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

Monday, June 04, 2007

The Trout Zone in Oklahoma

Due to the ultra slow dial-up I'm using, my posts are being made without pictures for the time being. This means I will attempt to whet your appetite for the pictures to follow in a few days because I'm not going to sit here long enough to upload them. I'm on vacation afterall... Between snake hunting and fishing, I've managed to keep relatively busy.

The creek out back was up and muddy the first couple of days I was here, limiting the fishing potential. Finally I took my spinning rod (gasp, no the Trout Zone doesn't follow purist philosophy) down with a small spinner and caught several various sunfish and a small bass. Wandering down the creek I spotted what appeared to be a gar or pickerel. Having never caught either, I spent some time trying to get it to strike but went unrewarded. Today I went fishing again, catching a better bass (at least for the size of the creek) and getting the long nosed toothy fish from the previous day to give chase to my spinnerbait. Once again I failed to connect leaving me to spend this evening pondering just how to catch it. Its got to be the fly rod I've decided. The few times I saw the fish appearing to feed, it seemed to be on the surface. Tomorrow I will go down to the creek again to give battle to the toothy monster, assuming I don't run into any dangerous critters on the way.

Speaking of dangerous critters, not wishing to fish at night with all manner of frightening animals lurking about, a recent evening was spent hunting snakes. How is that safer than the creek? At least I KNOW where the dangerous animals are at. I spent awhile driving the backroads looking for any interesting snakes to photograph, hoping to find a rattler. Instead I was rewarded with just another copperhead. I've seen quite enough of those in my life and really don't care to see another, especially after last night. The crazy thing was grouchy and decided to chase me. Usually they keep calm while the bright lights from the car shine on them, allowing me to get close enough for a good picture. I've photographed both copperheads and rattlesnakes this way. This copperhead had other ideas though and promptly chased me back to the car. A few minutes were spent donning my headlamp in preparation of round two. After attempting in vain to get a decent photo from the window, I gingerly stepped back onto the road towards the snake. This time it held relatively still for a series of pictures which will be showcased here in a few days. Life on vacation isn't dull at least!

If a new species is landed on the fly rod tomorrow, I'll have a fresh report up and ready...keep your fingers crossed for me...

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