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Story 2010 Spring Underwater Videos

Page history last edited by Jerome Moisand 13 years, 8 months ago

Underwater Videos - Spring 2010



Spring 2010


Boston, MA


The article, published in three languages


In the course of 2009, I started to write an article in French summarizing my experience with underwater videos so far, the various challenges I faced while trying to record & publish good material, and some lessons I learned in the process about carp fishing.
The original intent was to publish the article in Carpe Scene, a French magazine with an English-sounding name! A couple of months after writing this article, a carp angler from Germany (Tobias Renkawitz) contacted me out of nowhere, having viewed my videos on YouTube, and asking me if I could write something for a German magazine named Carp Connect (what's up with those English sounding names?). I told Tobias that I already had such an article, albeit in French. Since he isn't fully fluent in French and I don't speak German at all, we ended up deciding that I would translate my write-up in English, beef it up a bit, make it a two-part article, and he would translate it in German. The plot was getting complicated! Of course, I asked first to the Carp Scene editor (David Tartaglione) if he was ok with the article being published and he readily agreed. So we proceeded and then it crossed my mind... Having the article available in English, it would be a shame not to publish it in the CAG magazine (the North American Carp Angler) and the NACA's editor (Stewart McKenzie) was of course eager to do it. 
Long story short, the article got published. More or less at the same time, in three different languages! Too funny. Oh, and when this was all set and done and published, I also put the article on the Web! Click on the cover pics to see them as a full Web page.





Half a million!


Early April, I was marveling with my wife that my most popular video kept being viewed more than 500 times a day (according to YouTube statistics) and this had been going on for more than 2 years! And she made a prediction, that it would reach 500,000 views by my coming birthday (April 17th). I did some quick math, and she was right, this was entirely possible. Sure enough, by April 11th 2010, the magical cap of half a million was reached! Amazing! And now I have to wonder... Could it reach one million views one day?




It is also quite interesting to check the regional stats that YouTube provides and see in which countries the video is highly popular (Ukraine? South Korea? really?), or to do the same for the states of the US. Here are the results, as of early May 2010.


2010 Videos - getting started


This year, I wanted to spend a good deal of time making many experiments. Of course, my plan was too ambitious, I went through all the usual practical troubles, cursed and groaned, and I did only 10% of what I wanted to do. Oh well, I did succeed to edit and publish 4 videos. Also this year, I made use of video annotations to provide a few more explanations.



First video I published was just a patchwork of video sequences without much of a theme. Early March, the river had finally thawed, and I quickly accumulated material across multiple sessions, but a good deal of it didn't work out (the lingering cold weather and the video recorder proved to not be quite compatible), yet I didn't want to lose some good excerpts. Hence this 'patchwork' video.


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2010 Videos - pop-up experiment


Then the weather started to improve, and something I absolutely wanted to try was a pop-up. The first day I did that, my friend Domm came to fish with me. And well, it took me a few hours to land three fish on my pop-up rig while he was absolutely killing them with his bottom rig and his method balls. I did record some interesting material, the mechanics of the rig seemed ok, but fact is those carp didn't pay much attention to this strangely floating thing! The week after, I was alone, and I recorded more material, still without having that many takes. Overall, I would say that using a pop-up rig on top of a bed of bait might make some sense when a school of carp comes in and they aren't too excited, but once they start vacuuming the bottom, forget it, use a bottom bait!


Just to taunt a bit my YouTube viewers, I decided to assemble two videos, one centered on "when it doesn't work" which I published first, and then 2 days later, I published the second video, centered on "when it does work". Some did take the bait and asked me what changes I introduced to my rigs between the 2 videos (well, nothing at all!). 


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 Oh, and I caught a rather special carp in the process, a ghostie with some orange patches (notably its lips), not quite a koi, but somewhat close.


2010 Videos - a rig coming from France; an interview


Given the huge number of viewers of my videos, I am always a bit puzzled to not be contacted by e-mail more often. It's funny, people aren't shy to post comments about the video, but it's a bit like the author's persona is lost, and only a handful of guys contacted me directly by e-mail. Weird. Anyway, a French individual named Christophe Babec did reach out to me (actually, as a consequence of the article published in the French magazine). We swapped a few friendly e-mails, and before I knew it, a package arrived across the Atlantic with some strange rigs in there. 


Time to acknowledge that I don't believe at all in running rigs and that I am quite skeptical about the semi-fixed rig line of thinking. It seems to me that you can catch with those, but this is really mostly a way to give more chance to the fish to spit out the rig without you having any chance to intervene. The folks claiming that they can react real fast and set the hook better than a fixed rig would, they really make me smile, as you can see on some of the slow motion video extracts I published, a LOT can happen in less than 1/10th of a second. And well, I don't know about you, but personally, I still struggle to grab my rod in less than a second! And it's not for lack of practice! I must be getting old... 


More seriously, let's come back to the rig my new friend sent me, which was a semi-fixed rig. My beef with such concept was that I know all too well that carp makes quite a mess on the bottom before a real pickup has a chance to occur. And however good the rig is, there will be inevitably a few suck & spit events. So the hook link would likely be straightened in the process, and all you get is a fixed rig with a long hook link, so what's the point again? At least, this was my theory.


Now Christophe made an eye-opener comment when I shared my skepticism. He stated that in any water with some movement (notably rivers), the pressure on the main line will tighten the rig, back to the intended position. Never thought about that! I am still not sure to like the idea, as it seems to me that this is risking to have the hook grab something on the bottom in the process, but admittedly, the probability isn't too high for a movement not exceeding a couple of inches.


Now if we accept all of that, having some flexibility in the hook link would appear to have a clear advantage, to let the carp swallow the bait a bit more before the lead would start its job of pulling the hook in the fish's jaw. With my usual fixed rig, I had indeed seen all too often this situation of the fish swimming away from the lead, picking the bait, and it fell from their mouth too soon as the line tightened too soon. Based on this lengthy introduction, let's see what happened! Well, it seems to me that Christophe's theory was shown as quite possibly right. Except for the length of his hook link (9 inches!) which I knew wasn't a good idea on such solid bottom, as shown at the end of the video.


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I don't want to jump to conclusions though as I only succeeded once to make a proper recording with such a semi-fixed rig, and more experiments would definitely be in order to see what's truly happening. Remember, this is all quite a random process, so one specific take (or miss) isn't necessarily that meaningful. Still, this convinced me enough to use a variation of such rig (with a shorter hook link!) for my regular fishing this year.


Finally, I started to contribute to the Internet forum that Christophe and his friends from the south of France created, and there were so intrigued by this strange Frenchy lost in the USA that they even published an interview of the weirdo. Here it is (in French), just click on the image below.



2010 Videos - Des Taylor and the DVD


I thought this was it for the underwater stories for a while, but there is one more thing... I was contacted during the spring by an English fellow (Ashley Sims) who said that he'd like to get the authorization to take a few extracts of my recent underwater videos, and insert such material in a DVD centered on fishing legend Des Taylor. I wasn't sure what to think about it, but the guy seemed genuine, so ok, why not. 


I received (end of June) the DVD and watched it, and well, it was actually very pleasant to watch. Very nice job from the producer and editor, this Des Taylor character is truly likable, they did include short sequences of my material here and there, and I am happy to have provided a small contribution. Here are a couple of snapshots from the DVD. And click here to see the DVD trailer.





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