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, February 26, 2008

Too Cold

A front was pushing through the area today. This morning it actually felt quite warm out and I was hoping that it would turn out to be a nice day. By the middle of the afternoon, the front had passed and left us with a brisk northwest wind and mostly cloudy skies. I knew right away that no one else would be out fishing today so I headed over to my new fishin' hole to catch some more fish.

After an hour fishing, I'd had enough but not before catching two fish. The wind was a pain to cast in but even worse because it made it feel much colder than it really was. Earlier this winter I fished when it was in the 20's out and my guides were icing up. I actually felt warmer then than I did today. It was all the sweeter because I caught fish on a new pattern I dreamed up the other day. Basically it was a red tag off the back end, wrap orange egg yarn for the body, and then a sparse wing of brown over white bucktail. Of course, I also suspect that warmwater fish are a lot dumber than trout and will eat just about anything so it has yet to be seen if it is a good fish producer. Today could have been a coincidence.


Thankfully, I won't be heading back much more for a couple weeks. That's because I'll be out chasing TROUT which is really my favorite...ahhhhh, spring break!!!

2 comments:

  1. ijsouth9:21 PM

    Don't badmouth the warmwater fish too much - I cut my fishing teeth on bass fishing, and they can get plenty educated in a hurry, if the fishing pressure is high. Now, bream and whatnot can be pretty gullible, and when the conditions are right, so can a lot of the saltwater fish - speckled trout spend the whole summer spawning and eating shrimp, and if you hit them right, you can get a limit in a matter of minutes.

    But, I know what you mean about the trout streams - it's definitely special.

    ReplyDelete
  2. ijsouth, I got my start on bass and panfish myself. There still fun on occasion but honestly, I haven't fished warmwater at all the last few years, maybe once a year at most. My recent trips are mainly a product of a lack of time to drive farther and high gas prices. There's just something about trout though that I can't explain, although I'm sure you know what I mean. Trout streams are indeed special as you said...

    ReplyDelete

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