Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 10/17/2017

Fishing is excellent in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park now. We have had a couple of shots of rain the last week and a half which has helped keep the streams flowing strong for this time of year. The cool overnight temperatures will get the brown and brook trout seriously thinking about spawning. Please be careful this time of year and avoid walking on fine sand and gravel in riffles and tailouts. Leave the spawning trout alone so they can do their thing. When you find brook or brown trout that aren't spawning, they are aggressive and looking to feed. Recent guide trips on brook trout waters have been anywhere from good to excellent. Streams with rainbows and browns have been excellent as well. There are good numbers of fish to be caught in the Park right now!

A variety of bugs have been hatching lately. On cloudy days, Blue-winged Olives have hatched along with some other small mayflies. Various caddis, including the Great Autumn Brown Sedges (often referred to as October Caddis by locals) are hatching and provide a nice bite for the trout. Little Black stoneflies are hatching as well. Fish are eating both dry fly and nymph imitations and even still hitting some terrestrials. Don't forget your beetle, ant, and inchworm fly box. A Parachute Adams or Yellow or Orange Stimulator should work well for a dry fly. Smaller bead head Pheasant Tail nymphs should work as a dropper. Caddis pupa are also catching a lot of fish as are stonefly nymphs.

On the Caney Fork, things have been tough lately. The river has been running warmer than is normal this time of year because of heavy generation earlier this year and also with a stain due to the sluice gate operations. Work has been underway to install vented turbines on the generators and they have been working to try and tweak them to improve dissolved oxygen. One day, we were floating and they were checking the DO and found it at 1.5 ppm. If I remember correctly, the minimum target is 6 ppm. Obviously 1.5 is way too low. Trout were sitting along the banks and in back eddies gasping for oxygen. Hopefully all of this won't have too much of a long term effect on the fishery, but needless to say, things are a bit difficult as of right now. Cooler weather should help. Once the lake turns over, oxygen and clarity will improve quickly.

The Clinch River has been fishing well if you can hit it on low water days. Small nymphs and midges will get the job done here.

Smallmouth bass are about done for the year, but we will be back out on the musky streams again soon looking for the toothy critters. This is tough fishing, but the rewards can be sizable.

Photo of the Month: Night Time Hog

Photo of the Month: Night Time Hog

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Rain East, Low Flows and Heat West

We predict rain, you get rain. Enough rain fell in the Smokies yesterday to produce a small spike in the flows in Little River. Today's forecast continues to call for rain from today into tomorrow. Currently, NWS radar indicates a broad area of precipitation skirting the boarding of southern Tennessee into Alabama. Let's hope it holds together long enough to reach the mountains. If this verifies and enough rain falls, it might produce at least a temporary reprieve for the trout that have been battling low flows and warm temperatures.

In other news, the rumors I've heard about Yellowstone National Park have been officially confirmed. The National Park Service is asking anglers to help protect Yellowstone’s native and wild trout fisheries by halting fishing in lower elevation waters between noon and 6:00 pm.
It seems that at least some of this is premature as area fly shops are indicating that some of the streams listed on the official press release are still running plenty cool, albeit quite low.

3 comments:

  1. James Marsh5:38 AM

    I read your reports often as I can and enjoy them David. Just wanted to let you know some things I don't see posted on any blogs or site fishing reports.
    Angie and I returned from Yellowstone early due to the conditions in the park. We have spent every July there anyway since 2001 except one. We will return there in Sept thru Oct. It is now worse than here in many places. We have fished the NC side of the park everyday for the last 2 weeks except one day of Dr. visits. The water levels have been some low but not terribly low and the water temps have been good usually 60-64 (high as we have seen there) We fished Eagle, Forney, Hazel, Ochla, and Straight Fork...6 of those days on Straight Fk. It starts in the park at elev 2480. Water runs 61-63.
    Only one of us fishes at a time (other on camera) and never over 4 hours. We have yet to catch less than a dozen and usually many more as much as 35-40 according to my video tape logs. It has been good everywhere. We have been in several rainshowers but no big long heavy downpours. Several hatches have been going on mainly Little BWOs, but some Golden stones, little yellow and green stoneflies and some Eastern BWOs. Thanks for your interesting site. James

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  3. James, thanks for that excellent information! I've been wanting some firsthand info on the NC side of the park... Good to hear Straight Fork is doing well. I fished it for the first time this past spring and was very impressed. It is a great little stream...

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