Carp Dabbling

For the first time in many years we have rising water levels. I heard estimates that Lake Michigan is up from 15 to 20 inches. One thing this means is that we have flooded vegetation and carp, as you probably know, love getting in the weeds.

If your in an area with a soft bottom, you can often sneak within feet of these fish. While these ultra shallow carp are cool to see, they’re impossible to even consider making a cast to.

Steve, while fishing with Brad Befus (Carp on the Fly), was the first of us guides to witness a dabbled carp and not only one but several in the same day. While this technique seems silly, it ends up being surprisingly successful.

Shorten your line to a few feet. The key is exact placement of the fly, just a few inches in front of the carp’s mouth. More line reduces accuracy, especially with any wind. Lightly dip the fly into the water, the carp will most often gobble it immediately. If not, try lightly jigging to attract attention.

It seems that about half the carp attempted with dabbling will eat, the other half either ignore or spook.

Let me tell you, when you set the hook on a twenty pound carp that is only two feet from your rod tip, a lot is going to happen quickly and it’s all fun.


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