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

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Ending the Month Right


A Caney brook trout swims away

The month of June ended with two days of fishing for me. Sunday I fished the Caney Fork along with everyone else in the state of Tennessee and also those that are flocking here from other states to partake of our excellent fishing. That river is a total madhouse on weekends, and I suspect it is staying fairly busy on weekdays as well. With the odd generation schedule lately, wadeable water is hard to come by making the few places where you can effectively wade excessively crowded. I probably won’t fish it much more until the weather cools and some of the crowds start to diminish.

Releasing a nice Caney 'bow


Despite the crowds the river is still fishing extremely well. I broke off two large fish and am starting to think that I’ve somehow been cursed when it comes to catching big fish. I’ve either stung or hooked and lost some very nice fish each of the past several times I’ve been on that river but have yet to actually land one. Hopefully all the missed fish will add up to some good luck in the future.


The interesting side note to the day occurred while fishing up near the dam when I heard a noise off behind me. I turned around to see an animal ambling along up the shore in my general direction. After doing a double take I verified that, yes indeed, it was a raccoon. Seeing these things out wandering around in broad daylight always makes me a little nervous about their health and well-being but this one acted basically normal I suppose.


Monday evening again saw me on a stream, this time Little River here in the Smokies. After I got off of work at LRO, I grabbed a snack and headed up into the park to see what was going on. Driving slowly up the river, I took the time to stop and sample several spots above Metcalf Bottoms and finally ended up above Elkmont for the evening finale. The fishing is still holding up and should actually be excellent for the next several days as we go into the Fourth of July holiday weekend. Most trips are yielding some better than average rainbows up to 10 inches and even slightly larger.



The weather forecast holds some good news as well. Starting this weekend we should have a chance for showers and thunderstorms for several days. Every little bit helps and will keep the fishing good.


3 comments:

  1. A raccoon in broad daylight - who would have thought? Would make a gu worried about rabies or something, I suppose.

    Y'know the only way to get that luck to turn around is to keep hittin' the water. Such is my advice - go fishn' more!

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  2. ijsouth8:37 PM

    A few years ago on my old job (and before Katrina), I would play golf at City Park in New Orleans, since it was so close. I would always see at least one, and many times several; any time there was a complaint about a coon raiding a garbage can, the city would trap them and dump them in the park. They had no fear at all - they wouldn't even pay attention to me and my great swing ;)....now, the animals you really had to watch out for were the Canada geese - they're mean, and they would charge you for daring to be on "their" course.

    Now, most of City Park is an unkempt jungle - I don't know how the raccoons fared...but that area was under about 12 feet of water for weeks.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Yeah, raccoons wandering around in broad daylight definitely makes me wonder about rabies...hopefully this one was just hungry or bold or both...

    Tom, I like your idea about fishing more. Now if I can just figure out how to get over to the Caney Fork more often...

    ReplyDelete

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