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Recap of the South Platte Pro-Am Carp Slam XI
Chris Galvin,
The South Platte Pro-Am Carp Slam occupies a corner of my mind year-round, right next to my carp on the fly obsession. About a month before this year’s tournament, I started scouting the river and fishing to a few resident carp. Unlike previous years, the fish we not very cooperative leaving me a bit concerned. Perhaps they were just in their “dog days” doldrums? The South Platte River was very low and clear, probably the lowest I’ve seen it. This allowed you to see most fish in the river on sunny days. Problem was, they could usually see you too. In one section, fish were happily feeding while I was walking on the river trail. The moment I stopped and looked at them, fish started to disappear into the depths. This was not going to be an easy year.

Trevor Tanner, former Carp Slam champ and writer of the Fly Carpin blog, kept careful stats of his monthly catch rates over the years on the DSP – he’s that kind of guy. His data showed September to be the most difficult month to catch carp on the fly in river. My anecdotal evidence confirmed his findings. Other than the odd juvenile fish, carp were rejecting almost every fly pattern I tried. Even with good presentations, most fish would approach, sniff, and swim away.