Posts Tagged ‘carp’

September 1 Fishing

September 1, 2019

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One of Six Carp Landed this Morning

That man who does not believe that each day contains an earlier, more sacred, and auroral hour than he has yet profaned, has despaired of life, and is pursuing a descending and darkening way. After a partial cessation of his sensuous life, the soul of man, or its organs rather, are reinvigorated each day, and his Genius tries gain what noble life it can make. All memorable events, I should say, transpire in morning time and in a morning atmosphere.

Henry David Thoreau, Walden

At 7:30 this morning, though the sun was already bright, Lubbock was cool and breezy, and an inspiration seized me to visit the neighborhood park to try fishing the playa. More than 19,000 of these populate the Texas High Plains, making this region the highest density of playas in North America. Taking a lawn chair and a Stanley of coffee, I set up under a shade tree and tried to figure a way to rig my ultra-light Pflueger combo for carp.

I selected a clear casting bubble purchased recently in Colorado, filled it with water from my bottle, and attached to the snap swivel about 18” of 5x tippet. Baiting a size 12 treble hook with three kernels of corn, I decided to forego a split-shot sinker to see how things worked with the line drifting freely apart from the bubble.

Casting out about six feet from the bank, I took my seat, poured my first cup of coffee and opened Walden to read and feel the timeless words from Thoreau’s spirit. I only managed a couple of sentences before the sound of a large splash jerked my attention to its source, and finding no bubble in sight, I hauled back on my rod and felt something heavy. A few moments later, I landed only the second carp I have ever caught, and it was twice the size of the one I caught about thirty years ago.

His colors were spectacular in the morning sun. Throwing him back in the water, I re-baited and tossed my line again to the same spot. By the time I decided to pack up, five more carp had been landed, and two others broke my line. The largest one landed was by far the most fun, and well worth recording:

20190901_085719332811489966246980.jpgThe Largest of the Morning’s Haul

Casting out about ten feet further from shore, I sat in the shade and by this time decided that I was not going to be able to read from Thoreau. However, after five minutes passed with nothing happening, I poured my second cup of coffee, and as I was sipping it, I noticed a dark speck in the water, about ten feet beyond the bubble. Thinking it was a turtle, I continued watching it slowly moving to one side, then the other, and then the point of a tail broke the surface. Soon the entire tail emerged, and the span of it made my pulse quicken. I had observed “tailing” by redfish before, while fly fishing the Texas Laguna Madre, but at these Lubbock city park waters, I had not seen such activity from the carp. What I had always observed while walking along the shores were the high places of the carps’ backs poking up out of the shallows within a foot of the banks.

As I continued to watch, the tail stayed above the water, and slowly the carp rose nearer the surface till I could see his entire length. Magnificent! Closer and closer he moved toward my bubble as I held my breath. Then he submerged out of sight. At that moment, two large grackles strolled to the water’s edge and stared quietly at my bubble, which now was rotating slowly on it axis. Then it drifted slowly to the right, then back left. For about thirty seconds I continued watching, and then suddenly it was out of sight! It took considerable time to haul this one to shore, as I was uncertain how well the 5x leader would hold.

As the morning continued to unfold, I felt the thrill of a Thoreau-kind-of-a-morning. When the flock of Canada Geese flew over my head and landed on the point in front of me, I welcomed the pleasant company.

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Canada Geese on the Playa

Thoreau felt embraced by the wildlife that surrounded him in Walden woods, and though I was in a west Texas neighborhood, I saw only one human being, walking a dog about the park. Aside from that I only watched and listened to Canada Geese, Grackles, Robins, Mourning Doves and Mallard Ducks in my vicnity. I tried to be a good, quiet neighbor in their midst.

Thanks for sharing this beautiful morning with me.

 

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