There is no “i” in “South Platte Pro-Am Carp Slam”

The South Platte Pro-Am Carp Slam is now over. It was hot as hell, the fishing was tough as nails, but the booze was flowing afterwards in a lot tastier condition than the water we tromped through. James Snyder’s Broken Holmes played some serious funk during the post-game festivities, and a big, fun crowd ate, drank, and generally made merry well into the evening and beyond. Everything went off without a hitch, and a pile of cash was raised to benefit restoration of our beloved South Platte River.

First and foremost

Congratulations go out to Rob Kolanda and Patrick Stewart, who ripped the afternoon session to pieces and took home first place by a wide margin. Rob told me they got lucky with the beat – “the fish just so happened to be there and feeding hard.” I’m throwing the bullshit flag as it is Rob’s second win in as many years. Once you’re lucky, twice you’re good, and when it comes to these carp…damn good. Excellent job, gentlemen!

Barry Reynolds on the huntTeam Reynolds/Gracie

We hooked some fish, but more importantly we lost quite a few early and that fact kept the pressure on all day. As the afternoon progressed, Barry could see I was growing a bit weary in the sweltering heat, missing casts, switching flies without rhyme or reason, tangling my line…generally falling apart. So he carried me. With just a few minutes left in his second turn, I spotted a pod of sizable feeders and waved Barry over for the attempts. It turned out to be a good decision – with just a minute left in his turn Barry hooked up. I knew this could be the difference between placing and just drinking, so I dove into the river to net the fish while it took repeated dives towards the rocks. The effort paid off. Thank you Barry – it was a pleasure fishing with you.

The best part about Carp Slam…a legacy is born. Literally.

Tireless director and host Tim Emery was making speeches, giving kudos to sponsors, and dishing out instructions. Then his phone rang. It was his wife…”Honey, my water broke.” A few hours later Mr. and Mrs. Emery were the proud parents of a happy and healthy baby girl. Tim spent the night at the hospital, and when mother and child fell asleep the following evening Tim came back for the Carp Slam awards ceremony, visibly exhausted and wanting nothing more than to return to his family. Lil’ Miss Emery will be elected National Executive Director of Carp Slam, in 2029. She’ll be competing in the 24th annual Denver event as well.

Giving something back

Trouts Fly FishingSecond place scored me a beautiful Simms Headwaters hip pack and a pair of Simms Rivershed boots. I’m keeping the pack – after taking a good hard look at it compared the Mountainsmith Tour pack I’ve been using I think the Simms gear is going to do right by me. I love the Mountainsmith, but it isn’t built for fishing – the Simms pack is. As for the wading boots, I just picked up a new pair not long ago and am wholly satisfied with them. So I’m selling the boots I won at “auction” here, with the money going back to Denver Trout Unlimited’s South Platte restoration bucket. I’ve got a coupon good for the Rivershed boots at Trouts Fly Fishing – it’s worth $193 and change. Leave a bid in the comments section (or email me), and I’ll either go pick up your size boots for you and ship them to you (on my nickel if it’s within the 48 contiguous states), or just give you the coupon and you can grab them from Trouts yourself. The starting bid is $100, and I won’t be able to manage returns, complaints, etc. so please make sure you’re dead set on them and your size before you bid. As a bonus, the purchase will include an awesome lightweight breathable cap with the Trouts logo on it. I’ll close the auction at the end of the work week.


There are too many people to thank for a comprehensive listing in this post, and I had a few too many Jack & Cokes at the after-party so my memory’s still a little foggy and I don’t want to leave anyone out. But those folks know who they are (with particularly emphasis on the professional guides I roped into the event).

Big thanks go out to all.

MG signing off (until next year’s Carp Slam)


Murdock says:

Congratulations!!!!! Sounds like a great event.

Sabrina says:

Nice write up Michael! Pleasure meeting you and discovering your blog. There is an “I” in Carp Slam. I fell on my arse, I gouged my hand, I rubbed blisters on my feet, and I didn’t catch a flipin’ carp 😛

Barry says:

Michael- I enjoyed a great day on the water with you and though the fishing was a little tough at times it was for a great cause! I know I like to cover lots of water and as a result ran you though the mill in the stiffling heat trying to find “feeding” fish but you hung in there better than most and it was an honor to fish with you and watch you at the helm welding the net when needed (which was not very often) but it was a great day and I was thrilled to draw you as a partner and look forward to next years tourney and maybe we will get to fish together once again! By the way I went back to the bridge again yesterday just to have a peak and the big girls where right back in their same spot! Rest assurred I will be out this week and the remainder of the summer until I get one of those slobs to eat and next year we will get them all! Thanks again for the day on the water together! BR

James says:

You guys kicked ASSSSSS!!!!! What an awesome event and stellar weekend we all had!!! This one is eternally etched into the history books.

You and Barry are ROCKSTARS!

I love it! WOOHOO!!!!!!

@Murdock – Thanks!!!!! It was a hoot.

@Sabrina – You held yourself together better than I – took ten drinks to heal my wounds! Great meeting you too.

@Barry – You are the ROCKSTAR!

@James – I am the backup vocals, and sometimes that’s limited to studio time 😉

butters says:

Gracie you are the man! thanks for signing me up for this cool event. I had a great time and met a lot of cool people. As for your netting skills……. just unique!! Congrats on the 2nd place.

but there is an “i” in “Kick-ass” you big sexy man, you!

Thanks guys!

NOTE ON BOOTS: There is now a bid on the Riversheds (via email this morning) at $120.

Bever says:

Gracie, thanks for getting me involved! I will be back next year for sure!

FMMMD says:

You are very gracious, Michael, and a wonderful asset to our chapter. Thanks for the ongoing support, kind words and promise to return next year and the years to come. Isabella Emery promises to run a good show in 2029!

Thanks Fred – It was a pleasure working with you folks!

ALSO: The boots have been sold.

tom says:

Good man for giving Beav some credit. Big fish deserves it. Beav…….You are the man.

slavetotheflyrod says:

My bid for the boots – one (1) [REDACTED], size XL, full of pennies, bottle caps, and other suprises. Take it or leave it Guido

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