Friday, November 2, 2012

Urban Arizona Asualt of Grass Carp

Not much time to load a blog tonight as it’s late and I am giving a full day seminar for Desert Fly Casters first thing in the morning. The fast and short is that I’m settled in with my friends Steve Berry and Cinda Howard down here in Mesa, Arizona (See Not all Carp are Created Equal 2010 and Harder than Steelhead 2011). I came a day early to fly fish for grass carp (White Amur), common carp, koi and largemouth bass and I’ll be staying a couple days after my seminar for more.

Today Steve and I explored a few urban lakes around Phoenix that brought me back in time. They were those deals where you wondered how far from the No Trespassing signs you had to be to declare innocence. Luckily we didn’t find much more than a homeless colony so we snuck out of the illegal area as fast as we snuck in.

After a little more fishless adventure we ended up on water we knew from last year. It’s a canal near Steve’s house. This canal isn’t one of the most beautiful places in the world to fly fish; however its one of the most interesting. The water body is straight as an arrow and there’s a trail on both sides that you can expect to dodge a bike on your back cast at any time. It’s fascinating to me that we were fishing some manmade cement river in 90° heat with traffic blaring from all directions in a city. Despite the nutty place we were sight fishing olive hoppers to nice size grass carp immediately upon arrival.

The end result after fishing this canal for about four hours was a top grass carp day. Steve and I will never know why but the normally stubborn fish that often leave you begging for cocktail hour were flat out suicidal for our flies. Almost every good cast we made to a hovering grass carp led to an eat. Seriously, I’ll bet we had 20 grassies sip our flies today and landed more than a dozen.

I’ll be teaching most of tomorrow but should rap it up in late afternoon. After Cinda hears how good today was its likely we’ll end up back at the canal for sunset. Fine with me as fly fishing for grass carp is something we don’t have near Victor, Idaho and these oddball fish are one of my true favorite fish to fly fish for.

Last but not least.  We ended the day eating at my good friend Eddie Matneys Eddies House in Scottsdale.  I'll tell you the food here is incredible!  That's why over the years I've been fortunate to meet some well know people that eat here thanks to Eddie.  You know by now I'm a serious Cub fan.  A few years ago I hung with Ryne Sanberg and tonight I talked fishing for a few minutes with former Cubs television announcer and Diamond Backs coach Bob Brenly.


  1. Love the grassies! Would also love to see you make a grassie coffee cup.


  2. Wait to you see todays monster!

    If you want a grassie mug or grassie anything for that matter I already painted the image. Let me know.

  3. Great to hear the Grass Carp were willing to take a fly... better than last year when you had to walk over 100 feet to present your fly, then walk it to the carp. Good stuff!