The Carp - sometimes called over-sized goldfish, poor-man's trout, or mud rollers - is often considered a "trash fish" by many anglers and seldom respected, especially here in the USA. However many parts of Europe and other continents consider the carp as a highly prized game fish. Anybody that has hooked into one of these beasts on light line can tell you that bringing one to shore is no easy task. And when the fishing is slow for other species, nothing brightens the day more than a fat carp peeling line off of your reel.
Carp are generally line and weight shy so the lightest lines and weights should be used when fishing for them. Light action rods designed for trout or panfish are ideal for carp fishing - even for specimens in excess of 20 pounds. A longer 6-7 foot rod will help with casting a light offering further, although most carp are caught very close to shore so it's not really necessary. I use 2-4 pound test line only. You can probably use 6 pound test if you're really worried about losing them but you probably won't get as many bites.
The most important part of carp fishing is definately the bait. Carp are primarily vegetarians and feed on a variety of aquatic plants. The best all-around bait for carp is probably whole kernal corn in the can. Anglers should note that fishing with corn is legal for use as bait on California, however "chumming" (throwing corn into the water without hook attatched) is illegal. Another good bait is doughball mixtures (often corn-enhanced) and good old fashioned bread. Carp are often caught on a variety of other baits and even flies but if you're going to specifically target them, the corn and doughballs are hard to beat.
Carp Bait Recipes:
carp doe bait
Posted by Sea Shepard on August 10, 2000 at 23:31:39:
Mix wheaties and strawberry jello in a bowl. Add water untill you have a thick paste(consistancy of catfish dough bait) let set for at least 5 hours make a nice size ball that covers entire treble hook depending on wind use a sufficent sinker to tight line off bottom. use a 2 to 3 foot leader. you can also use floats. good luck and tight lines Jason
Carp dough-bait? answered
Posted by steve a. on August 12, 2000 at 11:06:01:
Here is how you make "World Class" Dough Bait:
Ingredients: 1-cup water
1-cup yellow cornmeal
1/4-cup pancake syrup
1-tablespoon peanut butter
1-cup white flour
1)bring water to a boil,
2)pour cornmeal in a mixing bowl,
3)add boiling water and syrup,
4)mix with large spoon until all liquid is absorbed,
5)allow to sit, covered, for half an hour,
6)mix in peanut butter and flour.
Now knead the mixture until you have a thick, tight dough. This can be done by hand or in a bread mixer. Add a little more flour, if needed, to make the dough super thick and dry, like catfish dough-bait. It should be a little sticky from the syrup, but, not because it is wet. The syrup helps make it water-proof. I put baseball size balls into baggies and freeze them until I go fishing. To fish with dough-bait, the way the PRO's do; put a small, marble size ball on a standard #6 snelled hook. Yes, you can use a small treble-hook, but, you don't need to, this is just like fishing with Powerbait, except you are using a single hook. Rig your line any way you like, (a heavy slip-sinker is what I use, just like for Trout), now using a heavy swivel-snap, clip on three hooks, each with a short, 6 inch leader. Bait each hook and cast. If you see the dough-bait fall off the hook, add more dry cornmeal, (take some dry cornmeal with you), the dough-bait should stay on the hook with no problem. The bait is too heavy to float, so it sinks to the bottom, that is where you want it. Check your bait every fifteen minutes or after every missed hit. Set your drag "tight". Many guys tie a bungie or safety-line to the pole handle, so they don't lose their rig. When a Carp hits, he slams it ! Good Luck !
If the conditions allow it, my favorite technique for carp fishing is "fly-line" the bait without any weight. With a single kernal of corn, a #12 or 14 salmon egg hook and 2-pound test I can usually cast around 20 feet which most of the time is too far out for carp anyway. However if there is a current as in river fishing or if they are feeding further off the bank, a small sliding egg sinker and swivel may be necessary. Look for carp in shallow water where the aquatic vegetation is thick. Cast your bait out and set your rod in a good holder with the bail open. If you're fishing close to shore, don't stand right next to your rod waiting for a bite. Carp can see you from 15 feet out and spook easily. I will usually set my rod down and watch my line from a chair a small distance away. As soon as I see my line move, I will creep up to the rod and set the hook. Bingo! the fight is on.
"Topwater" Carp fishing
Definately the the most exciting technique. Loosly roll bread balls onto your hook and "float" them on top of the water. This usually works well where there is a high concentration of feeding carp like on the Colorado River. Sometimes you can even be selective and pull your bait away from that 2-pounder to allow that 10-pounder to grab it!
Bow and Arrow Carp Fishing
I have never tried this but seen others do it and it looks like fun. This is a special bow and arrow rig with a closed-faced spinning reel attatched to the bow. It is usually done from a boat over shallow flats where carp are known to congregate.
In conclusion, I would like to give the carp it's proper credit due for fast becoming a popular game fish here in California and many other states in the US. There's been plenty of times when the trout, cats or stripers were not biting and I will break out the old "golden nuggets" and soon be bendo with drag screaming fun. Others would come up to me to see what I was doing and I would give them a handfull of corn and soon they too would become "bendo" and hooked on carp fishing for life!
CARP 101 (one man's junk is : another man's treasure) by Byte 247
Hello fellow carp fisher...
Yes, Here's the low down.
You need: 1 can of sweet corn any brand. I personally use jolly green giants pull top, it costs 75cent and is great- just pull the top and your ready to slay the carp.
I personally like to battle with my lightest equipment:(2) 3ft kencor rods, shimano 1000 w/ 2lb test. The major difference between a 10lb+ carp and a bass or trout of the same weight class is the lack of sharp teeth... (one less thing to break you off
Go to an area where the ducks are frequently fed as some of the morsels are "lost" to the bottom of the lake bed (the carp know this to be place to feed) ... and start "feeding" the ducks with some of your corn Get it chum?
Wait quietly for about 10-30 minutes for some line activity: at this point you will have put an size 18 treble with 2 or 3 kernels to the hook-flylined.
You needn't cast very far: typically you can get as far as 1/32 trout jig distance which is more than plenty of distance.
Time of day will dictate how close the carp will come to you. They spook very easily. I usually fish after work (4:00pm to 6:00pm) till too dark to see
The last thing to be sure is expect to break off some, and miss strikes from lots, with the awesome surge of energy and longest runs of any freshwater "game fish" out there. period.