In the summer, when the streets are flowing with tourists and every easily accessible “famous” water is packed with people, what do the locals do? More often than not we sit around over a couple beers and bitch about it, but when the fishing bug bites it bites hard. Some days you just have to get out there, crowds and people be damned. August is kind of a shitty month for trout fishing, much to the chagrin of the swarms of people who travel here and don’t know any better. When the weather is hot and the rivers are low, it’s time to chase carp.
Last week I was afforded the opportunity to fish with Shane and his old fishing buddy, Brian. Brian, who used to live out here, was visiting from New Jersey and had one day away from the family to spend chasing fish. Of all the places he could have picked, of all the scenic trout streams he could have gone to, he told Shane he wanted to fish for carp. Seeing as how I had the day off I well I tagged along.
After a couple of semi frustrating trips up there earlier in the year, we finally hit it right. Carp were thick. The biggest school of them we saw had to number over 100 fish. Some big ones too. We were all offered many shots at many fish. But of the three of us, all pretty talented anglers if I do say so myself, guess who was the only one to catch fish. Brian. The out of stater showed up both of us locals pretty badly, four fish to none.
To be truthful, I had my chance. Twice. The first came when a carp feeding off the surface sucked down a hopper pattern, and I got so excited watching him come up to it that when he finally ate it I set the hook hard enough you would think I was tarpon fishing. One brief moment of weight on the end and then POP goes the knot. Shit. I did the same damn thing when another one ate a streamer a few hours later. Oh well.
It was a good day, as they often are. Got a chance to fish with some pretty cool guys, learn a little bit more about a fish I know nothing about, and spend a day out in Montana. You can’t ask for more than that.