Friday, July 14, 2017

Topwater Carp!

I've been fly carping for years now and ha never caught one on a dry fly. It was always something I wanted to try, but aside from cottonwood seeds pretty much all of the floating natural food carp like is not too prevalent around here. I've seen carp surface feeding a number of times, but until today I had never had a carp come and take a floating fly.

This story doesn't start today though. It started yesterday after a few hours with Noah hunting for some green and hybrid sunfish in this pond:

Musky the Rat
Before I caught any fish I caught a typically ornery and good sized northern water snake. It was big enough that I didn't really want to get bit, but it had other ideas. Normally they will chill out after a bit, even after I let go of this one it kept striking. I can't make friends with every snake so I stopped trying an got back to fishing. 

I caught a whole pile of bluegills and green sunfish, and one possible but unconfirmed hybrid. 


Then came the rain. We decided to head west to get out of the rain faster. We went first to a pond that has big common carp as well as bass and bluegills. We got the latter two in good numbers. The bluegills were well proportioned, and all came out warm, and I do mean warm. That water was probably in the high 80's, maybe even low 90's since it is all just parking lot runoff. 

After that we made our way to a convenience store to get some bread to feed the fish in a pond with a lot of small commons and some grass carp. In the short time were were there Noah caught one common and had a take from a big grasser. So yeah, we kinda had to come back to see how this would play out. 

This morning we returned with much more bread and quickly got into the small commons. I of course had tied up some bread flies, and the really did get the job done. I caught 8 commons in total. None were large by any stretch of the imagination, but it was so cool to stick carp on dry flies. The takes are just so fun to watch. I didn't just catch them on bread flies either, I caught two on big foam butt caddis. 

Given the low yield tendency of my local waters, this was by far the most carp I have ever caught in one day. It was just such a hoot to watch them come up and suck down a dry fly. But we were really there to catch a species neither of us had ever caught, the biggest of the cyprinids found in CT waters. And, after a lot time baiting a good swim, dealing with turtles, and hiding behind a bench Noah's free lined piece of white bread got chomped down by a white amur, Ctenopharyngodon idella, a grass carp. It didn't fight tremendously hard until it got right near the bank. Then it was a tedious give and take battle, which is personally my least favorite kind. But we landed it. What a fish it was. Beautiful. 

That was the day maker right there. A solid topwater grass carp. That was the last fish and far and away the best fish. 


  1. Nice variety of fish. A white bread tie? Hay, if it works it's in the fly box. Nice white amur Noah! We don't see to many of them.
    Tie, fish, write and photo on...

    1. Bread flies are nothing new, but me catching fish on them sure is.

  2. Well done guys. I'm still looking for my first of any type of carp. Looks like you guys have it nailed.

    1. When I get out to Colorado we'll go get you into a carp or two Howard.