It´s a long time since I caught a carp on a dry fly but the chance presented itself a couple of weeks back on Concepción. The fishing for black bass seemed pretty dead and so I paddled my float tube over to the river mouth of the Río Verde. There are usually a few barbel and carp hanging around there and I thought I might be able to sneak up on one or two.

There is little to the river now. It trickles into a shallow extension of Concepción and the fish congregate close to the river mouth. There is little cover and so you need to fish from a kneeling position and cast from as far from the shore as you can. If you stand up the chances are you will see nothing but swirls as the fish turn and head to the safety of deep water.

I like this kind of fishing but it is not easy. If you want to see the fish clearly you will probably spook them. What you see are indistinct forms drifting here and there. They are smudges really.

A dry fly gives you a better chance at fish like these ones and so I put on a size 14 Royal Wulff and drifted it over some of the fish. Thankfully the fish were prepared to look up and I had a couple of carp and a barbel. I was lucky enough to take the second biggest carp I saw and had the biggest one casually swim along the surface pushing my dry fly just in front of his mouth but he wouldn´t take the damn thing despite my best attempts to convince him that it would be a good idea.

When a fish is hooked in the shallows at the river mouth they tend to swim off to the sanctuary of open water and this offers you a chance to beach and release the fish without spooking their fellows. If the Gods are smiling on you, you might be able to sneak back and take another.


I only saw one bigger carp than this one. It pushed the fly in front of its snout but without taking it. The fly never made it into the fish´s mouth but my stomach was in mine!


Gypsy barbel were happy to take a dry too.