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Buckeye Bob

Through the eyes of a 10 year old....

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If I look through my eyes in one direction...I see a man of 61; If I look through my eyes from the other direction, I see the world at any age desired depending on the event. While fishing last night I got to thinking about the catching of my first carp...age 10 (summer between 4th and 5th grade).

Fishing gear consisted of a Mitchell 300 spinning reel (gift from Dad) spooled with the cheapest 4 lb test line I could find, and a "very inexpensive" blue fishing rod (make/length etc. unknown). The concept then was that carp were so wary you had to use light line, no weight, and enough doughbait to cover your size 6 hook. Bisquick flour fit the bill very well and was "free" from mom's cupboard. We "swung" at light twitches in the line as the carp mouthed our baits...we only used one rod when carp fishing and never left them unheld. Landing the fish was always fun as you had to finesse the fish in very carefully in between 2 rocks that lined the shore of the area and remove the hook while the fish was in the water (we had no nets). Bicycles were our only transport to and from our fishing spots.

How big was that first capture? I couldn't say, to me it was huge and I was thrilled. It had been a challenge and I felt victorious as my first encounter and introduction to Mr. Carp had resulted in a busted up Zebco 77 fishing pole. Where did I catch it? I did a search for the location; Tenney Park Locks, Madison WI., (connecting Lake Mendota and Lake Monona). One of these days I'd like to go back there and fish...as well as stop in at my other favorite fishing holes in the area...the train tressel that crossed Cherokee Marsh, the bridge at Westport.

This summer marks 51 years since that first capture and I still see carp fishing through the eyes of a 10 year old....just as much fun and exciting. Might just be why I fish so much LOL!!! Life is good.

NOTE: I Googled the locks and they are still there...but modernized and looks like they've put in a Marina on the lakeside. https://maps.google.com/maps?expflags=enable_star_based_justifications%3Atrue&ie=UTF8&cid=370598033731684441&q=Tenney+Park&iwloc=A&gl=US&hl=en

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Beautiful story...it's similar to the first fish I caught as well...lived across from Muskingum river as wee lad and walked over one day, put my tiny rod in the water with a plastic worm and pulled out what I believe now to be a 5-8lb common, shame I didn't release it...put it in a bucket and tried to keep it as a pet lol

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Bob, thanks for the memories! I just realized that I spent several decades working and fishing for other species of fish when I could have been carping.

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Great story and that spot looks pretty sweet!

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