Guided Trips

FISHING REPORT AND SYNOPSIS: 10/17/2018

Fishing continues to be good to excellent in the Great Smoky Mountains of east Tennessee. 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 Yellow Quills are still hanging on in the mid to high elevation brook trout water although not for long. October caddis (more properly, great autumn sedges) are hatching in good numbers now on the North Carolina side of the Park and just starting on the Tennessee side. Terrestrials still have a place in your fly box as well although they are definitely winding down for the year. 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. Brook trout are still eating smaller yellow dry flies as well. 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 hoping to get some type of a report for there soon. 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 are holding off for 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. 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 and one or two in October. 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, January 02, 2015

First Rainbow Trout of 2015

Catching the first trout of 2015 was high on my list of things to accomplish yesterday, but it almost didn't happen.  With minimal time available to devote to fishing, I had to stay fairly close to home.  Even if I had made the drive to the Smokies, the very cold temperatures would not have been doing me any favors.

One of the winter stocking locations came to mind, and I started planning a quick trip.  Since Cumberland Mountain State Park was not stocked this past December due to a lake drawdown, I had to find another place.  Cookeville has a place I enjoy fishing on occasion that also just happens to have some trout stocked in the winter so I headed that way.

Arriving at the lake, I still had a rod rigged up from the other day and decided to just see what that would do.  Pulling some line off the reel, I made my first cast of 2015.  After letting the fly sit for a moment, I started a slow retrieve, stripping line in short 3-4 inch pulls.  Before I had moved the fly very far the indicator went down, and I set the hook on the first trout of 2015.  Seriously.  First cast, first fish.


Now, the question that I need answered is this: is it bad luck to catch a trout on the first cast of the year? Anyone who has fished long at all knows that catching a fish on the first cast of a fishing trip could be a bad sign.  In fact, this particular trip highlighted this very problem.  In a cold hour of fishing, I never had so much as another strike, much less a fish to hand.  The somber skies matched my concerned mood.  Bad fishing luck must be dealt with as quickly as possible so maybe I'll have to look into a new lucky fishing hat.


The hot chocolate waiting in a thermos in my car helped to warm things back up.  In fact, by the time I got home I was almost as warm as if I had not gone fishing to begin with.  The question of luck continues to nag me though, so it looks like I'll have to do some first hand research into the subject by forcing myself to go fishing and see if my luck improves.  I know, life is tough.

8 comments:

  1. The way I look at the first fish of the year is, now that that is out of the way, let's get on with the catching. What was the quote in that movie, "If you swing it, they will come." Maybe that's not quite right, but close enough.

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    Replies
    1. I like that Mark. Hopefully it will warm up soon so I can get on with the catching...

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  2. Nice going David! It was frigid up this way on New Year's Day too.

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    1. Mark, I'm just hoping it warms up a little sometime soon so the cabin fever doesn't get too bad. It is around 8 degrees out right now and dropping fast...

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  3. You're the man. No way was I worried about the first fish of 2015. Except store bought!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Howard. Let's hope there are many good days of catching ahead!

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  4. Well, David, I am a hat kind of guy. So I am thinking you better get a new hat for 2015 and start the trout quest feeling lucky!

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    Replies
    1. Mel, I think I agree. It might be time for a new hat. I usually get the same hat each time as it is hard to find ones that fit well so it might look the same.

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