Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 01/22/2020

High flows continue across the area but trends are definitely down. A recent cold snap broke the ongoing heatwave so fishing in the mountains has slowed dramatically. Right on schedule, some of our tailwaters should begin returning to more normal flows for this time of year meaning float trips are certainly possible.

For the Smokies, a warming trend should commence as we go into next week. By mid week the fishing should be decent before the next cold front returns us back to winter again. On warmer days, look for midges and possibly winter stoneflies hatching. Some blue-winged olives will be possible on foul weather days as we head towards February. The best fishing is still a few weeks out, but no longer feels like an eternity. Expect good spring hatches to start in late February or early March with blue quills and quill gordons along with little black caddis and early brown and black stones. By April, things will be settling down with the pinnacle of spring fishing usually happening from mid April through the month of May.

On our area tailwaters, high water continues to be the story. The Caney Fork still has at least a couple of weeks of high flows and that is assuming we don't get any more heavy rainfall. This time of year, that is asking a lot. The high water is good for one thing, however. Shad. Yes, the cold months are prime time to try and hit the famed shad kill and catch a monster brown trout. Same thing goes for the Clinch.

Speaking of the Clinch, the good news is that flows are scheduled to begin dropping tomorrow. A steady two generators will feel like low water after the recent period of two generators plus sluicing. Two generators opens up some nymphing possibilities in addition to our favorite winter pastime, stripping streamers for monsters.

The musky streams are settling into fine shape and will be an option moving forward as well. Remember that bouts of high water will get them stained or even muddy for a few days, but as flows come down the fishing should pick back up.

Photo of the Month: Starting the Year Off Right

Photo of the Month: Starting the Year Off Right

Friday, June 15, 2007

Tour de Rockies

No it isn't a bike race... Originally supposed to be a Yellowstone trip (to go fishing of course), my trip west is starting to gain momentum and destinations. Colorado is most likely being added and hopefully this means I will once again fish the Gold Medal waters of the Gunnison for big hard-fighting rainbows and browns that will bulldog deep in the strong current. My last experience with this special place left me yearning for more and it looks like it might happen.

Remember this fish? A nice rainbow from the Gunnison...

This year will bring a new experience for me on this stream. Supposedly the terrestrial fishing is excellent in August and the way things are looking, the flows shouldn't be too bad this year as compared to last year where I was chucking heavy nymphs along the banks. Even with last years high water I still caught around 20 fish in probably 3 hours with lots in the 14-16 inch range and one big brown pushing 18 or 19 inches.

Hopefully I'll be able to hit some small streams for Cutthroat in Colorado also. If I'm really lucky I'll get my first shot at the Greenback Cutts in Rocky Mountain National Park. The chance to add another strain of Cutthroat to the list is one that will be hard to pass up. Of course, when one covers as much ground as I will be, interesting ideas start to develop. For instance, how many different types of Cutthroat could one catch on such a trip? I can think of several and maybe it will happen. Time will only tell...

I could go on and on about how tough life is when you have to fish as much as I do, and I could mention a few more of the streams I hope to fish where the average trout is around 5 pounds, but probably it isn't my place to make everyone jealous. Did I mention I'll be on the South Holston in a week or two? This should be a fun fishing trip since I've never fished it in the summer... In the meantime, I absolutely must start cranking out some flies.

Current Fishing Report:
Not all fishing is in the distant future. Today I hit the Caney Fork for an hour or two and did okay catching several fish. Once again I saw some bruisers but as usual they were excessively spooky. I even dropped down to 7x for awhile and it didn't seem to make a difference. However, persistence is key and one of these times I'll catch one. Today I got chased off the river by lightning so maybe I just need to put in more hours. Back to the river on Sunday so check back for a more enthralling report...

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