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

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is raining and 52 degrees in Townsend this morning at 7:50 am.  I saw 8 wild turkeys in front of our house earlier.  They were all hens.  They will be mating soon.

Little River looks fine, the water is clear and rising.  There was only 1/10” in our gauge.  I think the mountains had more rain than we did in the valley.  The rain is about over for now.  Little River is flowing at 455 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 300 cfs.  The water temperature is 46.5 degrees.  This warm rain may cause the water temperature to rise a little today.

Fishing was fairly slow in the Smokies yesterday.  There were some hatches but nothing extraordinary to report.  Sporadic hatches of Quill Gordons, Blue Quills and Blue Wing Olives have been reported over the past two weeks.  It’s just not quite time for the big Spring hatch.

If you go fishing today be careful.  It is going to be windy.  The high temperature today is supposed to be 59 degrees.  Other than the wind, it would be a great day to be out there.  You could start by using nymphs.  This seems like a good Blue Wing Olive day. They love bad weather.  The problem is, the adult mayflies will be blown off the water by the wind.  Bugs are hard for trout to catch when it is windy.  You might be better off sticking with the nymphs.  Watch out for falling limbs and trees.

Flows are strong in the Smokies streams.  Watch out for that too. 

I’m going to be off tomorrow but I will be tying and testing some new Wooly Buggers tied specifically for bass and to sell in the shop.  To gain position on the web, they will be called something like “Byron’s Bass Bugger”.  It’s funny how a fly can be confused with something else on the internet.  Take Kent Edmond’s Stealth Bomber for instance.  If you search for Stealth Bomber, what you come up with is an airplane.  I have the same problem with the Knucklehead.  A Knucklehead is a motorcycle. 

These buggers are tied on a Gamakatsu bass stinger hook with 15 wraps of .20 lead free wire in the middle of the hook shank so it descends down through the water in a horizontal position.  Due to the wide gap and shape of this hook, I need to know if the fly needs a mono loop to keep the tail from fouling.  I’ll make a bunch of casts in the river tomorrow to find out. 

I have tied about 20 dozen Knuckleheads so far this year.  That’s enough to get us started so I’m switching to the bugger so we have plenty to sell for the smallmouth bass spawn.  None of our manufacturers make a plain wooly bugger on a stinger hook that is weighted.  I don’t know why.

Tennessee Valley Authority is cutting back on the generation and sluicing at Norris Dam.  The water was off most of the night.  They will be generating with at least one generator today but this is still great news for anglers in the area.  Maybe this is a trend.  I don’t see a lot of precipitation coming over the next few days.  The weather service is predicting a slight chance for rain and snow this week.  It doesn’t sound like we’ll get much.

It is going to be cold this weekend.  This weekend would not be a good one to plan a Smokies fishing trip.  Fishing will probably be slow. 

Maybe the tailwaters will be fishable.  It doesn’t matter how cold it gets, fly fishermen will be on the tailwaters this weekend if the water is turned off. I really hope that happens.

UPDATE 1:30 PM: LITTLE RIVER HAS RISEN TO 3.18' OR 778 CUBIC FEET PER SECOND. HEAVY RAIN MUST HAVE FALLEN IN THE LITTLE RIVER WATERSHED IN THE NATIONAL PARK. WE HAVE HAD ALMOST NONE HERE. WADING IN THE PARK, SPECIFICALLY IN THE LITTLE RIVER WATERSHED IS NOT ADVISED RIGHT NOW.

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

Byron Begley
February 26, 2013

Respond to: byron@littleriveroutfitters.com


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