I had a few nights back at my buddy's lake-pond. There are five large (at least one very large) grass carp that live in there, and they are unwanted guests. Chris and I have been assigned the task of cutting the population down to 1-2. It's hard work, but someone has to do it! This past week, I drove out a few evenings to chum an area with corn and tomatoes, planning to fish it Thursday night.
Wednesday night, though, gave me enough time for 8 casts with the fixed TFO. I landed this one little bass and left. I left because it was getting too dark to see and too windy to hear or cast. The dark was getting so dark it starting creeping me out enough to cause me to give several quick, nervous glances over my shoulder at the woods which back up to the water. This place is in the middle of nowhere, so the dark is a real dark. No light pollution! After the bass, the wind really picked up a lot, a lot of weird noises started, and I just got plain scared. I packed up, gathered enough courage to take the time to take down my rod and reel, and piled into my car. Preparing to turn on my headlights, I was sure an Eastern Missouri Zombie or the like was about to be lit up staring right at me, but I was alone. I still locked my doors and didn't bother looking back as I reversed out of my little parking spot (I figured if there were something behind my car, it'd be in my best interest to kill or injure it since it probably had ill intentions for me). Short night, quick departure, fun time back on the TFO.
Thursday brought Carp Day. With corn flies, red globugs (for tomatoes) and 1x tippet on a 7wt and glass 8wt, Chris and I headed into the fray with polarized glasses and high spirits. We soon spotted a finner just off the dock, and I stalked up into casting position...threw my line and fell just short. "Good, didn't spook him; he's still there" I thought. I recast and had it set perfectly, I knew, for dropping the corn-bug rig just in front of him without going over and as I brought the rod forward in the cast anticipating the line unrolling in front of me, I felt a hard TUG behind me. Cedar tree. A damn healthy cedar that should have been a Christmas tree long ago held my dropper rig like it was saving the carp's life! I ended up breaking my whole rig off in the tree and immediately called Chris over to take the spot. He's significantly smarter than I am, so he didn't take the same spot, but a little closer and more open. It worked.
He saw the carp still out there and dropped a red globug close enough for a notice and later described the hit as a hard "UHHNGG!" Chris had a carp on, and he was ready for a fight.
Less than 2 seconds later, the carp was gone. The globug too. Even a section of the 1x tippet left. The carp ended up breaking it off at the start of a hard run and never looked back. Chris did, however, hook into another big fish that seemed to be carpish, looked carpish in the murky water, and fought carpish. It ended up being a channel cat, but it was probably the most exciting, torturing few minutes of the night.
LESSONS LEARNED: 1x tippet is not enough; glass 8wts really are tiring; globugs work for everything, everywhere; "dipping your fly in corn" is not a known euphemism but probably should be; carp are damn hard to catch.