Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 10/17/2018

Fishing continues to be good to excellent in the Great Smoky Mountains of east Tennessee. Delayed harvest streams are also being stocked and fishing well in east Tennessee and western North Carolina.

In the Smokies, fall bugs are in full swing. We have been seeing blue-winged olives almost daily although they will hatch best on foul weather days. They are small, typically running anywhere from #20-#24 although a few larger ones have also shown up. A few Yellow Quills are still hanging on in the mid to high elevation brook trout water although not for long. October caddis (more properly, great autumn sedges) are hatching in good numbers now on the North Carolina side of the Park and just starting on the Tennessee side. Terrestrials still have a place in your fly box as well although they are definitely winding down for the year. Isonychia nymphs, caddis pupa, and BWO nymphs will get it done for your subsurface fishing. Have some October Caddis (#12) and parachute BWO patterns (#18-#22) for dry flies and you should be set. Brook trout are still eating smaller yellow dry flies as well. Not interested in matching the hatch? Then fish a Pheasant Tail nymph under a #14 Parachute Adams. That rig can catch fish year round in the Smokies.

Brook and brown trout are now moving into the open to spawn. During this time of year, please be extremely cautious about wading through gravel riffles and the tailouts of pools. If you step on the redd (nest), you will crush the eggs that comprise the next generation of fish. Please avoid fishing to actively spawning fish and let them do their thing in peace.

Our tailwaters are still cranking although the Caney is finally starting to come down. I'm hoping to get some type of a report for there soon. Stay tuned for more on that. Fishing will still be slow overall with limited numbers of fish in that particular river unfortunately.

The Clinch is featuring high water as they try to catch up on the fall draw down. All of the recent rainfall set them back in this process but flows are now going up to try and make up some of the time lost. It is still fishing reasonably well on high water although we are holding off for the low water of late fall and early winter as it is one of our favorite times to be on the river.

Smallmouth are about done for the year with the cooler weather we are now experiencing. Our thoughts will be turning to musky soon, however. Once we are done with guide trips for the year, we'll be spending more time chasing these monsters.

In the meantime, we still have a few open dates in November and one or two in October. Feel free to get in touch with me if you are interested in a guided trip. Thanks!

Photo of the Month: Fishing in Paradise

Photo of the Month: Fishing in Paradise

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. ijsouth10:12 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. 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

Newsletter

Subscribe to the Trout Zone Anglers Newsletter!

* indicates required