Cool Morning Smallies & Hot Afternoon Carp

by | Jul 27, 2020 | fly fishing for bass

trout-bumWe had an incredible stargazing night.  It’s so remote out here on the Lower Snake River of Idaho the night was inky dark.  Boots Allen, Erik Moncada and I could just barely see the comet Neowise but I’ll doubt it was visible with the naked eye anywhere else.  The night blended right into early morning.  This is what I love about camping in the summertime.  Soon I was boiling water to French press us coffee.  Erik put together a delicious breakfast out of nowhere.  Not doubt he loves the front of the boat!


Jeff-Currier-bass-on-flyThe main theme of this week’s trip is smallmouth bass.  This has already been a fine summer of smallie fishing for me.  June was unbelievable.  I tied on a secret Patrick Delaney Clouser.  Pat always delivers me a few special flies at the Denver Show in January that I’m not allowed to disclose.  I’m not sure the fly mattered much as all three of us caught a bunch of smallies.  But, there’s no doubt that Pat’s fly did coax this beast off the edge of the rocky shoal we were fishing.


We easily caught 25 smallies before 9 AM.  By then we expected to be struggling to maneuver the drift boat in wind.  But it was dead calm and hotter than hot.  Smallies, like most fish, hate hot sun and calm water.  The bite was over and we had 14 hours of fishing left.  Thank god for heat loving carp!


flyfishing-carpWe returned to camp to stock up on beers and snacks then motored across the river and back up to the carp flat.  The carp were waiting as were heaps of cattle.  The cows were fighting their way to the shoreline for a drink. Cattle fences only allow them to reach the water in one small spot.  It was a show to say the least that filled the air with moos loud enough to be heard for miles.


tailing-carpThe carp didn’t care and there were tails everywhere.  But they seemed to remember the pestering they met last night.  For two hours we changed flies repeatedly but couldn’t touch a single one.  What was so amazing is that at one point over a hundred tails protruded!


common-carpAt last Erik nailed one.  It was a fat-boy common carp.  Back on my home carp waters of Blackfoot Reservoir the commons are rare so its nice to catch a few while in this part of Idaho.  We shot some photos and released it back.


Boots-AllenBoots did it again.  He took Eriks place and used Eriks rod and had a carp in no time.  It was a miracle he landed this fish because it ran directly through an acre of thick weed bed and out the other side.  I was rowing and we chased it down.  It was yet another nice common.


squirmy-worm-flyI got my ass handed to me on the carp flat.  We were there until 4 PM.  I hooked one that I lost but I suspect it was fowl hooked.  Then I had the luck of being able to sight fish a few cruisers but not a one would eat for me.  Not even the dirtiest of flies I’ve ever fished, the Squirmy Worm, drew a strike!


living-the-dreamWe returned to camp late afternoon and had a feast of steak and fresh squash and zucchini.  We sipped a couple brews then took a nap.  We had our sights on chasing the surface cruising carp again at dusk.


Gillford-springsWhile we relaxed our plans were hindered.  By 7 PM we had 25 mph winds and there was no way we were tackling these waters in a small drift boat.  There were plenty of clouds as well and distant storms approaching.  Instead we packed up camp and went to another section of the Snake Boots and I fished last year.  Fishing here was in our plans anyhow so now we’ll wake up here and be ready for tomorrow.


Jeff Currier Global Fly Fishing


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I started fly fishing at age 7 in the lakes and ponds of New England cutting my teeth on various sunfish, bass, crappie and stocked trout. I went to Northland College in Ashland, Wisconsin, where I graduated with a Naturalist Degree while I discovered new fishing opportunities for pike, muskellunge, walleyes and various salmonids found in Lake Superior and its tributaries.

From there I headed west to work a few years in the Yellowstone region to simply work as much as most people fish and fish as much as most people work. I did just that, only it lasted over 20 years working at the Jack Dennis Fly Shop in Jackson, WY where I departed in 2009. Now it’s time to work for "The Man", working for myself that is.

I pursue my love to paint fish, lecture on every aspect of fly fishing you can imagine and host a few trips to some of the most exotic places you can think of. My ultimate goal is to catch as many species of fish on fly possible from freshwater to saltwater, throughout the world. I presently have taken over 440 species from over 60 countries!