What are some good tactics for carp? I found a small shallow lake where carp were cruising around. Not really sure how to prepare myself for them though? Any tips would be much appreciated. You can PM me to if you don't want to expose the secrets to everybody.(LOL)
There is an awesome article on this site written by one of carp fly fishing's most talented, creative, successful --- and modest---- proponents. Welcome to the sickness,
if you have a lot of fish to choose from, dont waste your time casting to jumping or cruising fish. although you can get the cruisers to bite, most wont. target the actively feedinig fish. Everything you need to know is written in that article as previousy mentioned. Zen's Yellow CCC is a sick carp fly.
I just went this evening and hooked a couple that took me in my backing. I guess in a way i decided to long release them.(LOL) Oh well..... Thanks to the advice of Zen with the fly of choice i have a new fishery to explore. Thanks alot Zen.

Zen Piscator

Supporting wild steelhead, gravel to gravel.
Read the carp article

the author is the patron saint of everything fly fishing, really the jesus figure of our sport. :rofl:

Seriously though, wrench tought me a ton of what i know.



Active Member
If you use one of your spey rods you wont' even have to cast. You can just dangle the fly in front of 'em.
The thing about where i'm fishing is i don't think the water gets really clear. It's a dirty brown color and i couldn't actually see the fish in the shallows but i could see them finning. What is the strike going to feel like or will i not feel anything at all?
you likely wont feel anything at all. You anticipate when the fish is right where the fly would be, then slowly pull back, if you feel resistance set the hook, fish on!

Zen Piscator

Supporting wild steelhead, gravel to gravel.
No offense but I find it very rare for anyone to ldr mouth hooked carp, its actualy only happend once to me. You may be late on your hook sets and be accedentaly foul hooking the fish. Try to maintain a tight line so u can feel the fish pick up the fly.
Landed 3 on top last Saturday with sz 12 Royal Wulf from North Sterling Reservoir in Colorado. Two were from near surface meadering schools. One was a feeding loner. It appeared to be looking for food on the surface as it seemed rather agitated and turned quickly towards the fly once it spoted it. It was totally awsome to see them come up, stick their mouth up to the fly and slurp it in. One of them missed the first time, and came back and got it the second time. They were actually trying to eat it! They were all hooked somewhat deep, had to use my Leatherman to get the fly out. Good thing they don't have sharp teeth. I tried a nymph for a while, nad had one come up and sucked in my bright orange indicator!
Cottonwood season is just ending, at least at my house. On a lake I was on this past weekend there was still a lot in the air and on the water. If you can find an area with cottonwoods on the water, you can often find carp clooping them down. If there isn't too great an abundance of "naturals," or if you can predict his path, you can trick the carp with a pretty simple cottonwood fly.

Same can be said for mulberries.

I have seen an episode of some flyfishing show where they nymphed for cruising carp in muddy water using typical trout flies - maybe size 10, so a little large - but stuff like BH PT or Hare's Ears - under an indicator. So that could work, but I haven't ever gotten one that way.

I have seen them aggressively chase a nymph though, so you can get all different behavior out of them at different times. Heck, I've caught them on steadily reeled jigs before, so it wouldn't be impossible to pick one up on a streamer.
We're there just the other night and they were exploding on top but we couldn't figure out what they were eating. there was cotton on the water. What do you think they were eating.