How to Fish Carp With Baitcasting Reels

How to Fish Carp With Baitcasting Reels
Carp has long been a sport fish enthusiastically pursued by many anglers in other countries. A loyal following in America fish for these often-large fish. Capable of growing to well over 30 pounds, carp are found in lakes, ponds and rivers throughout the U.S.. Casting reels are commonly used when fishing for carp and are a good choice for handling the heavy weight of these fish.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Baitcasting reel and matched rod
  • 10 pound test or heavier line
  • Size 4 to 8 bait holder hook
  • Whole kernel sweet corn (canned)
Step 1
Attach a size 4 to size 8 bait holder hook or circle octopus hook to the end of your fishing line with a Palomar knot. Tie the Palomar knot by feeding 4 to 6 inches of line through the eye of the hook with the free end extending from the point side of the hook. Turn the line and feed it back through the eye forming a loop on one side and a double line on the other. Tie an overhand knot with the loop and doubled line, pull the loop around the bend of the hook and tighten the knot against the eye of the hook.
Step 2
Place two or three pieces of corn on the hook, making sure to barely cover the point. Carp tend to mouth and feel their food before taking it in. A sharp hook point is a quick way to have a carp spit out the bait.
Step 3
Adjust the brakes on the baitcasting reel by turning the large dial on the side. Set the dial to the midpoint so that the reel will apply some braking for the light weight of the hook and corn. This will help reduce backlash.
Step 4
Hold the rod by the handle and point it straight out from you. Press the spool release button and allow the hook and corn to drop. Adjust the small friction knob located beside the handle so that the hook and corn fall slowly.
Step 5
Cast the corn to an area in the water where you know or suspect carp to be located. Reduce the drag on the reel by turning the star shaped wheel between the handle and the baitcasting reel. You should be able to pull line from the spool with only slight resistance.
Step 6
Reel in the slack line by turning the handle of the baitcasting reel and position the rod in a holder or against a forked stick with the rod tip pointed toward the bait in the water. Allow the bait to sit motionless and carefully watch the line for movement indicating a carp might be taking the bait.
Step 7
Pick up the baitcast rod and reel when the line begins to move steadily away; set the hook by raising the rod tip up sharply and quickly. Adjust the drag so that you have some leverage against the fish while playing it but do not set the drag completely so that no line can spool from the reel.

Article Written By Keith Dooley

Keith Dooley has a degree in outdoor education and sports management. He has worked as an assistant athletic director, head coach and assistant coach in various sports including football, softball and golf. Dooley has worked for various websites in the past, contributing instructional articles on a wide variety of topics.

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