Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 01/08/2020

Unusually warm and wet conditions continue to prevail here in middle and east Tennessee. This upcoming weekend is looking like more rain and possibly even severe weather. The wind forecast is bad enough that I wouldn't bother going fishing until Sunday at the earliest unless you can go tomorrow.

In the Smokies, nymphing will be the name of the game, but don't be surprised to see some blue-winged olives from time to time. With all the high water, think streamers, big stoneflies, or worm imitations.

Tailwaters like the Caney Fork and Clinch are still rolling with a lot of water. Both rivers are over 10,000 cfs. While this is still fishable, I don't really recommend it. Flows this high are generally all about swinging for the fences if you feel like hunting a trophy. Many days it won't happen. Once in a while it will. Throw big streamers, hope for a shad kill, and get out there. Those big fish won't get caught if you're sitting home on the couch.

The Caney will produce decent fishing if we ever get flows back down at least a little. One generator would be ideal. Right now I'll even take two. Minimum flow looks a long ways off right now.

On the Clinch, you can throw streamers and also possible nymph up a few fish. If you pick your spots, there are places to nymph even on 12,000 cfs. Let's hope it gets back down to two generators or less soon. Every time we get a big rain event, look for some low water for a day or two or three. TVA will hold water back at tributary dams like Norris to reduce downstream high water effects. This gives those of us who like to wade a day or two to fish.

Winter is our favorite time to get on the musky streams. In between bouts of high water, those will be fishing well for the next few months.

Photo of the Month: Starting the Year Off Right

Photo of the Month: Starting the Year Off Right

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Headwater Streams and the Perfect Fly Store

James Marsh is at it again. In addition to many updates for his sites on fly fishing in the Smokies and Yellowstone, he has started an online store to sell the patterns that are demonstrated in his "Perfect Fly" series on tying. Those that have checked out the DVDs on tying the "Perfect" fly know that he has developed a system of tying that allows one to learn a few basic fly patterns and adapt them to any specific species by just altering the color and size. His new site will allow those that don't tie their own to purchase these patterns for the first time.

In addition to the new store, updates to the "Headwater Streams" portion of his site continue to roll out frequently. The most recent is an interesting one on Enloe Creek. I've never fished this stream but have been close while fishing Raven Fork. This is one of the most beautiful places I've been in the park and the grueling hike up and over a ridge to get there insures that you won't have huge crowds to contend with once you arrive. The hike in makes this a better overnight option although I have done it as a day trip. If you want to look for larger than average brookies, this is one of the better places to try. Beware though that the area is extremely rugged and if you run into trouble you can't count on help any time soon...


A Quiet Pool On Raven Fork

4 comments:

  1. Anonymous10:12 PM

    Over Labor Day weekend, our plans were for my oldest and myself to head up there, specifically to hike into Raven Fork...I figured it would be too much for her younger sisters. Anyway, Gustav had other plans, and our trip for 2 turned into a trip for 5. I had to be content with a few hours fishing each day on Cosby, although if I had to evacuate, it wasn't a bad way to go. I was able to get a few specs around 8 inches or so, so I was happy.

    One thing I don't understand - the road to Straight Fork (and to the trailhead) closes for the year around mid-November...two weeks before my Thanksgiving trip up there. That road, with the exception of one spot, is relatively level; meanwhile, the roller-coaster road into Cataloochee remains open year round. I just don't get it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ijsouth, I've never completely understood the reason for closing that road either but probably it has everything to do with funding... You definitely should give Raven Fork a try sometime but plan for plenty of time to hike up and over the ridge, it isn't for the faint of heart either. The stream above the trail crossing get's progressively easier to navigate for awhile as the gradient eases up a bit. I haven't been too far upstream though. Someday I would love to do a pack trip up the creek into the headwaters. Probably lots of fish up there that have never seen a fly...are they worth they effort? Not so sure about that one...

    ReplyDelete
  3. Anonymous11:19 AM

    Raven Fork is one of the places I haven't fished on any of my trips to the Smokies, but you could say I keep noticing it whenever I look at a map.

    Maybe next year...

    ReplyDelete
  4. Raven Fork is definitely one of those places that you should try sometime since you enjoy catching brookies so much...they are the predominate species over there. Occasionally a rainbow will be caught but there really aren't many of them at all...

    ReplyDelete

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