Registration just opened for the 2011 Denver Trout Unlimited Carp Slam. Get your entry quick because I just got mine and the spots should go quickly. Despite selling out nearly every year they made a cool decision to drop the price of entry just so that this poor guy (cheap bastard) could afford to participate. That had nothing to do with it of course, but cmon. if I wasn't at least a little narcissistic and self-centered would I have a blog?
My old man to the rescue. Somewhere, somehow he found out about the Carp Slam and gave me a call. "Hey Tage, I know you love Carp but apparently you suck. I hope you don't mind but you need help and I signed you up and paid your entry into the Carp Slam."
The Carp Slam is a Pro/Am draw your partner fly fishing for Carp tournament on the Denver South Platte. You contribute a small but substantial fee to the noble cause of improving the South Platte. Denver Trout Unlimited (DTU) contributes a great venue, a fun format, an after-party and a professional partner to work with. What an incredible break. An opportunity to get a little guidance from a Master!
As my partner I drew none other than Barry Reynolds himself! My luck eased off a little after that since our beats were scarce in the shots and feeding fish category but who cares. It was fun as hell fishing with a legend and he gave me some good spots, some good advice and most importantly some confidence. I am not sure how you find your Carp mojo getting your arse handed to you in a tournament but I did.
The next weekend I went to one of the spots Barry pointed out, modified an MMF to his specifications (HEAVILY weighted, NO flash) and caught a nice 28" carp within 20 minutes. Confidence and a sweet spot is everything.
For those of you that like a good cause this is a very good cause. DTU is paying for some substantial river improvements with funds generated by the tournament. Just as importantly the tournament has raised the total awareness of the Denver South Platte and Carp as a resource. The increased awarness is good for the health of the river and the spread of the Revolution.
There is one other thing I love about the Carp Slam. If you put two 7 year old boys alone in a room for more than 5 minutes then you have to expect a couple of fart or poop jokes. Inevitable really. If over several years you involve a bunch of avid fly-fishermen in a Carp tournament then you are gonna get a stinky, smelly, stench ridden sleeper cell of the Revolution in TU. Just as inevitable and nearly as amusing.
FULL DISCLOSURE: This year I have been peripherally involved in helping with the tournament. These guys are way out of my league in the planning, promoting and vision departments so my contribution to this point has been nearly useless, virtually ineffective and in no way constitutes a conflict of interest. I think.