Townsend, Tennessee - Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, East Tennessee and Western North Carolina


Welcome to the Fishing Report from the Great Smoky Mountains in Townsend, Tennessee. Waking up this morning I checked the weather report and the temperature read 18F. That is not good motivation to crawl out from under the warm covers. Atleast the sun is shining.

These cold overnight temperatures have cause water temps to drop significantly. This morning the gauge is giving a reading of 36.5 F. On a good note, water levels are excellent. The Little River is currently flowing at 1.99 feet or 246 c.f.s. This is just below the normal flow of 307 c.f.s.

Fishing in the mountains will be slow in the morning. It is a good idea to give the water some time to warm a bit before heading out. Look for sunny sections of stream as they will warm more quickly.

Nymph patterns sunk with plenty of weight are a good choice for flies. I would stick to lower elevations streams along the roadside. Upper elevation brook trout streams will be very cold.

We have spoken to a couple people lately who wanted to go fish the Hiwassee River. I'm not sure what they have going on down there but they are running a ton of water. One angler I spoke with checked the TVA website which show 0 generators and drove a good ways to get there only to find a raging river. The dam which controls the Hiwasse is Apalachia the link to the TVA site is HERE There is no generators running but if you scroll down you see that the Average Hourly Discharge is over 8,000 c.f.s. The site says "Apalachia will begin spilling operations Sunday, November 1, 2015 through March 4, 2016 due to outages on generating units." So much for fishing there this winter.

We are holding several fly tying classes in January and February. Check the schedule by CLICKING HERE. This is an opportunity for you to begin the fascinating hobby of fly tying, or further your skills by taking more advanced lessons.

Winter is time to get organized and re-stocked for spring fishing. Warmer temperatures and spring hatches will be here before we know it. Good flies to start tying for spring would be Quill Gordon dry flies in sizes #10 and #12, Quill Gordon or other larger gray wet flies in #10 and #12. Don't forget about some small flies too. Blue Quills or even small Adams in #16 to #20 are good to have in case the trout aren't wanting the big mayflies.

Bundle up and stay warm if you head out today. There are no crowds in the mountains so even Cades Cove can be enjoyable.

Have a great day and thank you for being here with us.

Daniel Drake
January 6, 2016


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