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

Monday, January 14, 2008

Getting Ready

Spring is just around the corner and since I'm in school and unable to fish as much as I would like, I'm working on preparing for the next season by tying flies and planning trips. Just in time to help out with the preparation, James Marsh is adding some new material to his Fly Fishing the Great Smoky Mountains site.

My favorite addition is definitely the new "Hatches Made Easy" section that is still being constructed on a daily basis. Many Smokies fisherman often stick to a few standard patterns and while they may do well most of the time, there's always slow times and of course, always the chance for improvement. Paying closer attention to what the fish are really keyed on will help improve your success on the stream...

1 comment:

  1. ijsouth10:49 PM

    Man, I'm having a hard time waiting for Spring already, especially since I know that, between now and then, I have a ton of work to do on the servers at the office. If I'm not in a padded cell by March, I'll have everything primed for another trip to the Smokies. The good news is, at least down here, there have been a lot of diversions to break up the time. We had the BCS title game (geaux Tigers), and believe it or not, we are well into the Carnival season - Mardi Gras is VERY early this year - two days after the Super Bowl. Once we get past that, there's a long stretch of February and on into March, but come the week after Easter, we'll be there, dappling dries for eager trout. It looks like the water levels will be great, at least compared to last year. All in all, a lot to look forward to.

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