This is one of those stories that may read funny, but i can assure you that when it happened, I wasn't laughing--- It was the spring of 2012 and i was making my second trip to a newly discovered carp hot spot that I had found the week before along a popular urban river that runs through my state here in New England. The week before, I had caught two double digit fish (12 and 16lbs). These were the two first Carp i had ever caught since beginning my quest in the fall of 2011. To say that I was excited, would be a gross understatement! I was jacked up-- And now here I was ... ready for round # 2. The day was warm and comfortable and I quickly set up all my newly purchased Carpin gear. My new Fox alarms sat proudly on my new Wytchwood rod pod. And my new Okuma baitrunners were locked and loaded. Oh yeah! Two fish in two hours last week .... I should be able to catch a dozen today in four hours. Right? I'm a Pro.! I think I thought i was the next Danny Fairbrass. Needless to say... The next four hours passed slowly. Nothing. Not a tap. I rebaited often and recounted everything I had done the week before but nothing seemed to help. After a few more minutes i was getting ready to call it a day when i heard a voice from behind me, up on the bike path, call down..." Any Luck? ". I turned around to see a tall, middle aged man with his dog standing on the bike path looking down at me. I told him I was fishing for Carp and "No" I hadn;t caught anything yet. He politly asked if he could come down ( I assume) to see what I was doing. After sitting alone for 4+ hours with no action, I was more than happy to have a little company and show off all my new "high tech" fishing equipment to anybody that showed any interest at all. (even people that showed no interest) Little did i know, at this point i was about to start the craziest 15 mins.of my Carp fishing "career". It all started when "Jim" (I learned his name after) decided to unleash his giant, 100lb. very energetic, hound looking tornado of a dog prior to walking down the wooded path that led to the riverbank. It was almost as though this crazed animal had never been off a leash before and was making up for lost time. Imagine Marmaduke on bath salts! He barreled into my swim like a mini-tornado. The soft sand under his feet seemed to only excite him more. He ziged and he zaged! He barked ! He ran into the water. He ran out of the water! He jammed his huge head into every bucket and container of bait I had. At this point, his owner Jim emerged from the woods and proceeded to yell his dogs name loudly and often: Cooper!!!!!!! Cooper!!!!! Come Here!!! But as you can imagine... Cooper wasn't hearing any of it. Now he ( the dog) runs straight back into the water and snags both of my baited lines in the process. Beeeeeeep Beeeeeeep Beeeeeep. The alarms are beeping like crazy from the dog. And Jim, both embarassed and confused from all the noise and actions of his dog, marches straight into the water (with shoes on) to re-leash his psyco oversized puppy. He quickly apologizes. i quickly accept. Too stunned to do much else. We make some small talk and tried to pretend nothing just happened. Not easy. After another minute or so, I glanced at my phone for the time and announced it was time to start packing up. It really was getting late and my outlook to actually catch something looked bleek if not impossible. I quickly packed up my bait and folded up my chair and stuffed it in its bag . Now the rods and pod and I was done. Beeeeeeeeep Beeeeeeep Beeeeeeeeeeep!!! Holy Crap! Fish on!!!!!! I couldn't believe it.! The dog had disturbed my lines in the water but not enough to keep a carp from grabbing my bait. After almost 5 hrs.a fish was finally on. And to my novice feel, it was a Giant!
Jim looked baffeled. I was shaking. The fish ran left down river. I fought hard to get it to turn. It worked. The beast was coming back in our direction. It fought hard but i was not going to lose this fish. Finally, after a 4 minute fight the 18lb fish was in the net.
My new PB! YES!!! I was glowing with pride. Jim was impressed and Cooper licked it a couple of times before I slid it back into the river. Looking at my phone again for the time, I realized I was late. Not much, but late. I quickly broke down my pod and stashed my alarms into my bag. Lastly, I stuck my long handled net into my chairbag and slung it over my shoulder near my ruk sack. Like a typical Carp fisherman, I was loaded with gear and both hands were full. Jim and Cooper followed me and we began our short walk through the woods, back up to the bike path above. Halfway up the woody path my large net that I was carrying in my chairbag got tangled on a tree branch behind me. Jim quickly came up behind me and said "I got it". I waited a moment for him to untangle the net. He did and as I took my next step I heard Jim yell loudly; HEY!! LOOK OUT!!!. Those are the last words I remember hearing for the next few seconds. Apparently, the tree my net got stuck on was a standing dead tree. All 12 feet of it. And my net and possibly Jim's hand were all it took to bring that sucker down right on my head. Surprizingly enough, it didn't hurt that much but it did knock me for a loop. Jim asked me if I was alright and then Cooper licked my face. His breath smelled like Carp!! I told Jim that I was ok and then i proceeded to spit a broken tooth from my mouth into my hand. The knock to my mellon had slammed my teeth together. The final 5 minute walk back to my truck was awkward as we tried to pretend nothing had just happened. Again, Not Easy. We shook hands and went our separate ways.