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

Monday, April 02, 2012

Lostman's Five Version 2.0


One of the most relaxing parts of the Everglades trip was spending extra time at Lostman's Five.  Two nights was just about perfect for recuperating from the paddling of the past 3 days.  The wooden platform that was built upon the site meant we were able to sleep perfectly flat.  Best of all, we paddled up towards the freshwater Glades, began seeing alligators and birds......lots and lots of birds. 

On the first morning (second day) at Lostman's Five, we woke up to find a Black Vulture sitting atop the porta-potty.  Apparently the terrible odors wafting out smelled more like breakfast to the bird.  Before eating breakfast, I had good shots of a Turkey Vulture flying over as well as a Brown Pelican.  While not an avid birder, I do enjoy seeing and taking pictures of birds.  Basically this means that I like to see them but can't always accurately identify them which is kind of nice.  I prefer to keep some of my hobbies uncomplicated. 




The day's paddle towards the freshwater Glades was challenging for the first couple of miles as we had to paddle up Lostman's Creek and across a long bay.  The wind was blowing straight down the bay towards us and we had to fight for every gain.  Once we entered the small creeks on the other side though things improved. 

Alligators appeared with regularity, often sunning on the banks, sometimes floating half-submerged while keeping a cautious eye on us.  Some of them were rather large, or at least, it seemed so to us.  A canoe can suddenly seem rather small when it is sharing the water with an alligator nearly as large.  Still, they are generally shy and did not pose any serious problems.


Our hopes to paddle all the way to pure freshwater were not realized as we ran into a dead end pond with the water still brackish.  On the way, we saw many birds as well as lots of fish.  A particularly large snook had me wishing I had been fishing upstream instead of paddling.  By the time it rocketed past the canoe I knew any hope of catching it was gone. 

As the afternoon wore on, we all started to get hungry.  Returning to camp, we spent the remainder of the day relaxing, eating a good meal, and preparing mentally for the big day ahead of us.


After eating, I tried to be creative with the camera.  The next day was going to be tough and I wasn't sure if I would have many opportunities to get the camera out once we made it to the big water along the Gulf of Mexico.
 




As evening descended, a large alligator swam slowly past camp and up Lostman's Creek. 

Can you find the alligator in this picture?

1 comment:

  1. Shades of years gone by. There are times when I really miss that. Thanks for taking us along.

    Mark

    ReplyDelete

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