Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 12/4/2018

After a brief warmup and another borderline high water event, the streams of the Smokies are once again receding and getting cold. The spawn is winding down for the year so please avoid walking in/around gravel areas in the tailouts of pools and riffles. Those eggs need to survive for another generation to be born. When temperatures rise a few degrees, trout will become active and eat nymphs and streamers well. On cold days, don't expect too much although you might find a large post spawn brown trout.

The tailwaters are all flowing high and keeping us mostly limited to streamers. The Clinch might offer some high water nymphing, especially once they start to dial back the flows. Unfortunately it will be at least another couple of weeks before that happens it seems. The Caney Fork is fishing ok on high water but nothing to write home about. I floated last week and we did not do particularly well. We did find a bunch of crappie which seemed unusual at best. The good news? Water temperatures here are coming down and Center Hill Lake surface temperatures are falling rapidly as well. Shad kills should be in our future for sometime this month and of course January and February and perhaps later into the spring. This fishing is very inconsistent day to day, but when you hit it right you might have the best fishing of your life.

Musky streams are up and down with the rains. We hope to get in a few musky floats soon. As always, check back here for updates as conditions change.

Photo of the Month: Fall on the Tellico

Photo of the Month: Fall on the Tellico

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Tying Feathers

Do you ever want to try and steal some feathers from a duck?  I've come close to considering this one a few times.  Just imagine what all these feathers would look like on a fly.  If we could harvest these without killing the duck, it would be a great renewable source.  Instead of buying a bag of feathers, each tier would simply keep a small flock of various birds...  I'm sure someone would consider this cruelty to animals, but if I was this duck, I think this solution would be much preferred over getting shot...


11 comments:

  1. I have considered it, and plan to do it when I have a property where I can keep some birds. I was thinking more along the lines of chickens that might produce some quality hackles. I figure I can just pick up feathers they drop (molt) and probably won't need to do any inhumane plucking.

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    1. Jay, that's a great idea! I have been on the receiving end of some beautiful peafowl feathers obtained this way. If you pick up the feathers soon after they are shed you can normally get some excellent specimens!!!

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    2. Anonymous8:46 AM

      I do that!! My parents have Araucana and ISA Brown chickens-- it always seems like there are feathers lying around!

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  2. As soon as my new neighbor (lives where the people lived with the Llamas) moved in he brought me 4 bags of duck feathers. Yeh, he's a duck hunter. Only problem I have is I don't know what to do with them. I've yet to find a recipe that calls for duck feathers.

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    1. Mark, do you have flank feathers or wing feathers or both? If you have the smaller flank feathers, the fibers make great tails as well as wing cases on lots of different nymph patterns. My favorite variation on the Gold-ribbed Hare's Ear nymph is tied with mallard flank feathers for the wing case. It normally out fishes a standard GRHE back in the Smoky Mountains although I haven't tried it here in Colorado yet.

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    2. Anonymous3:37 PM

      Hi, Mark and David, just to jump in here. I have used Mallard Flank feathers for years in tying one of my favorite Streamer patterns. Trouble is I have to buy my Mallard Flank feathers since I don't have any duck hunting buddies. I would look kind of silly chasing them around at the pond in the park where I live just to maybe pick up a flank feather or two.

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    3. Mel, I'm in the same boat and buy all my feathers. If you ever decide to harvest some duck feathers at the park let me know. I'll be glad to come video the event!

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  3. Well, I don't have much interest in growing my own so to speak, but I'm always on the lookout for feathers from natural sources or from friends who hunt. I've got some beautiful turkey feathers last year from a friend in Ohio. Best pheasant tail nymphs I've ever tied.

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    Replies
    1. Generous friends who hunt are definitely great to have! I have a large collection of pheasant tail feathers from a good friend that come in handy all the time when I'm tying flies!

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  4. id rather shoot the duck (and pheasants), more time on the water, a great dinner, and feathers to tie flies!

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