Guided Trips


Things have changed a lot since the last report. Unseasonably warm weather has kicked off the first hatches of the year in the Great Smoky Mountains while an extremely wet February means all of the tailwaters are blown out across middle and east Tennessee.

If you want to fish in the Smokies, nymphs and streamers will be your best bet unless you encounter a hatch. In that case, Blue Quills and Quill Gordons should be in your arsenal as well as Blue-winged Olives.

For now, just forget about the tailwaters in the short term. continued rain means it will be at least another month before the tailwaters are fishable again. With luck, we can start thinking about some streamer float trips on the Caney Fork in mid to late March, although that may be optimistic. In the meantime, head for the mountains and enjoy chasing the wild trout there.

Photo of the Month: Breaking Cabin Fever

Photo of the Month: Breaking Cabin Fever

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Winter Is Holding On

While you wouldn't know it right now thanks to highs in the 60s today and 70s tomorrow, winter is going to be slow to relinquish its hold over middle and east Tennessee.  This warm weather we are experiencing might get a few hatches going, and of course once the bugs start they can't really stop, but realistically it might still be a couple of weeks at best.  As recently as 5 days ago it was looking like we might be in for an early warmup that would last long enough to get the hatches going, but now with a strong front moving in tomorrow night and forecast highs by the middle of next week in the 40s at best, I'm ready to tie a few more flies and wait for the main event.

My friend James Marsh over at reported a couple of days ago that some Quill Gordon nymphs he found just outside of the Park were nowhere close to being ready to hatch.  This short warmup won't be enough to get the main show rolling.

The 6-10 day and 8-14 day outlooks from the Climate Prediction Center indicate extremely high chances of colder than normal weather for the next couple of weeks.  Here are the two graphics for those two time periods respectively.

Yep, it's going to be cold still for a while.  On the plus side, the cold weather should include fairly dry conditions which will allow time for the tailwaters to come down after the rain tomorrow.  Also, I should mention that some of the best shad kills on the Caney Fork have happened in years that were cold later into March than usual.  Plus, all the cold water now translates into happy trout that will stay healthy all summer on the tailwaters.


  1. I hear you, what a frustrating winter this has been. Up and down. Here we are in the 60's for three days then down back to the thirties. Enough to drive one insane.



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