Ah yes, the much-debated topic, why do carp anglers wear green? On one side you have the anglers that wear all green no matter the occasion and on the other, you have the lot who wouldn’t dare be caught in the stereotypical green hue.
It all comes down to the age-old battle between mindsets. “This is who we are so this is what we do.” It all depends on how you view others and how you wish others to view yourself.
So Why Do the Majority of Carp Anglers Wear Green?
After talking to many anglers over the years and scouring the internet for hours on end I have concluded that the majority of carp anglers wear green due to the fact that it has been strongly marketed to the carp angling community for many years.
But how did it all start? Why Green? Way back in the ages before there were massive carp angling businesses with large marketing budgets, army fatigues were the cheapest and optimal clothes for carp angling. Durable, weather-resistant and readily available made them the go-to choice. It was also an advantage to wear army surplus clothes due to the fact that they had the added benefit of concealment as well.
Carp Anglers Wear Green For Concealment
There are many reasons to wear a green drab colour while fishing. There are many things the average carp angler needs to hide from!
To Hide from the Fish
First of all and most obvious, carp anglers will have greater success if the fish don’t see them. While stalking or fishing close to the margins if an angler sports a bright colour (such as a blazing yellow raincoat) which I have seen before, the fish are more likely to spot them and move out of the area. If an angler wears brown, green or even a pattern that breaks up their silhouette, they will be more likely to go unnoticed and prevent the fish from going on alert.
To Hide from the Bailiff
Carp anglers wear green so the bailiffs can’t see them! This fact I stumbled across while surfing some popular carp angling forums and it gave me a good chuckle.
To Hide from Other Anglers
Yes, especially when prebaiting areas. How many of you have spent days and days beforehand baiting up a certain area only to arrive one day to fish it and another angler is set up in your swim. I have had this happen many times even though there are not many carp anglers in Canada. Now I wear green to help conceal my operations or even go late at night while others are asleep.
To Hide from Their Wives
Carp anglers wear green so it is harder for their wives to find them while on the bank! Especially on those days when you’re blanking and just starting to get some indications on your bite alarm. You keep saying to yourself, “Ten more minutes!” “Just Five More Minutes!” before you notice 5hours have passed and your wife pulls up to make sure you’re home for dinner!
Carpy Green Clothes Are Made to Be Weather Resistant and Comfortable
The big manufacturers that design clothes specifically for carp anglers make them green. The majority of the time carp angling clothes are green, aside from the colour they are designed for optimal performance and comfort on the bank. If you want your clothes to be top quality for the conditions you’re facing out there they will most likely come from one of the big suppliers of carp fishing kit.
Some of the most proven clothes for being outdoors in harsh conditions. I believe this is how the colour green became associated with carp angling. Weather-resistant, comfortable, provide great concealment and is affordable to boot. No wonder you still see many anglers sporting them even with specially made clothes from the big brand names.
Fishing in the Cold
I find that the majority of carp-angling clothes are made to withstand the conditions of UK and Europe winters. Here in Canada during early spring, late fall and even winter sessions it can drop to -20 degrees Celcius. It is imperative to have clothes that stand up to these temperatures. I resort to Under Armour and North Face Winter clothes. I find they hold my body temperature the best and are made for North American conditions. Luckily they also make clothes in carpy green and camouflage!
Comfort at Night
As the majority of anglers do long sessions and spend the night on the bank, comfort while sleeping can be a top priority. Hence the carpy green joggers and track pants you see many sporting on YouTube. They are comfortable and warm while sleeping and also perform well for those screaming takes in the wee hours of the night. I still need to purchase a pair as I’m getting tired of fighting fish in nothing but my undies!
Fishing in the Heat
Today’s carp angler has to worry about extreme heat. I have experienced heat exhaustion and heat stroke, nothing will end a session quicker. Luckily you can find lighter carp fishing clothes that are UV Resistant. An important factor. I had a scare with skin cancer a few years back and now never go out on the water or on the bank without UV Blocking Shirts and Buffs.
Fishing in Wet Conditions
One thing that can ruin any carp fishing session is being wet and cold. Quality carpy green rain gear can prevent this from happening. Does it have to be green? No, but the majority of it is.
Carp Anglers Wear Green Due to Marketing
Yes, when you look at big companies such as Korda, Nash, ESP, JRC, Sonik Sports, Fox International, etc. They all promote lines of clothing that are for the most part carpy green. So if you’re looking to sport some carpy clothing it will most likely be that colour.
When big companies pour big dollars into marketing for many years it soon becomes the mainstream and normal thing to do. There will always be some that resist, but for the main part, people will buy what is readily available and what the big-name anglers are wearing.
Green is The Carp Anglers Uniform
As stated above green is the go-to colour for carp anglers. Not only are their clothes green but a lot of other pieces of kit as well. From Bivvies, brollies, bait buckets and bedchairs. Practically every piece of kit a carp angler has can come in carpy green.
I still remember the first carp angler I encountered on the bank. At the time, I, much like most other North Americans, had no idea that people actually targeted carp as a sportfish. I was scouting a small bay on the St. Lawrence River for bass fishing spots when I noticed a green tent tucked away in a small group of trees. As I approached I noticed most of the other gear was green too. A man stepped out of the tent when I approached and he was clad head to toe in green. I thought it was quite bizarre at the time but he introduced himself as a European Carp Angler. He was on a two-week vacation in Canada for the sole purpose of catching carp. I was shocked by the amount of kit he had on hand. He went over his gear with me and ended up giving me some free boilies to try catching some carp for myself. This was one of the first times I was intrigued by carp and realized what a great resource we have here.
Now when I see a bivvy or angler clad in green on the bank I know exactly what they’re after and who they are. It is still quite a rare site here but slowly I am starting to see it more and more.
Colours Other Than Green
Although there are many anglers that only wear green, there are others who won’t be caught dead in it. The lot that are against big companies will do whatever they can to fish their way on their terms.
There are other colours that have come out in recent years. Most of which align with the carpy green for concealment purposes. Some of these colours include.
- Camouflage – These patterns range from basic camo patterns to Realtree. It all depends on the company creating the gear as to what pattern it is.
- Black Ops – From Nash Tackle. They have come out with their own black ops camouflage pattern. It is a darker type of camo in a more modern style. It matches perfectly with their black ops luggage and other pieces of kit in the range.
- Gunmetal Grey – Which is more of a black colour, I have seen some companies opting for this simple colour scheme which in my eyes looks rather smart.
- Burgandy and others – There are also some brighter colours in some clothing ranges as well but I don’t see many anglers wearing them on the bank.
So there you have it. My take on why carp anglers wear green. I for one wear it myself. Mostly because my favourite colour is green but also because I can wear it to promote the companies that I like and proudly say this is who I am.