Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 11/1/2018

Fishing is good in the Smokies and other mountain streams if you can catch it on a day where the wind is minimal. Otherwise, expect lots of leaves in the water for the next few days. Delayed harvest streams are also being stocked and fishing well in east Tennessee and western North Carolina.

In the Smokies, fall bugs are in full swing. We have been seeing blue-winged olives almost daily although they will hatch best on foul weather days. They are small, typically running anywhere from #20-#24 although a few larger ones have also shown up. A few October Caddis are still around as well. Terrestrials are close to being done for the year although we are still seeing a few bees and hornets near the stream. Isonychia nymphs, caddis pupa, and BWO nymphs will get it done for your subsurface fishing. Have some October Caddis (#12) and parachute BWO patterns (#18-#22) for dry flies and you should be set. Not interested in matching the hatch? Then fish a Pheasant Tail nymph under a #14 Parachute Adams. That rig can catch fish year round in the Smokies.

Brook and brown trout are now moving into the open to spawn. During this time of year, please be extremely cautious about wading through gravel riffles and the tailouts of pools. If you step on the redd (nest), you will crush the eggs that comprise the next generation of fish. Please avoid fishing to actively spawning fish and let them do their thing in peace.

Our tailwaters are still cranking although the Caney is finally starting to come down. I'm still hoping to get a firsthand report on the Caney Fork soon although it might be sometime next week or the week after before that happens at the earliest. Stay tuned for more on that. Fishing will still be slow overall with limited numbers of fish in that particular river unfortunately.

The Clinch is featuring high water as they try to catch up on the fall draw down. All of the recent rainfall set them back in this process but flows are now going up to try and make up some of the time lost. It is still fishing reasonably well on high water although we prefer the low water of late fall and early winter as it is one of our favorite times to be on the river.

Smallmouth are about done for the year with the cooler weather we are now experiencing. I caught a few yesterday on the Tennessee River while fishing with guide Rob Fightmaster, but overall the best bite is all but over. Our thoughts will be turning to musky soon, however. Once we are done with guide trips for the year, we'll be spending more time chasing these monsters.

In the meantime, we still have a few open dates in November. Feel free to get in touch with me if you are interested in a guided trip. Thanks!

Photo of the Month: Fishing in Paradise

Photo of the Month: Fishing in Paradise

Thursday, March 08, 2007

Footballs

Today I decided to not go to the Smokies. I've had a bad cold and wasn't feeling that well but by afternoon, I was feeling good enough to make the short drive down to the Caney Fork. I arrived and immediately noticed that a lot of gulls were flying around below the dam and on downriver. The first thing I thought of was a shad kill.

I started fishing below the dam and soon caught a brown. After working the run thoroughly, I finally decided to go up to just below the dam where I saw numerous fish rising. I waded out and started casting. This area is somewhat like a shallow lake with almost no current. Fishing here is a waiting game. You try and cast in the vicinity of where the fish are working but then you just let the dry and dropper sit until a fish discovers it. Usually a take is fairly obvious with the dry sucking under. After a few minutes of casting, I finally had a hit and immediately had a strong fish on. After a nice battle on the three weight, I brought to hand a VERY chunky football shaped fish.


The rest of the time continued in much the same way. I caught several fish including a few more footballs. The last one I caught was spitting up half-digested shad in large quantities, losing a lot of girth in the process. There were plenty of dead shad in the shallows as well. The fish that are eating the shad are extremely fat and should put on a lot of weight quickly which is good news for those of us that fish this river. I have seen some pictures of very large browns caught in the last few days so this is an excellent time to be on the river.


If I am feeling well in the morning, it is off for the Smokies so hopefully I'll have another report tomorrow afternoon or evening!!!

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