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

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Back to the 'Gills

Since I wasn't in the Smokies as I originally intended, I decided that chasing some bluegill and bass late in the day would be a good idea. The small lake nearby that I like to fish had several other people out fishing on it but there were still plenty of good spots to work. My favorite area was deserted so I worked my way over.

When I got there, I tied on a swimming frog (slider style bass bug) from James Marsh and on probably the third cast, this little bass nailed it. The visual aspect of fly fishing is probably the most exciting. Watching fish sip dry flies, nail streamers, explode on popping bugs, all of these add up to make fly fishing the enjoyable sport it is. I'm really starting to enjoy fishing bigger flies and watching fish come chasing them. It all started when I floated the Caney with David Perry and he got me started on streamers. The bug just keeps getting worse. I'm currently in the very early planning stages of a trip out west and am hoping to do some streamer fishing out there as well...


After catching the bass, I started working back towards the car. There are lots of bluegill in this particular lake so I decided to try and catch a few. I tied on two flies, the second of which is one of my most deadly bluegill flies. I've mentioned this fly before but it is well worth mentioning again. It is the Simi Seal Leech and I was fishing a size #16 with a small beadhead in purple. I finally hooked one and for a second thought that maybe a bass had taken the first fly in the two fly rig. However, when I got it close, I saw it was indeed a bluegill and it had taken the small leech pattern. This was one of the fattest bluegill I've ever seen and it fought really well... That fish really made my day. I caught a few more smaller bluegill and sight fished over a bass for awhile, changing flies several times, but he was on to me and wouldn't eat.


Today I'll probably tie a bunch of flies and start planning for my potential trip out west. I've got to do some research on different rivers I hope to fish, fishing license fees, camping fees, and lots of other things. Also, I might try to get a little more time in today fishing...check back to see if I catch that big bass!

2 comments:

  1. That bluegill is SWEET. Sounds like fun

    --Brian J.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I def agree with you on all the different ways you can catch fish on a fly rod is what makes it enjoyable...also something I tried last year which was different for me was sight fishing for carp.

    ReplyDelete

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