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Lake: Douglas Reservoir
Fish: Common Carp

First Carp on the fly!

Post By: FishSeal      Posted: 8/1/2021 4:22:49 PM     Points: 3316    
Well, Matt Snider cashed in good on the Winter Giveaway! I suggest every member take advantage of the great work that sponsors add to this site, including the editors. The Winter Giveaway is one of the best things and it is neat to see all who contribute through offering "guided" trips, mystery boxes, and sponsors that contribute gear, just so we can win something and have a great time.

This last year, I won a "guided" trip with our very own, Matt Snider. Matt and I have known each other for years, fished occasionally together, he and Dave Coulson toured the laboratory I worked in for 19 years, and we have had great conversations. Earlier this year, we tried to get together, but my schedule did not pan out. However, we were able to set a date and pound the nails in the coffin.

Site, Douglas Reservoir (or Douglass if you use the USGS map), target being carp on the fly, goal being to not be skunked. Anyone who has fished Douglas, knows that it can be like fishing the Delaney Buttes, there are on and off days, consistency is difficult, and the fish have their own agenda.
We got started around 6:00 am at the dock, went over some basics and the game plan. I was using Matt's fly rods, so I had to get accustomed to his equipment. The bait was his very own carp slider. We hit a few spots around the lake that Matt had noted fish and structure, with not much success. However, Matt will have to go back to get the "one that got away." While we were conversing and Matt was teaching me, he had an unexpected hit, that we both think was a wiper, but took off with a new piercing.
Matt is an experienced fly fisher, so while I was learning to be accustomed with his equipment, he was teaching me how to put more power into my fly casts. Unfortunately, I'm not as coordinated as I used to be and habits are hard to break, but I tried. I now have something to work on later. :) Eventually, we got around to spotting open water carp. I have never seen carp do some of things I observed on Friday. We chased carp and Matt put me on them. We would get within my casting distance and we both would chant "eat! eat! eat!" or "bite! bite! bite!". Eventually, I hooked into one and did it take me for a ride! The thrill of catching carp came rushing back, the runs, the fight, and enjoying it with good company. Soon, the first fish was landed. We got the fly out, took a pic, and released it for another day. Matt and I continued to watch/ scout for carp. Soon we found a large pod of carp, eating just under the surface. It was only a matter of minutes before I had fish number two on, with the fight to go along with it. Matt had another rig and we were hoping for a double (there were enough carp for a triple, quadruple, or one for everybody on the lake that day). Our chants fell on deaf ears and the carp did not comply. But I got fish two in the boat, a tad smaller, but we got a measurement, over 24". What a blast! With captain Matt back at it, we scouted again and found some more. This time Matt hooked into one. He brought it in, we got it netted and the fly revealed a perfect hook set.
Matt also wanted to hit some additional spots and with clousers, pulled out a smallie.

Weather was good, not always cooperative, with the W being sometimes difficult. However, we had a good day. Kept off the skunk, I got a couple of carp on the fly, and we managed a multi-species fish day.

With a renewed desire to fish (has been a couple of years for me to wet a line), I'm excited to get back into the sport!

Thanks Matt for a wonderful time. Next time, I'll bring my own fly rod. :D

 Reply by: Troutbisquits      Posted: 8/1/2021 9:17:37 PM     Points: 2673
I love fly fishing for Carp! Love Douglas as well. Have not fished that lake in over a decade, but I grew up in Laporte and used to ride my bike there as a teenager and fish. Good times. Now I bet you are addicted! There are some carp in the river as well more and more as you head east. River carp are a blast, I highly recommend trying it sometime.
 Reply by: bron      Posted: 8/1/2021 9:30:18 PM     Points: 46533
Nice job Fishseal!
 Reply by: kiva      Posted: 8/2/2021 6:51:45 AM     Points: 233
Congratulations! I have really come to enjoy when I have a carp on the end of my line. They are such a hard fishing fish. Catching one on a fly rod probably makes the experience even better. Thanks for sharing!
 Reply by: anglerwannabe      Posted: 8/2/2021 7:13:39 AM     Points: 71677
Awesome Sean! I thought you had maybe disappeared on us!
 Reply by: Ajax5240      Posted: 8/2/2021 10:19:16 AM     Points: 37332
Nice work! Sounds like a great day!
 Reply by: Smelly      Posted: 8/2/2021 12:22:37 PM     Points: 26940
Nice to see you get out FS. Good looking carp ya got there too ! You reply to a lot of posts , answering a lot of our questions. And we appreciate your expertise. ( p.s. I do appreciate it more though when you agree with me 😉) Glad to see you actually start a post , particularly on a good trip! Itís kinda been a while . Glad you had a good trip. and congrats on a nice catch.👍👍👍🎣
 Reply by: Team CO.F.F.      Posted: 8/3/2021 8:11:40 PM     Points: 315
Nice work! Hoping to land a carp on the fly one day.
 Reply by: Matt      Posted: 8/4/2021 12:47:22 PM     Points: 91841
That was a fun trip Sean, thanks for the writeup! Glad we got into the carp, especially when the rest of the fish weren't so eager. They're always a good failsafe for me when the fishing for other species gets tough. And yes I need to go back for that freight train that nailed me unexpectedly at full speed heading who knows where. But you know the lake as well as I, and it'll be many more hours likely before I find something like that again.
Glad you have the bug once more.
 Reply by: bron      Posted: 8/5/2021 8:53:15 AM     Points: 46533
Nice job Fishseal and Matt!
 Reply by: FishSeal      Posted: 8/7/2021 10:20:04 AM     Points: 3316
I am taking a more back seat approach. Watching/ lurking... like a tiger muskie. But with work being so busy... it has been hard to set aside time to just get away. Although, this trip with Matt has me reinvigorated to get out again.

I like it when you are right too. However, keep in mind... I have been wrong as well. (:

As an addendum to my first post, this is what also got me into fishing... tying my own flies. I like to be creative and find new ways, or tie something similar.
The target this time...Matt's carp slider. I remember a post from a long time ago (2007) with a picture of it [log in for link] . In this article, Matt details that sink rate is important.
My imitations have me playing "scientist" again. I'm making my flies a little simple to narrow down the basics and then I'll change and add little bits.
I have glass beads and metal beads for eyes, held together by a bit of 50# mono. I also have two types of yarn to work with, wool and acrylic.
Goal, to observe yarn action in water... and sink rate between the two flies. My test pool will be my fish tank and see how my goldfish react. My son thought it would be funny if we caught one. I told him that if we caught one... we caught one. :D

 Reply by: FishHuntNow      Posted: 8/10/2021 9:23:17 AM     Points: 1709
That's amazing, nice job. I'm going to get with Troutbisquits and learn my self how to do it. I cannot wait!

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