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

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Jumping Brook Trout!!!

These brookies think they are salmon heading upstream to spawn, or at least they were doing their best salmon impersonation.  The high country brookies are starting to color up nicely for the spawn.  Today I found many willing fish, but the highlight of the day was watching several fish repeatedly trying to scale a small falls.  They appeared to be moving upstream in anticipation of the upcoming spawn.  I got several pictures as the fish hurled themselves into the air only to be swept back downstream in the fast water.







While I was definitely pleased with the pictures, the real highlight is the following video taken by my friend, Catherine McGrath.  In just a 15 second clip, you can see three different fish trying to scale the falls.  For the best video, watch this in full screen HD...


12 comments:

  1. I totally enjoyed the photos and video! Nice place you've got here David. I think I'll spend some time and look around.

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    1. Thanks for stopping by! I had a great time obtaining those brookie pictures...

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  2. David,

    Those are unbelievable photos. Must have been pretty cool to see.

    Ben

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    1. Thanks Ben! It was definitely a special opportunity...

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  3. Great work, David, that is pretty special to see. Life in the wilds!

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    1. Thanks Mel! Can't get any better than time in the wilds!!!

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  4. I never knew they did that. Ya learn something new every day. Good pictures.

    Mark

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    1. Mark, I did not realize they did that either. Back in the Smokies I think most fish spawned close to their home pool. Although I know that some browns back home would spawn in their home pool while others would run way up stream. Interesting how some choose to move up and others stay...

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  5. David, great to see that you are exploring some new haunts in Colorado, and getting acquainted with the finned locals! Fantastic brook trout photos and video, and the fish in the first picture looks like quite a colorful male...

    Iain

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    1. Thanks Iain! I'm really enjoying this discovery phase and hope the joy of discovery never gets old...

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