Today I caught my last trout on the 2011-2012 Tennessee fishing license. Until our state becomes enlightened and switches to a different system in which a license is good for a year from the purchase date, the end of February will continue to be time for a new license. After the quick fishing excursion I stopped for a new license.
The fishing was not exactly as I planned. Upon arriving at the lake, I discovered that a threatened drawdown of the lake level for some bridge repairs had already commenced. The fish were not going to be in the expected places, but that just makes the game a little more interesting. Exploring in a couple of new spots brought continued disappointment until just before time to leave. As I was thinking about heading to the car, I spotted what looked like a rise ring. Of course, all such things must be investigated.
On the first cast, a nice healthy rainbow nailed my small beadhead simi seal leech and gave the 3 weight I was using a good workout. Pausing to appreciate the moment, I realized how tranquil the water was and enjoyed the reflection of the forest above. For the rest of this week, I'll be tying and packing for the Everglades. For real this time...no more fishing until Florida...
UPDATE: 5/25/2016 Smokies Fly Fishing Report -- Current Hatches: Blue-winged Olives, Sulfurs, Light Cahills, Pale Evening Duns, March Browns, Little Yellow Stoneflies, Giant Black Stoneflies, Golden Stoneflies, Little Black Caddis, Tan Caddis, inch worms, and ants. Fishing is very good now in the Smokies. Hatches are quite diverse depending on which streams you are fishing and what elevation you are at. It is still spring up on the high brook trout streams but almost summer down low. Both dry flies and nymphs are catching a lot of fish now. If you need to learn how to fish these streams, a guided trip with me can help you accomplish that!
Caney Fork Fly Fishing Report: The Caney Fork is fishing excellent right now. Good for both numbers and a chance at some larger fish. Flows allow for both float or wade trips. Contact me about a float or wade trip if you want to enjoy this fishing at TroutZoneAnglers@gmail.com or call/text (931) 261-1884.
Clinch River Fishing Report: Fishing is anywhere from good to slow depending on the day and your casting ability. Long casts, long drifts, small flies. Watch for sulfurs and be prepared with nymph, emerger, and dun imitations if the fish are noticing them. When there aren't a lot of bugs on the water, stick with small nymph, emerger, and midge patterns and you should catch some nice trout.
Cumberland Plateau Fishing Report: Smallmouth are coming on strong now and wade fishing the creeks and streams for smallmouth and various sunfish will only get better from here on out. Some good fish are already being caught on topwater.