Fun Summer Carp Fishing with Action Packed Video Guide

Fun Summer Carp Fishing with Action Packed Video Guide

Here’s something that’s inexpensive and fun to do at this time of year when it’s too hot for traditional fly fishing. The carp put up a very serious struggle on a fly rod so do not underestimate your quarry when you tackle up! If you’re geared up for stillwater trout you should have almost everything you need already. However, you will need to add an unhooking mat and possibly a larger landing net to keep your carp happy and healthy!

Carp on- the FlyLet me help you catch your first carp. Carp love dog mixer biscuits, they have a meaty smell that will attract carp from all over the lake and it pays to spend time getting the carp feeding confidently in your chosen swim before you start fishing. Throw in a few mixers at a time being careful to encourage competition between the fish but ensuring they are not overfed so they lose interest. A catapult is useful if you need to feed further out.

NEW VIDEO: Allan and JT head to Court Farm Fishery armed with a bag of dog biscuits and some deer hair flies. The surface carp action was hot!

Tackle up with a 9’ – 10’ 7 – 8 weight fly rod although you will need to tailor this to the size of fish you expect to catch and how snaggy the area you are fishing is. Match the rod with a quality fly reel with a smooth powerful drag and a floating fly line. I would generally use a level leader of 10lb co-polymer leader material about the length of the rod. Choose a carp fly from the Fulling Mill range – all of them work well but you will need to keep them buoyant. Carp may refuse the fly if it’s not floating alongside the biscuits you are imitating.

This is great fun and you may find yourself catching more and better fish than the more traditional carp anglers! Enjoy.

Here are 5 top tips for success with carp:

  1. Always check with the fishery owner that they are happy for you to fly fish.
  2. Cast accurately to feeding carp and try to avoid spooking them with the fly line.
  3. Treat your fly with floatant and dry flies with an Amadou pad to keep them buoyant.
  4. Play carp firmly and use your skill to keep them out of snags and get them to the net quickly. Some carp anglers will expect you to play the fish for excessive lengths of time – this is nonsense you can land carp quickly on appropriate fly gear.
  5. You will need an unhooking mat and a decent sized landing net with soft mesh to comply with most carp fisheries rules.

JT and carp

A few tackle recommendations:

  1. Amadou Leather Holder
  2. Nash Unhooking Mat
  3. Hardy Copolymer Leader
  4. Dog Biscuit Fly, Breadcrust Fly, Bonio Dog Biscuit Fly and White Bread Fly

Did you enjoy the video? Have you been carp fly fishing? Please leave your comments and questions below – it’s great to share & chat! You can also share with all your friends via our social sharing buttons below.


  1. Hi JT and Allan,
    Great video on catching carp on fly – Thanks! I tried it last year at Willingshurst and caught 4x lovely carp on deer hair flies, all on the top to dog-biscuit chomping carp. They certainly go when hooked and a large landing net + unhooking mat is a must, as you say in the video.
    One question, however: You state you use Co-polymer. What knot do you use to attach line to fly? I have had problems with using co-polymer when trout fishing and I have lost a lot of fish due to the knot breaking. I would have thought that carp, being larger than the average trout, would severely test knots.

    Many Thanks

    • Hi John,

      Thank you! Both Allan and myself favour the Uni Knot when it comes to modern materials such as copolymer and fluorocarbons. It is a butting style knot that doesn’t slip unlike a blood knot which if tied incorrectly can slip. We are using copolymers as we wanted the leader to stay up in the water, pure fluorocarbon is more dense than water and sinks but can affect the way your fly sits on the water and this can be enough to put off a smart fish!

      Hope this helps,


  2. Two more top tips

    1 – grease the leader – helps keep the fly up and also acts as a good bite indicator when the fly gets mixed up in the pellets

    2 – very important – don’t lift into the strike – you will miss many takes. Keep the rod tip low and side-strike immediately you see the fly disappear into the carp’s mouth – they expel them very quickly!

    Tight lines


  3. Thanks JT, I will look for the Uni Knot and try that.
    Interesting comment from Geoffrey. When I was carp fishing last year, I used fluorocarbon, but don’t remember greasing the leader, but I did use a home tied deer hair fly which was quite bushy. The first carp – I missed, probably because I struck too soon. on a subsequent fish, I did see a large pair of lips ‘mouthing’ my fly and then take it. In the excitement I do not remember striking, but I guess I did, because the fish was well attached and shot off into the middle of the lake.
    I’m due to repeat the trip in the next few weeks, so will bear what you suggest in mind.
    Many Thanks

  4. Someday, if you get the chance, come on out here to Washington State and try fly fishing for our carp.

    I enjoyed your video, and couldn’t help contrast it with the far more violent, fast, reaction that accompanies many of our carp hook-ups here. Though they seldom leap from the water, our carp often pull hard, so hard that the line actually hisses going through the water as the fish describes a great circle around the fisherman, often running out all the fly line, well into the backing! I’ve seen a rooster-tail wake from the flyline as it courses through the water.

    We’ve had carp literally shatter a 7 wt Sage rod too.

    I use the same gear I use for steelhead & salmon fishing, an 8 wt, 9’ St. Croix rod and a Ross Reel with either a floating line or a Rio Versatip line. I’ll then run a 0x leader, 6-9’ long and perhaps a tippet of equal strength, should I decide to do so.

    Generally our carp are feeding on the bottom, in shallow mud flats. We’ll wade for them, wearing shorts and sandals, flats booties or just old running shoes. Cast ahead with a black wooly worm, let it sink, then just twitch it a little as the carp feeds towards it. Once the fly has been mouthed, a quick strip-set, and keep the hand well clear of the reel handle, but hold tight to the rod! Yee Haw! The fight is on!

    Not normally a long drawn out fight, it can take a few minutes to subdue the fish. I’ve never seen anyone here using a net, and we seldom remove the carp from the water. Just hold it firmly, then remove the barbless hook and off they go.

    I’ve had 10 – 15 carp per day, or some days are of course worse, it’s fishing after all. They’ll also take a crawfish pattern, or most any nymph pattern. I’ve only taken a few on the surface. They’re usually feeding along in 1’ – 3’ of water when I target them. May and June seem to be the best months here, though they’ll fish well all summer long.

    Thanks for posting the video – it was interesting to see how fly fishing for carp is done elsewhere.

    Regards, Guy Miner
    Wenatchee, Washington

  5. I’ve fly fished for Carp for several years now with great success, one comment I would have is that I never ever treat the deer hair bodied flies with floatant as it makes them sit to high in the water. Just look at the way your biscuits sit, generally flush with the surface, and by not treating them you will find your takes will increase and no need to set the hook as the takes are so confident even on hard fished waters even when using Tiemco barbless hooks.
    As far as flies go I always use the “Ginger Minger” Just Google “Ginger Minger Fly”
    Like you I prefer Hardy 10lb Co-Polymer its thinner than the equivalent fluorocarbon.
    Zane #8 or #10 rods + Greys Platinum XD lines

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.