Photo of the Month: Backcountry Brook Trout

Photo of the Month: Backcountry Brook Trout
Showing posts with label Elkmont. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Elkmont. Show all posts

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Frosting on the Trees

Yesterday, I had some business to attend to at the Park Headquarters for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. After finishing that up and also spending some time chatting with the Park fisheries guys (thanks again Matt and Caleb for taking the time to talk with me!), I headed up into the Park to see if anything was going on. Let's just say that I never even got my waders out. That had a fair amount to do with the fact that I was feeling lazy from getting up super early. However, it was still a fantastic day to be out and my camera captured a few images. Here is one of my favorites from the day.


I'll share some more later, but right now I'm heading out to float on the Caney Fork. Today we got a surprise low water day that coincided with the last "warm" day for a while (think 50s for highs). From here on out, it looks like the great arctic chill is on the way. In fact, this might be the two weeks of really cold air that we need to get the shad kill kicked into high gear. More on that later as it develops.

If you are interested in a guided fly fishing trip on the Caney Fork or in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, please visit my guide site for more information. The fishing is about to take off so don't delay in setting up your day of guided fly fishing!

Monday, April 21, 2008

A Walk in the Park


That's exactly what I did this past Sunday. The weekend was spent camping at Elkmont which was great as always albeit a bit expensive. They seriously need a student rate so poor college students like myself can enjoy some time in the park without breaking the bank. I guess I just need to start backpacking instead of car camping...and now I'm off topic...

One of my favorite ways of fishing is to hike in on a day trip, sometimes up to 15-16 miles roundtrip. Sunday's goal was not that optimistic. I'm out of shape after a lazy winter so 10 miles roundtrip seemed reasonable. The trailhead at Elkmont was reasonably busy when I arrived at 10:00 a.m. Sunday morning. An hour later, I was 4 miles deep in the backcountry and ready to start fishing. The stream temperature was about 48 degrees and the clouds hinted that the air temp might not climb much as the day progressed.


A double nymph rig seemed reasonable considering the conditions and I tied on a GRHE with a softhackle dropper and a couple small split shot. After a couple fruitless casts, an energetic rainbow hit the Hares Ear and the day progressed nicely in similar fashion. An hour later I had caught 10 fish and was getting hungry. During lunch I began noticing that every time the sun poked through the clouds bugs would start flying up from the stream. After I started fishing it began to make sense. The rocks were all covered with newly hatched yellow stoneflies. It was too cold to fly quickly so they were waiting for the warmth of the sun to take to the air.


This revelation brought out my trusty Tellico nymph as the new dropper and the catching continued. Not long after lunch I hooked and lost the best fish of the day, a brown pushing 11 inches. I missed a nice brookie as well but the rainbows kept coming to hand at a steady pace.


Somewhere after 30 fish I began to wonder if they might hit a dry and out come a yellow Neversink Caddis. The fish must have been starving, because they attacked it with reckless abandon. The time was slipping away unfortunately so I finally called it a day and started the trek back to the trailhead with another amazing day on the water under my belt. By 7:00 p.m. I was on the road back to Chattanooga with a great sunset in front of me and a relaxing weekend behind...