North American Carp Angler 2015 Q3

Page 1

As this issue of NACA drops we make the transition out of the summer months into what many consider to be the best time of the year to fish for carp; The Fall. As much as we all enjoy the warm summer conditions it does not necessarily make for good fishing and personally, I welcome the cooler evenings and changing of the season. In the last Edition of North American Carp Angler we spotlighted ‘Carping Conservation’ and how some of our members were making a difference in their own communities. Taking a leaf from their book I recently wrote an article for a general fishing magazine, where the usual view of carp is fairly negative. I hope to continue contributing as even if it only changes a few peoples mind, this is a step in the right direction. As an added bonus we were also able to get a CAG membership advert into the magazine so anglers know where to sign up. Check the article out here: ODU_Summer_Fishing_2015/ I was also honored to join the guys at the Carp Cast, who we featured in NACA Q2: docs/naca_2015_spring_edition

Over the course of 2 hours the guys interviewed myself and two other CAG members David Moore and Iain Sorrell. All of us gave some insight into American carping and spoke on a few different topics. If you have a few hours to spare, take a listen at the following link: In this Edition we will be highlighting a few different CAG events, including past competitions and some upcoming events that you may like to get involved as well as telling you about a few World events that saw some of our members involved in. We also focus on different ways we can capture our quarry with articles highlighting several approaches and methods from some excellent anglers. Hopefully these articles will inspire you to get out and catch a few Fall chunks. Remember, if you want to contribute or get pictures into this magazine, please send them to; Dean Brookes Editor In Chief

Letter from CAG president

glers are getting one hundred junior carp an d an rk Yo w Ne of try un It is August in the North Co t CAG returns This will be the first year tha er. Riv ce en wr La St ty gh ready to compete on the mi mberships and booth set up to sell CAG me a ve ha l wil We t. en ev g to hosting this long runnin far, far more than side casting clinic. This is nk ba a d an ol ho sc rp ca a gear and we will also host a kids fishing event.

r goal is simple; all participants who fish. Ou to hip ers mb Me G CA e fre We will offer a new 1 year o speak with the r membership. We will als ou w gro n tur in d an g hin get more kids into carp fis l join too. Our memtion and hopefully they wil iza an org r ou t ou ab ers parents and family memb m memberships ization. Funds generated fro an org an as do n ca we at bership numbers drive wh ership numbers ows and advertising. Memb sh de tra at s oth bo s, ter let help support events, news in the waters we courage protection for carp en to ls cia offi te sta d an al also give us clout with loc try. There is a real ent hosted across the coun ev s thi e se to at gre be fish. In the future it would ase contact me this a regional event so ple ke ma n ca we if ip rsh so on possibility of corporate sp for further details.

Bob Giordano

North American Carp Angler


Conte n ts


Thomas Bull Fish-in__________________________________ 8

The Ohio report_____________________________________ 13 Take a kid carping __________________________________ 22

BIG 4 Spring results_________________________________ 27

CCC 2015 __________________________________________36

AROUND T H E GLOBE World Carp Classic Junior Tournament _________________ 40

HOW DO YOU FISH Embracing the dark side _____________________________ 57

Fly fishing for Carp _________________________________ 66 Visual Pursuit ______________________________________76

Micro locations _____________________________________83 Swimming with fish _________________________________ 97 Surface Carp _____________________________________ 105

CAG members section CAG Members Gallery _____________________________ 115

CARPTS 2015_____________________________________ 132

Covershoot – Dean Brookes with a big, wild American Common

The NACA magazine not only puts you in touch with dedicated carp anglers across North America but has readers worldwide.

YOUR ADVERT HERE! A 1/4 page advert starts from as little as $45 and includes a live link to your webpage or become a Business Supporter and get a Full Page advert in each NACA plus a web banner link on the CAG Website and Forums for only $300 / year.

For more information simply click on this advert

CAG Fish-Ins and Contests Over the last few months many of our State Chairs ran fish-ins and events. With the nature of a quarterly magazine, we don’t always have space to cover all of these events but in this edition we are going to highlight some of the most recent ones. First up was the Thomas Bull fish-in which was organized by New York State Chair, Ed Wagner. This is always a popular early spring event as the water holds lots of mirror carp, a usual rarity in the USA. Next we have Craig Welch from Ohio who highlights the comings and goings in his state over the spring and summer. We then move to Massachusetts where Jerome Moisand once again hosted the ‘Take a Kid Carping’ event which is always well attended. Finally, we feature the results of the first ‘Spring Big 4’ contest which was hotly contested this year. Looking forward we also highlight the upcoming ‘CAG Carp Classic’ which will be hosted by Illinois this year on the iconic Lake Storey. Bill Hodge gives us the details and we hope to see many of you in attendance.

Thomas Bull Fish-In By Ed Wagner – New York Chair

Well another Thomas Bull fish-in is in the books. I Want to say thanks as it was great to see all

I believe close to 40 carp made it to the nets and

who made it to fish what was a terrific day with the

we had all sorts of angling, especially Colin dem-

mirror carp once again cooperating.

onstrating some great match pole fishing.

North American Carp Angler


Collin had the high hook with 14 landed and a few lost. We had our usual lunch and once again thanks to my buddy Barry for the chili and muffins. Also a few items were sold at the CAG ‘Swap and Sell’. We sure did miss Fran this year as he always is the winner at the swap and sell.

So a big thanks to Andrey and Val for bringing the sodas and water and the condiments, thanks guys. We had some new faces and old as well; Barry, Andrey, Val, Ken, Chris, Collin, new members Tony Sr. and Tony Jr. and David, Alex, Mark, Joe, and myself Ed

North American Carp Angler


Tony Jr. and Alex managed there 1st and PB mir-

I missed my two buddies Mike D. and Miguel

ror carp, good going. It was a fine day lots of talk

who always make it but Miguel had family ties and

and many stories and laughs.

Mike was under the weather. We hope to see all in the Fall at the Dutchmans Landing fish-in. I hope you all have a great upcoming season and break those PB’s.

The Ohio

Re po rt

By Craig Welch

It’s been a very wet few months over much of the midwest and Ohio was no exception, with fast flowing rivers, flooded lakes and soggy banks to contend with. It still didn’t stop some great fish getting caught by some of Ohio’s CAG members. A few members decided to have an inpromptu get together up in NE Ohio and besides having a great time socialising they caught some great fish with the biggest of the weekend falling to Timothy Miller with this stunning Grass Carp of 58lb 1oz which fell to a 10mm boilie with an oats method pack. Not satified with just the one biggie Tim also landed another stunning grasser of 46lb 2oz.

North American Carp Angler


The other anglers at the social also managed to get into some good fish. The pick of the bunch was Scott Erlenwein who managed to tempt a new PB common at 23lb.

Congrats to all involved in a great weekend, these kinds of social events are truly what CAG is all about.

Elsewhere CAG Ohio had a May Fish in down at Cowan Lake with Jetson Bates as host. This can be a very tricky venue but Jetson has fished this venue for many years and imparted lots of useful information to all in attendance and even helped himself to a pretty 21lb 1oz Common. That wasn’t all, Vince Shiflet had a slow take on the final afternoon and after a dogged battle slipped the net under a beautiful 24lb 10oz fish. North American Carp Angler


Our CAG June Fish in was held at West Branch and is a firm favorite amongst members. Nice campgrounds close to the lake and lots of carp action. At times it can be hard to keep a rod in the water. This year didn’t disappoint with lots of very tired and happy anglers by the end of the event. Michael Alloway fished hard all weekend and landed some great upper doubles and topped it off with the biggest of the fish in at 20lb 10oz. Way to go Michael.

North American Carp Angler


Outside of social events CAG members were out putting carp on the bank. Vince Shiflet didn’t let the flood waters put him off doing a series of evening after work trips. Baiting up after each evening he managed to keep the fish in his spot just a rod length from the bank landing several fish including some 20’s. He even managed to land the exact same 26lb common twice in 3 days. Great angling Vince!

Yours truly also managed to do a little pre baiting in advance of a Saturday trip. I headed over to the venue after work 3 straight days baiting up with a mixture of particles and boilies. The work paid dividends as I went on to land 8 fish, mostly high doubles and a couple of 20’s including this very pretty 26lb 14oz Common.

North American Carp Angler


There were also a couple of nice mirrors caught recently. Rob Shiflet hit a new spot on the river and was rewarded with this plump mid-double.

Finally Scott Hollar got tired of waiting for the water levels at his river spot to go down, so headed over to his favorite lake. He landed 4 commons to mid-teens and this absolutely stunning big scaled mirror. Scott fished at 70 yards range to clear gravel spots amongst the weed. Method feeders with panko/steam rolled oats and Solar 14mm Top Banana and Pineapple secret hookbaits, tied to 25lb Krysten Supernova hooklinks and size 6 Korda wide gaped hooks proved the downfall of his fish.

Well, that’s all for this edition of The Ohio Report. If you are an Ohio CAG member and want to be featured, get in touch on the CAG forum (cypry) or look me up on Facebook. Remember, it doesn’t have to be a monster carp. I’m looking for good photos and a little bit of background, the more information the better. Good luck and tight lines,


North American Carp Angler


g n i p r a C d i K a e k a T

By Jerome Moisand

In June we had our usual kids-oriented event. This is already the 6th year of the event and time really flies! I didn’t need a lot of motivation as this event is always great fun for all. It is fast becoming quite a well-known tradition in our local town and takes place each year at Spy Pond in Arlington, Massachusetts

It takes quite some work to prepare but with quite some rewards at the end, with a lot of big smiles and a sense of excitement as it unfolds. Many thanks to our dedicated helpers, Mike O and Mike K, David and Sheri.

North American Carp Angler


This year it went quite well with 5 fish landed for 8 kids in the morning (+ a couple of misses), and a perfect score in the afternoon, 8 fish landed for 8 runs and 8 kids. We even got featured on the cover of the local newspaper!

North American Carp Angler


BIG 15



CAG Spring Big 4 Contest Results By Brad Thomas

This year we had 31 anglers compete and between them they logged 156 fish, totaling 1,185lbs 7oz. Of these fish, 18 were over 30lbs and a whole bunch over 20lbs. This year did not bring the numbers and size of last year, but it certainly had its share of nice fish! A huge thank you to everyone who participated in the event this year and supported the club. Without further ado here are the results:

North American Carp Angler 27

1st Place Josh Bergeron

Big 4 Total - 129lbs 13oz

Josh claimed 1st place this year without even catching one of the 3 biggest carp! That says a lot for the average fish size for him! Well done Josh!

2nd Place Matt Janiszewski

Matt may have taken 2nd place for overall weight, but he certainly finishes first in the flair category! Another solid year by Matt J!

Big 4 Total - 127 lbs 15oz

North American Carp Angler


3rd Place Steven Braddy

Big 4 Total - 122lbs 13oz

Steven has made it a yearly tradition to be on the leaderboard or in the mix, finishing this year with some wonderful fish as always!

Big Fish Iain Murray

Iain Murray can talk a big game, especially with Jerome or Big Bird, and this year, he talked the biggest fish of the event to the bank!

36lbs 10oz

North American Carp Angler


Big Mirror Todd Richer 30lbs 1oz

The North East had a great showing this year, and this awesome mirror was one of the highlights!

Most Fish Frank Rink

69 fish

So many fish to choose from, so here is one of many! There was not a first fish award this year, but Frank made his appearance known!

North American Carp Angler


Highest Total Weight Matt Janiszewski 520 lbs 5oz

Making his 2nd appearance on the list this year, is Matt! Over half way to 1,000lbs!


has caught 520lbs of carp more than I have in 2015!

In closing, I just want to thank everyone that participated in the event this year. As always, if you have suggestions for tweaks, modifications, or other suggestions related to events, I would love to hear them! Do not forget, this year will be the 2nd annual Fall Big 4!

North American Carp Angler


The annual CAG Carp Classic (CCC) is fast approaching and this year it will be hosted at Lake Storey in the State of Illinois. Last year’s event on the St. Lawrence River was a big success and we hope to see good participation again.

2014 Winner Laszlo Adam Foldi

North American Carp Angler


2 0 1 5 C C C I t i n e r a ry: Entry fee - $50 for CAG Members and $80 for Non-CAG Member

Day 1

Day 2

Date - Sept. 25th Johnson Sauk Trail Challenge

Date - Sept. 26th

Location - Kewanee, IL (35 minutes from Lake Storey)

Time - 6:00 A.M. Set-up for peg draw and sign-up for CCC and

Time - 7:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M.

CCC 2 man CCC Challenge 6:30 Peg Draw

Awards - Gold, Silver and Bronze medals for

7:30 A.M. Start chumming your swim

top 3 anglers (top 3 carp by weight per angler)

8:00 A.M. CCC tournament begins

also a special prize donated by Wal-Mart Normal,

4:00 P.M. CCC tournament ends

IL. 6:00 P.M. Award Banquet begins Annual Meeting and Tackle Flea Market

Location - Broadview Inn and Suites

Location - Broadview Inn and Suites

Buffet dinner @ 6:30 P.M.

Time - 6:00 P.M. onwards Sign-up for CCC Sign-Up for 2 man CCC Challenge Gold, Silver

Trophy presentations, Prizes, and Raffles

Day 3

and Bronze medals (Top 2 carp by weight per

Date - Sept. 27

team) Each team member receives a medal. $15

Fish where you want or If enough anglers are in-

entry fee not included in $50 CCC entry fee.

terested $20 per man top 3 Carp per angler. Winner takes all. Top producing section of CCC will be used. Time - Peg Draw 7:00 A.M. Fishing starts at 8:00 A.M. to 1:00 P.M. For more information and to sign-up visit:

North American Carp Angler


World Carp Classic 2015 Junior Tournament By Radek Filip

The adult World Carp Classic has added a sister event starting this year; the World Carp Classic Junior Event. The first junior championship took place between 27th – 30th May, 2015 at Jakub Vágner`s 25 hectare lake, Katlov in the Czech Republic. The idea behind the championship was not only giving young carp fishermen from various counties to opportunity to meet, but there were also fundraising initiatives to give children a chance. All the money collected from sponsors are invested to purchase much needed equipment for the Motol’s hospital in Prague treating children with terminal cancer.

Raising money for young cancer victims was a big target for the Tournament

Opening ceremony The inaugural World Carp Classic Junior event started with the opening ceremony in the historic town of Kutna Hora. The flag parade consisted of 14 national teams, visitors, musicians, jugglers, performers and tourists, who went through the historic center to the spectacular Saint Barbara’s Cathedral, one of the most famous Gothic churches in central Europe protected under a UNESCO world heritage site. The competitors and the water in Katlov lake were blessed by the archbishop inside the cathedral and the peg draw took place at the balcony of Saint Barbara’s Cathederal. Teams from USA, Ukraine, England, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Slovakia, Netherlands, Poland, Italy and the Czech Republic were present in the parade

North American Carp Angler


The first match began at the opening ceremo-

The Norwegian pidgeon was the fastest. After the

ny (World Pidgeon Classic). Each team received

opening ceremony the guys moved to Lake Kat-

their own pidgeon. The birds were released and

lov where they would begin their 50 hours of an-

the first of them that arrived at the Katlov will

gling the next day.

maybe help to his team to win the WCCJ 2015.

Drones were used to keep a close eye on all teams


First day of competition

The World Carp Classic Junior was an invita-

The horn in Ross Honeys and Jakub Vรกgners

tional event open to children up to 18 years old.

hands started the championship on Thursday

Teams comprised of 2 competing children, and

28th of May at 2 pm.

each team was accompanied by a national team captain (often a famous name in carp fishing) and a guardian.

The lake was about 1 meter below the ideal water level and full of weeds and grass, which made

The captain could do everything apart from

the fishing very challenging. It seemed, that the

touching the rod and wasn`t allowed to pre-bait

draw was the most favourable to the teams fish-

for the juniors. The past has showed, that this

ing at the eastern end of the sector in the shallow-

was significant rule. The fairness of the teams

est part of the lake.

was checked by the marshals, several television teams, journalists (including me), drones with the

There was team Italy at peg number 6 on one

cameras from the air and even night vision were

side of the lake and team Motol Hospital at peg


number 5 on the southern side of the lake. If the

No boats were allowed, it was just a casting

weather was too cold, which was quite likely, it

event. The total weight of teams biggest 3 carp

could also happen, that winning pegs would be

over 8 kg would count towards the winning total.

close to the dam (team USA and Denemark).

The winners of the World Carp Junior Classic

Of course there was also chance to win for some

Junior event amongst a host of other prizes also

of the skilled teams in the middle of the sector.

won a place in the World Carp Classic at Lac de

The full draw was as follows:

Madine in 2015. North American Carp Angler


Team USA were unlucky at the Peg Draw

Southern side of the lake: Peg 1 – USA (Larysa Switlyk, Austin Pass, Brandon Pass) Peg 2 – Poland (Zibi Hukalowicz, Jakub Ziemianin, Bartek Stec) Peg 3 – Czech republic (Tomáš Blažek, Ondřej Týč, Jan Tůma) Peg 4 – Ukraine (Vadim Korunskij, Milan Stucenko, Vladislav Kozlov) Peg 5 – Motol Hospital (Jan Hubka, Ivan Krivosudsky, Martin Macek) Northern side of the lake: Peg 6 – Italy (Riccardo Battisti, Damiano Montesello, Samuele Rossi) Peg 7 – Netherlands (Lars Bood, Rowan Bood, Tony Hertogs) Peg 8 – The WCC Family (Silvia Omastova, Samuel Knazsky, Michal Chudy) Peg 9 – Norway (Henrik Hansen, Magnus Nilsen, Sebastian Pearce) Peg 10 – Sweden (Fredrik Mangotsson, Albin Sundnäs, Vinsent Johansson) Peg 11 – Germany (Thomas Keutmann, Luis Niedergassel, Fynn Brautmeier) Peg 12 – Slovakia (Ivan Fabián, Vladimír Koren, Marián Zauška) Peg 13 – England (Thomas Cywka, Liam Morgan, Nick Longpre) Peg 14 – Denmark (Johannes Olesen, Oliver Krytz, Laurits Rovsing Sloth)

The fishing skills of the juniors was varying. Some of them were very experienced, but there were also those, who needed help with the tactics. You could see those, who used the distance poles, advanced rigs and their casting and baiting accuracy was great, but also those who struggled with casting. The role of the team captain was crucial.

The role of the Team Captain was very important

The atmosphere was very friendly at the beginning, but the first carp landed would change this. Even official protests were made later. The majority of the teams wanted to catch and do their best to win the championship and some of the captains showed sharp shoulders. I will leave this to your consideration if this is good example for the young guys.

World Carp Classic 2015

Junior Tournament North American Carp Angler


Day One The first carp of the competition was landed by the team of Slovakia at 6 pm. They had landed a stunning 17.6 kg carp on pop up boilies. The Polish guys had landed a 14.5 kg fish as well. Both of the fish were landed close to the dam. Would the fish be mostly there despite the expectations? All the visitors had trusted, that there will be more action in the night, but this was not the case.

Team Slovakia with a big carp of 17.6kg

Team Italy were on the scoreboard early with fish like this 16kg carp

Day Two Dusk brought much more action. The Italians landed a 14.1 kg carp and the Czech team brought to the landing net a 12 kg carp.

North American Carp Angler


The team WCC family team lost a fight with a carp in the weeds, but you could see even more runs in the shallower sections.

Even busier were the Italian team, who dominated the rest of day. They landed carp after carp (including a koi carp

The Norwegian team lost two fish due to hook

of about 6 kg) and weighted in a 16.7 kg common,

pulls. The Motol Hospital team was fighting with

the second biggest fish of the competition to that

two carps on at once.

moment. They needed to wade more than 100 meters

They landed only one and lost the second in grass. But they did land other carp of 11.1kg and

from their spot when they intended to bait, cast and especially land any fish.

12.7 kg.

This koi was a surprise visitor

Large crowds watched the competitors fishing

The Motol Hospital team answered with carp of 10kg, 10.4kg and 12.6 kg. They had been un-

You could see lack of experience with weedy lakes in some of the teams.

lucky, that they have been landing carp below the

average weight of the Katlov`s fish.

The accompanying program of the event (fishing school for children, Indian village, bizons in behind

The lake is stocked with 468 carps with an aver-

a fence, jumping castel, television tent, fishing

age of 13 kg. Some of the other junior teams had

tackle show) was already running which stimulat-

lost carps due to the grass or other faults during

ed hundreds of local visitors to come to the lake.

landing. They wanted to finish the fight too quickly

They also watched the fights with the fish and ap-

and usually their drag was too tight.

plauded. North American Carp Angler


Scary night Stronger winds and colder weather brought higher fish activity during the second and the last night of the competition, but the storryline began in the Dutch bivy. The cell phone battery charger of one of the guys exploded. His luggage was quickly on fire and the young angler had to take the burning luggage with his bare hands and throw it out of the bivy to save rest the of the shelter.

He did it just in time but unfortunately his hands were full of burns. The emergency crew was called and he was taken to the hospital. He came back to Katlov later with bundled hand but alive and joined the rest of the compatition including Champions party and received a price for bravery

Lucky to escape with only burns

Team WCC with a nice common

But back to the moment of general chaos. The bite alarm of British team started screaming at the same time. They have landed a 17.8 kg carp only in the presence of British marshals. The media haven`t been called probably due to the present chaos. The weight of the carp was later a reason for official protest, which wasn`t accepted as the carp was found in the picture database, made during stocking at a slightly higher weight. The British guys received a price for the heaviest fish of the WCCJ 2015 later.

The championship were close until the last few hours due to the rule of only the 3 heaviest carp counting, but the domination of Italian and Motol Hospital teams were clear. They had majority of the carp in the lake close to their rods and confirmed it with various other fish landed. Top Motol Hospital carp in this part of the championship were 13.4kg and 14.5 kg, but the Italian’s answered with 16.7kg and 15.5 kg fish. The other teams had only a fish or two in total. The first Dutch carp (8.5 kg) and Danish carp came only 40 minutes before the end of the match (13.5 kg) and two carp of 11 kg in WCC family landing net wouldn’t change much. North American Carp Angler


Price Ceremony The WCCJ 2015 was over on Saturday at 2 pm. More than a thousand people had waited for the price giving ceremony and concert by the local pop star group

Host Jakub Vagner and WCC head Ross Honey During the event 33 carp had been landed with a

The second team was Hospital Motol with an av-

very interesting weight average of 12.1kg (5 fish

erage of 13.6 kg and third team being the WCC

over 15 kg). The largest weight average was a

family with an average of 11kg.

massive 16.46 kg and had team Italy (Riccardo

The rest of the teams had landed only one carp

Battisti, Damiano Montesello, Samuele Rossi)

(England, Slovakia, Poland, Denemark, Czech

winning the first World Carp Classic Junior.

republic, Netherlands) or none.

Team Italy dominated the event We all enjoyed the closing Champions party. The event was very popular among visitors and the media and the estimation was that WCCJ was visited by around 6,000 people. The event had been a huge sucess and it was covered by national television and radio. The fundraising activity for children with cancer was also successful. Based on that it seems that the junior carp fisherman will meet at Katlov again next year. See you there.

World Carp Classic 2015 Junior Tournament North American Carp Angler


The Podium

Champions – Team Italy

North American Carp Angler


H oyw ou do

? h s i F

There is a popular saying; ‘there are many ways to skin a cat’ and the same applies to carp fishing. There are numerous ways to catch carp, whether fishing with ‘a hook on one end and a fool on the other’, or using the latest Euro gear and spending several days on the bank.

The following articles feature a few of these ways to fish. First up we have Dean Brookes describing how he spends most of his time fishing in the dark to fool big carp. Next is a welcome return to NACA for Jim Pankiewitz who talks us through some of his methods when fly fishing for carp. We then feature Zach Hoffa who is a master of stalking carp with minimal equipment. Paul Scott then talks through his approach to locating and catching carp from ‘micro locations’ and then we have Radek Filip with a fascinating article on underwater exploration. Finally, Iain Sorrell gives us some tips on fishing for carp on the surface. Hopefully these articles give you some ideas and information should you want to try a different method as they all very effective in their own right.


Over the last 4 years the majority of my fishing takes place during the hours of darkness. There are several reasons for this, including working a full time job, fulfilling family commitments and following other hobbies and past times; however, I also choose to fish in the dark as it can be the most productive time. I hear anglers talking about ‘short’ sessions and then the oxymoron comes along that these ‘short’ sessions are in excess of 24 hours!! To me a short session is usually 12 hours or less and sometimes a lot of this time is taken actually driving to the venue(s) which sometimes are over 100 miles away from me. I know that sounds like a lot of effort just for a few hours fishing, but by stacking several factors in my favor I know my chances of success are relatively high. Night fishing offers many advantages to day fishing with venues being virtually free of other people, including anglers and boat traffic as well as the fish being generally more confident when feeding. If you want to see what night fishing has to offer here are some tips from experience that will make the whole endeavor much more productive.

A 3am wake-up call from a scaley mid twenty North American Carp Angler


A drop in air pressure resulted in 10 fish topped by this 42lb+ mirror


try to match the water you are fishing to the condi-

If like myself you have a regular job, then the

or a thunderstorm is coming I will make sure I am

times you can fish are generally dictated by your

fishing a water that produces in those conditions.

If you do not have a choice as of when to fish then tions that are forecast. For example, if I know rain

work schedule. To maximize my chances of success I will look at the long range weather forecast

On a recent overnight session the average day

and if one particular day looks good I will then try

time temperatures were in the mid to high 80’s,

to adjust my schedule accordingly.

but a rain band was forecast and with it the air pressure was due to drop.

What am I looking for? It could be a drop of pres-

The water I decided to fish was one I knew was

sure in the summer, a bout of rain or an impend-

excellent during the rain and as expected the ses-

ing storm, a new wind, several days of consistent

sion produced several fish with a 39lb common

weather or a specific moon phase.

and a 42lb mirror being the pick of the bunch.


Yes I have caught fish in the daytime and outside of these windows, but these times typically produce the most consistent results.

This only comes from experience or from speaking to other anglers, but if you can pin point the

A typical night on this water would be for me to

times the fish are more likely to feed then you re-

get to the swim just as it is going dark, pre-bait

ally can improve your results.

the areas prior to casting out and then slowly tie up fresh rigs.

If your water is excellent at dusk, then you need

I will then get my rigs into position and relax, try-

to make sure you are there well ahead of this time

ing to get a few hours sleep before the expected

so that you can get your baits into position.

action at 1am. Does it always work?

On one water I fish the feeding times are typically between 1am and 7am.

No. But more often than not I will be up in the middle of the night, catching fish

This upper twenty kicked off the night at 1am‌.right at bite time North American Carp Angler


BE PREPARED Fishing in the dark is all about preparation.

I use mine as little as I can, as I do not want ei-

The more prepared and organized you are, the

ther the fish or other people to know I am there!

easier you will find the whole experience. I make

You might not think this makes a difference, but

sure all of my kit is in the same place, to the point

believe me, having a lantern or bright light shining

of OCD!

all over the area will not help your chances.

This means that I can find anything I need with-

I also make sure I have all of my safety gear (net,

out my headlight as I know exactly where it is

unhooking mat, retaining sling) ready to go. If you

stored. If you are new to night fishing then I would

have everything set up and ready to go you will

advise preparing rigs in advance so that you are

make your life much easier.

not fumbling in the dark. Personally, I am happy to tie up my rigs as I need them as I like to be able to

Once I land a fish I will unhook it and transfer it to the retaining sling (if I plan to take a picture)

adapt as and when I need. One item you should definitely not leave home without is a headlight and extra batteries.

and I will then set up my camera gear to limit the amount of time the fish will be out of the water.

Retaining sling and matt ready for action

Fresh coffee is a must when fishing overnight


You also need to know your swims in terms of where you will be presenting baits. All of the areas

This has two aspects. First off, make sure you

I fish at night have been thoroughly researched

can fish safely in the dark. You need to know if the

during the daylight and I am intimately familiar

margins are shallow or deep or if the water levels

with the spots I am fishing.

can fluctuate greatly.

This can be as simple as marking spots using distance sticks, casting out and then clipping up

No fish is worth dying for and if you do venture

or wading your baits out to marginal spots. The

into the water at night make sure you have a life

more you know about your spots the easier they

jacket on.

are to fish in the dark. North American Carp Angler


GET READY If you are travelling light then comfort may not be top of the list. In these instances I may fish under a mosquito net or an umbrella. I may also take in some simple food and drink supplies. If I do not need to travel light, then I will take cooking equipment as a nice cup of fresh coffee does wonders during the night. I also make sure I have a comfortable chair or recliner and a sleeping bag (based on the season) as being

PVA bags ready to cast to crashing or rolling fish

cold and wet will make the experience miserable. Another important piece of equipment is a set of remote alarms. Firstly, you will be able to stay quiet and not have to turn you alarms up to Def Con 5 and secondly you can have the receiver next to you so that you will hear a take should you be asleep. If you plan to stay awake the whole time and sit next to your rods then you may not need the remote alarms, but they do make the whole experience much smoother.

LISTEN AND WATCH When I am fishing at night I encounter a lot of things that you just don’t see during the day. Wild life is abundant and as long as you don’t freak out at strange noises then the night is a wonderful place to be. Sitting on a chair, drinking a hot cup of coffee while looking up at the stars and hearing a pack of coyotes in the distance is something you just don’t experience when you are tucked up in a warm bed at home.

PRACTICE AND PERFECT SELF TAKES As I’ve already mentioned I will prepare my camera gear before I take the fish out of the water for a picture. While on occasions I will sack a fish if the daylight is close, I do not recommend retaining fish for more than a couple of hours and no more than 30 minutes if in one of the retaining slings. Is a daytime shot worth more to you than the carp’s welfare? To me I would rather take a night

I also find myself listening to the water as fish tend to be much more active at night. Sometimes it’s as simple as hearing a few fish roll over my spots where at other times the fish will tell me they are further away which may necessitate a move.

shot and give the fish the best chance to go back healthy than retain a fish for several hours. With a decent camera (I have a $120 Canon Digital) and a tripod you can still get excellent results. Nowadays, 99% of my pictures are self takes.

With practice, self takes will give you decent pictures

North American Carp Angler


In conclusion if you only fish during the day light hours you are missing out on possibly the most productive carp feeding times. This may not always be the case, but more often than not the waters I fish are much easier during the night time. Water traffic, bankside disturbance and noise are all reduced and you will often be the only one awake. With a little preparation and the correct equipment, night fishing is relatively easy. Just make sure you are ready to catch more carp!

F ly F i s h i n g f o r C a r p : Adapting to Different Conditions and Problems

Jim Pankiewicz

To be successful at fly fishing for carp you need to: understand carp behavior, evaluate what you are seeing, make decisions, and adapt. Dry fly fishing for rising trout is sight fishing; when they come up and take the fly it is exciting to be sure. The reality is that most fly fishing for trout or salmon is blind fishing. I may have a good idea where the fish are but I am still casting to fish I just hope are there. Twelve seasons ago when I started fly fishing for carp, one of the things that attracted me to this pursuit was that it is virtually all sight fishing. Yes, carp are big, strong, smart, and wary, making them a marvelous quarry; it’s the sight fishing that makes them the ideal sportfish for the fly angler. As exciting, engaging and just plain riveting as sight fishing for carp is, having to exclusively sight fish was still an adaptation for me. It was one that I loved making but it was a change nevertheless.

A perfect blue sky‌very little wind

Conditions When I am carp fishing, ideally the sky is blue, the water is clear, there is a light wind, and of course there are tailing fish anxious to pick up my fly. Sigh‌it is so rare for all of these variables to be optimally aligned. If you want to fly fish for carp; you learn to adapt.

Tailing fish‌heavenly

North American Carp Angler


Sometimes you just have to deal with the conditions handed to you

I fish in central WA and OR; we get lots of hard wind; lots of it. The wind can easily belly the fly

The fish get harder to spot so sometimes I have to spot them between the crest of the waves.

line even against the current in the river. When it is windy, to get the fly down I adapt by

In murky water I move more slowly because I

using more heavily weighted flies or by using a

don’t see the fish until I am very close. I adapt by

two fly rig. If the wind is blowing straight at me

plopping the fly or just simply dropping it in front

double hauling and making sure I complete my

of the fish. Plopping is a very short cast where you

back cast helps a lot. When the wind blows hard it

don’t shoot any line. I also shorten the leader to

makes some serious waves on the river.

make those short casts.

When I don’t see tailing fish, slow cruisers, or shoppers, I move. I keep walking or I get in my carpwagon and drive to a new spot. When the sky is completely overcast I adapt by whining, grumbling and complaining. I’m not sure if it helps but I enthusiastically do it anyway.

The devil clouds make fly fishing for carp tough

North American Carp Angler


F i s h B e h av i o r

For cruising fish I definitely need to adapt my presentation technique. When I am targeting a

Water clarity and the amount of disturbance on the surface of the water from the wind are largely what determine how close I can get to a fish to present the fly. When fish are seriously tailing, getting the fly on their dinner plate, or at least on their spaghetti platter, is the way to hook up. If it is good and windy, casting fairly near the fish and letting the fly sink on or near the fish’s dinner

stationary fish I look at the spot I want the fly to land when I cast but when I am casting to a cruising fish I watch the fish as I am casting; it’s like leading someone when you are passing a football. That way I can gauge the direction and speed of the fish and get the fly well out in front of him. It sounds like a contradiction and it’s counterintuitive but it works.

plate will work. If the water is clear and calm then I cast past the fish and strip the fly onto his dinner plate.

As long as the clouds don’t block the sun I’m happy

The clouds can be on the horizon but not in front of the sun

North American Carp Angler


Adapting to the Problem s I C r e at e

Isn’t it enough that the devil clouds make it hard for me to see carp? Isn’t it enough that the wind blows so hard it gets difficult to keep my balance sometimes? Isn’t it enough that murky water just makes it all more challenging? Isn’t it enough that the fish are smarter than me? Only a little smarter but still smarter.

Sometimes I manage to outsmart them!!

Well, apparently it’s not enough for me! Last sea-

With the second broken rod I continued to fish.

son I broke two rods. That would be two rods in

When the rod tip is broken the action of the rod

two days, doing precisely the same thing; netting

changes noticeably; it is stiffer and I needed to

a fish.

adjust my casting.

I suppose I can take the positive view and say

Playing a fish still works fine; I just had to be

that it’s a good thing I only broke a small part off

careful to not break more of the rod off when there

the tip of the rod. It gave me the “opportunity” to

were still several feeding fish near me. I put three

see how well I could adapt to casting with a bro-

more fish in the net and actually felt kind of smug

ken rod tip and it even gave me the opportunity to

about catching them with a broken rod.

see how well the rod played a fish with a broken tip. That first day I broke the rod my legs were already tired from wading and my arms were tired from playing fish. I had been thinking about calling

Conditions are rarely all perfect for the fly rod carp angler. There is virtually always something to adapt to and in the end it adds to the challenge, the sense of accomplishment, and the joy.

it a day; the broken rod sealed the deal for me and I didn’t get a chance to try casting with the broken rod or playing a fish.

North American Carp Angler


The broken tip from the second rod

Visual Pursuit by Zach Hoffa

I feel that a lot of anglers don’t practice the pursuit of carp by the means of stalking. I find it strange since this was once the only way I knew how to target them. It’s one of the most exhilarating forms of fishing and the intense emotions felt while looking at a carp slowly eating its way over to your offering is addicting. Setting the hook on pure sight gives the best rush I ever experienced fishing and what made me addicted to carp. Maybe it is the heavy British influence on our growing carp scene and the case that most of their tactics are restricted to a designated peg or maybe people just like having loads of fancy gear and kicking back at one spot. Whatever the reason, if you haven’t tried targeting carp that you can see, you should start!

A heavily scaled mirror, caught with stalking methods

I still chase small carp out in the farm field streams using just my ultra-light setup. It isn’t always the most ideal equipment, but it’s a ton of fun with the whole idea to be as mobile and effective as possible. A heavy fast action rod of 7’ paired with a strong reel can land anything and go anywhere. I used a one peace 7’ medium, heavy fast action, 3/8oz lure HMG Fenwick rod paired with a Shimano bait runner and spooled with 12lb fluorocarbon subline from Korda. Finishing off the business end with the same hooks I’ve been using for hair rigs for years: Ashima indispensable carp hooks. I just tie it on like any normal hook using a size 8 for sweet corn. My other weapon of choice is my fly rod, but that’s another topic for another day. It’s a great idea to take a small backpack or side pack with you. I find that the boilie pouches sold to be an aid with throwing sticks are nice for this type of fishing. I load it up with a few slices of bread, a can of corn, my terminal tackle bits, and a slingshot and still have room for a drink.

All within hands reach. A net is really important, especially when fishing for big fish. One with a sleeve for the net and handle that is also lightweight will come in handy as it would be too cumbersome to carry it assembled. It’s also time consuming to put together and take apart every time I spot a fish or move. The majority of the time I find myself putting it together one handed while I have a fish hooked. I have to say I have gotten very good at this. At one time I would go out with a big folding style net, but it was lacking in durability and was quite heavy. If the fish you are expecting to catch are under 10lbs, I found a large folding V-shaped trout net to be very well suited for the task. These are pretty easy to find at a local tackle shop or through Cabalas or BassPro. The last item that should go with you is some good polarized sunglasses. Leaving my polarizer’s at home is the equivalent of forgetting the bait. I won’t be fishing! So I keep a pair in my jeep at all times.

North American Carp Angler


My lightweight set-up

The most important thing that I spend my time

Often times with limestone cliffs and very deep

doing is finding the fish. At times I spend more

water, people stick to a very specific, accessible

time looking for carp then I do fishing for carp.

area. I can spot fish on the shelves and in snags

The best way to start is to simply cover ground.

from up top.

You don’t even need to be fishing to be productive. When I am out, doing anything in my travels if I see water I’ll be taking a close look at it.

With some effort it is possible to get to spots others haven’t. If there is a will, there is a way. The important thing to understand is that if you

Time by the water spent observing is never wasted. I refer to it as water creeping. I like to fish

find fish in a location that they don’t often see people they are often easy to catch.

for all types of fish and it is all too often that time

You can spot fish along the banks of a local park

spent on the water fishing for bass or pan fish re-

trail and find yourself frustrated with the lack of

sults in me seeing carp in some form or another.

interest they seem to have with feeding.

Some great places to start searching are bridg-

If a walking path is along the shore the odds

es. I’ve looked over the same bridge 20 times to

are that something like a bobber, lure or a rock

see nothing and then one day saw a carp, which

has been thrown on top of their heads more than

I promptly caught.


Look for still pools around bridges where food and

These fish can be caught, but will require more

debris builds up. The carp hide and feed around

effort in the form of baiting and time. A fish in a

these areas. Here in Pennsylvania we have a lot

safe feeling place will feed almost instantly.

of bridges. We also have the worst bridges in the country.

Often times my hook bait gets sucked up mid

Many are closed off, being worked on or be-

water. Any carp you can see is better than one

coming ruins. I often find myself in places that I

you can’t, but find them where they feel safe, be

shouldn’t be. I wouldn’t want to encourage any-

sure not to disturb them and your experience will

one to go fish past KEEP OUT signs, but I would

be instantaneous success.

highly suggest going where the fish don’t see many people. On lakes this tends to be on over grown banks or margins away from any walking paths. I like to stalk quarries since we also have an abundance of them and their waters are so clear. These also tend to be absent of many fishermen. North American Carp Angler


Carp can be very easy to catch when they feel ‘safe’ When sight fishing remember that the fish can also see you.

Wear earth tone colors, camo

I always wonder to what level they can communicate under the water that I can’t observe.

makes a difference. Movements should be done with caution. This is why I like using the boilie

Feeding fish tend to be easier to drop in on and

pouch. I can access my things on the move and

are definitely ideal for a quick take. Whenever I

still maintain a statue like presence on the bank.

see carp, I try to offer some corn bits. What makes visual fishing so thrilling is that you

Stay low being mindful of your shadow and plant

can observe the response and make decisions

limbs that move when you do. Be extra cautious

based on what you are seeing. Seeing fish feed-

when there are a lot of carp together. This in-

ing confidently is a great rush and will result in a

creases the odds of getting caught and spooking

deeper understanding of the carp. It’s important

all of the fish. Just one fish seeing something

to read the fish.

it doesn’t like can send a red flag to the whole group.

A cruising carp often isn’t a contender, but it’s

I see it as body language, one fish stiffens up all

always worth trying when no other options are

its fins, stops feeding and all the others follow suit,

present. A fish sitting still around some snags is a

taking off into the deep.

good opportunity.

By tossing small bits of corn or bread balls near-

It’s important to cover the hook completely, not

by you can coax the fish into feeding away from

only so the fish can’t see the hook, but also so you

the snag. The smallest change in the fishes body

can see which bait is yours. More often than not

language can tell you if its sniffing and taking no-

I will wait until the fish comes back before I make

tice to the bait or if its weary and noticing you.

my cast. Getting the hook a foot from the target’s face is goal.

Once I am looking at the fish and positioned well

Seeing the fish you pre-selected go straight for

to view them without being seen, I’ll get a palm

your sinking hook and inhaling it followed imme-

size amount of sweet corn and toss it in a spot

diately by a good firm set as the fish peels off for

that is best for the situation.

the closest snag is exhilarating. I always try to

Whenever possible you want to be close enough

redirect the fish the best I can and reward it with

to free line with just the hook and corn as weight.

less drag in the direction I want. The battles are

I hate to do it but sometimes I’ll put a small split

epic, violent and right in front of you. The feel of

shot on, usually to combat current.

using a shorter rod makes the whole experience that much better.

At some point the fish will swim around and about, its then that you want to make a move and

It is definitely worth having the minimal gear

get in a final position. This is when I either make a

needed in your fishing vehicle. You just never

cast, or I hold the hook, baited with 3 to 5 kernels

know when and where you may spot a carp. I wish

of corn in my hand and wait to place the hook in

you the best luck the next time you are out keep

front of a fish.

your eyes on the water, travel light, be stealthy and fish where others haven’t

A quarry stalked carp North American Carp Angler




LOCATION Most anglers know that location is the most im-

So, you see, location is vital for catching fish,

portant factor in catching any fish species. You

and it can make or break your entire fishing day.

cannot catch fish if there are no fish within range of

Luckily, in venues where carp are present, carp

your bait. Just imagine if you came across some-

do move.

one fishing the public pool. The water is clear, so you can see to the bottom, and the water is poi-

Sometimes a location that never produces for

soned with oxygen depriving chlorine derivatives.

suddenly produces for one particular angler. Sometimes this is because the fish just happen

You would probably first laugh, and then inform

to be passing through that day, and the angler

the angler that he/she was wasting his/her time

was very fortunate, but often the reason is that

fishing the pool. You would probably point out that

the angler knows something other anglers do not

there were no signs of fish anywhere, nor could

know, and that is the peg contains a secret spot,

any fish survive for long in the pool water.

a honey hole. This secret spot is a Micro Location.

Well, now imagine you are fishing in a carp tournament. Your peg is notorious for not producing fish. If you were fishing for fun, you would probably pick the best spot, right? You certainly would not pick the swim where everyone blanks. North American Carp Angler



flowing water enters or exits the lake or pond; stumps, brush piles, or whole fallen trees where invertebrates are plentiful; and even the windy

A Micro Location could be just about anything that you can imagine. It could be a snag of some kind such as a fallen tree, brush pile, or even an old tractor tire. A Micro Location could even be a depth change

side of the lake where food will collect along the bank are all great places to start fishing. Some of these locations can be quite large such as a weed bed, but others might be only a few feet across such as a dip or hole. These smaller locations are micro locations.

such as a small depression in the lake floor or even a hump where the depth suddenly becomes much shallower. The key however has more to do with the fish


than what the structure actually may be. It is this small change in the fish’s environment that attracts the fish. Usually, fish are attracted to these locations because food collects in or around them, but sometimes it simply is just a place for the fish to hang out and rest, or perhaps travel from one feeding ground to another.


The first thing you need to do is look. Do you see carp flopping? Do you see other fish species? Always cast to locations where you see carp showing themselves. It might be one fish or it could be an entire group of carp banging into each other as they compete over food. If you see or catch other fish species, try casting further out or closer or away from that spot with one hook bait. Sometimes carp feed heavily with other fish species, and other times they feed in

Whether you are fishing a large lake or a pond, the rules for still water are pretty much the same when it comes to locating carp. Carp that are feeding will be in areas where food naturally collects or is available to them. Places such as mussel beds, riprap banks where crayfish live; berry bushes or trees hanging over the water; mud flats with heavy weeds where freshwater insects can be found; locations where

slightly deeper water or shallower water or away from the other fish species. Sometimes carp are simply not in your swim and by placing a bait that carp will eat, but the other species will ignore or cannot eat, will guarantee that you have a bait in an area where carp should eventually visit.

Carp are often found feeding in windy coves of

Wood is one of the best features because it pro-

lakes and ponds; however, some of these coves

vides food, protection, and is easy for both the

can be large making it hard to pinpoint exactly

carp and you to locate.

where to place your hook baits or chum. Other artificial structures also make great micro Do you see the clump of cattail in the corner

locations because they will hold invertebrates and

across the cove? This is a typical micro location.

provide cover. One of my favorite artificial features

The cattails are a great place for carp to find food

is an old tractor tire.

and for food being swept against the bank by the wind to collect.

Although you sometimes get snagged onto these features, they tend to hold a lot of hungry fish in a

Since the cattails are only about ten feet across,

small area. Stumps, brush piles, and down trees

they also become a great place for carp to be con-

are often easy to find because they are usually

centrated. Placing a pile of chum out in front along

located near banks where trees hang over the

with hook baits cast to both sides of the cattail


ends led to a great day of fishing with more than twenty carp landed.

When fishing these types of micro locations, try getting your hook bait as close as possible to the

Do you see any stumps, trees, or other types of

feature. Carp will cling tightly to wood, and some-

snags poking out of the water? Carp often hang

times will not venture very far, especially if they

out around structures, particularly dead wood

are using it for cover.

such as stumps, brush piles, and fallen trees, feeding on invertebrates. You usually can see fallen trees poking out of the water or you can find them by plumbing. North American Carp Angler


These tires used to be on the bottom of the Burlington Reservoir, but where removed after the lake dried out Do you see overhanging trees full of nuts, ber-

The fastest way to catch fish feeding on ber-

ries, or seeds that the carp might be eating? I will

ries or nuts is to suspend a nut or berry under a

always sneak up on overhanging trees loaded

float. The carp are in such an aggressive feed-

with mulberries, nuts, or any kind of food the carp

ing mood that they will strike your offering like a

like to eat. Usually, the fish can be found just be-


low the surface feeding on whatever is falling into Normally, you do not have to wait for long to get

the water.

a run, so do not put the rod down. You can also All it takes is a handful of whatever the food

fish on the bottom with good results although

source is tossed onto the surface to determine if

most of the active feeding fish will be suspended.

the carp are actively feeding under the tree.

Trees with mulberries and nuts are always productive for carp fishing

If you do not have any visible features, then you

When fishing a depth change it is best to try to get

will need to plumb to determine if there are any

one hook bait directly in the hole because some-

underwater features. Is there a spot that is deeper

times the fish will not leave the spot. You can also

than the rest of the swim? Does the lake become

try chumming the hole, and fishing around the

progressively deeper the farther out you cast or is

outside where larger carp might be lurking.

it about the same depth?

Another depth change is an old creek or river channel. Creek channels often act more like

Depth changes are some of the most overlooked

ditches, but river channels are highways for fish

micro locations by anglers; partly because they

traveling from one feeding location to another.

are difficult to locate. Even a slight depression

If you do not have any feeding locations in your

in an otherwise flat bottom can hold carp. Large

swim, then chances are you will have a traveling

holes often hold fish when the temperatures are

feature where carp will swim through your swim.

extremely hot or cold. These tiny micro locations might only be three

Try getting a brightly colored pop-up onto this

feet around yet hold dozens of fat hungry carp.

super highway. You want any carp that might be

Depth changes also include ditches that carp use

traveling by to become curious and maybe stop

for traveling, feeding, and holding.

for a bite to eat.

With the water gone, it is easy to see where the old creek channel used to run in this lake

North American Carp Angler


Getting your bait into this slightly deeper micro

largest carp are more attracted to smaller feed-

location could make all the difference especially

ing spots: micro locations. This could be a small

during the hottest months. Obviously, there is al-

patch of mud where plants grow or perhaps where

ways some current here; else this channel would

aquatic insect hatches are common.

have disappeared long ago. Current means oxygen, food, and cooler water temperatures for fish in lakes and ponds.

This could be a gravel bed clearing in the middle of an otherwise very weedy bottom. Finding these micro locations can help you catch carp or at least

What is the composition of the bottom? Does the

have a better chance of catching carp. Also, it is

bottom composition suddenly change from one

very important to note here that a sudden change

substratum to another? Different bottom compo-

from one bottom composition to another is very

sitions can hold different food sources for carp.

attractive to fish.

Some of those food sources might be available all

Lake floor changes, such as going from a weed

year long, but others might only be available dur-

bed to sand, create edges. Fish love to follow

ing some particular times of the season.

edges in search of food. Carp use these edges as guides to help them remember where they last

Learning what carp feed on and where they find natural food can greatly help you catch them.

found food, and to help them guide themselves along the bottom. Placing a pile of chum or single

Although most carp will be found feeding in large

hook bait along a carp hunting path can lead to

feeding areas with many other carp, many of the

multiple runs and a very successful fishing outing.

A hidden culvert that only revealed itself after a big rain storm caused it to bubble Whenever you have a beach area on a lake that otherwise has a rock or clay bottom, you are going to find carp. Many people believe beaches are void of food, but actually these are some of the best places for carp to find food. In this case, a tractor tire micro location found on the beach helped concentrate the carp in a way that made them easier to catch.

Is there a spot where water is flowing in or flowing out? When water is moving, all fish species become very active. Increased water flow often means more oxygen and more food being brought into the lake or pulled to one side of the lake. Carp will stack with other fish species in these areas waiting for food to come to them. Often boulders, weeds, and other current blockers are great places to find hungry carp holding. North American Carp Angler


Carp will also feed directly in the current although

If you see fish moving, what feature do they

often they are more on the surface than on the

seem to be collecting around? If you do not see

bottom. Presenting baits in a way that offers the

fish, what features are most likely to hold feeding

carp the best chance to see your hook bait and

carp or traveling carp this time of the year?

grab it can be the key to catching them. When water is flowing into a lake, carp will sometimes try to swim up the current and out of the lake.

If you are fortunate enough to have multiple features in your swim, then you only need to determine which seem to be attracting the carp.

They will also sometimes hold in areas around a bend where food settles. When water is flowing

If the carp are not showing themselves, then you

over a spillway or out of a lake, carp will some-

should try fishing multiple micro locations until

times attempt to escape the lake.

you start getting runs around a particular feature. If there are not any micro locations in your swim

Carp have a natural desire to move on to the next

where fish would stop and feed, then you need

feeding location. This is because they originally

to find the highway system and get highly visible

were in mountain streams and lakes in China.

bait out where the carp will see it as they travel

There, the streams connected to other lakes, so

through your swim on their way to a feeding area.

carp naturally moved from lake to lake in search of better feeding locations or spawning grounds.

Just keep in mind that often fish do hang out in

Larger, older, wiser carp often just stay out of the

areas with large feeding grounds, but, even in

main current feeding.

those large feeding areas, there are smaller micro locations where the fish are in constant competi-

They have no desire to go looking for new wa-


ters at their age, but if a matriarch does jump the fence, then it will not be long before her entire crew is trying to reach her. First, try fishing the edges at any place where the fish can get out of the current including deeper water. Second, get your bait into the current or cast it into an area teaming with carp. Even if not all of the members of the group are feeding, there is always one fish that is in the mood for a snack.



Carp are adapted to exist in river sections with minimal current. What this means is that carp re-

Rivers range in size from creeks to tidal, and range in depth from shallow to extremely deep,

late heavily to locations in rivers where the current is slower.

and range in flow from slack water to raging rapids. Although carp probably exist in just about

These locations include deep holes, log jams or

every system of river you can imagine, they do

other wood structures, bridge pillars, sunken cars

not necessarily feed in all sections of a river.

or other artificial structures, large boulders, un-

Carp are somewhat streamlined, but they are not as streamlined as some species such as catfish.

dercut banks, or other bodies of water connected to the main river.

Here is a pegged swim located at Two Rivers. At this location, the river flows into Lake Michigan, and sometimes Lake Michigan blows into the river. When the flow of the current is strong, the fish are going to look for places to get out of the current. The boat launch area is a great place to hold because of the underwater concrete barriers. The boat launch is also a great place for carp to look for food such as Zebra Mussels

North American Carp Angler


MICRO LOCATIONS IN RIVERS In many ways rivers are very similar to lakes and ponds because micro locations are the key holding places or traveling places for carp. Just like in a lake or pond, you need to look for carp first. Do you see any carp moving or flopping? Since carp are moving constantly in a current situation, unless they find a spot that blocks the current, carp are often not in one place for very long, and may be at any level in the water column. Feeding fish are not always on the bottom, and could be at the surface or mid-levels. Carp in current also have to constantly swim or be pushed down river. The fish are used to this and will use the current to their advantage. Even though casting to a spot where a carp has just showed itself does not guarantee the carp will be feeding in that spot, it does offer you a chance to place bait near a known fish. Do you see any structure where a carp can get out of the current? Carp will use just about any structure they can find to get out of the current

to rest, or to look for food that has collected in or around a structure. Wood is usually the best place to start fishing although any solid current blocking structure could hold hungry carp. Look for log jams, artificial structures like a sunken boat, huge boulders, and even bridge support pillars. Inactive fish normally hold directly at the back of structures in a resting mode. These fish normally are not feeding, but it does not hurt to place a bait in and among them. Hungry carp usually move further back where some current starts to reform or where the edges of current deposit food items. If the current is not too overwhelming, active feeding carp will also venture to the front of the feature to feed on food being pinned up against the structure. Do you have a sandbar or silt area in your swim? Sandbars often act more like structures in that the fish feed around them. Inactive carp hold close behind sandbars to get out of the current, and active carp feed in areas where food is collecting. Silt areas are usually along the bank.

Rivers are famous for their many log and carp routinely visit wood looking for food

They are places where the current has slowed leaving the muddy muck of decomposing plant and animal life or eroded top soil. Many invertebrates live in this muck. Sometimes weeds grow in this muck too. Dead vegetation or live vegetation is always a feeding smorgasbord for carp. Do you have any depth changes? Fish in general will swim against the current. They do this because it positions them so they can feed on whatever is flowing towards them, and allows them to get out of the way of any objects flowing down the river at them. Most rivers follow a pattern of riffle, hole, and run. A riffle area is a faster flowing spot just in front of the hole. The water flows faster here because it is shallower and the bottom is harder. Most riffle areas have gravel or rock bottoms. Many fish species, including carp, will swim up into the riffle area and try to catch the food as it flows down the river. In a slow moving river or creek, this might be the best place to get a bite because there is more oxygen here, and also, during the hotter months, this is usually the best place to cool down. In faster moving rivers, this area can turn into rapids. When the river current is too strong, fish, such as carp, will not stay in riffle areas to feed. The next location just down current is the hole. The hole is an area of the river that had a softer bottom at one point, and now has become a deep scouring hole or a slightly deeper spot within the main river channel. Catfish normally sit at the front of the hole to look for food, while carp usually feed in the center or at the back of the hole. Carp do not occupy holes

where large predators live, but those free of large predators can hold a huge number of hungry carp. Carp hold in holes to escape the current so they can rest and to feed on food that has settled at the bottom or the back of the hole. Carp also occupy holes during the cold months from late fall to early spring. Holes can be some of the best places to locate hungry carp during the fall. Carp sometimes use holes to escape the hot sun, but normally carp move into the riffle areas where the river water is cooler. Just behind the hole is another area where the current has slowed called the run. A run can be full of sand or silt or a combination of both. The type of food that carp eats often collects in the run areas of rivers, and the slower current is also very favorable to carp. Finding micro locations within a run is very Important because runs usually cover a much larger area than riffles and holes. Is your swim NOT an area where carp would stop to feed? A river channel will always form where the current is strongest. This is often not a place where fish feed although it can be in rivers with moderate flow. Instead, this area is normally the highway system just like it is in lakes. Placing a highly visible bait or a pile of chum in this location can help you make contact with fish moving through your swim. Also, keep in mind that carp move along the shoreline. Carp use the shoreline as an edge to guide them as they search for food. Placing hook bait just a few feet off the bank is often a great way to intercept moving carp actively hunting for food items. North American Carp Angler


FINAL THOUGHTS Locating carp is the key to catching them. The best places are natural feeding zones where carp can be found in large numbers feeding aggressively. Within these larger feeding areas, there are micro locations where food is most readily available, and many carp are feeding competitively. Aggressively feeding carp are less likely to scrutinize over a hook bait than those not feeding aggressively, thus leading to more runs and more hooked fish. Placing your hook baits just right in that tiny area where the fish are feeding heaviest or visiting the most can be the key for catching huge numbers of carp and maximizing your success

Sometimes an angler finds himself or herself fish-

ing a swim that does not contain a major feeding area for carp; however, within these swims there are often micro locations where carp can find food in smaller amounts. These micro locations attract older, larger carp that are loners or travel in smaller groups. Micro locations can include naturally occurring structures such as wood or brush piles,

artificial structures such as tractor tires or bridge support columns, and even depth changes or edges of different types of bottom compositions. Placing your chum and hook bait in or near one of these micro locations can make the difference from catching carp and not catching fish. Fishing the edges of these features can lead to carp fishing success even in swims where many other anglers fail. Occasionally, an angler, in a competition, might be placed at a swim that does not contain any feeding locations of any kind. Within these swims are locations that the carp use for travel such as the main river channel and along the shoreline. River channels can be very small, and only be slightly deeper than the rest of the river; however, they provide a structure for carp to follow. The same is true in lakes that contain river channels. Carp use these features as highway systems for getting from one feeding area to another even in lakes. If an angler is able to find the main river channel, then he/she can place highly visible baits within this channel that might entice a hungry traveling carp into feeding. Carp also use the shallow water along the bank of rivers to travel

Three carp surfacing on the Shore line. These fish are feeding, and can be caught as long as an angler is careful not to spook them

My wife takes a photo with my rod during a tournament. In the background of the photo you can see several micro locations. There is the dock, the overhanging trees, the shade created by the tree, the aerator, and the windswept bank on the other side of the lake just for starters and to hunt for food items. This is true of lakes too,

If the carp can see your bait, smell your bait, then

particularly on the windy side where food washes

more times than not they are also going to taste

ashore. Carp with their backs sticking out of the

your bait leading to many more runs and a lot

water can sometimes be seen searching for food

more hooked fish.

along the shoreline as they travel. The shoreline provides them with an edge that they can follow.

Rather you are fishing for fun or in a competi-

Placing a bait along the edge of the river or lake

tion the key to success is presenting hook baits to

shoreline, just a few feet out, can sometimes be

carp in such a way that they have a chance to find

the key to catching them when natural food loca-

the bait. The more carp that run into your hook

tions are not available within an angler’s swim.

baits, the more chances you have of a fish actually tasting your bait.

You might say that river channels and the shoreline are not micro locations; however, the micro

The more carp that taste your bait, the more runs

location is not actually the structure itself, but

you will have. The more runs you have the more

rather the edge of the structure. It is the edges of

hooked carp you will have.

structures that are the true micro locations.

And the more hooked carp you have the more

That tiny spot where food collects naturally or

carp you will land. So, you see, location is the key

that is often traveled by carp. The key to being

to success, and finding that tiny edge of a micro

successful is to get your hook bait in front of the

location that the carp will visit in your swim is the

carp’s snout.

key to being successful. North American Carp Angler


Swimming with fish By Radek Filip

It`s easy to swim with fish in the sea. But many anglers think, that it is nearly impossible to swim with fish in fresh waters and have visual contact with them. My experiences show that the opposite is true. And what is more, you don`t need any expensive equipment for it. I will show you, that swimming with fish is easy. You can try it in the summer on your own and not only that you can shoot underwater pictures and videos as well.

Carp fisherman consider their favourite fish to be shy and clever. In my experience it is one of the most diving-friendly fish. North American Carp Angler


You enjoy adrenaline when taking pictures of pike as they are calm models

Beginnings I have always been obsessed with underwater photography, which was thought to be a discipline of professionals. It seemed that without a scuba diving licence and bottles full of compressed air you could not get close to the fish, but my first snorkelling attempts have showed, that the opposite may be true. It is possible to get close to the fish, mostly in summer even on a breath hold or directly from the water’s surface.

The only issue was to find a suitable freshwater fishery with clean water and a sufficient density of fish population. It wasn`t an easy task as very clean water is in stone pits but usually there isn`t enough fish in these waters and they are often too deep. The majority of the rivers, reservoirs and ponds in my country are murky, which is why I focused on the gravel pits. I visited about 20 gravel pits and spent 3 years until I found the right one! I have encountered fish in other pits, but the visibility under the water was insufficient to take quality pictures. If it was clean, then it was only for a few days in the season.

The invasion of bathers in the summer also stopped my hopes.

became obsessed with swimming with fish. I became addicted. Instead of fishing I was watching.

I finally found my private gravel pit paradise

My underwater expeditions were longer and

where I could swim with the fish. The daily meet-

longer. I often lost sense of time. I spent hours un-

ing with carp that I could sometimes touch with

der the water without any neoprene. I left the wa-

my hand became reality. I have also been meet-

ter only when I was cold, shaking or had cramps

ing with tench, perch, bream, bleak and solitary

in the muscles.

pike. Other times I repeatedly forgot, that I have to We know how to handle pike, when it is landed

breathe when I was deep under the water shoot-

outside the water, but trust me, if you meet it un-

ing pictures. I have learned a lot about the fish

der the water and you are watching it face to face

behaviour and used it in my fishing later.

a few decimetres ahead, it is a strange feeling. I have enjoyed the peace under the water and She can anytime suppose, that your watch, camera or wedding ring is a prey fish and attack as

the close presence of the fish. And I am sure, that you can have the experience the same.

many scuba divers stories confirm. You definitely don’t feel safe in her kingdom. I have also been meeting huge shoals of roach and rudd, that always disappeared, when I came too close.

Equipment The best thing is that you need only basic equipment for this hobby. A snorkel and diving mask is cheap. The situation with the fins is the same and you can buy it as a set for less than 50 Euro’s. If you swim in water warmer than 18 – 20 °C you don’t need anything else. In the Czech Republic we have this water temperature mostly from June to August and for your first snorkelling attempts this will be this season that is absolutely best.

This is all you need for your freshwater snorkelling

North American Carp Angler


The other equipment is optional. If the temperature is lower, you will need neoprene.

A DSLR camera in an underwater housing is the best to take excellent underwater pictures, but it

With diving neoprene you can easily experience

is also expensive. Many of the underwater casse

even the snorkelling in spring and watch spawn-

for DSLR cost more than the camera body and

ing fish in the shallows, or enjoy the autumn un-

some of my friends have lost their DSLR because

derwater beauty.

of water penetration into the underwater housing.

You will also need it in rivers that are often colder

It was their fault usually, but the truth is, that you

than still waters. If you would like to swim with fish

cannot ever be sure that your DSLR is safe under

in late autumn, winter and early spring, you will

the water. Because of these issues I have com-

then need a dry-suit, which is equipment for “real”

promised and I use an underwater mirrorless or

scuba divers.

compact camera.

It`s not often used for snorkelling and you usually need it to sink much deeper to get to the fish. The majority of us will not get to this level.

I have tested about 10 various models and at the moment I am the proud owner of compact Olympus TG-3 which is around 400 Euro’s. It focuses

The last thing that you need if you want to take pictures is an underwater camera.

very fast, is waterproof up to 15 m, shockproof, ergonomic and has a very high focal ratio f2.0 .

My underwater selfie – you really need only snorkel, camera and fins

Sunny days are the best to take underwater pictures. The focal ratio is very important as the light

is in thermocline, higher in the water column. You

vanishes very quickly underwater. In my opinion

can easily test how quickly the temperature de-

it`s the best compact underwater camera on the

creases if you dive deeper and experience thermal

market (together with its successor, the Olympus

shock. Especially in spring when the thermocline

TG-4, which was released this year). For video

may be less than one meter below the surface.

shooting a GoPro with a green water filter is all

The thermocline depth is of course not dependant

you need.

only on the season but also on the wind strength

Searching for fish

that is creating the waves and causing the mixing of the water. I recommend you snorkel along the bank and

The best time for snorkelling with fish on still wa-

break from shallow to deep water or underwater

ters is late spring and summer. At this time of the

islands. If there are some weeds or other water

year fish are gathered in shallow water and the

vegetation even better. It doesn’t make sense to

upper part of the water column. This means that

cruise the open water if the chance to meet a fish

we can watch them directly from the surface with

there is much lower. If you see fish deeper, you

the top of the snorkel in the air.

can easily follow them even from the margins and

The majority of my underwater pictures are tak-

if you meet fish at a spot one day it is very likely

en from this position. The reason is that the water

that you meet them at the same spot tomorrow

is much warmer there and the majority of the food

under the same circumstances. North American Carp Angler


Big perch are usually hard to catch on camera

Tips Fish behaviour is very different from fishery to fishery. In some places they are very confident and curious and in other fisheries they keep a distance from you. Sometimes they can be so scared of you, that it appears you will never see them. You can see only stirred sediment when you come 10 meters from them. Maybe the most “diver friendly� fish is carp. They are very curious. I never search for carp

under the water as I know, that they will usually find me, swim around me and follow me just like dolphins. They have no problems even to eat in your company. Many fish species will let you come much closer than you think, but they hate noises and strong vibrations. Because of this you should turn off all the sounds in your camera (including shutter sound). They frighten the fish. Breathe calmly and blow the air out of your lungs only after you take the intended camera shot.

Check the weather forecast as if you plan to pho-

The reason is, that the water is never clean

to shoot under the water without a flash light, the

enough and you need to get as close as possi-

lightning conditions are crucial. Rainy days aren’t

ble and take a picture with highest possible focal

ideal even when you photo shoot at the air but


under the water they are disastrous as the light is even worse there. If possible dive with your camera on sunny days. My experience is that in summer there are often

The basic fish picture composition is when you have your lens in the same depth as the fish’s eyes.

many fish species swimming in depths no more

The pictures from above view are not ideal. If you

than 2 meters (carp, pike, asian carp, rudd, roach,

follow the fish to the depth to take a shot, don’t do

bream, tench and so on) sometimes directly at the

it with furious fin kicks. Rather, blow some air from

surface. Other fish species are usually moving

the lungs and hold your breath. You will immedi-

deeper (perch, zander) along the thermocline.

ately start sinking.

I recommend you photo shoot at the shortest

This calm vertical movement will not spook the

possible focal length. I zoom the lens only rarely

fish and when you are in the right depth, you can

under the water.

take your shot and come back to the surface

North American Carp Angler


Knowledge All the stuff you experience under the water may be useful for your fishing later. You will become an expert on all the structures under the surface. You will know in which part of the fishery the fish reside and you will be surprised how many “dead zones” without any fish there are in the lake and how high the density of the fish is at some other spots. You can immediately use this in your fishing.

You can present your rigs on the bottom when carp fishing, hiding all that should be hidden and be sure that the presentation is perfect. Always remember that the seasonal behaviour of the fish is different. For example, carp love to spend summer under the leaves of water lily’s but they won`t be there when the lily’s disappear when the fall comes. If you keep in mind those seasonal changes, you will not only extend your horizons due to the underwater experience but also become a better angler. Enjoy your diving!

Experiences underwater can be helpful to your fishing



By Iain Sorrell

Over the years I’ve merrily hauled a ton of tackle and bait around in pursuit of my passion for carp. However the past couple of seasons (partly prompted by a recurring back issue) I’ve returned to the basics of float and surfacing fishing carrying the bare minimum of tackle and bait. And you know what? I’d almost forgotten how much fun it can be!

A minimum of equipment was needed to catch this Ghostie

North American Carp Angler


Unlike Europe where a carp’s diet can be made up of large quantities of bait here in North America they are almost entirely dependent on natural food sources. One of the greatest myths is that carp are primarily bottom feeders which clearly does not address the success of zigs and surface baits. As an omnivore carp will take every opportunity to feed on whatever source of natural food is most available or easily accessible. Discovering new waters can be a great opportunity to try out some stalking and surface fishing opportunities. A net, a rod and a few hooks plus some baits and a catapult is generally all you need. A light, easy to roll out unhooking mat ensures the fish is protected from damage although in most places I usually unhook the fish in the water for a quick release. Quality polaroids, a long peak cap and some camo or drab clothing will complete the outfit. As an avid ornithologist I also like to carry a pair of binoculars and they can also prove very helpful in spotting fish at range or along opposite margins.



The easiest and simplest form of surface fishing is to ‘free line’ a bait. There is no weight attached to the line and any casting is dependent on the weight of the baited hook.

It also allows a bait to be ‘fired’ out between a gap in even quite dense foliage without spooking the fish. Alternatively a small bag of PVA mesh loaded with chum mixers / chow pellets and attached to the hook can be cast quite easily.

In most cases this only allows a bait to be lowered directly below the rod tip or gently swung a few feet to intercept a feeding fish. However I’ve also lightly wrapped an extra piece of bread around the already baited hook to increase casting distance plus the excess bread falls off quite quickly and creates attractive free samples. The rod can also be propped up with the bail arm open and the baited hook ‘catapulted’ out. The distances that can be achieved with this technique might surprise you! I’ve routinely fired out pieces of bread around the hook to around 20-30 yds. A free lined bait is often all that is needed

CONTROLLERS When you need to cast further then attaching a bubble float (partly filled with water) or a purpose made carp controller can make all the difference. The choices are numerous but two there are two distinct types (1) in-line type that lay on the surface and (2) a float or bobber style. Which ever you use some consideration to minimizing the chance of the hook link tangling is important. The use of anti-tangle tube and ready made tapered sleeves has made this relatively easy to achieve.

Carp love bread

If the fishing zone is beyond catapult range then a small sized Spomb is an ideal way to introduce bait samples with the minimum of disturbance. Alternatively load up PVA mesh with chum mixers / chow pellets and attach to your hook.

SURFACE BAITS Bread. Wonder bread’s reprisal from bankruptcy saved me from despair! There is nothing like it for staying on the hook with a light ‘pinch’ and the fish love it! It also has the added bonus of staying ‘fresh’ for ages without going moldy – even for a week or two! North American Carp Angler


IMITATION BAITS Such as Dog Chow, Artificial Bread or Pellet Cups make excellent hook baits when combined with the real thing or fished on their own in a chummed area. There are plenty of choices but those made by Enterprise Tackle stand out from the crowd. They are not only life like but have innovative features (such as the chum mixers with an interchangeable foam core and split shot ballast to ensure the hook sits concealed above the surface of the water). A great combination is to fish one the Enterprise pellet cups with a pellet or dog/cat chow morsel pushed inside. The ‘cup’ ensures the pellet does not sink or dissolve too quickly while allowing some attraction to leak out. You can also fill the

I’ve fished waters here in the USA where the carp have never seen a ‘bait’ and rarely seem interested in feeding on the surface. However fire out a few catapults of these chow pellets and within just minutes carp seem to be fighting over them! Attaching these ‘hard’ baits can be challenging I usually fish a plastic imitation on the hook especially if its been soaked in some oil flavored with ground chow. However a bait band or small diameter drill is a great accessory and will allow you to attach one or even several baits to the hook by a short ‘air’. Attach the hair to the shank of the hook rather than the bend. A small split shot can also be added to the hair to act as a ‘keel’ so that the hook sits above the water on top of the bait.

opening with a piece of foam soaked in a mix of oil and ground chow if the pellet does not float as well as you like. I also like to fish regular bread (Wonder bread) squeezed around a piece of artificial bread mounted on the hook. This guarantees that you still have something to fish once the bread breaks down or is whittled away by sunfish or turtles.

OILED / FLAVORED BAITS / GLUGS In Europe its been well proven that anointing your chum mixers, trimmed pop-ups, imitation baits etc in a favorite flavor or oil (better still a mix of the two!) can really stimulate fish that seem a little lethargic or wary.

CHUM MIXERS / CHOW Take a walk around your local pet food store and you’ll see all manner of dried dog and cat foods. It never ceases to amaze me how effective most of them are at catching carp – even fish that have never seen them before fall under their spell in just a few minutes.

Here in the USA I’ve not usually found it to be needed very often but always carry some hemp, coconut, fish or peanut oil plus some Betalin and a couple of flavors just in case. However there is one trick I’ve learned that is stunningly effective.

Simply grind up some of the chum mixers or pellets you plan to use into a fine powder (a coffee grinder is perfect provided you wash it out after…) and then mix with a little oil. Put this into a zip lock bag along with your pellets / chum and shake until they are well coated.

The resulting slick off the free samples and the hook bait is the perfect carrier for the powdered pellets and stimulates the carp into a feeding frenzy! Another bonus to an ‘oiled’ bait is that it will create a clear ‘window’ in waters that are covered in duckweed or other algae which the carp will help

Oiling up baits can be very effective

‘home in’ on it.

North American Carp Angler


This fish fell to a surface bait

NATURAL BAITS Perhaps one of the most often overlooked surface baits are natural food items. Grasshoppers, Worms (air injected or mounted with a piece of foam) Snails, Mulberrys and other berries are all excellent choices.

Boilie Pop-Ups. Small 12mm pop-ups or a larger one shaved down are another great option especially if you want a brightly colored one that stands out.



I like a 1.75 – 2.50 rod with a softer tip that can

While most people associate floater fishing with

throw a free lined bait or when needed a light-

calm, sunny days I’ve done exceptionally well in

weight controller or bubble float.

even some of the most adverse conditions imaginable!

Often the fish are hooked close to the bank so the battle takes place right under the rod tip so a

Strong winds can play to your advantage as the

more through action rod will help avoid hook pulls

carp are often searching along the lines of foam

while giving you plenty of back bone to steer them

(wind lanes) looking for bedraggled insects and

away from snags such as tree roots or weed beds.

other food items.

8-12lb mono is usually ideal although occasion-

Catapult some baits down one of these wind

ally I use 30lb braid if the swims are very weedy.

lanes and watch carefully for any dimples or flat

I prefer to loosen the reel clutch a little more than

spots as a fish comes and sucks them down. The

when bottom fishing otherwise those initial runs at

rain will wash insects and berries etc from over-

close range can pop a lighter hook link.

hanging tree branches and you will likely find carp waiting to take advantage.


Even when the temperatures drop late in the season you can still find carp sipping at a fly or

I mostly use size 10 – 8 hooks with a straight eye

other hatch on a warm day.

for pellets or chow but will go with a 6 (especially for bigger fish & grass carp) when using bread.

North American Carp Angler


A quiet walk around the lake is often a good way to find where the fish are hanging out. On warm, sunny days they will often rest up in weed beds, lily pads or in the shade or a tree or bush. Look carefully through bank side bushes and trees where they line the lake margins. Carp often feel quite a bit safer in these areas as they are shielded from view and rarely disturbed. Even on busy day ticket waters in the UK it has been possible to find such areas and carefully poke the rod through a gap and dangle a bait in front of them… less easy to land them of course but hey ‘fish on!’ Climb a tree (carefully…) as you’ll be able to see fish more easily from above and sometimes they’ll be right beneath you.

A koi feeding through the duck weed

This 60lb grass carp couldn’t resist a simple approach

North American Carp Angler


Wind lanes… Even on quite windy days when the surface is being heavily rippled you can find carp feeding on the surface. Look carefully for areas where there is a foam line or ‘calmer’ edge. These are wind lanes and they concentrate and carry all manner of food items along their length. Careful observation will often reveal a dimple or calm spot appear where a carp has come up and sucked in a juicy morsel. If you soak the bait in some oil it will not only float well but the slick will actually create a ‘flat’ spot on the ruffled surface making it not only easier for you to spot your bait but helps the carp home in on it.

Oiled baits create ‘flat spots’ on the surface of the water

Get ‘sneaky’… Travel light and tread quietly and you’ll be amazed at how close you can get to carp.

Frank Warwick talks about using Enterprise imitation dog biscuits

When they are cruising just below the surface along the margins all it takes is a well positioned bait dangled below the rod tip to trip them up. Give it a try and you might just find yourself ‘hooked’.

Ben Ward fishing in tricky over cast conditions

’S R E B M E M


Bob Giordano - NY River Mirror

Bob Giordano - Big NY common North American Carp Angler


Columbia river 30+ by Da Sniper

Remember, if you want to contribute or get pictures into this magazine, please send them to:

FrankB - St Lawrence common

Francis North American Carp Angler


Jake Ayotte

Jake Ayotte

John Finney with a rare Colorado mirror

Junior Carp Tournament - Bait preparation

North American Carp Angler


Junior Carp Tournament

Junior Carp Tournament - Day 1 action

Junior Carp Tournament - Day 1 carp

Junior Carp Tournament

North American Carp Angler


Junior Carp Tournament - Good common

Junior Carp Tournament - Happy angler

Junior Carp Tournament

North American Carp Angler


Junior Carp Tournament - In action

Junior Carp Tournament - In the net

Junior Carp Tournament - Method mix

Junior Carp Tournament - Nice common

North American Carp Angler


Junior Carp Tournament - Release shot

Junior Carp Tournament - Scenic shot

Junior Carp Tournament - Spombing

North American Carp Angler


Junior Carp Tournament

Junior Carp Tournament - What it’s all about

Tom Perron

North American Carp Angler


North American Carp Angler


CARPTS – 2015 Connecticut Carp Open Questions with David Moore

NACA David, you have a history of running successful carp tournaments. Can you give us a few highlights of past tournaments? David Moore Certainly, I have run tournaments in quite a few locations but the highlights would include the first carp tournament on Town Lake in Austin. There was a $250,000 prize if a State record was caught and as this was achieved during the competition we had the largest payout ever in

the world for any carp competition. I also ran the first ever carp tournament on the Seneca River in Baldwinsville. This location has gone on to host two or more carp tournaments every year, since. Another highlight would be the St. Lawrence River World Championships, with winner being Tim Paisley & Steve Briggs in 2005 and Lee Jackson & Ian Chillcott in 2011.

2005 winner Steve Briggs and Tim Paisley NACA

David Moore

Why the Connecticut River?

The Connecticut River is the longest river in the New England area. It flows for roughly 410 miles

David Moore

and runs through four states, starting close to

The Connecticut River is an exceptional fish-

the Canadian border in New Hampshire and dis-

ery producing the Connecticut state record of 43

charging in Long Island Sound in Connecticut.

lbs. 12 oz. This combined with the enthusiasm of vision of Ted Carrier who sees potential for the

We know the river has big carp throughout all

sport of carp angling in central Connecticut led us

of its sections with 45lb fish being caught in New

to choose this venue.

Hampshire, Vermont and Massachusetts.

The Connecticut DEEP has very forward thinking leadership who support catch-and-release big money carp tournaments.

The current CT record is 43lb’s 12oz and we are sure there are much bigger fish swimming around in the areas we will be fishing. With 100 anglers


fishing for several days the possibility of catching

Can you tell us a little more about the venue?

a State record is very real. North American Carp Angler




We hear the prize money may go over $100,000?

Is the format a Big 4?

David Moore

David Moore

Yes, we have a regular prize pool and also an

Correct, the total weight of the 4 largest captures

additional prize for a State record. Due to the In-

will determine placement.

surance policy being in place we can only use public access fishing areas and so anyone want-


ing a crack at the $100k should probably sign up

Is this an individual or team event?

this year. Win or lose we’re planning on using some private areas in the future which will not let us use the $100k option as a payout.

David Moore You can fish either in this event but the choice of going solo or as a team must be declared prior to the draw. Once that choice is made it cannot be changed.

Big carp are prevalent through all the stretches of the CT River



What is the format of the peg draw?

How do we register?

David Moore

David Moore

CARPTS pioneered a format many years ago with a double draw where the anglers draw two pegs and choose between the two locations. CTS Draw format draw 2 pegs and choose which peg you prefer. If neither peg is wanted angler(s) can go to the back of the queue and try again choosing 2 pegs. After the second draw a peg must be chosen. On Tuesday noon a team that wants to claim an open peg may then forfeit their drawn peg. We will refer to this as the “Moving Day” rule. Angers have tournaments/2015-connecticut-carp-open/ NACA Is there any other information you would like to share? David Moore Yes, we would like to thank our sponsors and partners; Ted & Sally Carrier, Cabela’s, Big Carp Tackle, Saxon, Nash Tackle, CT DEEP and Riverfront Recapture

until Wednesday noon to declare they’re moving and notify us of a peg change. Open pegs may be chosen on a first come first serve basis. NACA Can you give us a break down of the total prize pool? David Moore Absolutely. The main prize pool will be: Big Fish Winner – $3500 Big 4 Winner- $3500 Big 4 Second Place $2000 Big 4 Third Place – $1000 Big Mirror $500 Daily Big Fish $500 Captured 2pm to 2pm each day (10am to 2pm Tuesday Day 1) Total Guaranteed Prize pool $12,500 $100,000 for state record - current record 43lbs. 12 oz. by Michael Hudack

North American Carp Angler


This fish was worth $250,000

We thank our sponsors for all the donations towards events. They always add that extra bit of spice to any event. We ask that you support the Vendors listed below. The more we support them, the more they can support us.

Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.