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.  At 5:58 am, light rain is falling and the temperature is 54 degrees.  We have an 80% chance for thunderstorms today. The temperature should rise to 71 degrees.

The forecast tonight looks pretty bad at this point.  We may be the target of severe thunderstorms with high winds and huge hail.  I hope this doesn’t happen.  The National Weather Service is talking about golf ball to baseball size hail.  Heavy rain is possible.

Another weather website I look at every morning paints a slightly better picture.  Maybe the weather won’t be so bad.

It’s hard to write a positive fishing report when weather like this is predicted.   

Little River continues to recede.  Currently, flow is 368 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 2.34 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 233 cfs.  The water temperature is 52.5 degrees this morning.

Often, when strong weather fronts approach, fishing slows down.  I think this might be one of those times.

Here is some good news, thankfully.  TVA is not planning to generate much at Norris Dam today.  Check the TVA website yourself and plan accordingly.  Generation schedules are subject to change.  You may have an opportunity, fishing on the Clinch River.  Watch out for those thunderstorms, if they occur.

It looks like you may also be able to fish below Cherokee Dam today as well.  Again, check the TVA website yourself, before you go. Don’t take my word for it.  I’m just writing what I see early this morning.

I got an e-mail from Josh Pfeiffer yesterday.  Smallmouth bass fishing is picking up on the tailwaters.  That’s more good news.

Work begins on Fly Tyers Weekend.  This year, the event will be held on November 6th and 7th at Tremont Lodge.  The Southeastern Council of the Fly Fishing Federation is heavily involved.  Marvin Cash, president of the Council has taken charge.  Anthony Hipps will be organizing the fly tyers.  FFF will hold a fundraiser banquet at the event.

Last year, I spent days, lining up fly tyers, securing the site and building several website pages.  Mike Bryant helped me organize the venue.  This year, it looks like other people are doing most of the work.  I guess my role will be in the realm of marketing. I’ll update the website and keep mentioning the event on this page.

I think Fly Tyers Weekend will be even better attended than last year.  All the FFF Clubs in the Southeastern Council will get more information from Marvin.

The Troutfest Banquet was held last night.  I didn’t attend.  I thought I might have been fishing yesterday.  To fish more this Spring, I would not commit to anything other than that.  It turns out I did not fish yesterday.  I believe Troutfest was well attended and it was certainly a huge success, as it always is.  I’ll hear more today at the shop.

I decided which chart plotter/sonar unit I’m going to buy for the boat and I need to do that today.  It’s a Humminbird, 859ci HD DI Combo.  It is on sale for $50 off at Cabelas.  Additionally, I’ll get a $50 Cabelas Gift Card if I order by tomorrow.  On top of that, I’ll get an extra 5% in Cabelas Club points.  I can’t pass this up.  The trigger will be pulled.

Paula and I plan to explore more lakes around here.  We’re going to fly fish more, in the mid-section of Tellico Lake to begin with.  A chart plotter will make that easier and safer.  I’m always a little nervous learning a new lake.  Trying to read a map, underway, and hoping I know where I am is not easy.  Running aground is possible.  I’ve done that many times but never sank a boat completely.  I have filled a couple almost full of water, due to waves coming over the bow in heavy wind.  I don’t recommend that.   

With a chart plotter, you know exactly where you are, and what the depth is ahead of where you are going and all around you, using GPS technology and digital maps.  With the depth finder we have, we don’t know we are in shallow water, until we are there.  Then, it might be too late.

When Tellico Lake was back up, they forgot to cut down all the trees.  You can be floating, barely above the treetops of a submerged forest, and not know it until you look down in the clear water.  Those areas will show up on the chart plotter so we can avoid them.

We are holding a beginner 2-day school this weekend, beginning today. They will probably get through the day today, and have a great class.  Tomorrow’s class is scheduled to be held in the Park.  We’ll have to see how that turns out.  Weather and high water makes it tough to manage fly fishing schools.  We have always put safety first.  Many school days have been cancelled over the years, due to the weather. Dan had to cancel a Nymphing Tactics class last weekend, due to high water. 

So, we’ll see what Mother Nature brings us this weekend.  I’ll be at the shop doing bookkeeping chores all weekend.

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

Byron Begley
April 25, 2015

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