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, May 30, 2010

Plateau Creeks


Here on the Cumberland Plateau, we are blessed with an abundance of small to medium sized streams. Every one of these holds a variety of fish with smallmouth and various sunfish usually dominating. Tired after a long year of teaching, I just couldn't get excited about making the two hour drive to fish in the Smokies, but the thought of driving 30 minutes and trying some of the local water sounded appealing.

This morning I went through my usual pre-trip ritual of stressing over my limited available fly selection, and this is always despite the fact that I normally have enough flies to open a small fly shop. Regardless of whether or not I had enough flies, I knew that if I didn't tie a couple the trip would be a bust. Sitting down at the vise, I quickly tied three flies that have done well on these local fish before. Throwing the flies in my car along with the other necessary equipment, I was soon cruising along the back roads near Crossville on my way to a favorite area that I have only begun to explore.

Arriving at the stream, I was surprised to see that very few people were around. That is unusual for this particular spot, so I took the opportunity to fish a pool that normally has plenty of people swimming and otherwise enjoying themselves. Several fish later, the crowd started to show up so I wandered downstream in search of solitude. I moved slowly along, casting my fly to each likely spot while keeping both eyes peeled for snakes. While I love fishing this area, it always seems to have a large number of snakes. Friends have told me of seeing rattlesnakes swimming in this particular stretch of water as well so I'm always on the lookout.


As I moved farther away from the road, the smallmouth started biting better. Most likely they just weren't used to seeing flies, but I like to think that I was actually doing something right as well. I ended the day no more than a quarter of a mile from the road but still the farthest I've made it downstream.



My morning tying session was justified...all the fish I caught except for one were on one of those three flies I tied. Part of my problem with tying is that I've been lazy lately. I just don't sit down to tie in the evenings like I used to. Each fishing trip uses up more of the supply I have so eventually I have to start tying again. Tonight I need to tie a few more patterns. I'm going to a bluegill and bass pond tomorrow evening and will have a friend that is new to fly fishing along. I need a few more good bluegill patterns ready to go since I am running low on the usual suspects...so for now I'm off to the tying bench. Here are a few more pictures from today's fishing...

6 comments:

  1. Wouuld love to know where this is at?

    ReplyDelete
  2. Shoot me an email and I'll be more specific...

    ReplyDelete
  3. Very nice! Fantastic pictures. Looks like a great day out on the water.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Active trip out. Great pics.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Great set of pictures!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Beautiful shots...I love the brown
    working on some paintings like that
    http://stridart.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete

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