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The Orvis Guide to Fly Fishing for Carp: Tips and Tricks for the Determined Angler


Carp on Fly | Grass Carp Fly Fishing Information | Grass Carp Flies

that have been most successful for me with the drop are moderate to small patterns. Size 14 and bigger nymphs, backstabber style flies, and other nymphs and egg patterns have all produced fish on the drop for me. The key with this carp fly fishing technique is to have flies that will dive or slowly fall to the bottom of the pond in front of an approaching fish. Thus, weight in the form of weighted eyes (lead, brass, bead chain etc.) or some split shot are critical for the pattern to be successful with this approach unless the water is extremely shallow. I also have more success when the fly is moderately weighted, since an extremely fast falling fly will often gets to the bottom too fast to allow the fish to follow. Remember this is only for the drop. Experiment with flies and pay attention to what’s happening in the pond, lake, or stream that you fish in. If dragonflies are all over the place, pollywogs are lazily swimming around, or stuff is falling into the water, use patterns that come close to these items. Carp are such an adaptable species that you need to have a variety of techniques for these fish through the season, give the drop a try, and I’m sure you will stack the odds a bit more in your favor, but don’t expect carp and their pubescent ways to make it easy on you.

Gear with this carp fly fishing technique is your standard carp gear and more or less dependent on the size of the fish and present vegetation of the fish’s environment. I fish an eight weight and have broken a six weight or two on carp. Tracking the fly, particularly in murky water, is a challenge, but this technique allows you at least to stay in the game when the water is murky and you can’t see takes on the bottom. For tracking my fly in murky water, I will attach a small indicator within a foot to a foot and a half of the fly. The indicator sinks and causes no problems with casting. My indicator of choice is a used fly line, nail-knotted to the line. You can go one to three turns with the nail-knot depending on how much you need on the line. I use bright orange from a heavy weighted line like an 8-10 weight, and I use a washed-out chartreuse from a 3-4 weight for clearer water. Experiment with what works for you, but get something to help you track your fly in murky water that doesn’t interfere with your casting or presentation. The drop does not work all of the time, but it is very effective in certain instances. When should you fish the drop and when should you not fish it?

Carp fly fishing Muddler Pattern

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Carp Fly fishing sparkle bugger Pattern

Denver Area Spring Carp Fly Fishing Report
Date: May 17, 2013
Denver Area Carp Flies: #08 , #04 , #06 , #04 , #08-10 , #06 , #06-08 , #08-10

Early mulberry imitations were mostly made of spun deer hair, but with the rise in carp fly fishing popularity, creative tiers have concocted fresh berries out of modern materials like foam and epoxy. Some of these flies – like Pennsylvania carp guide Nick Raftas’s Berry-U-Sucka—are so realistic, you might mistakenly drop a handful on your Wheaties. That level of realism serves a purpose. When mulberries are falling hard and working carp into a frenzy, any pattern that loosely matches them in size and shape—even a pink salmon egg—usually gets eaten. When only a berry or two is dropping here or there, carp may take more time to study the fly, in which case, closely matching each juicy dimple matters. But according to Raftas, the first criterion to consider when choosing a mulberry is audible appeal, not looks.