Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  The fog is burning off and the sun is popping through the clouds.  I still can’t see the mountains.  You should have been here yesterday.  We had a thunderstorm of massive proportions.  Lightning was popping all around us then eventually right around the building.  Then the rain came.  It was coming down hard.  A guy from WBIR Channel 10 in Knoxville called.  He said their radar indicated we were getting several inches of rain.  He wanted to know what the river looked like.  I told him to call back, there was not any way I was going down to the river right then.  It was dangerous out there.  Our rain gauge is cracked so I don’t have a rainfall amount today.  I’ll fix it in a little while.  We got a lot.

Little River’s current flow rate is 224 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 196 cfs.  So, the water is only a little above normal.  But, during the night the river peaked at almost 600 cfs.  It was rolling.  It dropped almost as fast as it rose.  When I checked the water temperature earlier the water was a little off color.  The temperature was 61 degrees.

Fishing should be good.  The low water level we have had for the past week is now fine. I think you should find some fine water to fish today.  That storm yesterday was isolated so other rivers in the Smokies were not affected. Oconaluftee, Cataloochee and Davidson Rivers are running below normal.  Tellico River is up and rose to 500 cfs last night.

Dry fly selection should include Yellow Sally Stoneflies and Light Cahills.  Terrestrials should work too.  A good nymph selection would be Bead Head Pheasant Tails, Hares Ears, Copper Johns and Green Weenies.  A Yellow Elk Hair Caddis or Stimulator would also be a good choice.

It appears we will have those isolated thunderstorms for the next few days.  Flash floods are a possibility in the Smokies.  The water can come up fast and you could be stuck on the wrong side of the creek.  I worried about Bill Sulzby yesterday.  I knew he and his son were going to Sams Creek.  That storm was dumping water right into that watershed. About the time I thought about driving up to the confluence of Lynn Camp and Thunderhead to check on them, Bill walked in the shop.  They decided to wait and see what the storm was going to do.  They did the right thing.  You could be trapped up there during a heavy rain event.

I know people who have experienced sudden rising water and were forced to climb out of the stream on the wrong side.  Ray Ball bushwhacked for miles to get to a bridge so he could cross and then hiked back to his truck on the road.  He was fishing a stream and all of a sudden, the water came up.  Bushwhacking along some of  these creeks can require climbing big rocks and hills through dense forest.  Depending on where you are it can be an exhausting experience.  So, be careful.

I would stay off the lakes today.  I’m going to work all weekend and avoid the water.  It’s going to be crowded.  We have a lot of people in town right now.  That’s good for the tourism business.

My battery charger went crazy yesterday and darned near melted.  It is supposed to cut off and go into maintenance mode when the battery is charged.  That didn’t happen.  I’m lucky it didn’t damage the battery.  I caught it just in time.  Boats are a non-ending source of revenue disposal.  I like these AGM batteries and 3 stagebattery chargers.  But they are expensive.  I guess I’ll call Bass Pro today and order a new charger. Dang it!

Have a great weekend and watch out if you are on the lakes.  Thank you for being here with us.

Byron Begley
May 29, 2010
  

Respond to: byron@littleriveroutfitters.com  


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