By Paul Russell, Guide Carp Fishing new york www.carpfishingny.com
Hi folks! I’m Paul Russell, professional carp angler and owner of Carp Fishing New York Guide Service. You can find me on Facebook at Carp Fishing New York, on Instagram at carp_fishing_NY and my website at www.carpfishingny.com. I love to catch big fish and there is no limit to the size of the fish I want to catch; the bigger, the better. When I’m fishing in my boat in the ocean it’s all about sharks and tuna but when I’m fishing back home in the freshwater, I leave my boat at home. Because I want to be on the bank fishing for one of the largest hardest fighting freshwater fish there is, the carp.
So how did I get into carp? These fish always fascinated me, but they were also considered kinda taboo. When bass fishing, I would see 20 pounders cruising the shallows, I wanted to catch one so badly, but they would never bite. I finally got sick of it and decided to do something about it. I was going to learn how to catch these fish once and for all. I did a ton of research on the fish and attended seminars to learn as much as I could. After all of the time and energy I put into learning, it was time to test out my new found knowledge. I fished very simple, starting out with just the basics, nothing too fancy and I was rewarded with some very nice carp. I was so amazed at the power the fish had, they took off like big redfish or striped bass, wow! I knew that this fish was made for me; size, strength, speed and smart, this fish had it all and no one was fishing for them around Central New York. It was an untapped resource and it was all mine, I was giddy with excitement. Today, I’m a professional carp angler and guide. My affinity and passion for the sport has never wavered.
We have 2 major tournaments on the Seneca River every year held by Wild Carp Club. They have been doing this since 2010. The Wild Carp Classic is in the spring and The Ed French Open is in the fall. These tournaments are 65 consecutive hours and are very demanding. They are like an endurance competition and a fishing tournament all wrapped up in one. The format is you draw a peg, which is a small section of the river, and that’s where you fish for the whole 65 hours. You get up to 3 guys on a team. The spring Classic is a big 10 tournament and the fall open is a big 6 meaning only your biggest 10 or biggest 6 count consecutively. All other fish must be let go. Carp bite both night and day but the night bites are some of the hottest bites, so there is not a lot of sleeping. 2010 was the year I competed in my first tournament. My partner Sean Lehrer and I took first place and caught the biggest fish in the Wild Carp Companies Fall Qualifier. Today, Sean is a member of the USA Carp Fishing Squad. They fish the World Championships in Europe every year. In 2014, I placed 3rd in the Wild Carp Classic and 4th in the Ed French open with the help of my partners Joe Rinaldo and Jason Bernhardt. This fall I placed second in the Ed French Open and we also placed 3rd in the big fish category with the help of my partners Joe Rinaldo and Steve Bailey. These style tournaments draw some of the best anglers from around the Country and Europe. My teammates and I are very proud of our accomplishments amongst a field of such great carp anglers. We would not have had such top finishes without the help of our two sponsors. Marble Island Bait in Baldwinsville was a huge help to us. Adam Case, the owner knows how involved it can be organizing for a big carp tournament and came through every time for us. Adam has a ton of fishing knowledge for various species including carp. He carries a variety of bait and tackle and can put you on some carp right across the street from his shop. Carp Maxx Baits was another huge help for us. We would have never caught the quality of fish that we caught in the tournaments without them.
So if you never have caught a carp before and want to give it a try, I will give you a few tips. Get a medium heavy rod or whatever you got that’s close enough. Then match it with a reel with at least 12 pound test or 20 pound braid line and a smooth drag. You’re going to need a 1 to 3 ounce sliding sinker and a good strong hook, not too big, size 4 is a good start. Run the sinker on your mainline to a barrel swivel on the other end of the swivel run, a 6 to 8 inch braid leader to the hook. You can bait the hook with corn or learn how to tie a hair rig. The hair rig is easy to tie and will catch you more fish. For bait, use boiled feed corn or Carp Maxx boilies. Feed corn is cheap and can be bought at any feed store or tractor supply. Just boil up a bunch use it for baiting a spot where you know there’s a bunch of carp and fish it the next day. Also, learning how to make pack bait is very important. It’s another bait you use with the hook bait. Once you bait the hook, you pack the pack bait around the sinker with the hook bait dangling below it. Then just cast the whole thing out there. It can be pretty heavy, that’s what the stiff rod is for. The pack bait will breakdown in the water and displace itself around the hook bait. Throwing pack balls into your fishing area is also a great way to bait the fish. But nothing is better than baiting and fishing with boilies, but you need to learn the hair rig to use boilies so do your research and catch some carp. I will give you a simple pack bait recipe to get you started.
1 42 ounce can of old fashion oats or rolled oats
1 can of cream corn
1 can of drained whole kernel corn
1 Box of strawberry jello
2 Tbsp of kosher salt
Mix the whole thing in a 5 gallon pail and put the lid on. Let it sit for about 20 min. If it starts to dry out add a little more cream corn or use river water or lake water. For the optimal way to learn carp nuisances, book a trip with me at Carp Fishing NY www.carpfishingny.com.