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. It is 37 degrees outside this morning. This day will be beautiful with a high temperature of almost 60 degrees and sunshine.
The water temperature in Little River is 40.46 degrees. Yesterday it peaked at about 43 degrees. We will probably see the water today, even warmer than yesterday. You might catch some trout in the Smokies today or tomorrow if you go. I doubt if fishing will be great but it will be better than it has been.
Start with nymphs. This afternoon, maybe you should tie on a dry fly to see what happens. Try a small Parachute Adams. You never know.
Flow in Little River is below normal at 208 cubic feet per second. That is not really low, just lower than usual for this time of year. Median flow for this date is 303 cfs.
Not many people are fishing in the Park. Many people are venturing out since we have sunshine again. I am getting some e-mail from people who are planning fishing trips to the Smokies. About the only advice I can give them is to watch this report and the water temperature. Keep an eye on the flow too.
I told one reader yesterday to have a backup plan, such as hiring a guide to float a tailwater. The guides are not busy this winter and you can probably hire one on short notice. They have to deal with flow issues so nothing is for sure. Fishermen are getting anxious. We long for spring fishing conditions again.
Paula and I and three other couples rented a house in Florida for a week this fall. We’ll take our kayaks. Now that is some far off planning and there is not much of a backup plan should we have wind or a hurricane. We did buy trip insurance. The house reservation can’t be cancelled for any reason. Trip insurance covers a hurricane evacuation or medical emergency. So, we have months to prepare. Between all of us, we’ll probably have enough flies tied to stock a fly shop.
When spring arrives here, there are many options. You could fly fish in the Park for wild trout. You can fish in the lowland rivers or lakes for smallmouth bass. You can float Little River for a day of smallie fishing. There are several tailwaters near here that offer excellent trout and smallmouth bass fishing. We have striper fishing and other warmwater species to fish for in the lakes and rivers. Our area is a fly fishing paradise.
If you enjoy camping, we’ve got that too. You can backpack into the back country and set up in a remote wilderness area for a few days in the Smokies. Most major trout streams have backcountry sites located near the river banks. The park has several large developed campgrounds for those who have motor homes, travel trailers or tents. They all have fly fishing opportunities nearby. We have several developed privately owned camping resorts right here in Townsend. Most are located on Little River with amenities that include power, water, bath houses, swimming pools, playgrounds, and our famous bike trail that runs for miles through town.
With lower fuel prices, we’ll probably see more campers this spring than we have in a long time.
We have several hundred cabins for rent here. We have lodges and bed and breakfasts nearby.
Lynn Camp Prong should be open to fishing this spring. The opening date has not been announced. Here, you will have miles of mid-elevation brook trout fishing thanks to the restoration project that began over 6 years ago. The stream has been closed to fishing to allow the brookie population to spawn several times and get the numbers to a level that can handle fishermen. That stream is a short drive from Townsend. A trail follows much of the water, for miles. Access is easy compared to most brook trout streams in the Smokies. We are all looking forward to opening day. We hope to know soon when that day will be.
If you would like to plan a fishing trip here, we can help. Send me an e-mail to get the ball rolling. Check out the menu on this website. We have a category of pages devoted to planning your trip at the top of this page. Call us at the shop. We are here for you, 7 days a week. Call 865-448-9459. This is planning time.
People actually live on boats here. We have so many TVA impoundments that have large marinas, the options are endless. At Norris Lake, you can rent a house that is floating on the water, out on the lake. You can rent houseboats at many of the marinas for your vacation. Visitors bring their fishing boats and keep them tied up at the floating house or houseboat. Impoundments with marinas include, Fort Loudoun, Tellico, Watts Bar, Cherokee, Douglas, Melton Hill and probably others I can’t think of right now. It’s early.
If you plan to visit Townsend this year, think about bringing your bass boat, fishing boat, drift boat, canoe or kayak.
We know that fishermen start planning now. We know because our business starts picking up in February.
I’ve been waiting for Daniel to finish our new fly list. This list will give me all the information I need to update our online store. New fly samples are already coming in for me to photograph for the online store. I have already photographed about 200 patterns. There will be many more. We are expanding our fly selection this year, in the shop and online. I’ve seen some of the new flies and they are beautiful.
I’m looking forward to the upcoming fishing season, as you can probably tell. It won’t be long.
Have a great day and thank you for being here with us.
January 19, 2015
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