Carp: A Love Story – Flathead Bacon

The rom con franchise that represents my life as a fly hunter may have finally jumped on the shark.

The first part of the Wind Knot cinematic universe, “The Desire for Dry Flies”, was well received. People can relate to the story of a city boy who finds love catching fly trout in the wild.

“Lippin’ Largemouth,” was an obvious sequel.

However, like many franchises, the well of new ideas quickly ran out. ‘Softy for Sharks,’ had its endorphin-producing moments, but really, how long does it make sense to keep staring hooks out of the mouths of toothy marine predators just to release them?

Seems like a good way to lose a number.

Things started to go awry with Mermaid Weddings: Pull the Bottom for Hooks. By the time “Directing for Romance: Searching for Love in a 13-Foot Self-Disciple” was completed, there was talk of it going straight into the video.

Which brings me to the Wind Knot shark jump, or more precisely, the carp moment jump. Carp fishing with flies has become an all-encompassing obsession.

The other day I was fishing in my favorite pit lake, shooting an olive lobster pattern along the bottom when two fish moved for it: a 3-pound largemouth and a much larger carp. Of course, the bass won, and unfortunately, I was almost pissed off when he sniffed the fly and had to turn it on to release it.

This nested behavior is not unusual. I had another large carp apparently chasing my fly the other day, only to watch a 4-inch blue gill race in the style of my lobster and its mouth. I love blogging. Fish the size of a salad plate is a shout-out, especially on my fly rod with three weights. However, when I throw in my 8′, the palm-sized panorama that cuts my carp away from carp is annoying. The gill managed to tie itself up. I released him, but the carp disappeared and got angry.

The discomfort of fishing is not a healthy condition. In fact, it may be a sign that you are not actually hunting, but have instead joined a cult.

I learned this about carps: they are the most delicate, picky fish I have ever targeted. I put the flies near the carp feed about 25 feet away, only to have them afraid of my left hand’s gentle movement to strip the slack from the line. Sometimes trout may notice movement on the bank, but if they freeze, they seem to convince themselves that you are a tree and go back to feeding.

Not carb. I’m sure these fish recognize the human form. No matter how long you stay, once they make you, they go.

Then, after two weeks of frustration, it happened. I found a bunch of aggressive tail feeders. Instead of fancy carp flies, I tied them up on a shiny green woolly trifle. As I petted him along the bottom, I watched the carp fin decisively toward the fly and inhaled it. I undress and put the hook and the game is on.

It took 10 minutes for the brute to land. Not only has it lasted any of the epic carp rides known to expose the spool, but it also had its way with me for most of that fight. In the end, I worked close enough to the net, and after a couple of quick pictures, the 22 inch was back in the lake.

I wish I could report that I’ve uncovered some big mystery about carp with that fish and have been heavy on carp ever since, but it turns out that Lake #2 was just as elusive as #1. My favorite lake doesn’t help. Carp are often chased in dirty and silty waters which makes them more accessible and less fearful. When I fish, the water is crystal clear.

Still, one down, there is a lot to follow. This carp thing is addicting.

Rob Breeding’s website is

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