Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 10/17/2018

Fishing continues to be good to excellent in the Great Smoky Mountains of east Tennessee. Delayed harvest streams are also being stocked and fishing well in east Tennessee and western North Carolina.

In the Smokies, fall bugs are in full swing. We have been seeing blue-winged olives almost daily although they will hatch best on foul weather days. They are small, typically running anywhere from #20-#24 although a few larger ones have also shown up. A few Yellow Quills are still hanging on in the mid to high elevation brook trout water although not for long. October caddis (more properly, great autumn sedges) are hatching in good numbers now on the North Carolina side of the Park and just starting on the Tennessee side. Terrestrials still have a place in your fly box as well although they are definitely winding down for the year. Isonychia nymphs, caddis pupa, and BWO nymphs will get it done for your subsurface fishing. Have some October Caddis (#12) and parachute BWO patterns (#18-#22) for dry flies and you should be set. Brook trout are still eating smaller yellow dry flies as well. Not interested in matching the hatch? Then fish a Pheasant Tail nymph under a #14 Parachute Adams. That rig can catch fish year round in the Smokies.

Brook and brown trout are now moving into the open to spawn. During this time of year, please be extremely cautious about wading through gravel riffles and the tailouts of pools. If you step on the redd (nest), you will crush the eggs that comprise the next generation of fish. Please avoid fishing to actively spawning fish and let them do their thing in peace.

Our tailwaters are still cranking although the Caney is finally starting to come down. I'm hoping to get some type of a report for there soon. Stay tuned for more on that. Fishing will still be slow overall with limited numbers of fish in that particular river unfortunately.

The Clinch is featuring high water as they try to catch up on the fall draw down. All of the recent rainfall set them back in this process but flows are now going up to try and make up some of the time lost. It is still fishing reasonably well on high water although we are holding off for the low water of late fall and early winter as it is one of our favorite times to be on the river.

Smallmouth are about done for the year with the cooler weather we are now experiencing. Our thoughts will be turning to musky soon, however. Once we are done with guide trips for the year, we'll be spending more time chasing these monsters.

In the meantime, we still have a few open dates in November and one or two in October. Feel free to get in touch with me if you are interested in a guided trip. Thanks!

Photo of the Month: Fishing in Paradise

Photo of the Month: Fishing in Paradise

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Teaching



As a teacher, I enjoy imparting knowledge and hopefully a little wisdom to young people.  Occasionally I get the pleasure of teaching more than just academic subjects.  Recently, the school I work for took our guys on an outing that included some time for them to swim, boat, or otherwise enjoy time on the lake.  Naturally I brought a fly rod along as well.  In years past, I have always had several guys that wanted to try out fly fishing.  As this small lake is private, it is the perfect place to allow them to try the sport without having to worry about such things as a fishing license. 

This year, three guys in particular wanted to try fly fishing.  By the end of the outing, it appears that I successfully did my job.  The guys were asking how much it would cost for them to buy fly fishing gear and where to go to purchase the equipment. 

I have a special pattern I tie specifically for fishing this pond although I use it anywhere I fish for bass and large sunfish.  After tying it on, I warmed up the rod for them by hooking a couple bluegills and a bass or two.  As soon as they were sufficiently enthusiastic, I passed the rod off to the first candidate. 

The first place I normally have someone try is where a culvert goes under the road, connecting a small, weed-filled section of the lake to the main body of water.  Bass will lay up in the deep cut waiting for any prey that happens to come by.  I placed the first guy close to the water and gave him just a few feet of line, showing him how to flip it out there and slowly retrieve it with small strips.  After mastering the presentation and retrieve, everything came together.  The fly slowly sank out of sight into the deep cut and suddenly the line twitched.  "Set!" I hollered, forgetting as always that a beginner normally has no clue what I mean by that.  Thankfully he got the idea and lifted the rod tip.  Soon, I lipped the best bass of the outing and we posed for a quick picture together.

 
The next guy up tried the other side of the culvert.  Almost as soon as the fly hit the water, it took off into some weeds were whatever had eaten promptly through this hook.  He was somewhat disappointed, but I assured him that, no worries, we still had plenty of good spots to hit. 

Next up we moved around to the dam.  Here, small indentations in the bank along with the proximity to deeper water give bass the sanctuary they need along with good options for feeding.  After helping him position, we moved to instruction on casting a bit further.  He picked it up like a natural and was soon casting the 15-20 feet necessary to catch fish.  Soon something slammed the fly and after a brief fight, we admired a nice chunky bluegill and posed for the required pictures.

 
The next guy took his place with the fly rod and we continued stalking bass.  Again, it only took a couple of tries for him to sufficiently master the art of fly casting to at least catch some fish.  The now standard twitch part way through his retrieve motivated a good hook set, and I soon lipped yet another bass. 


All three guys were thrilled with the experience.  Hopefully three more guys have been inspired to take up the hobby of fly fishing. 

2 comments:

  1. I've always said that learning fly fishing is one thing, but it's the catching that'll hook new students of the sport.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Pat, I agree whole-heartedly. When I introduce someone to the sport, I prefer to fish under relatively easy conditions or for an easy to catch species. None of these guys had to cast more than 15 times to catch their fish...

    ReplyDelete

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