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

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Finally Went Fishing

January will likely be the month with the fewest days on the water in a long time. This whole "becoming responsible and getting a real job" thing is really hard on the fishing time. Don't get me wrong, I really enjoy what I'm doing but not fishing is tough. Next month should be better though as most weekends will allow an opportunity to fish and I also have a few days off one week early in the month. Today was the first time I got out on the water, at least to fish, since January 3. Those of you that read this blog or know me at all realize that this is a long time without a fishing trip.


In many ways, my fishing trip today was one of the best in awhile. The small things that I often overlook really made the day. Each rainbow trout that graced the end of my line for a few moments fought hard, putting a nice bend in the 3 weight rod I was fishing. Watching the line form nice tight loops was a lot more enjoyable than I normally give it credit for and reminded me how the artistic aspect of the sport is really what got me into fly fishing in the first place.


When the short trip of around 30 minutes was complete, I had caught 4 little rainbows. All fish hammered a #16 black Simi Seal leech with a beadhead that I fished very slowly stripped in the current of the stream. The water was icy cold and my hands felt like they were being pricked by needles every time I dipped them in prior to handling a fish.


I goofed around a little and got some ridiculous "hero" shots with the small fish including the classic but rather cheesy "rod in mouth" picture. Overall it was a fun trip. By next weekend the Caney might be fishable and if so, I'll be there seeing how the fish have handled all the high water lately.


Also, later this week, I may have to head to Chattanooga one day and if so, I might check out my old haunts along the Tennessee river. Shad should be coming through Chickamauga and Watts Bar dams creating a feeding frenzy for the resident fish below. As always, stay tuned for more as it develops...

3 comments:

  1. Nice stuff David!

    I am hoping to build a 3wt soon to go after some of the fish in the smaller streams.

    Thanks,
    Chris

    ReplyDelete
  2. Chris,

    A 3 wt is a blast but still has enough backbone to land larger fish. I'll occasionally fish mine on the Caney Fork and catching a 16 inch brown or rainbow on that rod is about as much fun as one can have with a fly rod in my opinion...

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hey man, if you think a job is hard on your fishing time, just wait till you get married. The job's still the number 1 fishing time killer, but suddenly you find "real-life" responsibilities eating into your weekends, too. I've got my wife fly fishing a little, but to her it'll always just be something fun to do on occasion, not a lifestyle. Too bad we can't make a living blogging about fly fishing, huh? Take care,

    Nathan

    ReplyDelete

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