Golden Bones in the smoke


Active Member
Labor Day weekend and the tide was out. Not sure why The Bureau and assorted others do this every year on Labor Day but at least the launches in Coulee City were functional - lots of boats on the reservoir. The smoke was about as hazy as I like for sight casting; the haze made looking some directions difficult.

Montana erratics and the old road

Carp have been hard to find probably because the shallows were just too warm even for golden bones. I was hoping that the cooling trend we've been enjoying would result in some fish moving back up onto the flats.

Strung up, clean line, fresh leader (10' to 10# Maxima Ultragreen).

I wanted something that theoretically wouldn't hang up in the rocks so this fly, wetted version, was crafted with lead eyes on top of the shank so the point would ride up - that much I got right. The lead eyes loved hanging up on rocks. So I decided to try the fly in mud. I much prefer stalking carp in clear water - rocky bottoms, but sometimes the fish are hard to spot and I end up spooking more of them than I get shots at. In mud, you can often sneak up on the "plume" and make a short cast or even dap the fly (Bill Marts talked about using his spey rod for this dapping technique).

Mud plumes! Actually, they're from me hastily wet wading out of the mud flat to try and land a fish that fell to the cast fly. I saw this fish tailing about 20 feet away, cast slightly beyond and pulled the fly towards me, let it drop and saw the fishes tail quickly change angles - was pretty sure he was on the fly (he was).

Carp can bend the heck out an 8 weight. No fish into backing today but close on two of the three I landed.

Ahrex NS172 # 2 - hook point up. All three carp were hooked in their upper lip. I debarbed the fly before tying it so removing the hook from the fish was easy.

Mirror, mirror on the flats..............

This fatty was feeding along a rocky shoreline. I cast about ten feet in front of him and let the fly sink then made a couple short strips. When carp go on attack mode, it can be very exciting (that is, if you like fishing for carp). This fish acted like he was afraid Mr. Bass would steal his snack, he must have moved eight feet to the fly. Maybe the new fly has some merit?

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