I'm delving into this fishing endeavor), which I figure might work out decently for these strong fish as well.

Thanks for the offer. If I ever plan to head down to your area for some fishing, I'll ping your message box.
 
D

Drew9870

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10lb Mono is what I use for what is called a stiff rig (still a hair rig, but with mono), you will want Gamakatsu Glo-bug hooks #2 with an eye that doesn't bend in or out, or Owner Mosquito hooks in size 2 (pics of both mentioned hooks are below). When using Mono as your hooklink (Leader), you want to use a hook with an outturned eye, some hooks with no turn will work.

15lb Braid only has the diameter of 4lb mono, and it is good for just about all occasions/hook patterns except hooks with outturned eyes, inturned eyes or no turn are best for Braid. I have only caught a few Carp on Mono leaders, I did quite a bit of experimenting with mono rigs towards the end of summer and learned they are better for big baits, and big baits are only necessary when dealing with decent size pest fish.

For your reel, you should consider a baitrunner by Shimano or Okuma if you can find one locally, if you prefer baitcasters, I use an Abu Ambassadeur on my second rod and just loosen the drag. I would recommend spooling the baitrunner with 50lb Powerpro, the reel will hold a lot more 50lb Powerpro than it would 12lb (or heavier) mono, but you will also want a rod with reliable guides for running braid.

How much weight are you using with your hair rigs? 2oz is the minimum you should use for a solid hookup, I personally use 3oz all around since I have missed a lot of bites using 2oz. I'll post some pics of a complete bolt rig and how it is set up later tonight.
 
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ChezJfrey

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Well, my confidence in this hair rig is certainly waning...LOL!

More stolen bait and a few more missed hookups. Spooked one fish real good. Since I saw so many at my feet right off the bank the other day, I put my line in there so I could watch them. One in particular took a real long time checking things out and finally took the bait. Then, he must have felt a hook because shortly after taking the bait, it spooked real good, shook, and its back broke the surface as it took off. But, he shook the hook as well.

But seriously, you are right about needing to change things up. It definitely looks like I need to change my hooks and line to secure a fish.

I'll keep you posted.
 
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joesnuffy

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Baker City, Oregon
well keep at it. Fighting carp is really fun and worth the effort involved.

I"ve never used a hair rig but might have to try it the next time out.

I'd like to know more about the "corkie" setup...... wink wink!!!
 
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Drew9870

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The first time I went out with my 12ft Carp Rod (Chub Outkast) and baitrunner, I was using the corky pop-up rig as posted, here was my results (Location can not be given). 35lbs.
 
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ChezJfrey

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That's great!

Do you have any idea how much that fish weighed? I ask because the ones I'm eyeing are very near that same size from what I can tell.

I've gotta get myself to a tackle shop and rig properly...
 
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Drew9870

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That was a 35lb Carp

What city are you from? You can PM it if you don't want to give up where your lake is located close to.
 
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joesnuffy

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that fish is a beast!

Has anybody tried just using the corkie and some sort of scent?
 
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ChezJfrey

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Ugh! I am obsessed...LOL!

I went out for an hour and a half this afternoon and tried again...I have to get one! After a couple misses, I actually got another one! Yes!

I hooked him and had a good hold. The fish headed directly away from me for a ways, then stopped cold. I held it there and when I determined it wasn't gonna move, I gave a few nudges toward me with the rod and it started moving again. That thing felt like lead with my wimpy trout rod! I inched it closer and closer as it zig-zagged sideways back and forth a half dozen times.

After getting it about 10 feet from shore, it got real leery and made another run away from me, but to the right instead of its initial run to my left. It got about 20 feet further, then my line recoiled backward...nooooooooooo! I lost it! Kept my gear, but it came unhooked. Sooooo close.

This fish looked to be slightly smaller than your photo, Drew9870.

I'll send you a PM.
 
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john montana

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Love that fish drew. What a beast. I am still dying to get a 35 lber. I landed a ton of fish over twenty but didn't break the 30 mark this year. So much has to go right to land a fish that size! Jeep at em chez...you will get em!
 
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ChezJfrey

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Tigard, OR
Success!

I hooked 5 carp today, but 1 broke my line at the leader and 3 just plain got unhooked.

It was a learning experience. I figured my drag, though spooling out on runs, was still too high. So, when I hooked the last one, I loosened my drag on the fly and let it run around much more. I would get it close to shore, then it would bolt out again. I continued reeling in, letting it go. Eventually, I got all 30 inches of it to the net!

2010-10-06 15.44.43.jpg

I can now sleep at night ;)
 

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