Thursday, April 13, 2017

How to Catch Grass Carp on the Fly

I was recently asked to write a post for Orvis giving some tips about catching grass carp on the fly (link below).  I faced this scenario one weekend while trying to get some images to accompany the story.

You've paddled across a bay to a nearby flat that you suspect has grass carp feeding on it.  On the way you noticed more boat traffic than usual on the water.  You also managed to spook a couple carp that you did not see. 

As you stand to scan the flat before moving further, you notice a grasser tailing at the back of the flat. This is exciting because tailing carp give you a fighting chance.  As you begin to push pole across the flat being cautious not to make a sound, you see one swimming towards you.  Do you cast at it or try to avoid it?  From experience, I know if I spook that carp it's more than likely going to put that tailer down also.  Here's what I did.

I backed off and avoided the potential land mine.  I knew my best opportunity for getting an eat was getting a fly near the tailing carp.  The moving carp was also an opportunity but the odds were not in my favor.  It was moving towards me and I wasn't sure if it was one of the carp I spooked earlier.  If you present to every grass carp you see you'll likely have a tough outing.  Being selective sometimes increases your odds of success.  This was one of many tips I provided to Orvis found here:

Here are two flies I use:
Grass Carp leech pattern

Be sure to check out the dry fly tying video I made here:

And a short video from the pursuit: 


  1. Very good article Drew. I saw it earlier this morning on FB and really enjoyed it. I'm still looking for my first.

    1. Thank you Howard. Hope you find it this year.

  2. Great article. I have a lake nearby that was stocked with grass carp years back to control hydrilla. I have managed to hook a few but hopefully I can be a bit more consistent with your pointers.