When asked about his successful technique, the man replied: "short, accurate casts using a heavily weighted stone fly that I made my self from all-natural materials. It's deadly!"
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Seriously though, here's a good background explanation video on the LA River, along with some historic film from when it overflowed its banks.
By all accounts, the pre-1930s watersheds of the LA area were a sportsmen's paradise. A few years ago, I toured a 1920s mansion that my grandfather had designed on the edge of the Arroyo Seco. The entire basement was filled with racks and stainless steel tables. My mom recalled that this was where the owner would dress the bear, deer, etc. they had hunted that afternoon near the Rose Bowl!
There are remnants of many hunting and fishing lodges along various parts of the southland watersheds. I know that with our current urban density, unregulated hunting and fishing would deplete all natural resources, but if we could just get everyone on board with habitqat restoration and a catch-and-release ethos, we could have some great recreational areas again.
Lived about 5 minutes from it growing up, and I live 5 minutes from it now.
We used to dangle worms under bobbers for tilapia there when we were kids and fishing Echo Park lake became repetitive. Just your regular urban Huck Finns.
The guys at Fisherman's Spot are always talking about fishing that place for carp.
Now, perhaps I may be missing the point, but there are several urban ponds around that have big carp populations. I don't get why they choose the LA river. In fact, I've caught some huge carp at Balboa (which is literally 2 minutes away from the shop).
Perhaps it's the moving water that is the lure? I dunno.