Carp Fly FishingSport angling for carp is steadily gaining momentum in the United States and some of this is due to the appeal of fly fishing for carp. Two adjectives that describe carp are smart and feisty; if they are hooked on the end of your line you’ll know it and they will fight you. It is because of the fight in the fish that they have gained popularity among sport fishermen. But to fish for carp, you will need special carp fishing gear.
The key component to fly fishing of any sort are of course the flies used. Many of the carp flies sold are hand made by professional anglers passing down a pattern that’s been used successfully by them. The ideal size for a fly is dependent on a variety of water conditions. Many carp anglers like a size 8 fly. Others insist that with proper presentation of the fly (how it rests on the water, etc) that smaller sizes like a 12, 14, or 16 will work better. Fortunately some flies of a particular pattern can be bought in two or more different sizes.
The fishing line recommended for fly fishing carp generally comes in 100 foot lengths. Lines will vary in weight from 1 wt. to 15 wt, from lightest to heaviest. As you will need to vary the flies due to water conditions or fish behavior, so too you will need to vary the line weight and match that to particular conditions or fish behaviors. Read up or learn up by standing side by side with an experience fly fisherman or experiment yourself with different flies or line weights.
Other aspects which affect fly presentation include line taper and line density. The lines are weighted either to sink or float on top of the water, and tapers are used to help determine the success of the cast.
Seasoned fly fishermen will recommend a six weight fly rod to catch most carp, though larger species of carp will demand an eight weight fly rod. Among the Great Lakes along the Canadian border carp can reach an impressive weight of nearly 40 pounds. Bearing in mind that even a 10 pound carp can put a fly fisher back in his stance and fighting, reeling in a carp of any size is challenging. Carp will make long, powerful runs of fifty yards or more in making a bid for their freedom.
One last advantage of fly fishing for carp is that they are prevalent enough to be found easily (found in every state but Alaska) but smart enough and strong enough to give a fight to even the most experienced angler. So get yourself some quality carp fly fishing gear and enjoy the fight!