North Americas leading publication focused on catch and release carp angling, one of the fastest growing sectors of the sport!!!
FLY BAIT INNOVATE CARP FISHING QUEBEC ) 2 1 . /0 $ Featuring Adam Clewer Tomas Kutschy David Wratchford Trevor Tanner Haley Mcpeak Austin Anderson John Montana * ’( ) $ &% % # $ # # + $ >RoughFisher * ) ’( $ % & >Returns! % # $ # # " + $ 12) . /0 ..$ ) ,, .. ) ,, JP Lipton ! + Carpocalypse CARP TOURNEY ROUND UP 3 Rivers Throwdown WITHY POOL RIG explained Contents 8 | Editorial - Tony Cartlidge 12 | Quebec Carping - Justin Taus 20 | Carp Central Recap - Dan Frasier 26 | Rig Clinic - Tomas Kutschy 34 | The Winning Method - Austin Anderson 44 | The Power of PVA - Adam Clewer ISSUE 5 54 | Carp Throwdown - David Wratchford 66 | GRITS - Haley McPeak 74 | Carpocalypse - John Montana 84 | Small Flies - Dan Frasier 88 | Rig Clinic Extra - Tomas Kutschy 90 | 3 Rivers Carp - Matt Pike 98 | Return to Fantasy Island - Austin Anderson 113 | RoughďŹ sher - JP Lipton Cover: Trevor Tanner with a Lake Michigan Monster! Team Editorial TONY Cartlidge - Feature Editor Tony Cartlidge is a writer, editor, journalist, blogger and marketing specialist who started ﬁshing as a kid in the city parks of Liverpool, England. He caught his ﬁrst carp at age 12 and has been hooked since. Having lived in the US for almost two decades, Tony moved to Texas in 2008 and now targets smallmouth buffalo just as much as carp DAN Frasier - Editor Raised in South Dakota, Dan was introduced to ﬂy ﬁshing on a family trip to Breckenridge Co. Coming home to South Dakota, he knew he wanted to ﬂy ﬁsh but the only obvious species was carp. Dan taught himself to ﬂy ﬁsh on those carp over the course of a decade. In the process he began to blog about his exploits and became friends with some of the most inﬂuential ﬂy ﬁshermen for carp in the game. Dan found the CarpPro.net forum and quickly became integrated as part of the team. When CarpPro began looking for an editor speciﬁcally geared for the Fly Fishing niche, Dan was brought in to ﬁll that role. DAVID Smith - Layout & Design After founding USCARPPROmagazine David soon realized that ﬂy ﬁshermen were targeting carp. He made every effort to connect with this branch of the sport through regular articles, even making the long trek to MI from his home in California to meet David McCool and wade the freezing cold ﬂats of an early spring Traverse City. A bait angler for over 30 years he understands the rise of the sport and the passion carp anglers develop for their quarry. A HOME TACTICS & TACKLE MEDIA NEWS EASY ACCESS STYLE REVIEW BUY! Picture courtesy of Austin Anderson Comment CARPPRO $ 2013 Tony Cartlidge There has been a surge of anti-bowﬁshing sentiment amongst carp anglers this year. Facebook is full of pictures of dead ﬁsh, speared and shot and left to rot. They do not make good viewing. I guess that is the point; to shock and shame the authorities into doing something about what sometimes appears to be a campaign to eradicate nonindigenous species -- an argument that falls ﬂat when dead carp appear on the same piles of bloody carcasses as dead native buffalo and dead native gar. It's a highly emotional subject and, understandably, some of the rhetoric gets a bit heated. Understandable, yes. Acceptable, no. I don’t like bow-ﬁshing and I don’t see the sport in sticking an arrow through a large, slow-moving ﬁsh. (Surely the skill is in hitting smaller targets?) But let’s not forget that carp were introduced to the US primarily as a food ﬁsh and plenty of bow-ﬁshers actually harvest what they shoot. While we might argue the ethics of bow-ﬁshing, we are on a slippery moral slope when we campaign against another person’s legal sport for our own gain. The outpouring of venom on social media sites does nothing to solve the problem. Instead it polarizes neutrals and spurs those with that particular inclination to go kill even more ﬁsh next time. Let’s do something useful instead. Most states already have laws regulating bow-ﬁshing. Photograph transgressions and report them to the authorities. Go about it the right way. This year, Scott Ferguson, organizing an Austin Wild Carp Club event, reported three individuals attempting to spear ﬁsh Ladybird Lake. He went through the right channels and the three men were caught and escorted away by the authorities. That’s protecting our sport by doing something the right way. Trevor Tanner a few years back discovered and reported the Sand Creek oil spill, preventing it from becoming a wider ecological disaster. And Denver Trout Unlimited always mentions it when they write about him competing at CarpSlam. Yeah, that’s right. Trout and carp, hand in hand (or ﬁn to ﬁn?), for the good of both sports. Doing things the right way earns respect for our sport. Which brings me to Jason Bernhardt of WCC. Jason created a petition asking Texas Parks and Wildlife to do something about the damage being done to Lake Fork by bow-ﬁshers. I urge you all to read it, sign it, share it and support it. It does a great job of explaining why we need to enforce the regulations and protect this magniﬁcent multi-species trophy ﬁshery from excessive bow-ﬁshing. However, state Fish and Game departments are teams of scientists asked to regulate natural resources in a way that generates income for the state. And, since they must do this with shrinking budgets and manpower, regulating the killing of carp, a ﬁsh that is by no means endangered, is going to be a very low priority. Texas Parks and Wildlife is very progressive, possibly the most progressive DFG in the US as far as carp and buffalo ﬁshing is concerned. They are interested in promoting the sport and promoting carp and buffalo tourism. They are also very concerned for the future of Alligator Gar and the fearful rate at which they are being eradicated. If we are to stand a chance of regulation enforcement anywhere, it is in Texas. But that doesn’t somehow magic up the resources required to do it. We have to help. In short, we have to show them the beneﬁts that carp and rough ﬁshers bring. We have to show them the money. No one collects data on the amount of money carp and rough ﬁsh anglers pump into the economy annually. However, the anglers survey from Southwick and Associates last month reported that 1 in 20 anglers were carp anglers. That’s a huge number considering that the survey classiﬁed carp as “other” for years. We’re making progress so please continue to sign up for the survey, sign Jason’s petition, and show the powers that be that we are here and we are valuable. To this end, I ask you to complete the US Catch and Release Carp Fishing Survey. It is short, just 7 questions, and completely anonymous. The answers are there for you to choose and the data collected will be used to present to Departments of Fish and Comment CARPPRO $ 2013 Game in America in support of petitions such as Jason’s. But it is more than the money we spend. It’s about the money we save as well. We encourage all anglers to tidy up their swims, take home more trash than they bring, treat their environment with respect, and practice ethical and responsible angling. We can help alleviate the cost of waterbody management from the local authorities, sportsman’s groups and the local communities like Waddington, NY, Spartanburg, SC, Two Rivers, WI, Baldwinsville, NY, and Quitman, TX. These communities beneﬁt from successful events like the Texas 44, Carpocalypse, Wild Carp Week, and the Carolina Cup and are the allies we need on our side in order to get carp, buffalo and gar designated as sportﬁsh with all the same protections as trout and bass. With all that being said, this issue is full of material from the rising generation of carp anglers who see only the positive aspects of the sport and the excitement it generates. Hope you enjoy it. Bienvenue au Québec! Le Canadien, la poutine et... la carpe! A short introduction to carp ﬁshing in Québec. Justin Taus Fabien Provost By Justin Taus Pictures from WCC Quebec Carl Saucier The French-speaking Canadian province of Québec is known to many for its European vibe and architecture, for its national dish-the poutine--for its hockey team and as an overall great place to enjoy the arts and to party. In the angling scene, however, the province is slowly emerging as a great carp ﬁshing destination. This Although many European immigrants and native Québecois have undoubtedly ﬁshed for carp privately in Québec for many decades now, the ﬁrst major occurrence that marked the beginning of an actual carp-ﬁshing community was the founding of the Carpe Québec organization in 2008 by George Szczypiorski and Carl hasn’t always been the case. Not unlike the rest of North America, carp ﬁshing in Québec is for the most part only beginning to gain momentum. But it’s gaining quickly. The Beginnings: Saucier. Besides running a popular public discussion forum on their website, Carpe Québec introduced European-style tactics and culture by producing educational articles and by organizing ﬁshing outings amongst its members. One notable event was an educational session for children in 2009 during which the carp were very active and every REPORT ✈ CARPPRO 2013 child got a chance to reel one in. Furthermore, some Carpe Québec members were active in other facets of the North American carp scene, by participating in competitions like the renowned CAN-AM tournament for example. The popularity of carp ﬁshing in Québec grew slowly but steadily until 2012, a year that I feel marked an Fabien Prévost, in collaboration with the la Pourvoirie du Lac-St-Pierre and Carpe Québec, organized two different 48-hour tournaments under the banner of “the Lac St-Pierre Carp Challenge.” Lastly, towards the end of the year, another Montrealbased organization, “Les Pêcheurs Urbains,” organized a couple of tournaments and an educational Wild Carp Club members gather regularly explosive increase in people’s interest in the sport. I believe that this increase can be attributed to three organizations that saw the light of day this particular season. Firstly, Richard Chamberland and I decided to form the Québec chapter of the Wild Carp Club with a goal of uniting carp anglers and of promoting catchand-release carp ﬁshing. Secondly, conference for beginners. At the end of the year, I published Québec’s ﬁrst printed book about carp ﬁshing, entitled “Carpe Sauvage,” which described the year’s events in detail. The Wild Carp Club of Québec: As mentioned earlier, we formed the Québec chapter of the Wild Carp Club to help promote catch and .......Educating future carpers The Book Bruno Tessier REPORT ✈ CARPPRO 2013 release ﬁshing for carp, a ﬁsh that is sadly known as a "garbage species" by the majority of anglers in the province. We also wanted to create a community where carp anglers could meet, share information and opinions, and have a good time on the bank. Although participants change from session to session, they regularly consist of a good mix of seasoned, intermediate and beginning carp anglers, which make for great learning experiences. Although only in our second season, the Club's objectives have already been realized, with over 50 participants in total and plenty of carp caught in 9 different spots, some of which we were barely familiar with. Ever since starting the club, we have been very lucky to have the support of many great sponsors who have enabled us to provide equipment and price discounts for the club members as prizes at each of our sessions. Our 2013 season has started off a little slower ﬁsh-wise. We have had to cope with a late spring, a delayed spawn, and bizarre temperatures and water levels. Nevertheless, our ﬁrst four sessions have had good turn-outs with many new members and the ﬁsh weights are generally higher than last season. Carp fishing in Québec: In Québec, we have the mighty StLawrence river, with a length of 744 miles, running from one end of the province to the other. Although the majority of carp ﬁsherman are based in and around Montreal, catches have been recorded as far north as Québec City, one of the last stops before the river becomes salt water. In addition, we have other carp-holding rivers like the Richelieu, Yamaska and Rivière des Prairies, to name a few. In Montreal, Canada`s second largest city, with an urban population nearing 4 million, many of us are used to "street ﬁshing" as it is know in Europe. Here, many of us travel by bike and subway, which demands that we pack light and be mobile. Montreal is an island surrounded by rivers and large lakes and the city also also has a few canals passing through it, making it a true carp-ﬁsherman`s paradise. Furthermore, we are only a one hour drive away from Long Sault, Ontario and Waddington, New York, both renowned for excellent carp ﬁshing. The majority of catches are common carp ranging in the 18-25 lbs. Mirror carp are extremely rare REPORT ✈ CARPPRO 2013 here, although some nice mirrors have been caught over the years. The future: We hope that catch and release carp ﬁshing will continue to grow in our province. As already mentioned, we have noticed a marked increase in respect for a ﬁsh that was once (and is unfortunately still somewhat) known as an "invasive species" destined to be left to die on the shore. With the help of the different organizations working to promote carp-ﬁshing, I am conﬁdent that Québec will become a world-class destination. To all U.S. and international readers, know that you are always more than welcome to join us on the banks of one of our many lakes and rivers! Merci! Justin Vali Pavaoalia www.wildcarpcompanies.com REPORT CARPPRO ✌ 2013 Carp Central Update Dan Frasier The competition uncovered activities that are illegal in 48 states!! is good for ﬁsherman is good for the sport as a whole. Orvis’ latest foray in engaging the public in a productive and fun way came in the form of their new Carp Central page and the accompanying photo contest. “We wanted to introduce more people to carp ﬁshing with a ﬂy, and we wanted to have fun doing it while engaging our customers.” said Tom Rosenbauer, Marketing Director for Orvis Rod and Tackle. “Just having a web page devoted to carp is not the same as involving your customers in the fun. Based on the number of entries we got and the thousands of votes on those entries, we consider Carp Central a big success.” Success indeed. Nearly 250 photographs and a dozen videos or years Orvis has taken the stance that engaging their customers was an important part of being a steward of the sport. In that vein, they create instructional videos, offer podcasts and run a blog, all of which are free to anyone who wants to use them. This culture of engagement and education reﬂects a view that what F REPORT CARPPRO ✌ 2013 of ﬂyﬁshermen with carp were submitted during the 8-week-long contest. Winning photos were voted on by the public, who ultimately selected a Grand Prize winner. Winner Chris Fairbanks was elated. “…you really have no idea how much more this means to me than I believe it would to most… You see, my Grandfather. who has been gone more than a decade, was not only an avid ﬂy ﬁsherman but also an avid Orvis advocate. He loved and used your products so much he was actually buried holding one of his beloved Orvis ﬂyrods with a favorite ﬂy still attached from his last trip on the water. I am sure grandpa is having a hay day right now.” One great thing about a photo contest is that the picture is never taken in a vacuum. There is always a backstory. This one is no different. Chris continues, “On the particular day that the picture was taken I was on a scouting/practice day for the 3 Rivers Carp Cup. This location … has some open areas as well as a tight spot where the building and outside eating area juts out over the water at a height of about 10 feet. I hadn’t planned on ﬁshing at this location on that day but there happened to be a young family with a little boy of maybe 3 or 4 years old that was going crazy over the ﬁsh. I overheard him asking over and over to "touch the ﬁshies" and the Size isn’t everything REPORT CARPPRO ✌ 2013 mother wouldn’t let him get close enough to the water. I approached them and asked if they would like me to try and catch one for him to see up close and touch. I don’t honestly think they thought it was possible especially when I produced a ﬂy rod until I netted this 28 inch pig. The child was so Orvis undertook this endeavor. As Tom points out, “A lot of the new people coming into ﬂy ﬁshing are young and they have no preconceived ideas about what is “proper” in ﬂy ﬁshing, so they are more willing to embrace nontraditional species.” A very worthy winner excited yet petriﬁed of the huge ﬁsh I wasn’t even sure he would touch it. In the end he did. They were then gracious enough to take a pic and send it to me with their smart phone.” Chris is and probably will be a lifelong ﬁsherman; perhaps the young child that touched the ﬁsh will be too. That is a big part of why “Some of our more popular trout streams have too many boats on them already,” he adds. “And since ﬂy ﬁshing is growing at a faster rate than in previous years it is important to spread ﬁshing pressure across other resources.” In the end the photo contest was about engagement and having some fun. That is exactly what it delivered. with ProStaffer Tomas Kutschy Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 PopUp Basics! The pop-up rig is a proven favorite for anglers ﬁshing over a thin layer of weed, in silt, or to present a neutral buoyancy bait to fool wary ﬁsh. There are many variations of pop-up rigs, from this basic rig to some very complex ones, but this rig has banked me some great ﬁsh this season and continues to do me proud. I hope it is effective for you too! What you’ll need: Quality hook in size #6-#10, shrink tube, rig rings, supple braid, tungsten putty or split shot, a pop-up or buoyant bait, hair stops, a swivel lead, buffer bead, swivel of your choice, puller tool, and braid scissors. Form a simple overhand knot in your chosen braid, pull tight with puller tool. This loop will be used to mount your bait. Tactics âœ” CARPPRO âœ 2013 Most people will use a pop-up boilie but today I'm using a large piece of imitation maize. Thread onto the hair lengthwise and attach your hair stop. Slide your rig ring onto the braid (this helps with the movement aspect of the rig) and secure with an overhand knot again. Now adjust length of hair and tie a simple knotless knot. Steam some shrink tube over the eye of the hook to help the hook turn and take hold. You can also use preshaped kickers from ACE and save your hands. Tactics âœ” CARPPRO âœ 2013 Your rig should look something like this. Add some tungsten putty. (I like a bit more than most). Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 Next, slide on your chosen swivel lead, buffer bead and choice of swivel There we have it, the ﬁnished setup! I'll often use this in a PVA bag or over a bed of particles. (The anti-tangle sleeve is optional) All components are available from ACE, Taska & Korda and have never let me down. Tight lines and good times Tomas Kutschy These ﬂavors have set the Paylaking world alight. Don’t miss out, we simply can’t keep it in stock!!!!!! Contact us for the latest availability Sales@carppro.net TACTICS CARPPRO $ 2013 The Winning Method A ProTip from Austin Anderson Fishing at range has advantages and disadvantages like any kind of ﬁshing. Being able to ﬁsh really far out can be a huge advantage when ﬁsh don’t always venture close to the bank or during a tournament when ﬁshing really far can allow you to intercept ﬁsh that others may not get the chance to present a rig to. For me, the advantages outweigh the disadvantages, but it can get pretty frustrating when the conditions don’t cooperate. Fishing at range with a decent strength crosswind can be a royal pain in the ass, taking forever to sink your line below the surface. Lack of casting space may also be a problem, so try to make sure if at all possible that the bank behind you is clear and you have no chance of completely blunting a hook during the cast. It takes practice but I feel comfortable ﬁshing and baiting upwards of 130 yards in the right conditions. During the Lake Fork tournament we were ﬁshing into timber at range, accurately presenting baits over beds of particle. We relied on two methods to bait up. The ﬁrst method was launching method balls. Most people are familiar with a method blaster, my tool of choice, but some adaptations are made to this deadly method of baiting for long range. First and foremost you are going to need a decent spod rod to achieve the distance that you may need to hit, paired with a fast retrieve reel and braided line for spot-on accurate baiting. To hit the range in the ﬁrst place it’s going to take a good amount of practice and some strength because of how rigorous this can be when you are putting out over 50 balls per sitting. Use a good method mix that binds really well, the last thing you want is for your method to break in mid air when you are heaving it long distances. I developed the mix that is listed above especially for this, because I needed a mix that would withstand extremely hard casts and long distances. The only downside is it’s a very heavy mix to begin with so you can’t put out extra big method balls, but it’s easy to pack compared to a lot of packbaits and method mixes and it is easy to prep in bulk once you get the hang of it. TACTICS CARPPRO $ 2013 Austin’s Cracked Corn Method Mix (Adapted from original recipe by Richard Somerville) • 7lb cracked corn • 1lb prepared hemp seed • 4lb old-fashioned oats (half added to cracked corn, half added after adding hot water) • 1 gallon boiling water • ¼ small size jar cinnamon • 2 capfuls each: Hutchy Scopex, Savay Cream, and Fruit Frenzy • 1 can of cream style corn • 2lb regular breadcrumbs Preparation instructions: 1. Measure out cracked corn, oats, and hemp seed. Mix 2lb of oats, cracked corn, and hemp seed together in a container and mix well to evenly distribute oats and cracked corn. This will be the wet part of the mix. 2. Begin to boil exactly 1 gallon of water 3. In a separate container mix the remaining 2lb of oats, 2lb of breadcrumb, and the cinnamon. This will be the dry part of the mix. 4. When the water begins to boil, pour all of it into the container containing the wet part of the mix. Stir very well with a feed scoop to evenly wet the entire mix. Let this sit for 15-20 minutes stirring occasionally. You want this part, once completed, to be stodgy but not have any standing water in the bottom of the container. 5. Once the mix is set up, add the dry part of the mix gradually into the wet part stirring well to evenly distribute everything. It may look like it’s not going to pack very well or like it will not ever break down at this stage, but just continue, that’s what it is supposed to be like. 6. Open a single can of cream style corn. Dump half of it into the now made method. To the half that remains in the can, add all 6 capfuls of Hutchinson ﬂavor (any combination you want). Stir in well and then add to the method. Stir very well to evenly distribute to every part of the mix. 7. Time to bucket it! Start to scoop the mix into a 5-gallon bucket. Compress well into the bottom of the bucket and seal the lid. Leave this for at least 6 hours for the method to completely set up properly. 8. Once done, it should resemble a semi sticky paste, not too wet and not too dry. When ready to use, break up with a feed scoop and pack into balls to put into the lake. Notes*Don’t try to double this recipe. The amount this mix makes is barely manageable in a 5-gallon bucket. It ﬁlls a 5-gallon about halfway or more. A large mixing tray would be a lot of help when mixing the ingredients. TACTICS CARPPRO $ 2013 Water temperature determines the break time, but even though the breadcrumb holds this mix together like concrete, the cracked corn still traps enough air for it to break eventually. I wanted a mix that would take a while to break so the attractants in it would disperse more slowly into the water. Get into a rhythm of baiting up and once you get the distance right putting them out comes easily, and you can get a good 50 out at a time without tiring yourself out too much. The other method we used was spodding at range. I spod a lot when I’m not using a kayak on big water because you can quickly put a lot of bait into an area and also scatter some baits to give a little more chance of ﬁsh picking up your bait when you are ﬁshing single hookbaits far out. Again, you need beefed up tackle. A regular 3lb test curve carp rod with a baitrunner isn’t going to cut it for this kind of baiting. I like a heavy spod rod that has a lot of power for casting and reeling back, but not too heavy so it fatigues your arms. A fast retrieve reel is a serious plus, and though it’s not necessary it’ll make your baiting go a lot quicker. A good line clip isn’t completely necessary with braid but it helps tremendously. My setup consists of a Chub Outkast Plus 5lb TC spod rod and a Daiwa Emblem Spod reel. I use 30lb test Power Pro braid for spodding, 300 yards with another hundred or so of mono backing it to prevent slippage of line during the cast, which can result in a bad cut. I personally absolutely hate ﬁngerstalls, I just can’t stand to use one so I just lock up the drag tight and have no problems with line burn or cuts. As for spods... I love Spombs because of how true and accurate they ﬂy when cast, they just take a bit longer to load and you may have issues with the button engaging and spilling the contents all over the bank behind you if you aren’t careful with where you are going with your backcast. I also use a few others, including the Korda Skyliner. I really don’t ﬁnd that spod spill is an issue for me, with a spod mix that is kind of sticky when packed into the spod very little of it comes out the back of the spod. The only problem with spods is they make a lot of noise on the retrieve and entry, so you may want to limit how many you put in at a time at night or when it’s really quiet, as it may spook ﬁsh from your swim. There are a few other tools that make ﬁshing at range a whole lot easier. I absolutely love my marker rod and use it a lot in every situation I can just to gain more insight on exactly what is down there. I put reﬂective tape all over most of my marker ﬂoats to help with visibility at night, if you get some quality tape you should be able to see it perfectly with only a small headlamp. Marker elastic is something else I use all the time, it’s great for making sure that you rigs end up where you want them every time, even at night. Keep several spods and method blasters on hand in case you screw up and a few end up in a tree 20 feet in the air above your bivvy or 150 yards into the lake ﬂoating away into oblivion. Casting accuracy and rhythm are both very important with both baiting strategies, otherwise this is all basically useless. Make sure you are able to hit the baited area comfortably; don’t ﬁsh as far out as you possibly can because if the wind picks up you are out of luck. Try to concentrate your area as much as you can, don’t just spod all over the place like I see far too many anglers doing. The more accurate and concentrated your bait is (same goes for your rigs) the greater chance you have of getting a take. Also, this can make a dramatic impact on exactly how quickly the carp and/or buffalo ﬁnd your hookbaits. Another important point is to KEEP BAITING. Don’t just put a few spods in and be done with it; big water takes more bait in comparison than smaller waters do. If you are seeing ﬁsh, most of that bait you put in is probably gone. Keep it going in and try to bait at set intervals to ensure the bait is still there if the ﬁsh haven’t showed up. Adapt the amount you bait out to the situations; you’re going to need a lot less in the winter when the ﬁsh aren’t feeding as often and their metabolism is slower than in the summer when they can basically continuously eat without doing any harm to themselves. Of course practice makes perfect, and a lot of this just needs to be messed with until you learn what you prefer bait wise; how much, what that consists of, how often you put it out, and what range you’re putting it out at. A lot of guesswork may be involved at ﬁrst, but as you begin to get the hang of what you’re doing and see how your catches are impacted by different tweaks in your strategy, you begin to learn the game plan that works best for you. TACTICS CARPPRO $ 2013 Taska Needle Set $10.00 Taska Wazzup Foam Pop-Up Baits $3.29 Weedy Green Aligner - Short Shank - Hook sizes 6 - 2 $3.95 TASKA Nut Drill & 5 Cork Sticks 6mm $5.75 TASKA Big Eyed Swivels - Size 8 Matt Black $3.00 Taska Heli-Chod Beads $2.99 BUY NOW!!! Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 The Power of PVA European Pro Adam Clewer explains PVA is a product that can totally transform your ﬁshing. A bold statement I know. Its versatility and various guises mean the ardent carp angler is now equipped to offer an enticing trap over the top of almost any lakebed – it’s so good it’s almost cheating. When I ﬁrst started ﬁshing with PVA products it was a simple case of stringers or solid PVA bags. Over recent years, development in the tackle industry has meant we now have an assortment of PVA products available, all designed for different ﬁshing scenarios. In this article I will explore how to utilize these products, and when they should be used or avoided. The PVA stringer PVA string is one of the oldest products in the PVA family. Whilst varying strengths of string is now available, its attributes remain the same. PVA string enables the angler to thread boilies onto a strand, attach the strand to the rig or lead, and then cast the whole presentation into the water. As with all PVA products, the string melts in the water and leaves a tight deposit of bait in close proximity to the rig. This is accurate baiting at its very best. The added attraction of multiple baits near the rig enhances both the visual element of the rig and the boosts the aroma of the bait in the water. A restriction with PVA string is that it is only really compatible with boilies. Obviously the baits presented on the string need to be threaded using a hair needle. For some baits this is not possible. However, the beneďŹ ts of PVA strings far outweigh their limitations. Of all the PVA approaches, stringers are amongst the least fashionable. This means carp are less likely to be used to them so they could provide you with a real edge to catch the cagey (often bigger) carp. When considering which brand of PVA The classic PVA stringerâ€”often overlooked but still a great carp catcher Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 Mesh bags can be shaped to suit your fishing situation. Sometimes big isn’t best! string to use, there are numerous brands to choose from which all largely offer the same product. Some strands are thicker which delays the time it takes for the string to dissolve. The thicker strands are best suited to when you need to ﬁsh at distance, as they will withstand a big cast better. They are also better suited to the warmer months, where the speed of meltdown will increase in the warmer water. In contrast, the thinner strand PVA string works best during the fall and winter months, when the water temperature has cooled. Mesh Bags Mesh, or cobweb bags as they are sometimes known, resemble stockings or long, open-ended socks, usually supplied on a dispenser tube which allows the angler the choice of varying the size of the PVA bags required. From golf ball-size to tiny PVA bags barely any bigger than a standard Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 Once melted the mesh style bag delivers an alluring trap for the carp boilie, the possibilities are only limited by your own imagination. Obviously a huge sausage of a PVA bag will not cast particular accurately--but once again the choice is yours. One beneﬁt with this style of PVA is that, like stringers, you can make up numerous bags in advance and be ready to cast back out quickly. This is especially helpful if time is short or if you are ﬁshing a tournament and want your rigs in the water in double-quick time. The limitations of mesh bags are perhaps most obvious with regard to casting. Often the lead and the mesh bag don’t travel too well through the air, frequently causing a helicopter action as the bag and lead wobble, ﬁghting to lead the way. This isn’t an issue if you are gunned up with powerful rods, or are happy ﬁshing at less than 80 yards. However, like stringers, mesh bags can be an excellent method and once again provide instant attraction to any hook bait. MARK MELNYK HOST/PRODUCER OF WFN’S GUIDED WITH MARK MELNYK “ A FULL DAY OUTSIDE WITH ZERO EYE FATIGUE SEPARATES SUNDOG MELA-LENS™ FROM EVERY OTHER BRAND I’VE WORN. THREE GREAT STYLES THREE GREAT LENS OPTIONS CUSTOM “CHAMBER” HARD CASE INCLUDED ” PHANTOM 22 DEGREES HALO ALL FRAMES AVAILABLE IN: MELA-LENS™ POLARIZED • MELA-LENS™ POLARIZED PHOTOCHROMIC • MELA-LENS™ POLARIZED PHOTOCHROMIC WITH CLARI-COAT (OIL AND WATER REPELLANT LENS COATING) • ENHANCED POLARIZED DEFINITION • MAXIMUM VISUAL CLARITY • PROTECTION FROM UVA, UVB, UVC AND “BLUE LIGHT” • SUPERIOR GLARE REDUCTION • SOOTHING VISUAL COMFORT OLEO / HYDRO / ABRASION RESISTANT LAYER LENS - POLYCARBONATE MELANIN TECHNOLOGY POLARIZED FILM LENS - POLYCARBONATE PHOTOCHROMIC TECHNOLOGY AIR SILVER MIRROR OLEO / HYDRO / ABRASION RESISTANT LAYER Melanin is produced by the human body and is a natural defense against the negative impact of the ultraviolet and more importantly, the blue light portions of the spectrum. Melanin-based technology is the foundation for Sundog’s Mela-Lens™ which features synthesized melanin. In addition to protecting you from UVA, UVB and UVC rays, Mela-Lens™ ﬁlters 98% of dangerous High Energy Visible Light (HEVL). Commonly called “Blue Light,” it creates “veiled glare” in the eye, causing fatigue and negatively impacting performance. By ﬁltering this dangerous “Blue Light”, Sundog Mela-Lens™ effectively reduces veiled glare impact to provide “soothing” visual protection and superior visual clarity. WWW.SUNDOGEYEWEAR.COM Solid PVA Bags In Europe, solid PVA backs are enjoying something of a minirevival in popularity. The greatest advantage of solids is their ability to conceal the whole rig and lead inside the bag. By crafting a baseball size and shape, the bag will not only cast well, but will ensure near-perfect presentation. Since the rig and lead are ďŹ shed inside the PVA, if the cast lands amongst weed or bottom debris, the hook point of the rig will not become obstructed or tethered. When the solid PVA bag melts the rig will always be ďŹ shing effectively. When faced with a new water, or perhaps a swim I am not familiar with, solid PVA bags are often a good starting point. The only downside of solid A nice mid-20 caught using PVA products Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 PVA bags is the time and effort they take to tie—however will a little practice this isn’t too much hassle. and stored in advance, but unlike mesh bags PVA sticks can cast really well. PVA is certainly a product that is here to stay. Looking back, my ﬁrst carp over 20lb was caught using a PVA stringer. My ﬁrst carp over 30lb was caught using a solid PVA bag. PVA Sticks The PVA stick, which is similar in design to mesh bags, is a long, thinner version of the mesh style of PVA, which can be fashioned like a cigar. Sticks are great when ﬁshed with small food items and because of their smaller size and shape can cast really well. A great tip with PVA sticks is to thread the rig by means of a stringer or hair needle through the stick. This leaves the hook point submerged, much like a solid PVA bag, ensuring effective presentation every cast. Like mesh bags, multiple sticks can be made PVA sticks provide high attraction with little actual food content. Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 Last week, on a quick trip to France I landed a 45lb 14oz Mirror using PVA. In fact, I scarcely go ﬁshing without some variety of PVA in my tackle bag. Whilst many anglers still revert to traditional method-ball tactics, PVA can provide the angler with better hookbait presentation and offers a far greater variety of approach and techniques. You don’t have to be a big baiter to catch with PVA. The added attraction of free bait in close proximity of your rig, combined with fantastic presentation can often produce quick bites – without the need to pre-bait. My advice would be to get your hands on an assortment of PVA products, and learn to use them. By utilizing PVA in your ﬁshing you will almost certainly catch more carp. Perfect your PVA fishing and you will certainly catch more carp Weston Developments A must for all Daiwa big-pit users. 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TEL: 01992 462044 CALL FOR A COPY OF OUR FREE CATALOGUE P29_TC_03_Johnson Ross.indd 1 DARE TO COMPARE!!! Check out our new easy to use website, ordering from the UK has never been simpler and we even take PayPal! www.johnsonross.co.uk 05/02/2013 11:56 REPORT CARPPRO 2013 Wratchford Throws Down On Henshaw Lake Henshaw in the town of Santa Ysabel, CA,carp is an amazing but diﬃcult carp ﬁshery. It’s also the site of the now annual Carp Throwdown. What makes the ﬁshery so diﬃcult is that the water is often dark with visibility that can run to just mere inches. High winds, typically starting around midmorning, also contribute to diﬃculty factor. While the average carp is only about 19-20 inches the lake is absolutely loaded with ﬁsh. It’s also one of the few places where large numbers of carp gather in groups to feed on algae. Because of this, a lot of the ﬁshing is done to ﬁsh feeding either on or just below the surface. The other reason there are so many ﬁsh near the surface are the high winds; when the hoppers are around the wind blows them onto the water causing the carp to fall David Wratchford reports & wins into a protein-induced state of stupidity. There aren’t very many times or places where you can smack the water while ﬁshing for carp and still get an eat! Most of the Throwdown competitors came out on Friday to take advantage of a pre-ﬁshing day and to be there for Jeans (competitor and owner of The Kernville Fly Shop) and Conway Bowman (tournament organizer, host of Fly Fishing the World, Orvis endorsed guide and outﬁtter) brought out their instruments and started the new band, Three Blind Carp. By 10:00 or so, ﬁlled up on food, music and fun, everyone made their way to their beds Three Blind Carp the meet and greet that evening. Orvis rod designer Shawn “Puﬀy” Combs and I spent quite a bit of time walking the lake and putting our game plans together for the following day. Shawn found a nice secluded spot with quite a few tailers in skinny water and I located several pods of surface feeders that I hoped would still be there on Saturday. The festivities really started when the group of Bernard Yin (tournament social media guru), Guy to try and get a bit of sleep before the big day. Saturday dawned warm and still and the competitors gathered at the lake’s general store to pick up lake permits and measuring boards before heading to the docks for the shotgun start at 7:00 am. Boats were launched and ﬁred up; the wading division donned their waders and strung up rods. Al Q. and Conway counted down from 10 Worth The Tape? REPORT CARPPRO 2013 and everyone raced to the spots they had picked out from the previous day. If they were anything like me, they had hopes of winning some of the great prizes donated by the sponsors. An Orvis H2 SW 6wt, an Abel Super 6 with their Skull and Crossbones artistic ﬁnish, Yeti coolers, and even a Galvan reel for largest “trash ﬁsh.” For the purposes of the tournament, a ”trash ﬁsh” was anything but a carp. How many other times could a Largemouth Bass be considered a trash ﬁsh? (All the time? Ed.) Most of the wading group headed to the south end of the lake while Shawn Combs, a couple of others, and me headed to the north end of the lake. My plan was to look for tailers early and, once the wind came up, to ﬁsh to the pods of carp that I’d seen feeding into the wind on algae clumps the day before. Even the best laid plans of mice and men...you know how the saying goes. I was unable to ﬁnd the early tailers I’d hoped for but I remained ﬂexible and was able to pick up my ﬁrst three ﬁsh on three diﬀerent ﬂies. The ﬁrst came on a damselﬂy nymph, the second on a Parachute Adams, and the third on the ubiquitous San Juan Worm. Those ﬁsh were caught by locating the pods of carp that were traveling along and feeding sporadically. When the wind came up I was able to ﬁnally get back to my game plan. I found a knee-deep ﬂat that had large Cast? numbers of carp lazily making their way upwind and feeding. I put on a trusty white glo-bug and started making casts to groups of twos and threes. The day before I’d found that the smaller groups had a much higher tendency to eat than the larger groups. My percentages still weren’t couple of carp and the only catﬁsh of the tournament when the bug sank as I was looking for my next group of players and the line started ripping through the water, but I wasn’t going to trust to blind luck for the win. I couldn’t ﬁnd any big ﬁsh--they all ran right about the average for the lake-- On Foot ..or by Boat high, maybe one ﬁsh out of every twelve that I cast to actually ate. The hardest part was that visibility was limited to about six inches. That meant that extremely accurate casts that dropped the bug within a few inches of the ﬁsh were necessary. Any further and the ﬁsh either wouldn’t see it or it would sink below the visibility layer making me unable to see the takes. I did manage to pick up a but by the time I needed to head back to get to the weigh-in on time I had 13 ﬁsh that I’d landed and photographed on the measuring board. Honestly, I had no real expectation of being able to win since I’d been unable to locate any bigger ﬁsh as a kicker. I was just hoping to at least place. I was sure that with as many good carp anglers as there were ﬁshing the tournament that at least one or two had managed REPORT CARPPRO 2013 some better than average ﬁsh for score. The way the scoring worked was that you took your ﬁve biggest ﬁsh and the length, veriﬁed by the photographs, was added up and each inch meant one point. It didn’t matter how many catﬁsh. Shawn Combs and Dylan Moore tied for biggest ﬁsh and had to go to a cast oﬀ. After the ﬁrst casts resulted in a tie, Shawn graciously conceded the prize to Dylan in a great show of sportsmanship. In the boat division the team of Dustin you caught except that the more ﬁsh landed the better the chance that you would have bigger ﬁsh to add up. As I talked to the others at the weigh in it slowly dawned on me that I was the only one in the wading division that managed to land ﬁve ﬁsh or more for score. At the awards ceremony it came out that I’d managed to squeak out a win and I’d also landed the only trash ﬁsh of the tournament with the Sergeant and John Hendrickson (a carp guide on Lake Henshaw) repeated their win from last year and both went home with new Yeti 45 Tundra’s. I also managed to repeat my win in the wading division from last year and won the awesome Orvis H2 custom Carp Throwdown rod and also won the Galvan reel that was oﬀered as the prize for largest trash ﬁsh. (The SWAG ENVY REPORT CARPPRO 2013 full results of the tournament are posted on www.carpthrowdown.com.) This is a great event that just keeps getting bigger and better each year. With twenty something participants last year and about thirty ﬁve this year I really look forward to seeing how many more new faces arrive next year to join the fun. On a ﬁnal note; there is always a bit of controversy and a diﬀerence of opinion as to whether competition is a good or bad thing for the ﬂy ﬁshing industry. As Shawn Combs and I were talking on the evening of the tournament the subject came up again. I don’t think that the tournaments are the right thing for everyone and there are a lot of very good anglers who might not ever choose to enter one. However, I look at it this way, if I hadn’t been ﬁshing the tournament I probably never would have made the eﬀort to really learn what the ﬁsh were doing and how to catch them. I would have most likely just gone out, caught a few ﬁsh and still gone home happy. Instead, I became a better ﬂy ﬁsherman by truly studying what the ﬁsh were doing. If competition is what it takes for me to focus and become a better angler, then I’m all for it. I mean truthfully, that’s one of the major reasons that I started targeting carp with a ﬂy rod anyway. I ﬁrmly believe that no other ﬁsh is as accessible, as diﬃcult to fool, and presents so many diﬀerent variables in a single day of ﬁshing. Captions Please!! Introduction Haley McPeak is a CarpPro pro-staffer, and she’s just 11-years-old. No, this is not some kind of gimmicky honoriﬁc, she’s a bonaﬁde member of the pro-team, selected on merit, and on her day she can probably out-ﬁsh just about anyone in the paylakes. (Just ask the anglers she beat in the CarpReport tourneys this year!) Haley, aka BirdDog, is a fully-ﬂedged member of the famous team of paylakers along with her Dad, Barry McPeak (RedDog), and David (BigDog) and Donald (MoonDog) Moon. Together, the MoonDogs have been tearing up the paylakes for years and Haley plays a full part in that success. She makes her own pack, throws her own bait, lands and nets her own ﬁsh, and wins tournaments. Lots of tournaments. She even qualiﬁed for the CarpReport FInale this year by catching the biggest ﬁsh at a CarpReport qualifying event. Then went and did it again a few weeks later! Oh, and she’s also a straight A student, she's on the National Honor Roll, and even uses real words that CarpPro's editor has to look up in the dictionary! We asked Haley to introduce herself and to explain what makes her tick. We think she has done a ﬁne job of giving us a sneak peak at the determination and G.R.I.T. that makes her one of the up and coming paylake stars. She really is Girl Raised In the South! INTRO CARPPRO $ 2013 G > girl R > raised I ! > in T !> the S! > south Haley McPeak's True G.R.I.T.S - Girl Raised In The South Have you ever been carp ﬁshing? Have you ever ﬁshed with rice or grits? What about oats, soybean, millet, or chow? Well I have. My introduction to carp ﬁshing starts with my dad. I am a third generation carp ﬁsherman. My dad has been ﬁshing since he was a baby. He sat on his Dad’s knee and ﬁshed the old school way. I got hooked on carp ﬁshing after going to a pay lake with my Dad; he caught a lot of ﬁsh. When my Dad did something, I wanted to do it too. When I was learning how to carp ﬁsh I got hooked just like a carp. I have been ﬁshing for ﬁve years and I am only an elevenyear-old girl. I ﬁsh against some older men that have been carp ﬁshing their whole lives. And they don’t take it lightly just because I am a girl. They treat me the same as every one else. To them I am just one of the guys. They call me BirdDog. Why I carp ﬁsh? I carp ﬁsh because I think it fun, unique and very competitive. There are not a lot of young people who compete on the level that I do in the paylake scene, especially young girls. One of the other reasons is that I hate, just hate, video games. I’d much rather be outdoors ﬁshing or hunting than to be cooped up inside like a ﬂock of chickens. My dad, aka RedDog, ﬁshed a wild-water tournament in Baldwinsville, New York. He ﬁshed for a total of 88 hours, then he drove another 20 hours home. He wanted to go to HUD’s carp lake in Bostic, North Carolina, for a Carp Report tournament and I am glad we went. Carp Report is a circuit of tournaments held on different INTRO CARPPRO $ 2013 paylakes in North and South Carolina. This circuit ends with a Finale that the 50 best ﬁshermen and ﬁsherwomen qualify their way into. it’s a really big deal to win one of these qualiﬁers. Ok so back at HUD’s, about nine, nine-thirty, I got a run. I jerk the pole and start reeling. I was on the back side of the lake about the second to last hole; this is the shallow end of the lake. The ﬁsh started running towards the bank. He popped the top of the water like a cork! After a pretty good ﬁght, my dad netted it and we got the hook out. He got the ﬁsh carrier and walked to the scale house. I was standing watching the scales when they weighed it. And at 28 lbs 5 oz, it took the lead for big ﬁsh of the night. A little over four hours later the tournament ends and I got my picture taken because it was the biggest ﬁsh of the tournament. I got qualiﬁed at HUD’s and I was happy, happy, happy! What is my favorite ﬂavor for different baits? I like to spray on my ﬂavoring just in case the ﬁsh don’t like what I put in it, but if I was going to put it in the bait I like Savay Cream and Banana Crème from Rod Hutchison in grits. In chow I like Chocolate Malt, Maple Crème, and Total Maple and Megaspice is good in millet and Banana Crème is good in soybean. INTRO CARPPRO $ 2013 I don’t like to use rice but Fruit Frenzy is good in it. My favorite is Chocolate Malt chow, because I caught a lot of ﬁsh on it and I caught my 28.05 on it. Here is a tip, if a lake put new ﬁsh in from the river use Swan Mussel, Monster Crab, Shellﬁsh or Octopus and Squid. CarpPro ﬂavoring is new, not really like other ﬂavorings but better and I like to spray those. I thought it was really cool when I was asked to be one of the Jr Pro Staffers for CarpPro. Outside of ﬁshing at pay lakes I ﬁsh at the river like Wateree and Baldwinsville New York. I also like to hunt. This year is the year I really got attached to hunting. The last three weeks of the year, I hunted for two weeks and didn’t see anything, but the last week I killed a doe, a boar and a coyote, three days in a row. Three days, three bullets, three animals. My goal in life is to stop bow ﬁshing for carp. If you kill a big carp and it’s a new state record it shouldn’t be recognized. It should be illegal. That is how things become endangered and extinct. Just like the Woolly Mammoth. By Haley McPeak Aka BirdDog Fish with Poles and Hooks NOT WITH BOWS AND ARROWS September 26th - 29th Lake Blalock, Chesnee, SC Where the Paylakers go Wild!! $18K in prize money Register now!!! CARPOCA REPORT CARPPRO ♥ 2013 aLYPSE John Montana reﬂects 2013 There are some things that just go together; peanut butter and chocolate, salt and pepper, prince nymphs and trout. And there are some things that don’t quite ﬁt. Like ﬂy ﬁshing and tournaments. Truthfully, the entire concept of competitive ﬂy ﬁshing is often railed against by the majority of the ﬂy ﬁshing community, and usually with good reason. Fly ﬁshing is about a lot more than simply catching ﬁsh, and adding that competitive edge, the drive, the rules, and the pressure generally goes against the things that make ﬂy ﬁshing special. But sometimes, it just works. The beauty of The Orvis Company’s Carpocalypse is that while they call it a tournament, it really isn’t. Adam Mcnamara, Orvis Portland’s Fishing Manager, came up with the tournament 2 years ago and his overreaching goal was to simply make it fun. For starters, like most, the idea of competitive ﬂy ﬁshing didn’t really sit well with him. Also, carp were not quite as accepted 2 years ago as they are today (and will be tomorrow. The growth of carp on the ﬂy is a matter for a whole other article!) Adam set forth to create a gathering of anglers, to spotlight an under appreciated ﬁsh, and to give away some awesome prizes. With the support of some sponsors such as Idlewylde and of course Orvis, he succeeded and Carpocalypse was born. So what is the secret to his success? What makes this “tournament” more fun than competitive? Simple. The best prize (this year it was a one-of-a-kind Helios 2 8wt) is reserved not for the biggest ﬁsh, or most inches caught. Instead, the angler with the skill, savvy, and smarts to catch the smallest carp takes home the loot. Brilliant! This year was a study in success for Carpocalypse with roughly 40 anglers descending on Kennewick, WA. Day one of the tournament dawned early, highlighted by clusters of anglers dotted around the parking lot, frantically hoping their 4G service held out while they scanned Google Earth for shallow ﬂats on their iPhones. Well known big ﬁsh hunters like David Nakamoto, and eventual grand prize winner, Travis “Trashﬁsher” Hammond, whispered about secret “small ﬁsh” ﬂats, and contemplated city parks and sloughs. No one talked of gravel bars and big tails-large ﬁsh are relatively easy to ﬁnd on the Columbia--but small ones… not so much. Travis’s winning ﬁsh REPORT CARPPRO ♥ 2013 came in at 22¼ inches, narrowly snatching the win from a 23 inch second place ﬁsh. That 22¼ inch ﬁsh is one of the smallest I’ve ever seen caught, and seeing people frantically hunting for “babies” was as entertaining for me and Adam as it was fun for the competitors. The highlight of Carpocaypse isn’t the ﬁshing (which was great). Instead, it is the conversations and stories that abound when 40 some carp anglers, both new and veterans, share some space, beer, and ribs. Walking through the room at dinner on Saturday night was virtually impossible. At every table a REPORT CARPPRO ♥ 2013 new carp angler gushed about the near take he had, or a veteran suggested a drag and drop approach on a tailing ﬁsh. Hands waived as people explained ﬁsh position, and one gentleman broke into a full on carp crouch to demonstrate the stalk on a particularly memorable ﬁsh. The beauty of Carpocalypse is simple…It isn’t a tournament. It is an event, a gathering, a party of like minded anglers out to have a good time and chase a ﬁsh we have all grown to love. The fact that Orvis and others give away great prizes is a bonus, and the money raised for the anti-Pebble Mine REPORT CARPPRO ♥ 2013 campaign is a treasure, but most of us would show regardless. We’d pull into Kennewick, huddle over our phones and whisper secrets with one eye on the “competition.” Then we’d have a beer together and laugh and enjoy. As day two ended and anglers headed home, I frequently heard “can’t wait for next year.” Some things just go together… like good times and carp on the ﬂy. CLICK & LISTEN FREE FLY CARPING PODCASTS!! DONT MISS ANOTHER PROTIP IT’S FREE!! SCUDS Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 Small Flies w/ Dan Frasier There will be the usual glory of fall. Fish feed heavily, often times getting more aggressive as they prepare for the lean months of winter; the fall feed. In many parts of the country it has already begun and it can be one of the most exciting and fulﬁlling times of the carp ﬁshing year. But it is all too short-lived. Around the corner are cooler days and fewer hours of light, and that will move carp into the next phase of the year. They will still feed, but the size of the available food organisms will shrink. Smaller bugs will begin to make up a larger portion of the carp’s diet and if you want to catch ﬁsh you will have to adjust accordingly. The answer is to get small and subtle. Nymph patterns will take on a far more prominent role in your ﬂybox. Traditional patterns like Hare’s Ear Nymphs and Pheasant Tail Nymphs, not to mention more complex patterns like woven nymphs, can be very effective this time of year. Scuds and small Soft Hackles should also have a place in the late fall ﬂy selection. Soft Hackle size 12 Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 Flies should be more sparsely tied. Eliminating bushy tails or too many rubber legs can be a good idea too. Remember, the idea is to looks like food, not look like a carp ﬂy. Thinking more like a trout angler, you will want to dead drift the ﬂy handle the pull of a large ﬁsh. (The heavy duty Gapers are available in these sizes! Ed.) If you take these steps, downsize and adapt, it’s possible to extend your ﬁshing for another month or Think Small into the feeding lane of a ﬁsh, or feed it at close range if you are on still water. The critical factor here is size, not pattern. Over the course of the year we get accustomed to ﬁshing size 6’s and 8’s to carp. Now it’s time to get out the 10’s and 12’s. Small hooks tend to have a smaller gauge, so be sure your hooks can longer. The ﬁshing will be tough and the shallowing angle of light and shortening days will make locating ﬁsh difﬁcult, but if you are able to ﬁnd them you can effectively ﬁsh to them far deeper into the year than you may have thought possible. And who knows, you may even catch one of those elusive December carp. A R T EX The Withy Pool rig, created by Steve Renyard, can be a devastating rig choice on some waters. Created back in the late 80s for the highlypressured carp of Withy Pool, the rig proved highly effective as an anti-eject rig for fish that had seen it all before. The problem with the rig, however, hasnâ€™t been its effectiveness, but the fiddly process of steaming and shaping the shrink tube to the right curve. Until now... When I got a chance to try the new With Pool Kickers from ACE, I jumped at the chance. Everything I've used from them has been Tactics ✔ CARPPRO ✭ 2013 with Tomas Kutschy & ACE Withy Pool Kickers top notch and these are no exception. No messing around holding tubing over hot steam, simply slide one onto the hooklink of choice then over eye of the hook. Put the tungsten putty or weight at the base of the kicker, and away you go. Couldn’t be easier and no need to put the kettle on to fix up new rigs! A quick word about the hooks. I’ve also been fortunate enough to try out the new ACE razor point curve shanks that are making a bit of an impression back in Europe. These are not only mega sharp, they seem to stay sharp too. I’ve yet to drop a fish on them and I’m using hooks smaller than I’m used to. So far, they are performing flawlessly and I’m very happy with their reliability! So far so good. The captures speak for themselves and I’ve no doubt they will continue. 3 Rivers Carp Cup REPORT CARPPRO âœ” 2013 Matt Pike reporting Pictures Courtesy of Matt Pike and Ryan Dunne Mid-August means hot. MidAugust means dry. Mid-August means guaranteed fantastic carpin’ weather. Unless, of course, it’s mid-August in the Southeast in 2013. Weird is the only accurate way to describe the unusual (middle) East Tennessee weather that had highs in the 70’s and rainfall amounts suited for spring or fall (in a record year). Cloudy Tennessee on August 17th, and can be considered nothing short of an absolute success despite the unseasonal temperatures and record-breaking rainfall of the previous weeks. More anglers entered the tournament this year. More boats hit the water. And more ﬁsh came to hand. In fact, participation topped out at 68 anglers this year, which is skies meant cloudy water, and for a carp ﬂy ﬁshing tournament that means, well, that means absolutely nothing at all. The second annual 3 Rivers Carp Cup was held in Knoxville, REPORT CARPPRO ✔ 2013 extraordinary regardless of the weather, or moon phase, or gentle ﬂow of the chum line. The contest playground is expansive and diverse to say the least. The water allowed includes 3 entire drainages and close to 150 miles of river, lake, creek, and down in waterfront marinas and restaurants, waiting for a fat 36incher to cruise by in search of a discarded fry, partial hamburger bun, or carefully placed tater tot. Stories of broken 8wts, lost ﬂy lines, spilled beers, and botched dockside orders greeted the exhausted ﬂats, creek and river puddle. If carp live there, and you can physically make it to the morning and evening check-ins, then that water’s likely in play. That presented unique opportunities and challenges for the 22 teams and 13 individual anglers who participated, many of whom traveled across state lines (presumably legally). The hometown boys again held great advantage, as they hunkered anglers as they sped stinkily into the 6pm check in. Last year’s team winners, Team Shock and Awe’s Brent Golden and Jeﬀ Keith, retained the honor with 13 ﬁsh and a top ﬁve that measured 146 inches. Andrew Smalling claimed the Individual Division title with his top ﬁve ﬁsh at 132 inches. The big ﬁsh winner and world famous title of 2013 3 REPORT CARPPRO ✔ 2013 Rivers Carp King went to Greg Marret of Team Fudd, with a common carp taping out at 35 inches. My team, Carptastic, including trusty partner (and spectacular boat owner) Ryan Dunne, fought it out in the trenches of the East Tennessee lake ﬂats amidst poor weather, worse water clarity, sleepy ﬁsh and unsavory fellow competitors to ﬁnish the day with a measly 5 ﬁsh that topped out at 111 inches. If you stacked all of those ﬁsh up into a shape of a basketball goal, I could probably dunk on it. That’s not impressive. The battle of marina ﬁsherman vs. ﬂats ﬁsherman is just beginning, but the battle of the 3 Rivers Carp Cup will rage on, and on, and on, and on… FANTASY ISLAND Re o t n r u t REPORT CARPPRO âš‡ 2013 Austin Anderson & Mirko Lucchi continue their adventure Jon Eisen’s birthday was August ﬁrst, and we wanted to do something special for it. We tossed around ideas for a small tournament on Fork to celebrate the occasion and try to throw a bit of friendly competition into our session. After getting everyone invited we ended up with Jon, Josef, Brid, Rick, Lil Rick, Mirko, Erik, and myself. We agreed on a $20 side pot for big ﬁsh, a trophy for the winner, and a list of rules. Summer in Texas is really brutal; it’s hot and humid. Sucks all the energy out of you and it can ﬂat out exhaust you within minutes of stepping into it. Sessions during this time of year are difﬁcult, with the ﬁsh not always feeding, the nights being hot, humid, and sleepless. Along with the challenge that always exists at Fork with the hard ﬁshing, snags, and big ﬁsh, it was going to be hard, maybe more so than ever. We were ready. After the results from the ﬁrst session, the island never left my mind for weeks. I sat thinking for days about what occurred during that session, why things played out like they did. Were there always mirrors in the waters surrounding REPORT CARPPRO ⚇ 2013 the island? What about buffalo? There was only one way to ﬁnd the answers; return for another trip and conquer the snag ﬁlled island once more. I prepped for several days rolling 30lbs of boilies ready to drop in along with particle bait. I was deﬁnitely coming prepared for every instance we could possibly encounter out there. Friday ﬁnally came and I loaded up the truck. Destination: Lake Fork. Upon my arrival I headed over to the famed 515-west swim, a popular peg that produced extremely well in both Texas 44 carp and buffalo challenges. Jon, Josef, and Brid had already begun to bait up their swims so I stopped by to visit until Mirko showed up with the boat needed to get out to the Land of the Mirror Carp. I paid in for the big ﬁsh side pot and helped the guys bait up their swims before Mirko and I headed off to our own swim. Loading the gear on the boat took a long time as always, especially in the Texas heat we were facing. It was already beginning to get dark The Mirrors just keep coming when we arrived at the Island at last. We unloaded the remaining gear as quickly as we could and got started baiting up. I mixed up a ¾ full 5-gallon bucket full of maize, chili hemp, tigers, mixed boilies, and robin red. Along with a bucket of range cubes, we loaded up the boat and Mirko and I began to shovel the bait into the swim over where we were going to ﬁsh. We put about half of what I had prepped. Enough to fend off the catﬁsh and turtles and then some. We felt conﬁdent. I set my rod pod up and got my rods sorted sort of quickly. I opted to put my tips into the air again to try to force the ﬁsh out of the snags before they could drive me into them. I made up a quick method mix and got my rods cast out with their respective hookbaits and rigs. I launched about 20 balls over that lot to try to get the ﬁsh on the feed quickly. Mirko did the same and we soon had our rigs sorted out conﬁdently. The quick baiting must have worked because I immediately attracted the attention of a couple catﬁsh, catching four within about 15 minutes of casting. Everything settled down quickly after that and I began quietly milling around, moving gear and organizing stuff the best I could. Not easy in the pitch dark! About eleven we heard the ﬁrst crash. Being close in, it was expectedly loud but it sounded really big. Like someone dropped a small car in the water. It was a typical nighttime big buffalo crash, right over our rods. The loud VRRROOOSSSHHHH echoed through the nighttime air. Our conﬁdence rose but no takes. Another miserable night of no sleep and squadrons of mosquitoes. I decided to have a 2am brew in my lucky Obsessive Carp Disorder cup. Half way through it I realized, “You dumbass that has loads of caffeine in it!” and I basically screwed my thoughts of sleep for the entire night. About 4:50 I had a screaming take. I lifted into the ﬁsh, which felt solid, and surprise, it snagged me up within a couple seconds. I broke everything off and it was already time for my ﬁrst rig change of the session. Something prompted me to put on one of the Mulberry Scopex boilies I’d rolled. Within about a minute I had landed a fat catﬁsh. Fantastic! One more try before going back to a less sweet hookbait. I launched more baits out, carefully casted a ball of pack connected to the rig, and sat in wait. REPORT CARPPRO ⚇ 2013 snag free to attempt to land it myself, but the ﬁsh wanted otherwise and resisted, taking a heart wrenching run on a tight clutch right for some more snags. I kept the rod high and kept reeling until I saw the ﬁsh break the surface. It was another Mirror! I shouted back behind me “Mirko! Mirror!” and Mirko stumbled toward me and helped me net the ﬁsh. Success!! Two sessions in a row! I couldn’t Lake Fork commons often ﬁll the time between monster buffs and mirrors Sure enough, a couple minutes later I had a screaming take on the boilie. I could tell instantly that this was no cat. I cranked the drag all the way down and began to force the ﬁsh up and surprisingly it cooperated. I steered the ﬁsh the best I could over to an area that was relatively ACE X-Tenda Net Review Austin Anderson I’m hard on landing nets. No lie, I’ve broken every one I’ve ever owned in some way. I was getting fed up with breaking nets in all of the same places. I received my ACE Carbon X-Tenda net this week. Initially I was pretty amazed wondering how a guy as small as I am was supposed to use a 50” landing net but upon using it I was blown away. The handle is made of woven 3K carbon so it is light but rock solid. And it has an integral twist lock system that allows the net to be extended and locked at any length from 6ft to 10ft. It’s not like ﬂimsy nets that bend and ﬂex so much that you can’t get it moving through the water, the ACE net handle has some backbone to it so I was able to actually lift it even when wet instead of forcing it around. The net arms are stiff enough to maneuver the net through the water, even with the the dual mesh system that adds a ﬁn-friendly micro-mesh to the base of the net. The micro-mesh also moves well through the water pretty well and doesn’t seem to hold as much water once you lift it out either. The stainless net retaining clip is strong enough to hold the net and move it through the water but something in the design causes it to unclip the second you lift quickly. Once you get the ﬁsh in and it unclips, that extra net room confuses them and I haven't had any issues at all of ﬁsh trying to power out of the net. I never thought that could even make a difference, it's perfect! The best of any clip I've ever seen on a net. Everything is extremely well thought out, from the easy twist lock mechanism that extends the handle anywhere from 6 to 10 feet, to the One piece Spreader block with a ﬂoat Quick release net clip Light weight but strong extendable carbon ﬁber handle super strong mono cord, the robust net arms and the stainless clip on the mesh. I’m glad to ﬁnally have a net that I feel sure will accommodate anything I could wish to catch without sacriﬁcing any maneuverability. This is a high-end net, that’s for sure, and not for every pocketbook, but it is extremely well thought out in every way and I expect I’m going to be using it for a very long time. Available at firstname.lastname@example.org $270 + tax + shipping California Pro Miguel Ruiz has also been testing the net “best I’ve ever used, difﬁcult to imagine how it could be improved” he says! REPORT CARPPRO ⚇ 2013 believe what I was looking at, another apple slice-scaled Israeli strain mirror, absolutely stunning ﬁsh. She went 15lb 4oz on the scales and I slipped her back after taking a couple pictures. Spot on. I recast the rig and went back to catching catﬁsh for a couple hours. The sun had barely peaked over the horizon and the day had instantly taken a turn for the better. I texted a picture to the guys via a group message we had going and quickly got the reply that Jon had already topped me with a 16lb common. Shortly after I had another on the bank. This time a small common that I played hard enough to almost bend the hook out. It was an immaculate ﬁsh, and I snapped a pic due to it’s perfect scaling and slipped her back. That morning I lost a lot of ﬁsh. I landed a couple small commons but I lost a good 4 or 5 ﬁsh plus a couple more rigs. It was just plain brutal, and I was feeling that the ﬁsh had the upper hand. All I could really do was tie rigs, keep bait in the water, and hope the next chance I got would be a ﬁsh that I could land. I ended up in the yak a couple times ﬁghting ﬁsh but was never able to land any of them. It was just taking too much time. Mirko was getting into them too, but he has been having some recurring trouble with his reels and they kept locking up on him, losing him ﬁsh. It was extremely disheartening. The guys on the other bridge reported that Rick Wilson’s son, Lil Ricky, had lost a big buff at the net. I felt gutted for him losing a ﬁsh that was certainly way above his PB. There had also been a bunch of small commons landed on the other swim but nothing of any size apart from the currently leading 16lb common. The day wore on and it just got hotter and hotter. I decided to ﬁsh one of my favorite plastic rigs, a KD variation that hooks ﬁsh extremely well when coupled with a 10mm plastic boilie or a single kernel of artiﬁcial corn or maize. I opted for a size 8 hook so I’d have a shot at hooking a buff if one came by my swim, my usual 7 inch stiff hooklink, and I was ready to go. I baited up with single kernels of artiﬁcial maize and wrapped them in paste from the mulberry scopex boilies. I was looking down when Mirko exclaimed “Big Big Crash!” I looked up just in time to see a huge buff crash over my middle rod. My heart was in my throat. I trickled a bit more bait in with the catapult and about 20 minutes later my middle indicator jumped up, settled, then dropped back a bit. I sat above it watching as the line moved a couple times slightly up then down. Suddenly, the indicator dropped back all the way. I grabbed the rod, lifted, palmed the spool, and slowly applied tension. Fish on! I could already tell from the take that this ﬁsh was a buffalo. The ﬁsh was laying low, moving extremely slowly and planing from side to side. I played the ﬁsh slowly as it plodded and made a couple slow runs. I could tell already this was a big ﬁsh and I was seriously being careful. After what felt like an eternity the ﬁsh started moving up and I caught a glimpse of the massively proportioned buffalo. The ﬁsh lazily cooperated as Mirko waded out and slowly pushed the net under it. After a couple thrusts, the ﬁsh calmed back down and she was in the net. I had captured a ﬁsh that had long been on my list, a big summer buffalo. Mirko held the net in the water while I quickly got everything sorted out. We slowly slid the sling under the net and hoisted it to the unhooking mat. It was a beast. A very long ﬁsh that was just straight up big in every way. I removed the tiny KD from the ﬁsh’s mouth and moved her carefully into the sling. The dial swung around past 45… 46…47…48, and ﬁnally settled on 49 even. I thrust my ﬁsts in the air. I was now in the lead by a huge margin. I snapped a couple pictures of the scale for ofﬁcial conﬁrmation and moved the ﬁsh back to the mat. The pictures happened quickly as we wanted to get her back in the water. Lifting buffalo this size is extremely difﬁcult, they are like cows with ﬁns and they are extremely hard to get righted without ﬂopping back over the other way. I struggled to hold her up for a couple minutes as Mirko hurried around me to get a couple pictures. I also posed for a few water shots with her and took quite a bit of time reviving the tired ﬁsh in the hot water. I gently moved the ﬁsh side to side until she ﬁnally kicked her tail a couple times and swam off. Not ten minutes later, Mirko’s middle rod shot off and he lost the ﬁsh in a snag. Then my left rod went...another ﬁsh lost in a snag. Just when I thought enough chaos had taken place, Mirko’s right rod took off, slowly running. I knew this was going to be a big ﬁsh again, so REPORT CARPPRO ⚇ 2013 “I struggled to hold her up!” REPORT CARPPRO ⚇ 2013 I was extremely nervous while Mirko played this one, praying that his reel wouldn’t lock. After several long runs, lots of plodding, and getting snagged twice, it broke the surface and we were astounded. It was a rare, summertime big common. Mirko played it for a couple more minutes before the We didn’t have any ﬁsh all night and only had one small common in the morning that fell to Mirko’s traps. At noon I was ofﬁcially crowned the winner of our little tournament. We soon had everything loaded back into the boat and were motoring Austin & Mirko will be ﬁshing the Carolina Cup - keep up with them here! ﬁsh slipped in the net. I knew Mirko had broken his PB. Sure enough, the ﬁsh broke Mirko’s PB, going 30lb even. I took some pictures and we slipped her back. We landed a couple more ﬁsh and lost a lot more but the trip had already been made before the second evening even came. The night was quiet and we got plenty of sleep, a rarity on almost all sessions I ﬁsh in the summer. back to the boat ramp ready for our journey home. Josef met us at the ramp and handed me my winnings, a $100 bill and a pat on the back. The island had proved to be another ass kicker but we had emerged with an amazing result yet again. I feel sure that, though it is snag ﬁlled and extremely hard to ﬁsh, it’s going to remain very close to my heart...especially this winter when Fork really kicks in! GET IT HERE! $18.95 + Shipping $22.95 plus tax + $3 shipping â€œ r o f n i a g a e c n o k e c d a a B g e n e r r e the ter, w o p , s r a e g m a m . a e l d D4 e peop ain for h g t a o e t c n o k e c d a a b g e n e r e th t e r , h t i w , s r m a am ag e r o d i v 4 a D h e b l l i the â€œ Tactic CARPPRO $$ 2013 JP is back in da house No one wants to suffer a casualty, or the unthinkable, a KIA or MIA while out on shore patrol. The carp ﬂats can be a very unforgiving theater for the warrior who comes ill-equipped. Don’t be sending your ﬂies off with a 21gun salute, or worse, ship home with a toe tag in a body bag. Trying to engage your opponent when your ammo is not up to snuff has got to be one of the most frustrating experiences. Fishing with too light of a round can be the difference between a missed target and positive engagement. Bead chain isn’t always the proper ordnance when ﬁshing in current, wind, or in knee deep water; armor yourself with some lead eyes. But beware, go too heavy, and your cover is blown when your projectile enters the water with a large report and muzzle ﬂash. Buffering your round with a marabou tail, rubber legs, and soft hackle collar is not only the perfect kill ﬂash, but imparts enough positive movement once in the water to engage your target effectively. Recently a friend told me, “You carp anglers are amazing to me! You have absolutely no "rules" to your tying. No hackle this way, tail that way. It's free style. And this brings out the most odd ﬂies I have ever seen. Completely crazy!” Though intended as a compliment, my friend was both right and wrong. While it is true that a carp angler and ﬂy tyer generally do not have to follow protocol and the rules of engagement (which were originally drafted for trout) it is not a complete free-for-all either. Alchemy at the vise is not beguiling from chaos and anarchy, but rather from an objective, a mission where the tyer follows the principles of improvise, adapt, and overcome. Inspired by the Rufﬁan, the Carpocalypse is a ﬂy borne of necessity. There was a need identiﬁed out on the battleﬁeld for Tactic CARPPRO $$ 2013 Carpocalypse Hook: Eyes: Tail: Body: Umpqua U401, Size 4 Wapsi Painted Lead Eyes, Small Gold Hareline Grizzly Marabou, Tan Roughfisher’s UV Dub, Dark Tan Thorax: Hen Ringneck Pheasant, Tan Throat: Rabbit, Tan Legs: Sili Legs Nymph, Sand Barred and Pumpkin/Green-Orange Barred; Speckled Leggs, Olive/Green Roughfisher’s UV Dub, Dark Tan Head: Tactic CARPPRO $$ 2013 a small, dense, high proﬁle ﬂy, equipped with rubber legs and a hook point protecting throat. Fishing with ﬂies not designed to ride hook point up almost always results in a casualty, with the hook point snagging bottom, dulling or even bending the tip outward. Anyone who has been deployed to the ﬂats knows that rocks out on the ﬂats are like ﬁshing in a mineﬁeld, it’s not a matter of if you detonate one, it’s when. Concealment of your ﬂy is of lesser concern when determining the coloration of your ﬂy’s camouﬂage. While still important, stealth of the angler, along with the presentation and accurate delivery of your ﬂy are the most crucial elements when approaching your target. Finding the perfect ammunition for your service weapon takes a little effort on your part. Know the limitations of your line and rod, and your casting ability. Spend time at the range, working on your cast; become consistent. Practice your range-ﬁnding skills and know what a true ﬁfteen yard target truly looks like from a distance. Or a thirty. Observe and monitor environmental conditions; be able to account for windage and know how to effectively counter its effect. Most important of all, learn how to read carp and react to their behavior. Selecting the right ﬂy for the situation is sometimes a matter of trial and error. However, understanding your opponent and your theater of engagement can help you narrow down the possibilities, enabling you to easily identify a ﬂy appropriate for the mission. Rely on instinct, adaptive behavior, and muscle memory, rather than operating without any decent restraint. When you ﬁnd your target, inﬁltrate it by whatever means available and terminate the carp’s command. Terminate with extreme prejudice. Follow us @ We hope you’ve enjoyed our Earth friendly magazine:) If you did, subscribe FREE at our website www.carppro.net and don’t miss the next issue!