FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 3/23/2017
The fishing has been great lately! This spring has been phenomenal in the Smokies. Long hatches have produced dry fly fishing lasting for hours every day. The Caney Fork has been producing some great fish on high water.
In the Great Smoky Mountains, the spring fishing has started early this year. Quill Gordon (#12-#14) and Blue Quill (#16-#18) mayflies are starting to transition into Hendricksons (#12-#14). On foul weather days, the Blue-winged Olives (#18-#22) have literally poured off of the river. The recent cooler weather actually enhanced the dry fly fishing. The bugs have been having a harder time getting off of the water, so despite the cool water temperature, fish have been rising lazily through an extended afternoon hatch. Little Black Caddis (#18-#20) have been hatching well along with some Early Brown Stoneflies (#12).
On the tailwaters, the fishing has been decent to good. The Clinch is fishing well along with the Holston. The Caney Fork continues to be my river of choice, however. Streamer trips continue to produce and we are doing some high water nymphing as well. This is as good a time as any to have a shot at large rainbow and brown trout on this tailwater!
I still have some open dates for guided trips in April and May, but the calendar is filling fast. I've been turning away trips because people wait too long to book. Don't make that mistake!
Wednesday, August 13, 2014
On my recent trip to upper east Tennessee, I fished the South Holston and Watauga rivers as well as a high elevation freestone stream. Of the three streams I fished, the Watauga was the easiest by far. The fish are less sophisticated than on the South Holston and would eat most any nymph I drifted through their living room.
I only fished the Watauga for a few hours in the morning but probably caught 30 or 40 trout during that time. None were large but all were in great shape. Some of the browns I caught looked like they were wild. For that matter some of the rainbows did as well although I'm not sure how many wild rainbows are in that river. Once the clouds started to break and the sun peaked through, the fishing tapered off a bit but was still very solid.
The only downside of this trip is that now I'm wishing I lived closer to these fine streams so I could fish them more often.
Here is one of the browns I caught on the Watauga that is a strong candidate for prettiest fish I've caught this year. Just look at those spots!!!