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 Mountians.  The sky is clear and the temperature is 44 degrees in Townsend, Tennessee.  This is going to be an awesome day to fish.  The high temperature is supposed to be 74 degrees.

Little River is flowing at 208 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.85 feet on the gauge.  Median flow for this date is 364 cfs.  The water temperature at 8:00 am is 46.5 degrees.  The water temperature at the “Y” reached and barely exceeded 50 degrees yesterday.  The same thing happened day before that.  Do doubt, it will happen again today.  That will be 3 days in a row, which has some significance to anglers.

We may get some rain tonight and tomorrow.  Then, it is going to be cold for two nights with lows in the 20’s and highs in the 40’s Thursday.  Then, it will warm again. There is a chance for rain this weekend.

Fishing is good.  Yesterday afternoon, it was probably very good.  Some bugs are hatching and there is sporadic dry fly fishing possibilities.  That depends on where you are and at what time.  The guessing game is, where you should be when.

You may see Quill Gordons, Blue Quills, black caddis and other aquatic insects.  Or, you may see nothing.  That is early Spring for you.  Many anglers are having good days.  I’m interested to see how David Knapp is doing at Elkmont.  He stopped by here yesterday on his way there.  David will stay on the water all day.  When you do that, with the conditions we have, something is going to happen sometime.  Fly fishing for trout will probably be good for a while and slow for a while.

Fishermen are also reporting success with nymphs and wet flies.

Soon, we will see green hues moving up the mountains.  Spring in the Smokies is a beautiful time of year.  The vegetation turns green in the valley.  Then the color slowly creeps up the mountains.  I watch it daily.  It changes daily. 

I can tell Spring is near by watching the turkeys.  When I got home last night, just in front of our driveway, about 20 hens and two gobblers were standing there looking at my truck.  The gobblers were fanned out.  They finally got out of my way and I parked the truck.  I came back outside a few minutes later wearing a shirt and no jacket.  The temperature was in the high 60’s.  I could hear those hens clucking all around me.  It won’t be long until the hens will break up and the wild turkey mating season begins. 

The whippoorwills will be singing at night soon.  We heard one lonely bird Friday night.  Sometimes, a whippoorwill will perch in the woods near our house and sing all night long.  It is impossible to sleep.  When you are 30 to 50 feet from one of them, they sound like they are in the house.  Those birds are loud.  I’m not complaining.

The redbuds will bloom soon.  The may apples will sprout, grow tall and bloom.  One day they are not visible.  The next day, they are everywhere. You can’t miss them. 

I have lived in Townsend now for a third of my life.  Nature is so different here.  The stars are bright at night here.  We don’t have light pollution.  The streams are clear and cool.  There are more species of trees here than anyplace in the world.  We have more species of everything here than any place I know of. 

Someone found a bald eagle nest near Townsend.  It is an active nest with adults and two youngsters.  Sightings of bald eagles right here in town are common now.  These birds found our town and a river chocked full of rainbow trout due to the stocking by TWRA.  They are easy to see during the winter when the trees are bare.  During the summer, you catch a glimpse of one occasionally flying along the river.

We haven’t seen a bear at our house since last Fall.  They are there.  The forest is so densely wooded around our house, we can’t see far.  When we see them, they are usually just a few feet from our house.  I’m sure the bears are active now, looking for food.  Where we live, garbage is kept inside the house.  If you put it outside, the bears will get into it. 

I can tell by reading our message board and talking to fishermen, we are all happy to be able to get outside and fish again.  Heck, it was a treat to go outside last night and walk through the woods without a jacket.  What a great time of year.

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

Byron Begley
March 11, 2014

Respond to: byron@littleriveroutfitters.com


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