Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 11/1/2018

Fishing is good in the Smokies and other mountain streams if you can catch it on a day where the wind is minimal. Otherwise, expect lots of leaves in the water for the next few days. 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 October Caddis are still around as well. Terrestrials are close to being done for the year although we are still seeing a few bees and hornets near the stream. 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. 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 still hoping to get a firsthand report on the Caney Fork soon although it might be sometime next week or the week after before that happens at the earliest. 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 prefer 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. I caught a few yesterday on the Tennessee River while fishing with guide Rob Fightmaster, but overall the best bite is all but over. 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. 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

Friday, June 06, 2014

Please Help!!!

If you have ever fished in Tennessee, or if you ever hope to fish in Tennessee (seriously, we have some fantastic fishing), then please keep reading.  We currently are in the midst of a serious effort to fund our tailwater trout stocking program.  In short, the US Fish and Wildlife Service has pulled the plug on hatchery funding for trout.  I'm not sure whether this has to do with the budget cuts over the last couple of years or not, but that is not that point.  

The important part is that we may lose a lot of stocked trout.  That's where you come in.  Please check out the document from the latest meeting first.  It covers the alternative options.  Please note that the USFWS has said that funding through them is not an option unless congress appropriates a LOT more funding than they currently have.

So why is all of this important? Well, we only have limited natural reproduction on most tailwaters, with the Clinch and South Holston being two of the best in terms of wild fish.  Imagine if all of the other tailwaters were more or less barren and the anglers that normally fished them now crowded onto the already crowded Clinch and South Holston?  Even worse, imagine if all those tailwater anglers were so frustrated by the lack of quantities of fish (even on those rivers as both have lots of supplemental stocking) on the tailwaters and started hitting the wild mountain streams a lot harder.  In other words, the Smokies might become a bring your own rock sort of place.  I'm not too excited about that, and I hope you're not either.

Personally, as TVA is responsible for the dams being in place that created this artificial situation where native species cannot thrive, I think TVA should foot the bill on this one, but that could definitely be debated.  Ultimately it will be passed on to TVA rate payers as a rate hike.  However, current calculations are indicating that a rate increase of 5-10 cents per year is all that would be required to get this thing funded.  That's not bad.

In the end, the most important thing you can do to help is to contact TVA so that they know a lot of people care about our tailwaters.  It won't take much of your time, just go to http://www.tva.gov/hatchery/, read the page so you understand the issue, then scroll down to the bottom where you will find a link to submit comments.  Let TVA know that you care about trout in our tailwaters and that you believe the trout stocking needs to continue.  The more people that submit comments the better.  They have to realize how many people are utilizing our waters and they need to understand the economic impact that a cessation of funding would cause.  

Thank you for taking the time to read about this issue and sending in your comments.  With everyone's help, we can make a difference in maintaining the fantastic tailwater fisheries here in Tennessee!!!

7 comments:

  1. I'll have to look more into this. I can't believe they'd can stocking for this year. Especially with all of the out of state traffic they get for the Holston.

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    1. Kevin, they are not cutting it for this year. I believe the current funding agreement is good until 2016. The current discussion is about what happens after that...

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  2. I'm looking it over and passed the word to my buddy Tim who is moving to Tenn. next week.

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    1. Thanks Howard! That is much appreciated. The more people who are aware the better.

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  3. David
    Thanks for letting us know about this issue and yes I will be contacting TVA as soon as I complete my comment here. We are having the same problem in Alabama at Smith Dam tailrace. No funds to continue funding stocking. We are talking to issue to our local legislature leaders in this area and contacting Alabama Power for additional funding. At this stage nothing has happened. Our last stocking was two months ago. We will continue our efforts. Thanks for sharing

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Bill! I hope you get your situation resolved down there in Alabama as well. Is there any natural reproduction at all in the Smith Dam tailrace? Are there any browns or just rainbows?

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  4. David
    We have no evidence of reproduction in the tailrace, we only have rainbow. We have been working to get browns stocked as well. If some of the powers to be had their way in Montgomery we wouldn't have any trout at all in the tailrace. Long story on that one.

    ReplyDelete

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