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

Monday, February 03, 2014

There She Goes

If you enjoy fishing tailwaters, I hope you made it to the Caney or are swinging by today.  Just like that, we get a good rain and everything is blowing out.  I'm guessing the generators come on tomorrow but we might, if we are extremely lucky, get one more day out of the recent lack of precipitation.  Here is a streamflow chart for the Collins River, a tributary of the upper Caney Fork at Great Falls Reservoir.


Spikes like that are not what any of us want to see, but I'm sure it is probably better to be getting all this cold water now.  The fish will appreciate it by late summer and so will the fishermen.  Great Falls lake is showing forecast releases somewhere north of 10,000 cfs.  I'm sure we can all guess what that will do to Center Hill dam and the Caney Fork tailwater.  It looks like two generators around the clock for a while again.

On a more positive note, the rain has cleared out the Smokies streams of ice.  The ice buildup should be a thing of the past unless we get some more extremely cold weather.  Now it is time to start thinking about the spring hatches.  Head over to the fishing report on my new guide site to see a fly I like tying for the Quill Gordon hatches.  For the Blue Quills and Quill Gordons, it is also hard to beat an appropriately sized Parachute Adams. I've had fish doing backflips (literal ones mind you) to eat that fly all day.  For a really picky fish, I'm a big fan of Comparaduns and Sparkle Duns.  Whatever pattern you decide to tie, just make sure you have plenty.  When the fishing is really on, you can never have too many flies.

2 comments:

  1. Glad things are going well for you. Keep up the good work.

    ReplyDelete

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