Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 12/3/2019

Winter fishing is nearly upon us. Snow yesterday has given way to falling water temperatures in the Smokies. In general, fish will be hunkered down, although by tomorrow they should start to get more active again as temperatures warm. For the next three months, expect many more fish in the slower places in the Park. Think nymphs and maybe streamers but don't be surprised to find fish rising to blue-winged olives or midges on some days.

On tailwaters like the Clinch, brown trout and some fall spawn rainbows are doing their thing. This is a good time to review good ethics when it comes to spawning trout. Remember that these are the next generation of trout and the best thing you can do is to leave them alone. Avoid wading through spawning areas and don't fish for obvious spawners. For the foreseeable future, we should have high water thanks to big rains this last weekend. Fishing out of the drift boat will be very good through the winter with both nymphing and streamer fishing a distinct possibility. Want to swing for the fences and go for just one monster? Streamers will just get better and better going into January and February.

The Caney is slowly coming around. A few shad are coming through the dam, but lingering water quality problems are limiting the fishing. Winter streamer floats will produce shots at larger brown trout for anglers willing to work hard. Next spring should bring good fishing again.

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: Big Fish Chuck Strikes Again

Photo of the Month: Big Fish Chuck Strikes Again

Friday, January 23, 2009

2008 Was a Good Year

Our most recent poll has closed and most people voted that 2008 was a good or great year. A few of you apparently not so lucky readers didn't have a particularly good year but overall the results were positive. One of my favorite responses to that poll came from my buddy Trey who said it was his best year because he learned to fly fish in 2008. Now that's a great year in anybodies book if you ask me.

To me, 2008 was great for several reasons. First, I expanded my horizons and explored some more. I caught several new species on the fly rod and chased the mythical lake run fish on the south side of the Smokies, finally finding a few good fish. One of the major highlights of the year was the opportunity to work at Little River Outfitters which was a dream come true. Talking with customers and helping them have a great time while visiting the Smokies was a lot of fun. It was always gratifying when someone would stop back by to say thank you for the information that led to some nice fish.

The year was also great because the Caney Fork River continues to improve despite enormous fishing pressure. This river has become one of the top rivers in the southeast but unfortunately this has created some serious crowding problems. While it will still fish well this next year, it will probably not be the river of choice for many people, myself included because of the bad crowds. Still, I'll get my fair share of time on that river which will always be my favorite Tennessee tailwater.

If anyone else has anything to share as to why 2008 was a good year (or not), please let me know. In the meantime, I'll be putting up a new poll soon so be sure and cast your vote...you can choose more than one option on the new poll by the way...

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