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

Welcome to the Fly Fishing Report.  It is partly cloudy and 58 degrees in Dry Valley.  This is my one day off this week and I am at home. 

Little River is flowing lower again this morning.  Flow is currently 505 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 390 cfs.  Rivers and streams throughout the Great Smoky Mountains National Park on the Tennessee and North Carolina Sides are close to normal.  Water temperatures in the lower elevations are perfect for rainbow and brown trout fishing.  The brook trout streams higher in the mountains are cooler but fishing should be good there too.

Trout are taking dry flies and nymphs.  I would fish with a dry.  Make it a Parachute Adams, March Brown, Stimulator or Elk Hair Caddis.  Your fly pattern choice should not make that much difference right now.  The trout are hungry and looking for a meal.  As long as your offering is presented well with no drag they should take it.  For a nymph I would use a Bead Head Pheasant Tail or Tellico in the Park.  Other nymphs will work just as well. 

I had to drive to Morristown and Knoxville yesterday so I had the opportunity to see some of the lowland rivers and lakes.  Little River below Colter’s Bridge was still off color.  The Little Pigeon River in Sevierville was really off color.  The French Broad River looked to be clear above the confluence with the Little Pigeon.  Fort Loudon Lake looked to be clearing up some.  The Little River embayment was muddy.  The Holston River near Knoxville was clear yesterday where I crossed.

Those of us who fish for smallmouth bass in the rivers, (Little Pigeon and Little River) might want to fish higher upstream where the water is clearer.

I read one post on our Message Board this morning about the Hiwassee.  It was good news.  The angler reported excellent fishing there and larger than normal trout.  I seldom see information about that beautiful river.  I wish some of the guides would keep me up to date.

I was on the road about three hours yesterday, to and from Townsend.  It is amazing how many different bodies of water, either lakes or rivers you will see on a drive like that.  I was also probably 5 minutes from Cherokee Lake and Douglas Lake on that drive.  We are fortunate to have so many different options for trout, smallmouth bass, stripers, bluegill, carp, largemouth bass and other species.  The hard part is deciding where to go.

We will probably have some thunderstorms moving in tonight and for sure tomorrow.  And they may linger through Saturday night.  That’s all we need, more rain.  Our rainfall here is about 25% greater than normal this year, in less than three months.

The search continues for Derek Lueking, a hiker who has been lost or at least authorities think he is lost in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  I think this is day 7 of the massive search.  Teams are using trained personnel, dogs and two helicopters.  New and interesting information has come to the surface.  For instance, a note in his truck may written by him indicated he did not want to be searched for.  Here is an update on the KnoxNews website.

Oddly enough, there is another missing person in the Park and a search has been organized to find him. 

I have had two mechanical failures in one week.  Last week David Ezell and I were somewhat stranded on the lake when my motor conked out.  We did make the 2 mile journey back to the ramp with a trolling motor and fished along the way. 

Yesterday I drew some fuel from the gas tank we were using.  The fuel was only two weeks old at the time and I had cleaned all three tanks before buying it.  They have water and sludge that settled to the bottom and caused the problem.  Today I will pour all the fuel into a 5 gallon glass container, let it settle, then siphon the good stuff off the top.  After that I’ll treat the gas, change the fuel filter in the motor and everything should be OK.  I was out of fuel filters and drove to Tri-County Marine in Morristown yesterday to pick a couple of them up.  I’m going to spend the day working on the boat.

A hard drive in one of the iMacs I use at work crashed.  Allan at MCS in Knoxville installed a new hard drive and downloaded the operating system.  The files on the old drive were not salvageable.  Tomorrow I will be downloading all of my backed up files and software to that computer. 

The people at Tri-County Marine and MCS take good care of me.  I have called Allan twice about problems which he solved over the phone at no charge.  I sent him a check both times anyway.  And, when I buy a Mac, I buy it from MCS. We have an established relationship.

When I ordered our new boat three years ago there was intense negotiating with Jimmy who owns the dealership.  First I would pay his asking price, which I did without trying to get a lower price.  I did know about what they sell for. I looked online.  Second, I would do the maintenance myself but get ongoing advice and training from them at no cost.  They have lived up to that agreement and then some.  They would like to get the service work from me but they know I don’t want to pull the boat there to get it done.  They are over an hour away from me.  I also enjoy maintaining the motor.  Of course I will buy our next boat at Tri-County Marine.  We have established a relationship.  

These guys own a small business just like me.  We are all in the service business.  There is a connection between all of us.  And, we have become friends. So, if something goes wrong with my Macs or our boat, I don’t dread the solutions.  I enjoy them.  That is the way life should be.

I won’t be buying 100% ethanol free gas from that gas station again.  What I got was probably sucked from the bottom of the tank according to the experts. 

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

Byron Begley
March 22, 2012

Respond to: byron@littleriveroutfitters.com


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