Back on The Keys – Keyboard Keys That Is

| July 8, 2013

Carp on the Fly GoPro Shot
Lake Ray Roberts carp action yesterday. Brighter flies and looking deeper is the key to catching right now.

It seems like a month has passed since last Monday in Alabama. Just two days before that Monday, I was helping out Dallas Fly Fishers at the Denton Senior Center, as they gave fly fishing lessons to those who signed up. It was a great group, and there were some fast learners, and one or two who had experience, in the crowd.

The first two days of last week in Alabama are basically “classified information” until I get the green light to talk about why we were there. It’s not that big a deal, but sometimes work gets that way when it comes to the advertising side of photography life.

Staring me in the face all last week was a trip I had offered up to the members of Fort Worth Fly Fishers – scheduled for this past Saturday. Even though it was a big time holiday weekend, and the flats appeared to have been pounded (I’m still wondering about the mysterious coincidence of walking up on two folks seemingly from outer space Saturday morning), I was able to do a little show-and-tell for a group of four in the morning slot, and a group of three in the afternoon slot. There were few shots, and about all that can be said is they all now know where and how they can try to catch carp.

Somewhere along the way, someone reminded me just how difficult this “fly fishing for carp thing” really is. That made me pause and think; yeah, that’s right. Carp may be everywhere, and they may be easier bow hunting targets than a largemouth bass (why don’t bow hunters target bass if they really want to improve their skills), but they are also smarter, bigger (on average) and stronger than anything else swimming in Texas lakes. Combine their behavior with our current water conditions, and yes it can be difficult, but they’re not impossible.

Only a couple of weeks down the road is the Lydia Ann Fly Tournament on the Gulf Coast, so I will be getting ready for that behind the scenes, while getting the video from the trip to Port O’Connor, Texas, for redfish done, and another video (shot yesterday) out as early as today. In between all that is the ongoing Airstream work (crack of dawn only), and two more photo shoots, family in town for a birthday boy turning 80-years-old … let’s see what else did I forget?


Those of you who went, know what the conditions are like on Lake Ray Roberts. The drought has essentially rejiggered the habitat, and made for the deepest wades, and most frustrating fly fishing for carp in recent history. As the water receded, it came completely off the first layer of vegetation (closest to shore), passed the desolate area (now a wide line of sand), and has settled on the downslope of sticky mud and hydrilla. It’s tough going on the south side of Lake Ray Roberts, but I think it will get better.

Since the water is deeper, your flies will have to sink faster, and based on what I saw yesterday, they need to be extremely bright flies as well.


The cooler water has triggered the bass action in the flats again as well. The bass-o-holics apparently haven’t figured that out yet, as I saw no bass boats in the coves Saturday or Sunday on a holiday weekend! By the time they figure this out, the heat will have run the bass deep again.

White over white Clousers with bright silver flash is the ticket to drawing bass to your hook. Size those in about three inch lengths on a #4 or #6 jig hook. The bass are at the height of their strength right now, so set the hook and hold on. Look for them around submerged timber, structure and old submerged stock tanks. You’ll be plowing some, so be sure to tie those Clousers to run hook point up – no matter what.

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Category: Fishing Reports, Fly Fishing For Carp, Fly Fishing for Largemouth Bass, North Texas

About the Author () is where to find my other day job. I write and photograph fish stories professionally, and for free here! Journalist by training. This site is for telling true fishing news stories, unless otherwise noted.

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