Goin' Ghetto/Carp Questions


Big Ben

OK Carp aficianados, what kind of equipment and patterns do you use for these floating monsters. I used to catch them on corn, but I would like some pointers on getting them on my 7wt. I was thinking about my clear intermediate, 8lb Maxima and a bug pattern. What works for you?:dunno

Brad Niemeyer

Old School Member

As one of the "Carp Fanatics" I guess I should give you my 2 cents:

1) Fly fishing for carp is sight casting ( don't bother blind casting)

2) Small brownish nymphs( 12-16) seem to work alot better than big woolly worms (4,6)

3) Tailing carp are feeding! Cast a foot in front and wait for your line to wiggle then set the hook...

4) A 6 weight will do, a 7 weight is better ..you will appreciate the fighting butt...Floating line 6-12 foot leader w/ 1x or 2x tippet... carp are generally not leader shy.

5) Tie strong knots...nearly all of the big carp I've lost pulled the knot loose. Their rubbery lips hold a hook very well

6) Expect at least two long runs into your backing from carp over ten pounds

Carp are a blast and this is the time to go...

So where have you spotted these scaly monsters?
If you need a good tip on where to look I can help...

Keep in mind, the take from a carp is EXTREMELY gentle.... thats a great point that when you see your line hesitate, or wiggle a TINY bit, set the hook, and HOLD ON! Once you finally hook into a "golden ghost" you'll want more!:thumb

Big Ben

Sounds like Greekgeek found some and he works at a local Safeway so I'll have to bribe him out of a few holes. I saw about 10-12 podded up in Rowland and casted to them with an ant but they weren't interested. I had a 5wt with 4x so its probably better they left it alone. I saw the Reelguys catch a few so I thought I'd try it. I know a place on Sauvie Island (OR) where they really get thick but not very big.
Floating monsters..if you are trying to fish for carp lounging near the surface...tough fishing. As has been said, you need to find feeding fish. I use a 5wt, 0x, floating line, #8 stout hook, a "carp bug" fly, is a pic on this site somewhere under carp fly swap. STILL trying to get a pic to go onto this thing...got to admit I am computer illiterate......
Well, I'd suggest oatmeal, garlic powder, and vanilla extract, but don't pass the recipe around.

Seriously, these are freshwater bonefish. I've been chasing them for over 5 years now, since the trout fishing in Colorado was so damn good, I used to get bored and head out to the plains for some world class carp fishing.

Two weekends ago, Sparse and I managed to salvage a perfectly good expedition to a certain place out east that was rumored to have big bows. The bows were nowhere to be found, but we did manage to kill half the day chasing the carp cruising in the eddies. I hooked three, two around ten pounds (one was a mirror carp), on a red san juan worm, trying carp wooly's and cray fish and all sorts of things. Unfortunately, I didn't land any of them, I'd hook them and they'd take me straight into the current, downstream, and pull the hook.

The reason carp fishing is great is because it's all sight casting for fish that are often tailing. Carp are also can be more selective than any other freshwater fish I've fished for (yes, even De Puy's Spring Creek rainbows), so it's a challenge. Of course, they're not as pretty as trout and generally don't live in as pretty of locations as trout.

One of my favorite carp flies is a red san juan worm tied with red copper wire along the shank. It's easy to see, and for carp fishing, you need to know exactly where your carp fly lands. I've also had good success on tan carp flies, and a friend at a fly shop recently recommended pink san juan worms...

Look for tailing fish! Don't cast unless you see a fish, and in moving water, look for the tell-tale mud trail of a feeding carp. Cast a foot or two in front of him, depending on how fast he's moving, and how spooky he is. Let the fly sit, and when he moves over the fly and put's his head down, set the hook, HARD! Cross his eyes! People talk about your line twitching and things along those lines, personally, I very rarely see my line twitch. A carp will pick up your fly with his mouth, then spit it back out. If you don't hit him when he's got it in his mouth, or if you wait for the line to twitch, you'll likely miss him. Best of luck!

P.S. use a uni-knot, I usually have the line break before the knot breaks. If you have problems with any knot pulling out on you, leave a longer tag, the main reason a knot break is because it pulls through.


Calling Fly Fishing a hobby is like calling Brain Surgery a job.
-Paul Schullery

Big Ben

Thanks for all the advice! I've got a half day of school Friday then its off to the gorge.
I've had most luck with San Juan worms...all colors...red being easiest for me to see. As mentioned in other reply's, sight casting and stealth is necessary as they can be spooked easily. I've heard that Banks Lake has some monsters to 50lbs cruising the shallows but I haven't tried that yet.
I was on Green Lake last evening for my usual Wednesday attempt for tiger muskies. Nothing to report on the tiger front. Water temp moved up to 67 degrees. I switched over to carp stuff and hooked two on a red glass bead head black wooly bugger, size 8 3x long, fished on a 9 foot 2x leader on floating line. Saw several broaching but had to leave to pick up my wife.
Carp bug...#8 stout short shank hook, tiny bead chain eyes, two rubber "tails", body is "Aunt Lydia's Rug Yarn" I use this stuff for tons of flies, is cheap at craft stores, is just like Antron? Anyway, then a brown hackle palmered. I trim the hackle off what would normaly be the "top" of the fly, and I also darken half the fly with a brown or black marker. I the carp are in a spooky mood, I will pull off the tails. Hey, I think I managed to load a picture on this thing!!!!!
Fly Fishing for ole Buglemouth is one of my favorite pastimes. Lots of good advice so far herein and my two cents worth would be: use an eight weight outfit with a good quality reel as the two or more trips into the backing comment above is vry true with bigger carp. I prefer the floating to an intermediate as it helps with sight fishing. I like small wooley worms, San Juans, Chironomid patterns and other nymphs. Match the hatch if the cottonwood fluff is flying or if any other food is predominate. A good hex hatch can create some fabulous fishing the next day as the fish "gloop" the spent flies off the surface.

Here are my webpages on Carp fishing with the long pole and although I am sending this from Florida, I will be back to a few of my favorite Carp haunts soon in Washington state. http://community-2.webtv.net/fishing-folks/Carpflyfishingthe/index.html

Good Fishing
Chuck S
Carp can be a blast on a fly. Very strong fish! I fished for them as a kid on the Okanogan river. There is was corn on the bottom.

Several years ago, though, I began to cast to them with a fly on the Snake River below Hells Canyon Dam. It is very clear water, and sight fishing is easy. Lots of fish in the five lb range. I used pretty much the same fly as I was using for smallmouth bass, a brown wolly bugger on a 8 size hook.