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

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Moose!!!

After the previous success in finding moose a couple of weeks ago, it was back for another shot, this time with some friends who hoped to see moose for themselves.  Our goal?  To find some moose without freezing.  Surprisingly, despite the recent storm and new snowfall, the temperatures were actually more mild than our previous trip.

Expectations were set extremely high when one of the small kids with us decided he wanted to see a moose and prayed that Jesus would show him a moose on the drive up.  My stress level immediately shot up because who wants to disappoint a little kid?  Determined to find moose, we picked one of the area trails and started hiking.  Returning hikers suggested that moose were recently spotted on the north side of Long Lake so off we hustled.


Keeping moving to stay warm, we were making good time around the lake when something interesting was spotted.  Moose tracks?  Nothing else in the woods is that big...


Where do they lead?


Following the tracks carefully off trail while moving very slowly so as not to surprise a moose at close range, I carefully moved closer to the clearing alongside the lake.  Emerging from the trees, I froze and carefully looked around.


About to proceed, I heard a commotion and saw three moose charging about. One turned in our direction, and I was just about to look for a tree to duck behind when it abruptly turned and galloped in the opposite direction.

Carefully bringing the kids down to show them the moose, I was glad when the big animals froze near the edge of the woods.  Everyone was awed at the size of these beautiful animals.  Before long, the moose moved on into the woods.  We followed the trail further and inadvertently intercepted the now spooked animals.  Can you find the moose in this picture?


It was actually standing right on the trail.  In this next picture, you can see the moose clearly through the magnification of my zoom lens.  Notice the color immediately behind the moose.  A pair of hikers were coming the other direction and were probably no more than 30 feet from the moose when they rounded the rock to see it standing in the middle of the trail.  They took a broad detour far up the hill above the trail while the moose alternately laid its ears back only to perk them up to listen better again.  These signs had me a bit uneasy again and our group kept a very respectful distance.  No use to precipitate a confrontation with one of these wild creatures.


Later, on our drive out, we found 4 more moose! Yes, you read that correctly, FOUR more!!!  This brought our total to seven and one of the last 4 had a nice set of antlers which was another Colorado first for me in the moose department.


Now that I'm quickly becoming a moose expert, I'll probably have to start charging for tours... Three options available.  The leisure package will consist of a lazy drive through the mountains were you can spot these animals from the comfort of the Trout Mobile, now converted into an elegant Moose Wagon!!!  The beginner adventure package will allow you to get off the roads and hike into the wilderness in search of these beautiful creatures.  Safety will be emphasized and we will always stay at a reasonable distance from these massive animals.  Finally, the interactive adventure package will include stalking moose at close range through heavy brush.  Surprised animals will likely charge at this range meaning you will need to have professional training in moose wrestling.  I'll demonstrate the proper method to take down a moose with your bare hands during our first encounter and give you the option of trying it for yourself thereafter!!!  For any clients who survive, a hot meal and beverages will be provided after we return to the Moose Wagon.

5 comments:

  1. lol... always the businessman.. Good luck with that! Ill come watch!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Nothing more exciting than spotting moose. Good job David.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Gabriel Flechas9:31 PM

    As a long time resident of Colorado I feel ashamed to say that I have never seen many moose. I've heard numerous accounts of people being charged by these elegant yet wild animals. I suppose that's what happens when you get too close to a mother's young. All in all, the pictures of the mooses (meese? moosie? I'm not positive on the plural for a moose) are spectacular. Sounds like quite the trip!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Gabe, we need to help change your record with moose viewing. I know where to find them so we should go on a moose hunt...

      Delete
    2. Gabriel Flechas3:42 PM

      You know, I might just have to take you up on that offer.

      Delete

Newsletter

Subscribe to the Trout Zone Anglers Newsletter!

* indicates required