With TPWD's Trout Stocking occurring, I kept some trout to try Trout Amandine. Pulling out all the little bones is not something I like to do, nor do I do it well. Since I had never filleted a trout, Cody always does it for us, I found this video to be most helpful and left me with very little bones to remove from the filets. I would suggest advancing ahead to 1:21.
Filleting Trout Fin & Flounder Style
Fly Fishing for Chain Pickerel in East Texas--Rob Woodruff
We followed Rob Woodruff's advice in this on-line article. We visited Daingerfield SP where we had hits and catches. Next time, though, we'll hire Rob to guide us!
Chain Pickerel by Rob Woodruff
Fly Fishing for Carp on Lake Ray Roberts--Joel Hayes
The Metroplex's best carp flat is in Lake Lewisville, north shore where it crosses 380. If the wind is out of the south, it turns the flat in to a mudhole, so it needs to be fished when it's not windy and has been calm for about three days. For Lake Ray Roberts, some of the best flats are in Johnson Branch SP, just north of the swimming beaches and just north of the marina. Cedar Creek Reservoir, north-northeast shore holds some nice flats with lots of carp.
On the north side of Lake Ray Roberts--in the morning, carp spend a lot of time in three inches of water. Alligator weed are nursing grounds for carp, juvenile bass, and many other species, because the weeded area is full of snails and an abundance of food sources. Alligator weed’s cross section looks like okra. Use a topo map to find a shoreline with a very gentle gradient. If surrounding shoreline is gentle, you’ll find flats like those on the east side of Ray Roberts and Lake Benbrook. A softer bottom flat holds more insect species, than the harder packed sand. A difficult wading area due to sand and muck means a great area for carp.
As of today (7/11/11), Ray Roberts is 23 inches low. The north area is about 18” deep.
Find old road beds, because they are easy to wade with soft bar-ditches on each side, where carp are cruising along. Carp love windy points. They cruise back and forth in the breakers along the points. Ragweed grows at low water levels during the drought, but during the rainy seasons, the water fills up, and ragweed dies, but stalks remain, and carp like this terrain. Also, Willow, Button Bush heavily-tree lined shore means a Carp nursery exists. Button Bush act like Texas Mangroves.
|Hayes' Carp Fly Box|
Rubber legs and natural colors, you have a carp fly. Dragonfly nymphs and damsel fly nymphs (they swim in two inch bursts, so strip your fly in two inch bursts to make the fly look like real life). Natural colors, like olive, some weight (beadchain or x-small lead eyes), and not much flash, size 8 hook makes for an excellent fly. Bonefish Bitters in olive or amber are an excellent choice. When the wind is blowing out of the south, southwest, go get on the southwest side of the lake, because the winds are blowing the grasshoppers on to the water, and everything eats them. 5#/6# 8’ or 9’ rod with an 18” leader.
Found in a dissected Carp's belly: dragonflies, snails, grass, flowers, willow seeds & cottonwood seeds, clams & mussels, damsel flies, hexagenia (live on the bottom of a lake for 1 – 2 years, hunting at night, and when they hatch, every species, including Crappie, comes to the flats to eat them), grasshoppers . Bigger Carp are caught on the edge of the flat, earlier in the season--early to mid-May.
Imagine a volleyball on the carp’s nose. Fly must act naturally in the volleyball zone; too far in front or behind, Carp won’t take the fly. Fly has to go down and be in their sight-zone. Casts usually aren’t made longer than 30’. You will not feel the carp’s take. You’ll feel a hesitation in your fly retrieve, and a flash of its orange lips. Set the hook on the first lip flash. Avoid the strip-strike hook set, because that will pull the fly out of the Carp's mouth; instead, raise the rod and set the hook similar to a trout hook set. Also, on windy days, if possible, put the wind at your back, raise your rod and let the wind straighten out your line and leader, and lay the rod tip on the water. No fighting the wind on your cast and gives one of the softest presentations.
Odds 'n Ends
Carp can swim backwards. Average size caught around the Metroplex is 3.5 lbs. Carp fight more like redfish, than bonefish. Carp season begins around Mother’s Day and lasts through August. Get on the water at 9:00 (need a good sun angle) and fish until 18:00. Fish stay on the flat. If someone walks on that flat, the fish leave and won’t return until at least 8 hours elapse. Line color isn’t important. Use a trout leader—9 foot, 2X, fluorocarbon, because fluorocarbon sinks faster. Boat to different places, but wade fishing the flats perimeter is the key.