Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park
January 28, 2010

Welcome to the Fishing Report from Townsend, Tennessee in the Great Smoky Mountains.  It is calm in the forest.  There is no wind and no sounds of nature.  I did not see one wild animal on my way to work.  That is unusual.  There might have been some birds that I missed but today is different or odd.  There was a noticeable lack of people in town too. 

I started my workday as I always do, dipping a thermometer in the most beautiful river in the world.  There is still plenty of flow, double what you would normally see this time of year.  The water temperature was 42 degrees, up two ticks from yesterday morning.  The  gauge below the “Y” is reading 2.91 feet or 610 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Normal for this date is 299 cfs. 

If you go fishing please watch your step.  The water is swift.  Taking a plunge in 42 degree water would not be good for your health.  The trout are going to be less than active.  To catch one you need to get your fly right in front of them and they will probably be deep.  But, you never know.  They could be feeding on blue wing olives on the surface.  They probably won’t be but they could be.  I think a streamer would work best.  It will be fairly warm today, 48 to 50 degrees down here, so if you want to get in a little fishing do it now, don’t wait until tomorrow.

I guess all the wild animals in the forest and us people are wondering what’s going to happen over the next three days.  We are considered to be under a winter storm watch.  Rain will fall tomorrow, it may change to ice, then to snow and continue through Saturday.  The Weather Service says we could get between 4” to 8” of snow.  They also say a two degree increase over what is predicted would change the whole picture.  There would be more rain and less snow if that happened.  One thing is for sure, it is going to be cold Saturday night and Sunday night, 13 to 16 degrees.  The high temperature will be in the 30’s through Sunday.  This is going to be an interesting weekend.

Jack Gregory and Tim Ivey are scheduled to be tying at the shop on Saturday between 10:00 am and 2:00 pm.  It’s free, just show up.  But, with this weather threat it may or may not happen.  If the roads are fine Jack will certainly be here.  He lives here.  Tim lives in Georgia.  That trip might be risky for him. 

Chuck Wechsler called me yesterday.  Chuck owns and is the publisher/editor of Sporting Classics MagazineSEE THE WEBSITE HERE. Sporting Classics is my favorite magazine.  Chuck sends them to me at no charge.  It is really the only one I read anymore.  I read it because many of the articles and stories take me back to my childhood and I personally know several of the writers.  I can read an article by Jack O’Connor just like I read them in the 1950’s.  Through Jack’s pen and my imagination I was there in real life on his hunting expeditions.  In fact, I just returned from a tiger hunting trip in India recently.  I got one on the first day.  I’m still gloating and bragging about that one.

Chuck said “Jim Casada told me you have already sold 500 of his books.”  “Yes sir, I think we have sold about that many”, I replied.  I did check a couple of months ago and we had sold around 300.  I’d say Jim is right. Chuck is a book publisher too.  His newest release due out in March is a book of 45 hunting stories by Jack O’Connor. 

Chuck and I talked about the book business, especially the outdoor sporting book business.  We have talked before and I like to hear his perspective on our industry and the book publishing business.  I told him everything I had read yesterday about the new Apple iPad and how that company is going to be working with publishers.

Then he switched the conversation to Troutfest.  Sporting Classics and Jim Casada have already purchased booth space.  Chuck said he is planning to be here.  There will also be four writers who work with Chuck at Troutfest.  That, in itself is a pretty big deal I think.  

So we ended the conversation saying we are looking forward to Troutfest and I would try to help sell more of his books.  This morning I read and lived a story in Sporting Classics about a cape buffalo that had been wounded by a lion and was terrorizing a village.  One man with a rifle and another volunteer went into the jungle and put an end to that dangerous situation in Africa. 

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

Byron Begley
January 28, 2010

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