Saturday, May 21, 2011

So you want to catch a carp

Apparently we have developed a bit of reputation around here as deviants folks who like to fly fish for carp. Recently, several fellow fly anglers have approached us about joining the carping fraternity. These conversations typically go something like this, usually via cell phone in hushed whispers:

"I hear you guys fly fish for carp. "

"Yep, we do."

"I'd kinda like to try it and was just wondering if you could give me a few tips. You know, get me pointed in the right direction."

"Sure. Be glad to."

"Great. And of course you'll have the good taste to never tell anyone that I asked about this. Ever."

"Of course."

So yeah, we've been getting quite a few questions about carp. More anglers seem to be taking an interest and when they find someone who actually does the thing, they latch on and try to glean every bit of advice and information possible. Can't blame them, I guess, because the truth is information on fly fishing for carp can be a bit tough to track down. As John Gierach said - there's no book called Selective Carp, no great carp guide down at the local fly shop to show you the ropes. Sure, there's a short "how to" paperback or two out there and the odd magazine article, but you're more or less on your own unless you know someone who is a carp angler.

Or a blogger. Some of the best information we've seen out there on fly fishing and carp is on blogs. There are three in particular that we follow and there's a reason for that. These three anglers have obviously fished for carp a lot. They provide a level of detail in their tips and techniques for chasing these great fish that you probably won't see anywhere else. We have fished for carp pretty hard these past couple of years but still learn something new just about every time one of these guys posts. We catch a few carp around here in Finewater territory, but these dudes catch CARP. Big gnarly thick-shouldered reel rattlers.

Here's a post from each of these blogs to get you started:

Fly Carpin' - Landing Carp on the Fly Rod

Carp on the Fly - You Gotta Make 'em Move

Colorado Fly Fishing Reports - 30 Tips to Make You a Better Carp Angler

If you're looking to get into the carp game, check 'em out. This is how it's done, folks.

(Disclaimer - We apologize that the author of this post used the word "gnarly". Mgmt.)


John Montana said...

Thanks for the link! I am far from an expert but I have picked up a few things that work for me.

Let me know if you make it out west anytime and we will chase some bruisers.

e.m.b. said...

Yeah, don't know about that "g" word usage there -- before the disclaimer you had lost me as a reader. ;)hehe. Really, really great post, and I love your description of carp fishing as kind of a guilty pleasure Nice!

Unknown said...

Thanks Ty...Finewater has a place on that list too! Man you arent kidding though. It can be hard to find good info on fly fishin for carp. There are people out there who know WAY more than I do, but many of them went through so much time and energy self-learning that they are understandably reluctant to give up the goods. Bloggers seem to be a bit different though (with Carp on the Fly and Colorado Fishing Reports tops on my list too) which is exactly why I started mine.

Owl said...

I need two things. A trip carpin' with you and for you to change my blogroll listing the correct and proper name. ;) LOL

Thanks for the links! I've heard rumor that there are carp near me in Lake Lanier. Not sure if I can find 'em without a boat though, but I'm going out to look for them this week anyway!

Ty said...

John, don't be surprised if I take you up on that offer one of these days!

Yeah, Erin, I had some real reservations about the "g" word, but somehow it seemed to fit in a post about carp. Thanks for the comment!

Thanks McTage. Blogs like yours and the others we listed are definitely the best sources for carp info. I routinely point folks to these blogs when I get questions about carping. Everything you need to know is right there.

Owl, I almost changed your blogroll listing to "Tenkara sucks, but barbed hooks are awesome!" Anyway, check it now. Better? And you come on up to La Fayette anytime. I'll be more than glad to take you carping!

John Montana said...

I made the same offer to Mctage last year, primarily in jest...sob flies in on June 9th now! Hah!

I struggle just a touch with this stuff to be honest. On the one hand, I love carping and want to share, shorten the learning curve etc. It took me months to figure out what a take looks like. On the other hand I have seempn the power of the internet so I hoard my best spots like a miser. Mctage had to sign a 12 page non disclosure agreement and I get final approval of all pictures before they go online...hah! I know all three of my readers figure I just suck with a camera but the truth is I just don't post pics unless the background is generic.

It is a sickness. But hell, half the fun is the exploration.

Ty said...

I'm with you on that John. I'm glad to share what little I know about any type of fishing, but I don't readily give up info on my hard-won hot spots. I think that's fair enough.

Yeah, you better keep an eye on that McTage character. Very much looking forward to the blog posts that come out of that trip.

Jay said...

Wish I could find some carp waters near Memphis. You would think it would be easy, but I just haven't found any.

Ty said...

Man, there has got to be some good carp water out there Jay. I've thought about that since I'm out that way from time to time. Surely some of those oxbows hold a few carp. I've heard Reelfoot has plenty too.

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