Monday Morning – Clooping Carp and Broken Marble Jars

| December 29, 2014

clooping carp fly fishing for carp oklahoma trout #flyfishing texasflyfishing #carponfly

Welcome to wherever you arrived this fine morning. It’s fine mostly because we’re alive to celebrate the day, not because anything so fine as fish on a fly is happening anywhere nearby (here anyway).

Here is Houston, Texas, this Monday morning, and after two straight days of rain, and the beginnings of a third today … it’s looking more and more like a washout this holiday as well. Actually, when I say “as well”: The last trip to Houston at Thanksgiving wasn’t a “wash out” so much as it was a barf out – three straight days sick as a dog, at the end finally gathering just enough energy to load up, get behind the wheel and head back home a complete (fishing) loss.

While we have one of those constant rains here, I hear the weather has finally turned, in North Texas, to something more like winter we recognize. Unfortunately, for another year, it doesn’t include the precipitation we expect from decades past. The lakes continue to drop when they used to catch a breather this time of year.

Once the party is over here in Houston, I’ve been enlisted to replace my 95-year-old Grandmother at her home in Weslaco, Texas – about an 800-mile turn-and-burn round trip. There’ll probably be a crossover to Mexico, as long as we’re in the Borderland, why not?

It’d be nice to hear from readers about what Santa put in their fly fishing bag last week. There were plenty of gift ideas that went unmentioned here, but I did manage to get that first part of the Fly Fishing Music Top 10 out, and CD’s make great gifts and long lasting New Year’s party favors. The top five of the ten will make their way out sometime before the New Year 2015, with the usual minimal fanfare and no early warning.


Whether it’s rain or cold, Texas is fully involved in the cold weather fly fishing patterns nowadays. So let’s go to OKLAHOMA. Last week’s trip to the Blue River was productive, but  in talking to one of the guys working there – we agreed the fish are a bit finicky and hard to come by (more like normal trout fishing!). He said they’ve been that way since the first cold snap, and these waves of cold and wet are keeping them unsettled (Blue River catch-and-release). That said, out of the fish I caught, there was a fish or two that were especially nice. I’ll have to get back to another machine to do the edit on that short video.


After last week’s video report, I did hear from a young fly fisher (among many others) back in town from boarding school, and through a series of text messages he was telling me about catching carp on the ice in Idaho. That got my attention. Any carp I’ve caught here in the winter months have been very similar to catching sunken logs.

Continue reading about clooping carp and spiritual fly fishing …

[ppw id=”88913076″ description=”Carp Bite & Finding out who Friends Are” price=”.10″]

Later in the holidays, late Sunday night actually, he texted to let me know he’d found and caught “clooping carp” inside the Lewisville Lake Environmental Learning Area below Lake Lewisville, Texas. For better or worse, I don’t pay a lot of attention to terminology from US Carp Pro’s discussion boards, or drop terms like glooping to cause quizzical looks. Clooping is what I’ve been calling “sipping” for many years now. These are carp that can (and sometimes do) take dry flies off the top. It’s a low percentage opportunity that is a lot like timing a trouts rise to your fly arriving in the zone. However, for your insider information: He not only caught carp, but said there are plenty of drum to be caught there (at LLELA) as well. I will check it out when I get home later this week, but if you get there first – you may as well wear waders, boots and make your way down — look at the first long straight runs (with polarized glasses), and then drop further down to the pools of this stretch for telltale signs of glooping carp. Beware of the wild and woolly conventional and fly fishers going at the anemic stocker trout combat style though! I have seen arguments break out among fly fishers who were beating this muddy ditch silly, with their $800-dollar fly rods, in years past. Better to avoid than engage.

It’s pretty easy to wax philosophical this time of year, as calendars get tossed and new ones get hung. I heard an interesting interview a few days ago, a professor at the University of Houston. Her name is Dr. Brene‘ Brown and the lengthy interview included some simplified analogies on the topic of “trust.” One of the analogies compared how we trust and befriend people to having a jar of marbles where we add marbles for the things they do that add to our trust of them. This was a good year in those terms. I was able to break a few jars of business people and fly fishers, narrowing those I trusted, in business and fly fishing, down slightly. The hangover continues though, as I continue to wonder about so very many other’s motivations into 2015. I think the new format Pay-Per-View reading will take care of a lot of those unknowns in the year ahead. (It already has had a deep impact on by catch this year!)

Put simply; it was a great year for finding out who friends were, and it ran the gamut. Like I’ve said before, this “internet thing” casts a wide net, and the by-catch has to be sorted and tossed back. It’s a painstaking process that can, and has, taken years, especially if you start off with a jar full of trust marbles like I always do. It really is amazing how much better things are – once we break a few cracked jars on the sidewalk and walk away.

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; . . . who at best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.” —Theodore Roosevelt

Have a great week, and check back occasionally to see if we can fit any fishing in between all the family matters!


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Category: Culture on the Skids, Fishing Reports, North Texas, Oklahoma Report

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