Torn – Henry’s Fork or Fly Fish for Carp?

by | Jul 11, 2019 | fly fishing for carp

fly-fishing-for-carpCall us insane but when I sat out at the Knotty Pine last night with friends Tim Brune and Milan Germishuizen debating on whether to go to the Henry’s Fork or chase mirror carp, we all agreed let’s go fly fish for carp.  The reason is, we all needed solitude.  It’s so freaking busy here in our neck of the woods now with visitors it’s crazy.  From the roads to the rivers it’s a crowd, so Blackfoot Reservoir was undoubtedly our escape.

 

mirror-carpWe camped last night arriving at Blackfoot around 7 PM.  We made a few sloppy casts at some tailing carp on our drive along the lake to our camping spot but the casts were only warmups.  Blackfoot carp are finicky so drive-byes don’t generally result in success.

 

Jeff-Currier-IdahoThis was my first good campfire on my home waters since the Carp Tourney in June.  It was refreshing to kick back and enjoy the sunset.  We ate some brats then I picked up a fantastic night sleep in the back of the Exploder.

 

Currier-YetiAt 6 AM it was already hot.  I made coffee for the guys and we listened to the Western grebes.  We observed several big schools of carp mulling in the shallows waking and splashing around.  To me they didn’t appear like happy feeders so I watched Brune and Milan chase them.  As expected, they couldn’t get one to rush a fly.

 

carp-on-flyThe spot we camped was new for us.  We dabbled here during the tourney and it looked like a good summer spot but today it was too shallow and murky.  Milan is here visiting from South Africa so there wasn’t time to waste.  We moved to where we often find happy feeding carp.

 

blackfoot-reservoirThe carp were there, although they didn’t come easy.  Brune, Milan and I worked heaps of carp but they had similar attitude towards eating as the ones earlier this morning.  But then we found a few undoubtedly feeding and Milan hooked up first.

 

Milan-GermishuizenBrune and I became friends with Milan because he works with our pals of FlyCastaway and he is one of the top guides at St. Brandon’s Atoll for flats fishing for huge bonefish and yellow permit.  Tim and I are fortunate to have fished St. Brandon’s a few times.  Milan visited last summer also and we took him here to Blackfoot then.  I guess he enjoyed it here likely because fly fishing for carp is sight fishing the flats.  Here he is again with a beauty!

 

After clicking the shots of Milan I had my eye on a carp of immense proportions.  This fish wasn’t long but pushed water around like nothing as he glided from weeds to weeds.  He looked more like a black drum from Louisiana than a carp.  When he tailed the base of his tail was so fat he looked weird.  I had to get him and went after him with such caution it was like today was my last day.

 

Jeff-Currier-scientific-anglersI was using a fancy crayfish pattern tied by a friend.  I’m sworn to secrecy on this fly and must admit it works so well I don’t blame him.  I stalked this fish down the bank about ten minutes when he created a huge mud from rooting around on bottom looking for food.  I dropped my fly in discolored water and stripped.  The mirror carp gobbled it up!

 

currier-huge-carpIt was a heck of a fight.  I endured a long run into the backing and survived the weight and drag of weeds stuck to my fly line.  But in the end, my 6-weight Winston Air powered the fish to me.  It doesn’t hurt that my 0X is strong.  This is one of the stoutest mirror carp I’ve ever seen with a hump on his forehead like the Napoleon wrasse I caught in December!

 

There were fish all around us and these were feeders.  But carp are challenging and it’s in fact why I’m addicted to them.  They took hard looks at our flies and refused.  They spooked.  We missed a couple subtle eats.  They were tough.  Lucky for me and Milan, we at least weren’t getting skunked.  But Brune was losing his cool.

 

Tim-Brune-carp

Tim chases permit around the world like no other.  He’s been more than aggravated by a fish before.  He sucked his frustration up and continued and sure enough the silence was eventually broken with, “Finally!  You weren’t refusing it that time were you!”

 

Tim-Brune-CarpBrune was on and I watched the fight from a few hundred feet way.  By the run, the bend in his rod and Tim’s battle stance, this was a big fish.  I reeled in and wandered over with my camera.

 

Like me, Brune also uses a 6-weight and 0X tippet.  Go any lower in tippet and the weeds will get you every time.  For Tim all it was now was to be patient.  He’d been patient all day so why not now.  After nearly ten minutes he slid the beast to the shallows.  The stunner weighed at 26lbs!

 

We all ended with one mirror carp.  That may not sound like much but it’s a perfect fly fishing for carp day.  There are many days where three anglers can be skunked from the puzzling fish.  But we weren’t and when the light for sight fishing diminished around 4:30 we packed it up for the long but beautiful drive back to Victor.

 

fly-box-artI went ten days before wetting a line since returning from Canada.  That’s only because I had to catch up on a million things.  I’ve been gone a lot this year.  Unfortunately I’m still catching up.  Lucky for me it’s mostly art projects.  I thoroughly enjoy my art and will post some of my work as I go.  Here’s a smallie crushing a streamer I did on a Cliff Box on Monday.  If you too have been looking for piece of “Currier” artwork this is a great time to contact me!

 

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!

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