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 overcast and 67 degrees in Townsend this morning.  Traffic was very light on my way to work.  August is a slow time in our town.  I did see the man and his dog.  We both waved as we do almost every morning. 

Last night when I got home a deer walked into the Cades Cove Road.  He was so dark, I thought it might be a bear.  Cades Cove Road is not a highway or country road.  It is the road the settlers in the Cove used to go to Townsend.  The road runs along our property and into the Short Creek at the ford. 

There was never a bridge at the ford.  The people in their wagons on or horseback had to cross through the water, which is the largest stream in Dry Valley.  About 200 feet above the ford is the old McCampbell Mill which still exists.  Mr. McCampbell replaced the former log dam with a concrete structure.  His grandson or great grandson owns the dam and the adjoining 17 acres now.  We each own to the middle of the old road.  We are neighbors though he doesn’t live there.

Rain has all but been removed from the weather forecast this weekend.  Today will be partly cloudy and 85 degrees.  Tonight, the low should be 60 degrees.

Little River is flowing at normal.  Currently, flow is 117 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.62 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 118 cfs.  The water temperature is 65 degrees at 7:55 am.

Fly fishing in the Smokies is very good.  I only talked to one angler yesterday who had a report.  It was David Knapp who is working here on Thursdays and Fridays.  You should plan to be here on one of those days and talk to David.  He is a guide and a Smokies fly fishing expert.  While working at the shop, he is camping at Elkmont.  So, he goes fishing before and after work.  He told me yesterday, fishing is very good.  The water level in Little River is great and the water is cool. 

One of the members on our message board caught a 20” brown about a week ago.  He posted the picture with a measuring tape laid over the fish.  It is a beautiful brown.  He caught it on a Rubber Legged Tellico on his first cast.  You can see the fish and read his recount by CLICKING HERE.

Don’t think, because you don’t see brown trout often during low Summer flows that they can’t be caught.  They can.

Most people are using foam beetles and any yellow fly that looks like a Yellow Sally Stonefly.  There are many to choose from.  We like the Neversink Caddis.  The trout like them too.  A Green Weenie is also a good choice.

I met with Wilson Reynolds yesterday to discuss Fly Tyer’s Weekend.  He and I are bringing back the event November 8th and 9th. Today, I plan to build a web page dedicated to the event.

Wilson is completely remodeling this 132 room, 16 acre property.  It is beautiful and located right in town.  He has spent several million dollars so far.

Wilson is an avid hunter and fly fisherman, who lives in Maryland.  He is as excited about Fly Tyer’s Weekend as I am. He called me two weeks ago from Jackson, Wyoming.  He was sitting with Scott Sanchez as we spoke.  Wilson is bringing Scott to Fly Tyer’s Weekend.  CLICK HERE to see one of Scott’s fly tying books, “A New Generation of Trout Flies”. 

I’m busy lining up fly tyers too.  So far, 21 have committed.  We plan to have 40 fly tyers, tying in 4 hour sessions.  Every 4 hours, throughout the weekend, the tyer’s will change.  There will be ten tying at one time if our plans work out.

I don’t have the room rates but I know what the discounts will be.  If you are a member of Trout Unlimited or the Fly Fishing Federation, you will get a 20% discount.  (You don’t have to show proof).  We’ll take your word for it.  If you are not a member, and you join while you are there, you will get the discount.

Fly tying demonstrators will get a 50% discount.

I took a long tape to the meeting/event center on the property and measured to do a layout.  The exhibition space consists of two large rooms on two levels.  The size of each room is approximately (I measured them without help) 2,100 square feet.  Additionally there are rest rooms, halls and I think there is an elevator.  So, we’ll probably have 5 fly tyers up and 5 down.  Each large room has a fireplace.

Fly fishing non-profits will be given space at the event.  There may be different TU or FFF Chapters, Project Healing Waters and Casting For Recovery.  There may be more.  These non-profits can hold fund raisers at the event in the form of silent auctions and raffles.  They will also have the opportunity to sign up members and tell people what they are doing.

We haven’t worked out food and beverage at this point.

We have no idea how many people will attend.  Back when we did this event years ago, we had 200 or more people show up.  Some were from out of town and some were local.  We stopped doing the event because of the cost.  We rented a heated tent, tables and chairs.  The most costly part was the direct mail advertising.  Now, we will use the web which makes the whole event less expensive.  I think our printing and mailing costs back then was $2,500 to $3,000. 

Wilson and I want to make this an annual event and we want this first one to be successful.  So, you will be hearing a lot about this in the future.

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

Byron Begley
August 2, 2014

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