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marcustackley

Houseboat Carping!

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We've just returned from a second trip fishing from a houseboat in the thousand islands region of the St Lawrence River. It's a phenomenal experience if you like adventure carping or pioneering. We hired a 6 berth houseboat which acts like a mobile posh floating bivvy as you've got a fridge freezer, toilet, shower, kitchen and proper beds and a platform to fish from!
 
We found a couple of likely islands to moor up against and baited up heavily with flavoured and boiled maize by swimming out with buckets and hand scattering it across an area the size of a football pitch. We'd then swim our baits out and dive them down to check presentation in 12-20ft of water, and finally we'd swim out a colour HD underwater camera then sit back on the boat, crack a beer and watch the carp move in, Carp TV! - believe me there's no finer way to fish! There was a BBQ overhanging the water at the back of the boat so we'd chuck a couple of steaks on with some corn on the cob and dine like kings! 
 
Over the 6 days we caught 80 fish to 30lb all of which took off like freight trains. We saw some much larger fish on the underwater camera and whilst snorkeling, and I've 6 hours of fascinating footage from that. We also lost two unstoppable runs on 66lb braid, Solar 101 in size 1's and 50lb hooklinks - there are some absolute monsters out there. We used an application called Navionics to find like looking structures and given the water is crystal clear you can easily drift over an area stood 15ft above the water on the roof of the boat with a pair of polarized glasses and see them. This is the most exciting fishing available and beats a pre-selected peg for a week fishing for 'Humpy, One Eye or Starburst. It's the future boys, check out some pics of the trip, we're going back next May for the pre-spawn big girls!
 

 

 

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We've just returned from a second trip fishing from a houseboat in the thousand islands region of the St Lawrence River. It's a phenomenal experience if you like adventure carping or pioneering. We hired a 6 berth houseboat which acts like a mobile posh floating bivvy as you've got a fridge freezer, toilet, shower, kitchen and proper beds and a platform to fish from!

 

We found a couple of likely islands to moor up against and baited up heavily with flavoured and boiled maize by swimming out with buckets and hand scattering it across an area the size of a football pitch. We'd then swim our baits out and dive them down to check presentation in 12-20ft of water, and finally we'd swim out a colour HD underwater camera then sit back on the boat, crack a beer and watch the carp move in, Carp TV! - believe me there's no finer way to fish! There was a BBQ overhanging the water at the back of the boat so we'd chuck a couple of steaks on with some corn on the cob and dine like kings!

 

Over the 6 days we caught 80 fish to 30lb all of which took off like freight trains. We saw some much larger fish on the underwater camera and whilst snorkeling, and I've 6 hours of fascinating footage from that. We also lost two unstoppable runs on 66lb braid, Solar 101 in size 1's and 50lb hooklinks - there are some absolute monsters out there. We used an application called Navionics to find like looking structures and given the water is crystal clear you can easily drift over an area stood 15ft above the water on the roof of the boat with a pair of polarized glasses and see them. This is the most exciting fishing available and beats a pre-selected peg for a week fishing for 'Humpy, One Eye or Starburst. It's the future boys, check out some pics of the trip, we're going back next May for the pre-spawn big girls!

 

 

 

 

Sounds fabulous . Any chance of posting some of that footage ?
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sure, I've got about 12 minutes of raw footage here. This is at 28ft with a water temperature of 19.2 degrees C and is on a 45 degree ledge that bottoms out at 52ft inside 120 horizontal feet across the surface

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zb-3Y38MJoI&feature=youtu.be

 

The common with a scar at the start of the footage we had to a different rod later that evening at 22lb 14oz

Edited by marcustackley
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Sounds like you had a great time, and it definitely seems like a good holiday experience; but the future? I'd rather spend the majority of my angling time on a secluded English water (Although, not on a pre-selected peg :wink:

 

But, obviously, each to their own. The only hard and fast rule in fishing is fish how you want and enjoy yourself in my book :wink:

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I don't know if how comfortable the accommodation is effects how 'wild' a river is. Infact looking at the size of the waters on the map I would have thought you are much more likely to catch a wild one that's never been out compared to the UK with so many anglers condensed into such small waters (in comparison, the lake south of where they went on their trip is bigger than London!)

 

Cracking pics and video mate, looks like a you had a great time!

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Well done Marcustackley! I laughed when I read "yanks"[emoji1] . The link to Marcus' 10 year old thread about his 1st trip to the St Lawrence has a post by Mudfish, time warp! Before he was banned I was trying to find a supplier for carp safe netting and he was the only one who tried to help, sent me a good link. I remember him trying to explain that where he is carp are harvested by the ton and sold for fertilizer yet they still thrive - and he wasn't believed. Most Britons have trouble comprehending the scope of things in North America; the lake I fish most often is large, but nowhere near our largest. It covers 231 sq km. Loch Neagh NI, the largest body of water in the UK covers 383 sq km. Anglers who have come here from the UK told me they just dropped their gear on the shore and stared at the water wondering what to do. Most of the carp lakes you have would be called ponds or sloughs in Canada (not bragging, I had nothing to do with it) [emoji1] . Fact for the day: There are more lakes in Canada than in the rest of the world combined.

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I reckon Finland has you beat for numbers Buzz, but size oops, still luxury fishing for those guys.

Depends how you count, Finland has thousands of lakes but Canada has millions. By percentage more area of Finland is covered by lakes than in Canada, but Finland would fit in Lake Huron with room to spare. [emoji1]

Edit: The largest lake entirely in Canada would not quite hold Finland. When you fly over northern Manitoba there are so many lakes and so many trees you can't really tell if it's blue or green. Lake Winnipeg is an inland sea, more on that later.

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Well that's the biggest part of it for me. For months beforehand we study google earth, navionics and seaway depth charts to find likely places to intercept the fish. Of course there's no local reports to go on because nobody targets them so we go in with research and test our theories out. The first trip we found a huge island that had another river flowing in to the st Lawrence, the delta had a bright white spot in amongst the weed about the size of a tennis court. So we baited it with 100lb of maize, and floated the boat over it the next day and the place was ripped apart and the size of a football pitch! But being half a mile from land we had to anchor the boat adjacent to the clear spot. The first time we tried we ended up drifting on the wind in to the main shipping channel so had to frantically pull in a 100lbs of anchor swinging under the boat and start the motor to try again. We eventually got the boat to hold and swam our baits out across the clear patch, re baited, set the underwater camera up and took 28carp that first night under the most amazing starlight I've ever seen. The cast was an underarm flick because if you can get the boat there, then you can fish anywhere along the 80km stretch. I'd need a lifetime to explore a fraction of it!

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Great question! Carp we're brought to North America in the late 1800's primarily as a cheap source off food and we're stocked widely. Since then they've flourished and are found in pretty much every water body in the US and Southern Canada. In terms of winters then they seem to survive brilliantly. A doctor buddy of mine drove all the way over from Boston to the st Lawrence a few years ago because a very specific natural phenomena occurred which turned the frozen river opaque - check this footage out

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