Friday, January 31, 2014

2014 Fly Swap: Medina's Hevos De La Muerte

Click HERE to visit the swap summary page.

Tier: Mike Medina
State: Colorado, Denver

About:  "Many people think that you shouldn't waste your time with suspended carp.  The Huevos De La Muerte (Eggs of Death) changes that.  Now, don't be afraid to throw them to feeding carp as well, but when you fish it weightless and let the fly sink slowly in front of negative cruising, sunning or suspended carp they really work.  The take can be subtle and difficult to detect.  One method is to watch the leader where it penetrates the water and when it twitches set the hook!"

Notes:  Nobody ever told Mike he couldn't catch negative carp - so he just kept trying and trying.  Now he catches more negative carp than anybody I know and these eggs are one of his secrets.  As I mentioned in the swap announcement, last spring Barry Reynolds was confronted with some extremely large but negative carp and broke out his Huevos De La Meurte from last springs swap.  The result?  His personal best 37lb common carp.  Mike has also hooked several grass carp on these eggs - particularly a version using pale green yarn.

  • Hook:  Eagle Claw Plain Shank All-Purpose Bait, size 10
  • Thread:  Black 
  • Body:  Peach egg yarn.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

2014 Fly Swap: Beve's Carp Nymph

Click HERE to visit the swap summary page.

Tier: Luke Bever
State: Colorado, Denver

About:  "Most carp flies are heavily weighted, which is good in most cases. However, I have run into situations where a big heavy fly spooks fish nearly every time. I wanted a small durable fly that was light and would land softly when fish are in shallow. This one seems to do the trick. I like to tie the marabou tail long for as much action as possible and a stiff hackle helps with a soft landing. This is my go-to pattern on the Denver South Platte when the water is low and clear." 

Notes:  Luke has been guiding in Colorado since 2000. He now works for Freestone Outfitters as well as North Fork Ranch. He's fished in three Carp Slam Tournaments and hopes to participate in many more.
  • Hook:  TMC 3761 #10
  • Bead: 5/32 tungsten
  • Tail and Body:   ginger marabou, medium vinyl rib brown
  • Thorax: brown scud back, light olive fine dubbing
  • Hackle:  brown saddle feather
  • Thread: danvilles waxed monocord orange

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

2014 Fly Swap: Christmas' Hack Variant

Click HERE to visit the swap summary page.

Tier: Miles Christmas
State: MEEEEEchigan

About:  "This variation of the Egan's Headstand Nymph is faster sinking than the original for the moving and deeper water I usually fish. Drag and drop it into the zone and twitch it if it's ignored. You know, the standard carp presentation.  I caught 7 carp over 20lbs on this fly this year, but 4 of those times it was the same fish!"

Notes:  Miles has been fly fishing for carp longer than some of our participants have been alive.  He may denigrate his flies by naming them things like "Hack Variant", but we know two things.  1)  If Miles fishes it, it gets eaten and 2)  Miles has found the stupidest 20 pounder on the planet and is completely willing to to catch it over and over and over and over.  Find him on Instagram at @milesxmas.  
  • Hook:  #8 TMC 2457
  • Tail: Barred orange rabbit fur and brown speckled crazy legs
  • Legs: Hareline Dubbin: Rusty Orange
  • Beard:  Peacock Hearl
  • Eyes: Black mini lead dumbbell
  • Head: Dubbed orange egg yarn

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

2014 Fly Swap: Garza's Sculpin

Click HERE to visit the swap summary page.

Tier: Mario Garza
State: MEEEEEchigan

About:  "My fly tying started with patterns for the local waters I fish.  The smallmouth flies I tie are usually successful patterns from Mike Schultz and the other guides at Schultz Outfitters.  As I dove into carp fishing, The Schultz Outfitters crew were a huge influence on me.  However, most patterns I tie tend to be heavily influenced by the flies of JP Lipton at  As JP has shown on his site, sculpins are a hot pattern.

This pattern is based on a common wooly bugger variant i've seen in shops for trout, with the addition of rubber legs and a rabbit head, as used on Schultz's S3 sculpin pattern.  I tied them in both burnt orange and natural rabbit.  Natural colors have been the ticket on the Huron River here in Michigan lately."

Notes:  At 1.5" total length, this fly is much smaller and delicate than it looks in the pictures.  Mario lives in carp heaven and knows how to catch 'em. The man eats, drinks and sleeps fly fishing. Find him on Instagram at @mgarza912.  
  • Hook:  Orvis 9034 Size 6
  • Tail:  2 grizzly marabou feathers, stacked on top of hook
  • Legs: Hareline Dubbin: Rusty Orange
  • Body:  Marabou feathers from tail wrapped forward to eyes
  • Eyes:  Medium lead
  • Pec Fins2 sili legs on each side (trim to adjust sink rate)
  • Head: Rabbit fur spun in a dubbing loop and wrapped around eyes

Saturday, January 25, 2014

2014 Fly Swap: Adduci's Rock Hopper

Click HERE to visit the swap summary page.

Tier: Austin Adduci
State: Illinois

About:  "This is best fished in the great lakes region hopped, bounced or dragged on the bottom.  The longer tail fibers along with the rabbit hair head breathe underwater with very little movement"

Notes:  This fly is 2.5" long.  Austin guides on the Great Lakes for carp and his charter service is a member of Fly-Carpin's guide directory.  

  • Hook:  TMC 200r size 4 or 6 
  • Eyes:  Medium painted lead dumb-bell 
  • Tail and Body: Grizzly marabou 
  • Head: Magnum zonker strip (hair only, no hide)

Friday, January 24, 2014

Video: Suspended Dap

Hard rabid tailing carp can be infuriating. Often they can be surprisingly hard to catch since the carp can't find your fly in their own dustcloud and you can't figure out when they take the fly amid all the choas. If you can get close enough to dap the fly one presentation to try is suspending the fly just a couple of inches off the bottom at the edge of the dust cloud.


Thursday, January 23, 2014

2014 Fly Swap Loot: Orvis Fly Boxes

Orvis Fly Boxes!

Last year Orvis was kind enough to supply every swapper with a great new flybox for all their shiny new swap flies. Well, this year's swap is bigger and badder and Orvis has stepped up with bigger and badder boxes. Personally, I loved last years box; super light weight and curved so they fit against your body. This year's boxes are even better. They are larger to accommodate more flies but just as light and still curved. Plus, there is a place for swappers to write their name for when they forget what it is. Big thanks to Orvis... boxes are so much more legit than ziplock baggies. 

Monday, January 20, 2014

2014 Fly Swap: Eric's UV2 Carp Leggs (Bonus Flies!!!!)

Tier: Eric Beebe
State: Montana

Notes:  Since he owns a fly company, Eric practically swims in flies.  He doesn't really need any flies back beyond those that participants explicitly want submitted to CATCH, but he still wanted to participate.  In order to support the swap and celebrate carp flies he sat down and personally tied up a full batch of 40 UV2 Carp Leggs as bonus flies.

About:  "This fly doesn't sink as fast as you might think.  I like to do the drag and drop with it followed by small twitches until they see it then stop, wait and hold on!"

Eric Bebee's UV2 Carp Leggs Carp Fly

  • Hook:  Dai-Riki #810 Size 4 
  • Tail:  Barred and Speckled Red Crazy Legs 
  • Body: Black UV2 Dubbing 
  • Neck: Black UV2 Schlappen 
  • Throat: MFC Red Barred Ostrich Herl 
  • Eyes: Dazzle Dumbbell Eyes 
  • Beard: Black Schlappen 
  • Thread: 210 Denier Black Danvilles

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Ge Ya Carp Flies Heaaaaaaaaa

Ge ya carp flies heaaaaaaa

Ge ya carp flies heaaaaaaa

No.  Seriously.  Get your carp flies there ------------------------------------>

As many loyal readers are aware, CATCH Fly Fishing has been working hard to bring the top carp fly selection in the world to the market for over a year now.

Well, there is more to come, but some of that hard work has paid off and CarpPro is now carrying the McLuvin along with nine other great carp patterns.

Incidentally, I have gotten several samples from several different lots of the McLuvin - they have all been perfect.  Absolutely perfect.

Ge ya carp flies heaaaaaaa.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Ambush Style

This was one of the first things I filmed with my new GoPro the day after Christmas.  As a result it is a little rough, but the presentation is cool, you can see the fish tailing and moving on the fly (if in 720P) and it happened to be one of the biggest carp I have ever hooked on the South Platte. 

I hadn't published it before because of the quality (I will learn) and I lost the fish shortly after a botched net attempt.  I am fairly certain it would have been my DSP personal best common carp if I had landed it, so that had me a bit bummed out about the video.

Eventtually I decided I have to publish it because it should give fans of Fly-Carpin a better idea of what I am talking about when I talk about "Ambush" style carpin.

The fly was an Olive McLuvin presented with a one-handed bow and arrow cast followed by a short drag and drop.  Notice that after I dropped the fly I never moved it again until I set the hook.  In the winter I rarely impart much action, and the tail of the McLuvin sticks up and waves in the micro-currents on it's own without imparted action anyways.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Fighting the Fever

Personally it starts to hit me mid January.  It starts with a feeling of unrest.  Like I am forgetting something.  Like I am forgetting to wear pants.  What I am actually forgetting is to fish more. Never-mind that I don't really have a choice in the matter.  By mid February I am certifiably insane with cabin fever.

Fly-Carpin has taught me something really interesting about cabin fever.  It seems that many other carpers have the same seasonal pattern with it that I do.  I know this because overall interest in Fly-Carpin starts to rise rapidly in mid January and peaks by March.  You would think that the most interest would be in the summer right?  Nope!  January, February and March.

Now, cabin fever is excruciating, and I would like to help out a little if I can.  Obviously I can't change the seasons, but I can help in other ways.  First off, I try and ramp up content at Fly-Carpin this time of year and the fly swap is a big part of that.  Just as importantly though, I think I can help you find all the hot carp content you need to keep you warm for the next two months.

CarpPro Fly Fishing Forum (LINK):  The CarpPro forum is always a little slow in the fall and early winter but let me tell you something.  When it starts kicking in the late winter / early spring it is the most vibrant and energetic forum that I have ever participated in.  Be sure and check it out. Remember - obsessing is tastiest when shared with others.

CarpPro Magazines (LINK):  You can sink hours and hours digging into the 6 current issues of CarpPro magazine.  So many excellent articles, and most of us still have several months left until spring to read them all.  The cover of Issue 5 is particularly fetching!

Blogs:  The blog-sphere's cup is running over with carp on the fly content these days.  If you take a look at the right side of Fly-Carpin you will find an invaluable resource for finding most, if not all, of the quality carp on the fly content on the blog-sphere.  It is called the "CarpRoll" and it is continuously searches the blog-sphere for carp content - so that you don't have to!

Instagram:  When it comes to social networks, Instagram is easily most active when it comes to fly fishing for carp content. The best thing about Instagram is that it is extremely easy to find that content.  If you look on the right hand side-bar of Fly-Carpin you will see something designed to help.  The "InstaLips" feed filters Instagram for pictures with the hashtag #carponthefly which is allot of fun and really active.  Once you get the hang of it you can easily do the same from withing Instagram by searching for #carponthefly or even just clicking it wherever you see it.

Facebook:  Facebook has a good amount of carp on the fly content, but it can be very hard to sift the wheat from the chaffe, and I have never attempted to make any tools to help.  You could check out the "likes" section at to find most of the carp content producers on facebook but in general you are going to have to wade through allot of extraneous content to get your carp fix there.

Twitter:  I am not a huge fan, and for some reason the fly fishing for carp revolution is much less active on Twitter, but if it is your thing I can help there as well.  Once again, there is a tool on Fly-Carpin's side-bar called "TwitterStank".  It filters twitter for a large variety of fly fishing for carp related key words.

So go on ahead, dive down the rabbit hole.  These days there is more than enough GOOD carp on the fly content to keep you busy until spring.

Further Developments on the Head-Stand Leech

It looks like I am going to submit the Head-Stand Leech I am working on for the fly swap.  A couple of weeks ago I had started with the intention that it be an articulated leech but I gotta tell you - it was a ROYAL pain in the butt to tie.  It was a really interesting pattern and had already caught several carp, but it was just too annoying. Check it out.

I am still using Pat Cohen's Carp Dub, but after playing around with some other ideas I have decided to ditch the articulation.  Instead I am using a short rabbit strip pierced at the hook and tied in behind the eyes.  The cool trick is that I am putting the rabbit strip on upside down so that it pushes the rabbit fur and the Dubbing shag against each other and flattening the profile of the fly.  It gives the same laterally flattened profile as the original concept, takes about 1/3rd the time to tie and has BETTER action under water.

Here is a picture:


And here is some bathtub video of the new version:

I think this will probably be the version that goes out for the swap.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Announcing Fly-Carpin's 2014 Carp Fly Swap

WE ARE FULL AT 5:04 Mountain Time!!!!!

The third annual Fly-Carpin Carp Fly Swap is a go.  We are going to have 40 participants this year.  I already signed up 27 on the down-low, so the next 13 people to email me at mctage at yahoo dot com are IN.  You could also use this form.

Before I get into details lets tell a story.  Very early last spring Barry Reynolds found a group of very large carp laid up at a local still-water.  You know, the kind that are just sitting around miserably cold and that won't eat anything?  Well they wouldn't eat anything. Not, that is, until he remembered from swaps past that eggs are reputed to be good for passive carp.   As a last ditch effort he started wind-drifting his copy of Medina's Huevos de la Muerte from last years swap and promptly landed a 37lb common carp.  Not only was that his personal best, it may be the biggest scale-verified carp I know of on a fly.  On a swap fly actually!

Medina's Heuvos de la Muerte
Back to the details - The only significant differences from last year's swap is that I am going to limit it so that each tier will send only one pattern in multiples of 10.  Or in other words 10, 20, 30 or 40 copies of a single pattern instead of any number they want of any number of different patterns.  Limiting rules suck but I had to.

  1. Email me your intention to participate at mctage at yahoo dot com or with the form at this link.
  2. Mail me a 10, 20, 30 or 40 copies of your carp fly.  You will get roughly the same number of flies back that you send.  Due Feb 15th!!!  Please do not send 30 or 40 unless that is going to be fun for you. This is for fun, not to be miserable.
  3. I will send out my address in an email.  Please Include your return address with your package or via email!!!!
  4. At your discretion include materials lists, instructions, how to fish it, about you, website links, credit due etc.  
  5. If you earn or supplement your income in some way related to fly fishing for carp feel free to include promotional literature or cards (within reason) and I will include it in the return packages.
  6. There is no requirement that these are unique flies.  What is and is not a unique fly is a murky subject but I will be highlighting your flies on my website, so try and give credit where due if applicable so that I don’t get nasty-grams or lose possible carpin buddies.  If you are not sure if your fly is a dead ringer, a variant or truly unique just ask and we can decide together.  I will communicate with you directly and negotiate if I feel we need to give credit.
  7. If your fly is unique and you would like to submit it to CATCH Fly Fishing, send two extra's and I will forward them on.  I will just be forwarding the flies and the participants contact information - Whether CATCH is interested in your pattern and everything after that is none of my business.
WHAT I WILL DO (With some help from Dan Frasier at CarpPro)
  1. I will take pictures of each pattern and compile a summary page on Fly-Carpin along with whatever information you provide.
  2. The summary page will include links or plugs to participant’s fly fishing for carp related websites and businesses where applicable. 
  3. I will forward all the pictures, supplemental information and contact info to CarpPro for possible inclusion in their magazine.  
  4. I will forward extra flies to CATCH at participants request.
  5. I will sort the flies and mail back packages by March 15th. 
  6. The packages will vary randomly.  I will work hard to kype all the good stuff be fair.
  7. In order to make this as easy and fun as possible I will cover shipping costs back first class. 
  8. I will make a half-arsed effort to get the participants some free stuff.  
Current Participant List: (I will continuously update)
  1. Barry Reynolds (BT2 Productions)
  2. Brent Wilson (Uprising)
  3. Chris Galvin (Facebook
  4. Chris Vargo (
  5. Dan Frasier (CarpPro)
  6. Dave Litten (AnglersAll
  7. David Wratchford 
  8. Erin Block (Mysteries Internal)
  9. Jay Zimmerman (Colorado Fly Fishing Reports)
  10. John Montana (Carp on The Fly
  11. Wendy Berrel (Fishing and Thinking in Minnesota
  12. McTage 
  13. Mike Medina 
  14. Miles Christmas (Instagram
  15. Mr P (Got Backing)
  16. Pat Cohen (rusuperfly)
  17. Roughfisher (
  18. Scott Wells (Reel Fish Ink)
  19. Steve Martinez (Indigo Fly Fishing)
  20. Ty Clifton  
  21. Ty Goodwin (Carp Afficionado)
  22. Mark Erdosy (This River is Wild)
  23. Gregg Martin (CATCH)
  24. Adam Hope (This River is Wild
  25. Kevin Morlock (Indigo Fly Fishing)
  26. Ben Muraski 
  27. Zach Janssen
  28. Luke Annear (Young Man and the Stream)
  29. Matus Sobolic
  30. Treavor Hackenberg (TCO Fly Shops)
  31. Luke Bever 
  32. Chase Harmon
  33. Mario Garza 
  34. Travis Hammond
  35. Danny Scarborough
  36. Robert Uphsall
  37. Austin Adduci (Grab Your Fly Charters)
  38. Levi Meetz
  39. Josh Rinehart
  40. Chance Gallant

Monday, January 6, 2014


For a long time chewing and fishing was synonymous for me. Actually, chewing and virtually everything was synonymous. About a year ago that all changed though, and I have officially been tobacco free for over a year now.

In my case laser acupuncture seemed to help.  I mean it really truly seemed to help.  For the first two days I was homicidal and for a good month I really couldn't fish worth a damn but otherwise quitting was pretty easy.

How is life post chew?

Well, not being enslaved to 7 eleven and a spittoon is sweet.  Not having bad breath at all times is rad.  Not having to walk the "do what I say not what I do" walk of hypocrisy with my son is bitchin.  And that leaves me desperately short of archaic old-fart replacements for sick.  Because as a friend pointed out today we are all of us pretty much too old to get away with "sick".

More than anything else though, this means I get to be a sanctimonious prick to anybody else who hasn't quit.  I looked it up, those are the rules.

Incidentally their is a long-standing theory about chewing and carpin.  The theory goes something like this:

  • You have it on your hands.
  • Therefore it gets on your flies.
  • Carp can smell tobacco in the one part per bazillion gazillion.
  • Carp HATE the smell of tobacco.
  • Therefore you catch less carp.
Just a theory mind you, but it would also seem to indicate that either the proponents of the theory or the carp themselves are also sanctimonious pricks who quit chewing a while back.  Either way I am officially on board.  

Saturday, January 4, 2014

First Go-Pro Video

My lovely Wife got me a Go-Pro for Christmas.  I still have allot to learn on getting great footage but here is a taste.

These were two of the carp I caught on the Headstand Leech Proto-fly over the Christmas / New Years break.  One on an underhand flip cast drag and drop and the other on a over-hand cast drag and drop.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Carp Fly Fishing Guides - International

You are viewing the International section of Fly-Carpin's carp on the fly guide directory.  Return to the guide directory map to select a U.S. state.

Location: Surat Thani, South Thailand
Waters: Cheow Lan Lake and the rivers in Khao Sok National Park
Other Species: Hampala Barb, Giant Snakehead.
About: "Thai Fishing is a fishing guide service that specializes in Mahseer Fly fishing. We are privileged to offer top-quality, fully- guided fly fishing trips for Blue and Thai Mahseer in some of the most beautiful and untouched jungle water in Thailand."
Note:  Mahseer are another member of the carp family Cyprinidae perfectly suited to fly fishing.
Location: Chandigarh, India
Waters: Streams, Rivers & Lakes of Himachal Pradesh & Uttarakhand
Other Species: Brown and Rainbow Trout.
About: "Himalayan Outfitter is an outdoors travel guide service that operates fly fishing holidays for Mahseer and Trout in select regions of the Himalayas and Indian Subcontinent. "
Note:  Mahseer are another superb fly fishing worthy member of the carp family Cyprinidae.  India is home to the Golden Masheer among others.