Fishing carp in difficult conditions

The spots are often uncomfortable, but worth it!

Conditions in Quebec are generally quite difficult for carp fishing, and more specifically in urban areas where access to water is rare. We often have to improvise and show imagination to hope to find a spot. Consequently, the found places are generally difficult of access, uncomfortable, even dangerous (large rocks) and thus very hard on the equipment!

The St-Lawrence river is without a doubt the best carp fishing area in Quebec, and possibly in Canada. However, natural and artificial structures, currents, grass beds and invasive species make it more difficult to fish than most other rivers.

Carp are known for their lightning starts and long “unwindings” along the bottom, which puts our line under enormous stress as it rubs against the bottom. The St. Lawrence Seaway is the gateway for many undesirable aquatic species brought in by foreign ships, including zebra mussels. Zebra mussels literally line virtually the entire bottom of our river as far as the Great Lakes, particularly in the areas surrounding the seaway.

These mussels have the unfortunate characteristic of being very sharp for our thread. No type of non-metallic wire is resistant to them. With inappropriate material, many fights end in breakage. Too many carps end up with a mount in their mouth for a good part of the rest of their life, and can eventually die if their ability to feed is affected. However, there are ways to find types of line that are more resistant to abrasion than others, but without too much harm to the casting and the flexibility of the mount .

For my main line, I use very high-strength braid, with a slightly larger diameter, i.e. Sufix 832 Advanced Superline with 86 lb (39 kg) strength and 0.42 mm (0.42 mm) diameter. As a bottom line, 20 to 30 feet (6 to 9 m) of 70 lb (32 kg) mono with 0.75 mm diameter, from the Ultima Enigma brand. This momo is very flexible and it is easy to tie knots. The knot that I use and that I prefer is the Albright. This mono is not available in North America, so you have to order it from Europe. However, if you want something that you can easily find on the shelves here, I recommend the Berkley Big Game in the 40 or 50 lb (18 or 23 kg) strength. It’s much less flexible than the Ultima, but can help out very well.

This poor carp probably got caught at the bottom with a mouth mount wrapped around the gill and pectoral fin. While pulling with all its forces, it wounded itself very seriously!


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