Saturday, July 11, 2015

July 11, 2015 - Mountain Run Lake

Went over to Mountain Run Lake, Put in at about 6:30. PM of course.  What sort of normal human is up and awake and aware at 6:30 AM?  Freaks, that's who.  Since I'm not a freak, readers should assume when I refer to putting in, I'm referring to PM in all cases, and thus henceforth it will be unnecessary for me to specify.

Anyway, I put in at 6:30, paddled around, casting a small black popping bug, and caught a number of sunfish of various species, including this green sunfish.  The picture doesn't give him justice, the yellow-orange dithered fins and the iridescent cerulean (vocabulary!) stripes really making for an attractive fish, even if he was small and mundane in every other way.

But if this was a trip where all I caught were bluegills, what kind of bullshit is that?  Glad you asked, because I caught a carp!

Casting my small blag popping bug, on the sneaky Pete model, up near the shrubbery, where there were surely bluegills to be found, I saw a cavernous maw open up, and take in my bug!  Yee Haw, I set the hook and had a carp on the line!

Carp, for you fishing-uninitiated, are the red-headed stepchildren of the Pisces order, somewhat universally reviled among fishermen as trash, "rough" fish, unworthy of pursuit and subject to universal disdain,  But shit, when you have a  24 inch monster on the line who fights like a child unwilling to go out into the snow with boots on (preferring to go without boots), does their loathsome reputation matter?  Hell no!

I battled this leviathan for 15 minutes, and finally brought him to the boat.  It occurred to me that I should have put a fighting butt on my rod.  It also occurred to me that I should have used a stronger tippet than 4 lb test mono.

Anyway, got him in the boat, then it occurs to me, what the hell do I do with him?  I caught a bigger carp last year, or the year before, and threw him back, but I only had 4 bluegill on the stringer, so I kept him.

A carp, subdued:

Subdued and ready to be cleaned:

1/6 of a carp, cleaned and cut into chunks:
I called my father with reports of my success, similar to how I imagine a winning politician does when he sweeps the opponent, and he read to me a forum post that, I have to admit, was a little discouraging:


Anyway, for lunch of July 12, 2015, I ate carp.

I coated the carp pieces in batter, and fried them in oil.  They looked delicious, removed from the horrific lighting of the CFL bulb in my kitchen:

The taste?  It tasted like fried fish, but if I hadn't cooked it myself, it might as well have been fried flounder or tilapia or cod; or for all I know, fried chicken or just lumps of batter.  Which is to say, it tasted like fried flour and didn't cause retching. There were bones that were annoying.

Of course, I still have 5/6 of the carp to go until I'm done, so I might try for dinner tonight sauteed in butter or broiled with salt and pepper.  I even offered over the telephone to freeze some and bring it home to my parents, but they seemed less than totally enthused over the possibility.

But even if carp aren't to be commended as table fare, they put up a fight, for sure.

The Acute Angler, signing out.

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