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FFF 2018 - Post Written Summaries (Jerome Adventure Tale) of your FFF 2018 Experience here!


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This FFF 2018 thread is where you will post your always enjoyable written summaries of your FFF 2018 experience (Jerome Adventure Tale). 

In honor of Jerome Moisand's quick wit, photography skills, way with words, and dedication to CAG and FFF as past organizer of many First Fishing Follies, we are including an award category for the best written summaries of your 2018 FFF adventure. It will be called the FFF 2018 Jerome Adventure Tale Award

Your summaries will be judged by a panel consisting of Jerome Moisand and myself.  Although the judges are encouraged to submit FFF 2018 stories, they automatically remove themselves from award contention.  The winner will receive $25, the second place winner will receive $15, and the third place winner will receive $10.  All participants will receive a frameable FFF 2018 Jerome Adventure Tale Award Certificate. There will be no north and south zones for this FFF 2018 category.

You can see examples from last year's submissions here.


1. You must be registered for FFF 2018 to submit an FFF 2018 Jerome Adventure Tale.

2. Simply post your creative, well-written story and outstanding photographs in a reply box on this thread.

3. Please include the following information at the beginning of your post:
A. Begin your tale with a title.
B. Let us know the locale, including the city and state/province, where the story takes place (Sharing detailed information about the exact location of the venue is optional.).
C. Include your first and last name.

4. You are definitely encouraged to include photos to help tell your tale, but photos are not an absolute requirement for award consideration. Photos can be embedded within the story or posted at the end.

6. The best way to post a photo is to drag it to the the bottom of each posting window or to choose a file as indicated at the bottom of each posting window.

If you are having problems with the photo posting options, I will take your photo and caption information via e-mail and post the photo for you.  However, you should know how to post photos on the forum, so please don’t abuse this option. E-mail me at fjrink@comcast.net or pm me at FJR1. I'll need your e-mailed entries at least two hours before the January 4 deadline to allow me to process and post the pictures by the posting deadline: 1:00 p.m. EST, Noon CST, 11:00 a.m. MST, 10:00 a.m. PST.

6.  Every and all fishing award entries must be posted on this thread by 1:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (that’s Noon Central, 11 AM Mountain, 10 AM Pacific) on Thursday, January 4, 2018.  No exceptions!

7. Again, every and all FFF 2017 Jerome Adventure Tale entries must be posted on this thread by 1:00 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (that’s Noon Central, 11 AM Mountain, 10 AM Pacific) on Thursday, January 4, 2017.  No exceptions!

Thank you. We look forward to some great stories and accompanying photographs.

Don't forget to register for FFF 2018  by 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, December 31, 2017. Registering much earlier than that, like right now, is always appreciated. Thanks.—Frank Rink, FFF 2018 Coordinator

Click here to Register for FFF 2018!
Click here for Detailed Rules for FFF 2018
Click here for a List of Award Categories and Prizes for FFF 2018

Click here to Post ALL Carp Entries/Captures for FFF 2018
Click here to Post Written Summaries for the FFF 2018 Jerome Moisand Adventure Tale Awards

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12 hours ago, (OK) Randall L Hooker II said:

Once you have registered do you recive conformation?

Yes, I post a confirmation of your FFF participation on the CAG Forum FFF 2018 Registration thread and also list you as a participant on the Facebook thread.  FYI--You are not yet registered!  The thread on which you register is here:  


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MOCarpers 2nd Big adventure!!........ Wm. Kirk Suedmeyer, Kansas City, Missouri and Kansas

It began innocently enough….my second FFF!!!.....It was quite the challenge, or so I thought last year, driving across the state to fish in a marina cove. This year, I had two lakes, and two creek holes to pick from, one of which was a creek just 2 minutes away from home!- this was going to be fun and easy!....uhhhhhh but nope. So I title this MOCarper’s 2nd big adventure!

   I went to the local creek several weeks before FFF, at midnight. I set up my pod, two poles with hair rigs on method feeders with panko and fake corn…Within 90 minutes I caught four small carp. I WAS SET! Unfortunately, the forecast couldn’t have been worse for January 1st- It was to be -12F with wind chills of 20-30 below 0!...Yikes!, I’d better ramp up my game! …..There was going to be some fierce competition, but I really just wanted to better my results from last year………So…….it did drop to the predicted temperatures-I hiked to my spot close to home, in late morning and, ummmm, the entire creek was frozen!! The silver lining was a bald eagle eating a frozen catfish on top of the ice!- I still can’t figure out how the fish got there and the bird immediately flew away. Here’s a picture of the partially eaten fish!!!..


Both (all for that matter) lakes were frozen, so it left just one creek hole….I drove a couple miles, walked to the hole and WOW- it was totally clear of ice!!! Yeaaa haaaa!!.....So, to prepare further, I went to Lowes and bought a propane tank top heater with a 20lb tank…..ewwww, that’s a little heavy (that’s foreshadowing … J ).  Re-tied lines, made panko and readied the van; dressed as warmly as I could, placed toe and hand warmers, and I was off!!. At 11:00pm I went to the spot- the hole was about a ¼ mile away…no problem-I’d take my wagon for one trip, then carry the propane tank (and a little buddy heater too) next. I had to carry the wagon across the creek twice to get to a small gravel bar-no small feet at night! I set all my gear up, and it was 11:50…hmmm, I was feeling ok so I left the propane tank-not a good choice…. An hour into fishing, I had a couple hits, but didn’t land any…..then, unbeknownst to me, my waders had very small holes, which chilled my feet….I reeled up, and hiked back to the van at 1:15am….uhh-oh…..an SUV pulled up next to the van-police?- no……my wife and fellow CAG colleague WOW- what  pleasant surprise- warmed up in the car, then grabbed the propane tank and headed back…….it was a very long walk in -25F wind chill and -4F temps!!....I hiked back (keeping my zip-lock bag of panko under my shirt to keep it warm and spread scent in the water), waded the creek for the 3rd time, and set up the 32,000BTU tank…..and….one of the two heads wouldn’t light!!! AND- somehow, I lost more than ½ of my panko- the bag was upside down, and panko trickled out while I hiked back..(funny now as I followed the bait all along my hike, during the day, but it wasn’t funny at the time- I was getting truly cold!!!


The other lit ok, so I set lines and waited, and within 20 minutes I hooked my first carp of 2018!!.....As I reeled in near shore, the fish lunged upwards, and FROZE to the edge of the ice forming on the water!!....I use my net to break the thin sheet, slid the carp into the net, placed my phone/camera on my little tripod, then turned to get the carp, and-the net had frozen around the carp!!....I freed it easily enough, weighed, photo’d the fish and got it back into the water ok……My first fish!..


....But, I was in trouble now- the wind kept blowing out my little buddy heater and now the second burner wouldn’t stay lit…..I hooked another fish, but it snapped off-still can’t figure that one out, but…..I had to pack it in, which was a feat…. Got home at 4:20am and woke at 6:50am to get my sunrise photo!


Then, back to Lowes to return the heater-got another one, and went to two other creek holes, but alas, they were frozen solid as well!......so…….back to last night’s hole. Only this time, it was daylight, and 6F- yeah!!....and, this time, I went to the opposite bank and slid down the 90 degree bank cliff to the gravel bar-wasn’t going through the creek again! Followed my pack bait trail back to the creek-  a Hansel and Gretel type of tale J………This time, though, the heaters worked, I had more pack bait and was set to go!........Caught my first fish- a battle cause it kept diving under the ice edge and I feared I’d lose this one, but, able to land, weigh and photo it, then released. A very fat football 13lbr-the fish was bigger around than it was long!!......and then, another beauty, this one more like the creek carp I catch-very long and strong. A little easier to land, though the net kept freezing within minutes….and then, late in the afternoon, a great hit, but, I set my drag too light on my spinning gear, and instant bird nest!!!-I couldn’t reel any line- the line somehow wrapped around the reel knob!! I had no choice but to remove the knob, which allowed the handle to fall off, and the carp was making its runs!.....somehow, I got the line free, the birds nest corrected itself, and I finally landed this wonderful fish!!- a 19lb 13oz great fish!!!! While I landed it; a gentleman watching on the cliff bank, stated one simple line- “that’s hard core”… J…..I paused, and had to agree!...  J……


What a fine ending to a great, but brutal FFF 2018!!...... congrats to all; thanks to my wife and family thanks for the support, tips, and advice to all who’ve helped me in my first full year of carping!.....Hope you all have a GREAT NEW YEAR!!!.................

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Year Number 4 (or watch out for molars)

This year will mark the 4th year I have waited excitedly for the FFF to start, and the one that I have done the worst at in many ways. There is a lesson here: don’t fish a place that is close and uninteresting simply because it’s close - this will lead to a lack of motivation and a lack luster performance in cold weather and when family makes is difficult. When I was planning on where to fish, I had an idea that if I chose the lake that was closest to me (around Tyler, TX) I’d have more time to fish it and might even get to fish twice (early AM, late evening). I started baiting about a week ahead of time. The mix consisted of a lot of different particles and a couple of handfuls of boilies all boiled together with a bit of flavor. This seemed as good a plan as any and I had caught fish on similar in the past. As time went on the water forecast got worse and worse, but I kept baiting every day before work. The swim I chose was near an old road bed and had a reasonable depth of water. Also, it was somewhat protected from the wind and had less traffic from the people I did not want to deal with (some parks on this lake have a problem with sketchy people).


So, the 31st rolled around and even though I had been on the water at first light every morning I had seen very little in the way of signs that carp were in the area. None as a matter of fact. Well I was planning on getting there at mid night and doing it properly but 2 factors can be traced to the reason this did not happen: 1) my youngest child was getting molars and did not sleep at all the night before, 2) I had had no nap. So, getting out at midnight was just not going to happen. I would go in the morning. Or the afternoon. Afternoon sounds good. It was not until about 330pm on the 1st that I managed to break free and get to the lake (this is shameful, and will NOT happen again!!!). The air temp was in the 20s and windy, with no cloud cover and high pressure. Just lovely fishing conditions. My parents were in town and my dad had decided to come along…and sit in the truck like a sensible person.


I got my rods out as fast as I could, just setting them on the ground until they were all out and I could jet out the sticks. I got the rods on indicators and went to sit in the truck in front of the heater with my dad. After very little time I got a few beeps, but figured they were catfish as the lake is full of them. A coot ran into my line and gave a good impression of a fish, but nothing much happened to make me think that this would not be the year, I am so sure is coming, where I blank for the FFF. After maybe 50min, a bite of sorts, developed. It was 100% a catfish bite, with the bobbin going up and down and no line being taken. When I picked up the rod and felt the fish I could not tell if it was a small carp or big catfish (there are Channel Catfish that are very large in there). I was fishing out about 130yds (30wraps x 13/3) and once I had the fish about half way in I was relatively sure it was a carp. Soon it was in the net and it was the smallest carp I had caught from the lake, but it was a carp so the blank I was so sure of will have to wait until another year. It turned out to be a little Common of 8lbs 10oz that had surprisingly long barbles and a few odd scales. Thanks to my dad I did not have to set of my tripod for the picture and had the little fish back in the water in no time.


Then came recasting. It turns out that braid line freezes very quickly when you expose it to 20-degree weather, and that casting frozen braid 130yds is just about impossible. I ended up having to get the canoe out to replace me baits. The fish had come to a Mulberry Florentine (Rod Hutchinson) tiger nut topped with a VBN 10mm orange pop-up. I was using a little PVA stick of bread, corn, and hemp with VBN flavor and lots of sugar. I stuck it out for another couple of hours but only had catfish after that. My dad seemed ready to go so I packed up and went home and had some excellent chili that my wife had made. I did get to see the first moon rise of the year (a super moon as well) and catching a carp is always fun even if it is small! However, I think next year a lake house rental will be a good idea.

‘Till next year!

Evan Cartabiano     

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A North Texas Carper's New Year 

Location: Bridgeport Lake, Texas

By: Nicholas Anderson

Bridgeport Lake, located approximately 50 miles northwest of Fort Worth, was my swim of choice.  With almost 12,000 surface acres and a depth that reaches almost 90 feet in certain parts of the lake, there is plenty of space for the fish to hide.  It is by no means a big fish lake, with the records for carp and buffalo both being below 20 pounds.  Bowfishing is extremely popular on this lake, which drives down the big fish population.  But when I do fish Bridgeport, I almost always catch, and catch often.  It’s a great lake to experiment with different presentations or to boost your confidence after a blanking session.

Due to a late New Year’s night, and staying up well past midnight, I had a delayed start, not waking up until 10:00 AM.  Luckily, I was staying at a lakeside property, so getting to the swim was just a 60 yard walk from the front door.  With my rods already made up and sitting on the rod pod, I simply had to make up some method and attach my rigs.

The method mix I chose for this session was a “sweet heat,” which consisted of old-fashioned oats, creamed corn, chili powder, and poppy seed pie filling.  I’ve experimented with poppy seeds before, and I believe that it can keep the fish rooting around in an area.  The chili powder comes from a theory that it helps a fish “warm up” in the colder months.


For my hookbaits, I decided for the following 3 separate presentations: an 8 mm fluro-pink Cell pop-up, stacked 6 mm white and yellow Rosehip mini pop-ups, and a Megaspice tigernut tipped with a dull pink Korda floating maize.  

The wind was blowing mildly towards the rods and the sun was out almost in full force.  Fish had to be in the area because once I threw in, the bait was taken in less than 5 minutes.  The bite came in typical smallmouth buffalo fashion, which was a series of steady drop-backs, followed by a slow rising of the swinger.  The first fish of the new year was landed at 10:15 AM and was a 9 pound, one-eyed buff.  I’m not sure if this was a good omen or a bad one, but I convinced myself it was the former.

My next run wouldn’t come until 12:25 PM, but it was a proper carp run.  I was very excited running down the 100 feet of dock, since it had been a couple hours since any action.  Unfortunately,  that was enough time for the sub-freezing temperatures to do some nasty work, and when I pulled up on the rod, everything went slack.  At first, I thought it was a bad hook-up, or maybe a hook-pull.  However, after closer inspection, I found the 12 pound mainline had snapped somewhere close to the rod pod.  There had been enough moisture to freeze the mainline to the swinger, so when I pulled up, it simply broke the line.  Lesson learned and for the rest of the day, whenever I had a run, I gently pulled up on the rod to slowly break any ice that may have formed.


From the hours of 2 to 4 PM I pulled in 3 more smallmouth buffalo.  The first buffalo of the set was sandy brown, which I seem to only find at Bridgeport Lake.  It was landed at 2 PM and weighed in at 8 pounds.  The second of the group came in just 15 minutes later, and was the biggest, weighing in at 11 pounds.  The eyes on it started to glass over from the extreme cold, so I quickly got it back into the water after a picture.  The third buff evened out at roughly 10 pounds.  None of the fish are extremely big on Bridgeport Lake, but considering the conditions, I was happy to be pulling them in.IMG_20180101_234810_685.jpg

The sun would set around 5:30, and I was hoping the “power hour” would produce a common carp.  At 6 PM, I heard an alarm scream out unlike the other beeps earlier in the day.  There was no break in the alarm’s screech from the first beep until the moment I grabbed the rod.  When I pulled into the fish, it also felt heavier than the others.  Now I was smiling!  The fish played differently too than the previous fish; more side-to-side movement and stronger lunges.  Sadly though, the hook pulled at the halfway point.  

With the sun gone, and the cold weather, it felt that I may have blown my one chance to bring in a carp.  But with the full moon rising, I reset the rod and went inside with a hopeful attitude.  Something would come, it just might not be a carp.

Inside the house, I was sitting down to eat a Hawaiian-style pizza.  One Shiner Bock beer and 2 slices in, I heard a couple beeps from my receiver.  Having already caught 2 channel cats previously in the day, and with night coming on, I thought it was probably another catfish.  But when those slow beeps, turned into a steady tone, I shot out the door with a renewed sense of anticipation of what was on the end of the line.  After the 60 yard dash from doorstep to rod pod, I pulled into a fish that felt like it was a fighter.  Of course, at range, even the smallest fish can feel big.  However, this fish didn’t disappoint, and it put up a struggle the entire way into the landing net.


Once in the carp cradle, I saw that the carp had chosen the yellow and white pop-up combo, which made sense.  The buffalo tended to favor the pink baits, and the carp prefer whites and yellows, at this particular lake.  With a picture of the capture secured and the scale zeroed to the weigh sling, I placed the packaged carp on the scale.  It settled on 8 pounds, 12 ounces.  More than satisfied with the result, I said a quick goodbye, and sent the carp back on its way.  

I left the other two rods out until 10 PM, but then gladly reeled them back in, ready to retire for the rest of the night.  This was my first CAG-FFF event and I know it will be forever remembered, thanks to the abnormally cold conditions.  Looking forward to next year’s event and the new carp it will bring!

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3 hours ago, MoCarp said:

wow...  crazy mofos!...LOVE IT!!!!!!.......this has to be the coldest FFF ever

We had a few really cold & harsh ones, I am no stranger to nets and fishing lines freezing up, or hot spot at midnight found frozen solid later in the morning, but I agree with you, this was undoubtedly the coldest ever. 

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