Archive for February 2012

Carp on the Fly Must Haves!

This is just a short post to list some of things I won’t leave home without when hitting the water.

#1) Polarized Sun Glasses.  If you fish without polarized glasses you are putting yourself at a severe disatvantage.  I’d rather drive home and get my glasses than fish without

#2) Finger Stripping Guard .  Personally I can’t stand to fish without my lycra finger guard.  Though lycra isn’t the best material it will work until I can find a Kevlar or similar super fabric to take its place.  Not only does the finger guard protect ones finger from abrasion and burns  but In my opinion allows one to fish better.  I find I have  increased sensitivity and can get a steadier slow strip when using one.  Where I fish, the mud will eat through my stainless steal rod guides in a single season of fishing, but even if you fish crystal clear water, I would highly recommend trying a finger guard, even if its just a cloth band aid (which won’t stay on too long), or a cheap little pair of stretchy freezer gloves from the gas station(will burn through on a good run).

#3) My Rod with Fuji SiC rod guides. As stated above, the mud in the lower Missouri river will eat through stainless in a single season.  I had to put my Sage on the shelf and make a rod with Fuji SiC guides.  Not only are the guides mud/silt resistant but they are highly terminal loop friendly.  With my old Sage I had to be careful not to get my end loop or leader to line knot into the guides making Landing large thrashing carp almost impossible to land from a kayak.  With the SiC guides the loop or knot goes in and out the tip smooth as glass, a huge advantage for me.


Old Sage One Month After New Guides

Old Sage One Month After New Guides


Fuji Sic Guides

Fuji Sic Guides

Fuji Sic Guides

Fuji Sic Guides

Fuji Sic Guides

Fuji Sic Guides


#4) ? I think this would have to be Weedless Rough Dub Crayfish flies


Carp fly crayfish

#5) Some Balck Ops flies


Carp fly on saltwater hook

#5.5) 20 lb Tippet.  Too extreme for most, I can’t afford to play around with the fish, anything less than 20lb and I get burned.  Plus, there’s nothing worse than hooking the fish of a lifetime and having it break off because you couldn’t withstand the initial hook up and burst or keep the fish out of a downed tree…and then never knowing what the heck it was.

#6) My kayak, trolling motor, battery, and anchor. When it  comes to finding, approaching, and casting to carp, the yak is definitely the way to go for me.  I’d love to wade creeks, rivers, and mud flats but that’s hardly an option for me.


Fly fishing Kayak


#7)A Camera to document all the action.


That’s my short list of essential carp fishing gear.  Have something to add? Leave A Comment

Easy Crayfish Flies for Carp!

My little foray into the Carp Candy and a couple orders for my favorite crayfish pattern have gotten the juices flowing.  Although I’ve been in love with squirrel tail claws for some time now, I decided to give some other materials a chance.  Lets start at the beginning shall we?


The Rough Dub Carp Craw

Carp fly crayfishA long time favorite for both Common and Grass Carp, I can hardly think of a time that this little guy got turned down by a hungry fish.  It has exactly what I’m looking for in a crayfish fly, simple, effective, stable, and takes a weed guard well.   I like to dub this fly with a good bit of squirrel tail in the dubbing as well, sometimes it turns out ugly as hell, but always catches fish.



The India Hen Bug (Big Claw Craw)

Carp fly


Carp flyThis little guy features some big bad ass claws for such small crayfish.  Will it work? I have few doubts.  This fly is small enough that I can’t imagine any carp getting scarred by the over sized claws…if anything this fly will probably get all the more attention for it.  For those of you who tie the claws are crayfish orange India hen, and the dubbing probably isn’t as red/orange as it looks. I’ve added some flash antennae but this fly is still in the realm of simple to tie.


India Hen Bug (Small Claw Craw)

Carp flyNow this fly falls more in line with what I would typically fish.  A small fly with very subtle, slightly mottled claws of the small variety.   This little bug will certainly catch both Grass and Common Carp in the waters I fish.  To get the claws i first added a small ball of dubbing at the back of the hook, then I took a crayfish orange India hen feather and cut out the tip and tied it in just in front of the dubbing, then I dubbed the body…crayfish don’t have to be complicated.


Rabbit Claw Craw (small claw)

Carp flyThis bug starts out like a Carp Candy…with a bit of crayfish orange rabbit tied in at the back.  Claws are split with a bodkin and wrapped with thread each at least once and tied/wrapped into place and as always a small amount of cement is added at the tie in to help keep the claws in the right place.  A little bit tricky but doable .  It would be easy to add ribbing and/or another plume at the head ala the Carp Candy.  I traditionally keep away from softer materials like this because they can be troublesome to tie in and split, to avoid fouling and to maintain profile when the fly sinks but this should still be a viable Carp catcher.  I may have a solution to splitting  softer  materials in the next fly.


The Ginger Bug:

Carp flyMarabou has never worked for me with crayfish, at least not split claw crayfish.  I tried something new here.  After getting the eyes on and wrapping to the back, I tied in two longer than normal pieces of flash going off the back, then added a small dubbing ball to help split the claws.  Next up i tied in one clump of marabou straight off the back.  Once that was in I split the clump with a bodkin and brought the two pieces of flash through effectively splitting the claws, and tied the flash off to the shank of the hook and then folded it back 180 and tied it down going off the back for antennae.  I don’t think i even post wrapped the marabou, just added some cement at the base of each claw, dubbed the fly and was done.  Not so bad.  If I had to post wrap these or tie in two clumps I think that would be a deal breaker.  There you have it…a bunch of easy crayfish flies for Carp or whatever it is you fish too.


Carp Flies

And some late additions to the the post


Carp Fly

Candy Craw


Carp fly

Squirrel Back Crayfish

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Chris’s Carp Candy?

A contact told me that he’s had the most success fly fishing to Carp with a Carp Candy.  Not knowing the fly, I hit google images.  I’ve definitely seen this fly before but was turned off by the swanandaze wrap.  Just so happens I actually have swanandaze…Its been sitting  in my stash for probably a decade or longer, still looking as good as the day I purchased it.  I never did like the look of it, but after tying up some of the ugliest looking crayfish that never fail to catch fish, maybe its time to open my mind to the Carp Candy.


Carp Candy Fly

Chris's Carp Candy?


Carp Candy carp fly pattern


Tied up with some “gold variant” Rabbit fur on a size 6 hook with large bead chain eyes, this fly actually looks pretty good.  I can already see some of the variations that will come out of this pattern and I’m half way excited.  Being awakened to a new fly is something I will never cease to enjoy.  So if you have a favorite carp fly,your out there and reading, drop a line or a comment and let us all know about it!


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Mini Ball Weedless Carp Fly

Nothing to this fly, just a Grizzly Marabout feather wrapped on the hook shank, some eyes and a weed guard.  I don’t know a bout a carp but I’d eat it. This could be tied in any of your favorite carp colors, with or without sparkle/legs, dead drifted ON bottom, stripped, or “motionless” I’d have to bet this fly will produce.

The Mini Ball Carp fly

The Mini Ball Carp fly


Carp fly pattern flies

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