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: 7/11/2016 Smokies Fly Fishing Report -- Current Hatches: Blue-winged Olives, Isonychias (Slate Drake), Little Yellow Stoneflies, Golden Stoneflies, Tan and Cinnamon Caddis, inch worms, beetles, and ants. Hatches are sparse for the most part. We have reached that point in the summer where heading higher in elevation will increase your odds of success as will a good hike. Brook trout fishing is great now. High water days will be excellent in the lower elevations throwing nymphs or streamers. Recommended flies include, Prince Nymphs, Golden Stonefly nymphs, Yellow Stimulators, Green Weenies, Ants, and Black Foam Beetles. If you need to learn how to fish these streams and where to go, a guided trip with me can help you accomplish that!
Caney Fork Fly Fishing Report: Terrestrial season is upon us but we have been boating some large trout on nymphs and midges as well. Some high water this week will also offer the chance for some streamer fishing with very large trout and stripers always possible. Fishing will remain great if you know the river. The best way to enjoy this fishing is out of the drift boat which allows us to access some less pressured sections. 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: So far the sulfur hatch has not been anything to write home about. 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.
Holston River: Give this river a break on the trout sections until next winter.
Cumberland Plateau Fishing Report: Smallmouth bass fishing is excellent right now. The rain last week has left a good amount of water in the creeks and the fish are happy. Get on this sooner as opposed to later and be prepared for afternoon thunderstorms and rising water.