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, February 11, 2009

Next Three Days

Finally! I've got a few days off from work so the next three should provide some fishing time. The Caney Fork is always a possibility because if its close proximity but other streams are probably better options for a good adventure. Lately, I have been seeing reports of nice fish being caught in the Smokies including rainbows up to 12 inches or so and also some decent browns. Of course it is a little early for any major hatches to begin but that won't stop me from catching a few. The fish still need to eat and the recent warm spell should have all the fish thinking more about eating than they might normally at this time of year. Also, it is the time of year to start looking for fish making their annual run up out of the lakes to spawn in the streams of the mountains. I've got several streams that I "need" to check on and hope to make a good start on that soon, like tomorrow or Friday.

Today will likely not include any fishing despite the nice warm weather. Instead I'll be staying close to home to watch the days weather unfold. Yesterday turned out to be a big day weather-wise with severe weather striking the Nation's midsection. Today is not looking quite as favorable for severe weather but it is still a definite possibility. Instead of getting caught on the river during lightning and high winds, I'll stay home, tie a few flies, and if things start to get exciting, head out with the camera to try and get a few decent pictures of the storms as they roll by. Tomorrow, I'll be fishing somewhere for sure so check back for updates soon...

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