Guided Trips


Things have changed a lot since the last report. Unseasonably warm weather has kicked off the first hatches of the year in the Great Smoky Mountains while an extremely wet February means all of the tailwaters are blown out across middle and east Tennessee.

If you want to fish in the Smokies, nymphs and streamers will be your best bet unless you encounter a hatch. In that case, Blue Quills and Quill Gordons should be in your arsenal as well as Blue-winged Olives.

For now, just forget about the tailwaters in the short term. continued rain means it will be at least another month before the tailwaters are fishable again. With luck, we can start thinking about some streamer float trips on the Caney Fork in mid to late March, although that may be optimistic. In the meantime, head for the mountains and enjoy chasing the wild trout there.

Photo of the Month: Breaking Cabin Fever

Photo of the Month: Breaking Cabin Fever

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Fishing For Me

After an evening of teaching, what I really wanted to do was to explore the small lake for myself, so the next day I snuck off for an hour on the water. 

When I got there, the sun was sinking fast in the western sky and the fish were on the feed.  I started with the same fly pattern that I was teaching the guys with (more on this simple strategy for bass later).  My first cast produced a bass and I was off and running.

As I progressed around the lake, I caught fish in most places where the guys had the previous evening.  Some new spots proved interesting as well when I noticed some monster bass (no joke, one was probably in the 7-9 pound range) up feeding on baitfish against the bank.  These bass know how to chase the small fish up against the bank and then pound them unmercifully. 

In one spot the previous evening, one of the guys kept hooking up only to have the fish (we never saw it to know what it was) race off into the weeds.  I was determined to catch whatever "it" was.  Dropping my fly in with anticipation, I jigged it twice and then watched the line dart towards the weeds again.  Putting as much pressure as I dared, I soon muscled a nice bluegill out of the heavy cover. 

As the evening wore on, I fished as late as I dared without a light.  The bass and bluegill just kept hitting and the big fish were making their rounds along the banks.  Finally I knew I better head back.  I'll be looking for an opportunity to go back though.  These fish are just too much fun...


  1. That's a big ol' panfish. Very cool...


  2. The bluegill pic of it's silhouette is awesome!

  3. Beast of a blue gill!



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