Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 10/17/2018

Fishing continues to be good to excellent in the Great Smoky Mountains of east Tennessee. Delayed harvest streams are also being stocked and fishing well in east Tennessee and western North Carolina.

In the Smokies, fall bugs are in full swing. We have been seeing blue-winged olives almost daily although they will hatch best on foul weather days. They are small, typically running anywhere from #20-#24 although a few larger ones have also shown up. A few Yellow Quills are still hanging on in the mid to high elevation brook trout water although not for long. October caddis (more properly, great autumn sedges) are hatching in good numbers now on the North Carolina side of the Park and just starting on the Tennessee side. Terrestrials still have a place in your fly box as well although they are definitely winding down for the year. Isonychia nymphs, caddis pupa, and BWO nymphs will get it done for your subsurface fishing. Have some October Caddis (#12) and parachute BWO patterns (#18-#22) for dry flies and you should be set. Brook trout are still eating smaller yellow dry flies as well. Not interested in matching the hatch? Then fish a Pheasant Tail nymph under a #14 Parachute Adams. That rig can catch fish year round in the Smokies.

Brook and brown trout are now moving into the open to spawn. During this time of year, please be extremely cautious about wading through gravel riffles and the tailouts of pools. If you step on the redd (nest), you will crush the eggs that comprise the next generation of fish. Please avoid fishing to actively spawning fish and let them do their thing in peace.

Our tailwaters are still cranking although the Caney is finally starting to come down. I'm hoping to get some type of a report for there soon. Stay tuned for more on that. Fishing will still be slow overall with limited numbers of fish in that particular river unfortunately.

The Clinch is featuring high water as they try to catch up on the fall draw down. All of the recent rainfall set them back in this process but flows are now going up to try and make up some of the time lost. It is still fishing reasonably well on high water although we are holding off for the low water of late fall and early winter as it is one of our favorite times to be on the river.

Smallmouth are about done for the year with the cooler weather we are now experiencing. Our thoughts will be turning to musky soon, however. Once we are done with guide trips for the year, we'll be spending more time chasing these monsters.

In the meantime, we still have a few open dates in November and one or two in October. Feel free to get in touch with me if you are interested in a guided trip. Thanks!

Photo of the Month: Fishing in Paradise

Photo of the Month: Fishing in Paradise

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Last Trip

Sunday may have been my last trip of 2012.  There is the possibility of venturing out while in Maine for Christmas (yeah, you read that correctly), and if any of you have any helpful hints and suggestions I'm all ears.  Realistically, however, in all likelihood I logged my last trip of the year.  Best of all, the fish were still hungry!!!

A trip to Boulder provided a great excuse for tossing a fly rod in the car.  One can always hope right?  On Saturday, I drove about a mile up Boulder Canyon and was dismayed at the amount of solid water. Yep, winters in Colorado are just a little bit different from those in Tennessee.  Amazingly, there is still a fair amount of open water in town.

After quickly rigging a rod, I hit the stream with, you guessed it, my favorite little white streamer.  Time has been tight lately but I promise that I will get around to doing an article about this great winter time fly.  In the first pool and riffle, I found zero fish.  Not to be deterred, I worked my way upstream.  The next pool was much more promising.

A little trick I like to use this time of year is to find pools where I know fish spawned.  Normally fish will move to the closest deep water after spawning to ride out the cold months.  The next pool I fished was such a pool.  The tailout still had the telltale signs of recent spawning activity so I was fairly certain there were some browns nearby.  In fact, my first cast into the heart of the pool produced a rather impressive follow for the size of the creek, one of those "I'm coming back again later" type of moments.  Not a giant fish mind you, but large enough to be interesting.

Working my way into the run/riffle area at the head of the pool, I was surprised at how many fish were following the streamer out of the faster water.  The fish were definitely hungry and willing to eat while the stream conditions were still marginally favorable.  Finally, I saw two fish racing to hit the streamer at the same time.  The smaller of the two won, and I was a bit surprised to discover a brook trout with a face full of streamer on the end of my line.


Working my way up through riffles and pools, I found a few more willing fish.  As usual, I discovered several creative ways of spooking the best fish of the day.  This time of year can be particularly tough with low clear water, but I was already satisfied.  I hadn't really expected much out of the outing, but those are usually the times when the fishing is actually pretty good!!!



For Christmas, as I mentioned above, I'll be in Maine.  If anyone has any tips or suggestions for a place to fish this time of year, I'll be just northeast of the Portland/Freeport area.  I still haven't decided if I'll go to much effort to get out or even bother taking gear but must admit that the idea intrigues me.  I'm already thinking about some late winter or early spring trips to tailwaters like the Taylor or Frying Pan for BIG trout.  Apparently cabin fever sets in early here in Colorado...

2 comments:

  1. Yep David welcome to Colorado home of early cabin fever and late runoffs. Have a very Merry Christmas back home.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Those Browns look just like the ones that I catch up in the San Bernardino Mountains here in So Cal. Great photos!

    ReplyDelete

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