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 5:35 am and the temperature outside is 55 degrees.  I’m off today.  Paula and I are going fishing. 

Today’s high will be around 78 degrees and there is a 30% to 50% chance for thunderstorms, depending on who’s weather website you believe.  We’ll be on one of the nearby lakes.  I doubt if we will venture too far from the launch ramp, with thunderstorms in the forecast.  We will be fly fishing for smallmouth bass.  I’m hoping to catch 100 smallies.  We may get skunked.  I don’t care.  We’re going fishing.

The boat is remodeled, with new paint and equipment.  I’ve been working on her for months. 

Little River is flowing at 479 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 2.56 feet on the gauge.  Median flow for this date is 358 cfs.  The water temperature is 55 degrees this morning.

Yesterday, I talked to customers in the shop for a few hours.  I heard some decent reports.  One that I heard more than once was, fishing was good, then, they stopped biting.  We had thunderstorms in the area.  The barometer was probably moving around all day.  It is not surprising, the fishing activity was spotty.

Flows are right at the high end of good.  We don’t take beginners on the stream in classes, when the gauge reading on Little River is above 2.5 feet.  Right now, the gauge is reading just slightly over that.

Some fishermen will consider the water to be high.  Others will not.  Some like the glass full, and others like it half full. 

I think you will do best using nymphs today.  Dry flies may work.  The water temperature is good and it will be better, later today.  Go fishing if you can.  Be careful in the swift spots.  Always be careful.

Lake fishing has been pretty good from what I hear.  Some people are catching smallmouth bass.  Dan did this week.  He caught a couple.  White bass are going nuts.  The crappie fishermen are doing well on Douglas Lake.  I have not heard much, if anything from lake fishermen catching trout. One fisherman I talked to lately caught rainbows on Tellico Lake, in the Little Tennessee arm.  I saw a pictures yesterday of a fisherman holding two huge hybrid stripers.  I don’t remember which lake he was fishing on at the time.

Stan fished the Holston River for trout.  He said the fishing was slower than usual.  All these funky weather fronts probably caused that.  He is an excellent fisherman and the Holston is a great river to fish.  Some days are just slow.  Nobody knows exactly why, sometimes. 

Paula and I may fish tomorrow too.  I wrote Thursday off until now.  I’m seeing improvement in the weather forecast.  We have three boat ramps within a 40 minute drive from our house, on two different lakes.  We can go fishing at a moments notice.   

After I finish this report, I’m going to the boat house and put new leaders on about 4 fly rods, then tie on some flies.  We keep several rods rigged and ready to go.  I’ll use a 6 and a 7 weight today.  Paula will use a 5 and 6 weight.  My 7 weight will be rigged with a large Wooly Bugger. The 6 will have a Knucklehead tied on, probably black. 

The guys are doing a great job running the shop.  We are very busy.  I go by every couple of days to make the deposits and talk to folks.  I also run sales reports to see how we are doing.  I do most of my work from home.  I try to stay out of their way and let the Dan’s run the business.

This has been an excellent year, despite an awful February.  A large percentage of our business is mail order during the Winter.  In February, almost nobody fished in America because the weather was so bad.  Those mail orders we normally get, didn’t come.

Yesterday, we shipped an order to our customer in North Pole, Alaska.  We may have more than one customer in North Pole.  If we didn’t have a customer there, I would not know that town existed.  I looked online once, and found North Pole is a suburb of Fairbanks.  I’m looking at Wikipedia right now, again. 

The North Pole where Santa lives is actually 1,700 miles away.  2,117 people live in North Pole, Alaska.  That is almost exactly the same population we have in this valley.  Like Townsend, North Pole has a thriving tourism business.  They also refine oil.  In the town, is the world’s largest fiberglass statue of Santa Claus. It sounds like a cool place to me.  We are very thankful to our customer or customers in North Pole.

We have customers all over the world.  We have to be careful, shipping out of the country, to a new customer.  Sometimes, people use stolen credit cards and place huge orders.  If we ship them, and the transaction is fraudulent, we are liable.  We don’t get tour money or merchandise back.  It’s gone.  It happens.  We eat “losses” for lunch that day.

Sometimes, Daniel checks the address using Google Earth.  He was shipping an order that was suspicious.  I think the address was in Switzerland.  The credit card information passed all the tests.  He looked at the home where the order was going.  He could see the customer’s fishing boat so the order went out.  Everything worked fine.

One guy got us good a few years ago.  He was using a stolen credit card.  I even talked to him on the phone.  Daniel talked to the bank, who said the owner of the card had just left.  The owners of the card, didn’t know, one of their employees had stolen their credit information.  The bad guy had us send two orders to an abandoned house in Texas.  He used the tracking numbers to stay updated on the delivery status, so he knew when UPS would show up and put the orders on the front porch.  He was sitting there in his car, waiting for the brown truck. I called the police in Texas.  They barely missed getting him the second time.

We’ve learned over the years.  Most orders are legitimate.  Daniel has learned how to circumvent the bad guys.  The banks and credit card companies are learning too.  By the way, we don’t store credit card information on our computers or servers, remote or LAN.  We are what the credit card industry calls, “PCI Compliant”. 

I hope you have a great day, go fishing and thank you for being here with us.

Byron Begley
April 8, 2015
 

Respond to: byron@littleriveroutfitters.com


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