Whoa, yeah, L.A. River yields second bass!

Nothing like catching your first fish on a fly --  a baby bass, no less. (Mark Gangi)

Nothing like catching your first fish on a fly — a baby bass, no less. (Mark Gangi)

By Mark Gangi
Guest Contributor

I brought my friends, Bob and Michelle, to the L.A. River for a casting lesson one day before they left on a trip to Montana and the Madison River. They were blown away by the river, as most are when the visit it for the first time.

I wasn’t expecting to catch any fish, as the moss was high and water, low.

When Michelle got the hang of casting and mending, I was showing her how to work a pool by taking a few steps upstream and — wham — a beautiful little bass smacked the crayfish pattern I had tied on.

So, her first fish on a fly rod was on the L.A. River.

“I can see how this could be addicting” was her comment between smiles.

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Landing Capt. Ahab’s carp (big as a whale, mate)

That's no minnow! To get a sense of scale, check out the big Galvan reel in the lower left. (Mark Gangi)

That’s no minnow! To get a sense of scale, check out the big Galvan reel in the lower left. (Mark Gangi)

By Mark Gangi
Guest Contributor

What a great fight that day, which created a spectacle and drew a small crowd of joggers.

The fish took off downstream, wrapped me around a large rock and then headed upstream. I didn’t jump in after him until he was deep in my backing and I thought I was going to lose another carp on the river.

The water was deeper than my hip waders so I had to slosh like a maniac upstream after him, and when I had him in shallow water he was too big to pick up by the jaw so I had to go WWF on him.

I have had my best takes with Jan’s Carp Tickler and Hise’s Carpnasty, both in brown with orange. Maybe the orange looks like tilapia eggs? Both of these flies are also visible in the water.