It is a rare body of water that does not contain the common carp, so every fishing trip could be a carp fishing trip. The presence of carp is not always a good thing but it looks like they are here to stay so we might as well make the most of it.
In trout angler catalogues you can expect to find waders; in a catalogue of products targeting the carp angler, you may find a selection of portable chairs. This is because, although the rewards of a carp fishing trip can be huge, but it requires patience and generally some sort of bait.
Carp bait is often sweet such as corn or dough bait. I’ve even heard of strawberry soda being utilized. Grasshoppers or nightcrawlers also work very well when rigged with a small hook and weighted to the bottom. “Boilies,” which are small rounded balls of a paste from assorted ingredients are very popular with carp fanatics and can be rigged with the hook above the ball of bait.
Fly fishing for carp also is growing in popularity. It is a challenge to target a fish that can grow to 60 pounds and that requires stalking on muddy flats and long casts to a small target area with a small fly with just the right sinking rate.
Andy Sutthoff enjoys fly fishing for carp. “Carp embody everything that I love about a true game fish.” The “golden ghosts,” as he calls them, are “big, strong, smart, and wary.” Drew Price in Hatch Magazine makes a good point about looking for a specific behavior of actively feeding carp. “Carp with their heads down, tails up, and mud coming up around them-the game is on! Get something on the bottom in front of them and you are in for some fun!”
“Beauty is in the eye of…”
Let’s face it: carp are just plain ugly. But because this is a fish that frequently achieves double digit weights and has long powerful runs, they make a great Plan B, if not a Plan A fishing trip even in urban waters. And even though most regulation list carp as a “rough” fish you still need a fishing license.
Have you been on a carp fishing trip?