The 2-pound carp derby on Creve Coeur Lake last weekend ended on a dramatic note with Mike Ries, of New Haven, Mo., fighting a corpulent carp.
He hooked it at about 11:25 a.m., 35 minutes before the end of the derby. Because he was using 2-pound test line, as required, he was still fighting it as the minutes ticked down toward the close. Tension grew as the derby came to an end and Ries patiently hanging on. He finally brought it to net about 10 minutes after noon, but the rules were bent a little. The carp wasn't as big as expected, considering the fight of almost 40 minutes, but its nearly 3 1/2 pounds were enough to earn Ries second place in the big-fish category of the low-key angling contest sponsored last weekend by the St. Louis Department of Parks and recreation.
The derby, in its sixth year, drew 75 anglers who in the alloted four hours caught literally hundreds of fish from the old oxbow lake in the county park in the Missouri River bottom. Most of the fish were common and grass carp of less than a pound, but there were several fish of 1-2 pounds.
The derby, where fishing this time was much better than last year when Creve Coeur Lake was briefly between floods, is interesting for at least three reasons: