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

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Float Down the River

One of the most peaceful and enjoyable ways to fish larger streams and rivers is to float.  While I enjoy the intimacy of wade fishing the Caney Fork, sometimes it is nice to sit back in a boat and relax.  Last Friday I had plans to meet David Perry to float.  We finalized where to meet the evening before and everything was set.  As before most trips, I spent the evening before furiously tying up a few last midge patterns.

Friday morning I got up and was soon on the road.  A quick stop for breakfast and fuel slowed me down temporarily but before I knew it I was cruising along the river to the takeout.  David and Brent had already dropped off the boat so I waited until David came back to do the shuttle.  We rode together back up to the launch point while catching up and discussing the day's fishing prospects.  We found Brent waiting with the drifter and after arranging fly rods and other gear were soon underway.

I somehow found myself in the front seat but the hot spot to be was in the back.  Before we knew it Brent had caught several trout while I was still looking to get rid of the skunk.  My luck was slow to turn while Brent continued to boat trout at a ridiculous pace that soon landed him on the rower's bench. Changing up to a deeper rig to get down to where the fish were holding, I finally fed a few fish and the day was looking up.




Naturally just being back on the river with friends was a great way to spend my time.  I found it difficult to concentrate on the indicator, instead getting distracted by herons, deer, beavers, and whatever else happened to be in view at any given time.  Still I was catching enough fish to make the day amazing.

The best part of the day was when Brent and I doubled up and David P. was kept busy with both fish in the net at once.  I had to ask for a picture.  In the background you can see Brent is already back at it and trying to catch the next fish.



The one disappointment of the day was the lack of big browns.  We normally see a few monsters but the largest we saw was probably 18 inches or so.  Hopefully we just weren't looking in the right places.  If we don't get too much more rain the river may be at low flows for much of the rest of the summer.  To get in on the good fishing, consider taking a trip with David Perry.  He knows the river well and always seems to crack the code early in the trip to get into fish.

Oh, one more funny picture.  I snapped the picture right as the fish panicked...


3 comments:

  1. That last shot was a good catch. Gag.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I love floating. I haven't done it a lot but it's always an adventure and the fishing is usually for bigger fish. Good job David.

    ReplyDelete
  3. David
    Anyway you slice it the Caney has to be one of the best tailraces in the south. I love to fish it. thanks for sharing a great trip. By the way I am entering the derby Saturday on the Sipsey, let you know how I fare

    ReplyDelete

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