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Archive for the ‘Carp’ Category

Spring Time Bassin

Spring is just around the corner for all of us here in the South and I can hardly wait. Just thinking about getting out to do some bass fishing gets me super pumped up. I was cruising through some photos today and ran across a trip that a buddy and I took last Spring. We had been planning a Devil’s River trip for the past 6 months and when it unfortunately fell through, we decided to go test the waters of a beautiful river right in our backyard. The Brazos River happens to be that piece of water. Having heard so many good things about it from our customers we planned a three day float from the Hwy 16 bridge all the way down to Rochelle’s Canoe Rental.

via Spring Time Bassin – theflyphoto.com.

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Brent, Matt and I went out to the Brazos River below Possum Kingdom Dam on the 11th, and while we didn’t whack a ton of stripers as we had intended, we certainly had a good time walking through eye-high brush and watching carp fly by us in the shallower parts of the river. We couldn’t get shots off at them fast enough, unfortunately. Matt did bring both SLRs with him – one in an underwater housing, the other on the tripod. While we didn’t get to shoot any fish porn, we still had the opportunity to play a bit – see below for a few shots from the trip (ok, more than a few).

It was the first time there for any of us, and we definitely liked what we saw. Initially, my inner bug-geek went bonkers. We stepped down into a side channel, and within seconds a Baetis dun came floating by me. Not only that, but TONS of tiny Trico spinners were bouncing around above the surface, just like you’d see on the Missouri. Crazy for this time of year, but absolutely AWESOME for me to see. I’ll stop now before I get more carried away…..

The cooler weather that had rolled in over the last few days had likely knocked the fish down a bit, but Matt caught what initially looked like a Smallmouth, but was more likely a Spotted Bass, and I caught another guy not too dissimilar down stream. Definitely a new species for me, and that is always cool!

We moved downstream to where Rt. 16 crosses the Brazos as a wonderful stone arch bridge – georgeous architecture. We were able to peer down into the water below, and saw a 30+ pound carp swimming around, with 3 bass pushing 2-lb each in tow. Matt scooted down to the bank to take a shot, but he got a bit deep, and we lost our opportunity. Still, the spotting and watching was a blast….if Matt could only get his act together….. j/k

The highlight of the trip, without a doubt was our ‘streamside’ brunch while we listened to the Cowboys game on the old AM radio. A mantra I lived and died by while guiding was this, “You can’t control the fishing, but you sure can control what you’re eating!” It definitely paid off in spades as Matt (fresh off his cooking/guiding exploits in AK) and Brent put together a little burrito feast of scrambled eggs, breakfast sausage and brats. Solid win for the team, and I trip I will definitely repeat in the near future!

This was just one of the boxes we brought. We like flies. Photo by: Matt Jones

This was just one of the boxes we brought. We like flies. Photo by: Matt Jones

Brent and I walking in. No backpack, so the Fishpond Dakota had to suffice. Loaded for bear. Photo by: Matt Jones

Brent and I walking in. No backpack, so the Fishpond Dakota had to suffice. Loaded for bear. You can never have too many rods with you. Photo by: Matt Jones

Eye-high. Brent and I aren't kneeling. And we aren't that short. Photo by: Matt Jones

Eye-high. Brent and I aren't kneeling, and we aren't that short. We saw a slew of carp cruising by and one BIG bass that ignored us and Matt. Photo by: Matt Jones

Can you say "tip flex?" Photo by: Matt Jones

Can you say "tip flex?" Photo by: Matt Jones

Matt Jones fishing with Tricos threatening to carry him off. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Matt Jones fishing with Tricos threatening to carry him off. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Looking in the water. Also - I'm not THAT fat - I have 4 fly boxes stuffed in the pockets of my Cloudveil. I think Matt planned this angle. Skinny bas%&$d. Photo by: Matt Jones

Looking in the water. Also - I'm not THAT fat - I have 4 fly boxes stuffed in the pockets of my Cloudveil. I think Matt planned this angle. Skinny bas%&$d. Photo by: Matt Jones

Signs of life on the Brazos. Photo by: Matt Jones

Signs of life on the Brazos. Photo by: Matt Jones

Matt putting his experience to good use. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Matt putting his experience to good use. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

The amazing creation sprung from Brent's imagination. Photo by: Matt Jones

The amazing creation sprung from Brent's imagination. Photo by: Matt Jones

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Friend of the shop and carp-guru Joel Hays had a nice review of the new TFO Clouser rod series on his blog this week – click HERE to check it out!

The New TFO Clouser Series on Display at Tailwaters. Photo by: Shannon Drawe

The New TFO Clouser Series on Display at Tailwaters. Photo by: Shannon Drawe

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Had a bit too much going on yesterday between dogsitting and the CCA meeting at the shop, so I had to stay local to get my carp fix. Did a bit of searching / recon in and around the Park Cities, and found a spot that is probably recognizable to anyone who grew up in that area and wet a line as a kid:

A not-so-secret location in Highland Park. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

A not-so-secret location in Highland Park. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Apologies on the cell phone picture – Brent has the good camera in Alaska. Honey Girl did make the journey with me, and was amazing – didn’t jump in that stinky water even once. Maybe even SHE was scared of it. Instead she decided to sit and laugh at my frustrations:

"Ha-ha dad. You can't catch a cold." Photo by: Bart Larmouth

"Ha-ha dad. You can't catch a cold." Photo by: Bart Larmouth

And she would be correct. The carp were there (in droves), but I couldn’t buy one. I tried every ‘go to’ fly in the box, and they ran away from every one. Well, sauntered is probably a better description. They didn’t really spook and explode as you’d expect, just kinda moved off.  David’s suggestion of a bread fly might be a good idea…. I did however catch two bass over 1lb each (“stupid trash fish” according to Joel Hays), and the biggest frustration were the little bluegill (bream) that kept stealing my fly as it fluttered down to my real quarry. Ah well – it was a good time, and hopefully I’ll get it figured out before Evan goes down there an pulls them all out.

Stupid little bastards...... Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Silly little bastards...... Photo by: Bart Larmouth

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Here’s  a little photo essay from this past Sunday when Joel Hays took yours truly and our new ‘shop guy’ Evan carp fishing up on Ray Roberts (in the 100+ degree heat!). I made a point to get some macro shots of fish scale – with some results I hope y’all will like! Evan landed his first carp on a fly, and together we landed well over 30 fish. It was a great day on a section of the lake that only fishes when the weather is juuuuuuust right. If Joel hadn’t blindfolded us, I might be able to get there again……..

Evan Russell with his first carp on the fly! Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Evan Russell with his first carp on the fly! Photo by: Bart Larmouth

A view through the 'mangroves' on Ray Roberts. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Evan and Joel through the 'mangroves' on Ray Roberts. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Oh No! EVAN! Look out!!!! Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Oh No! EVAN! Look out!!!! Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Evan hooked up. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Evan hooked up. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Dark Scales. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Dark Scales. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Several of the fish had a handful of coppery-pink scales mixed in. Very cool. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

Several of the fish had a handful of coppery-pink scales mixed in. Very cool. Photo by: Bart Larmouth

A 'gimpy' fish I caught that had most likely tangled with an Osprey in his youth. His tail formed an 'S' when he swam. Strange but true! Photo by: Bart Larmouth

A 'gimpy' fish I caught that had most likely tangled with an Osprey in his youth. His tail formed an 'S' when he swam. Strange but true! Photo by: Bart Larmouth

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Ummm....... ew.

Ummm....... ew. Photo by: Joel Hays

If there was ever a picture that could be described as “Fish Porn,” this one is it. Friend of the shop Joel Hays sent us this LOVELY picture of a Cyprinus Carpio (Common Carp) caught recently on a new fly that Joel has been working diligently on – the Coyote Carp fly. Check out his blog for some more info. It seems that the carp are up on the flats for a bit of pre-spawn feeding, and Joel had a great day chasing them around, and hopefully we’ll be able to join him soon!

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