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 6:39 am, light rain is falling and the temperature is 70.2 degrees.  Rain fell most of the night.  The Knoxville Airport reported .35” so far.  A weather station in Townsend on Little River reports rainfall of .24 inches.  Weather radar indicates the rain is about over for now.

The high temperature today should be around 80 degrees.  Tomorrow will be warmer and it will be hot Sunday.  No rain is expected either day.


Little River is flowing at 98 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.47 feet on the flow gauge.  The rising river has peaked.  Median flow for this date is 120 cfs.  The water temperature is 70.3 degrees this morning.


This is probably an almost perfect day to be fishing in the mountains.  It will be cool and cloudy.  Fish the higher elevations where the water is cool.  You may encounter some stained streams.  That seems unlikely because the rainfall was light here, but you never know.  If you find clear water in the stream you are fishing, use dry flies or nymphs.  Stained water calls for nymphs.

The water is still low, and warm in the lower elevations.  However, flows are higher than they have been for a couple of days, which is an improvement.

I would use terrestrial dry flies or a Neversink.  My sub-surface pattern would be a Green Weenie.


This might be an awesome morning to be fishing the Clinch River. Generation is predicted with one unit at 10 am, then, TVA plan is to turn up the flow at noon.  The water has been turned off since 2 AM.  Check the TVA website yourself before going and make plans accordingly. Don’t take my word for it.


I don’t know who is floating a tailwater with Josh Pfeiffer today, but, whoever you are, you picked the right one.  Some folks are going to have a wonderful day, catching brown bass under perfect conditions. 


This will be the wonderful Summer day to be fishing on one the many lakes in our area.  It will be cooler and cloudy.  The wind should be out of the west, and light. 

Poppers and small threadfin shad patterns are what I would use today.  If I were not working, that is what I would be doing.  We don’t get many days like this one.


I should be fishing today.  We may not see another one like this for a while.

I was off yesterday, rested, then re-arranged the man cave yesterday evening.  Out went a recliner, in came an electric piano.  Last night I sat around and enjoyed the new surroundings, listening to music.  Then, Paula and I watched the debates.  What a great day off.

Today I plan to re-design the home page on this website.  That has not been done in a while.

You may not know this, but we have a country music band here in Townsend.  They are named, the Jeff Jopling Band.  Jeff Jopling and piano player, Jerry Sullivan, live here.  They play gigs in our area.  They are a great band.  Jeff and Jerry both graduated from Maryville College with degrees in music. 

I know Jerry pretty well.  He grew up across the creek from our property.  His mom and dad own the Townsend Shopping Center.  If I’ve met Jeff, I don’t remember.  He looks familiar, this is a small town, but he spent much of his younger years living in Nashville.  I don’t think our paths have crossed.

One year, they set up on a semi truck flat bed, and performed while being driven in the Townsend Christmas Parade. A generator powered their instruments and sound system.

I told Jerry recently, I was planning to get back into playing, both guitar and piano.  So far, I’ve practiced guitar for an hour every day, going on several weeks now.  Last night, I played the piano. That was not a pretty sound. I gave up both instruments over 20 years ago, when we got into the fly fishing business.  Coming back is slow and tough.  I play by ear and can’t read one note of music. 

You can visit the Jeff Jopling Band’s website by CLICKING HERE.

It’s quiet in Townsend, for the most part, on weekdays.  It will be that way for a while.  We will transition into Fall soon.  I am really looking forward to Fall fishing. There is nothing more beautiful, than seeing those brightly colored trees, reflecting on water.  I love those crisp mornings, and even walking through spider webs.  We’ll see more deer.  We’ll hear acorns falling on the metal roofs.  Bear, deer and turkey will be devouring the acorns about as fast as they fall.  I love Fall.

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

Byron Begley
August 7, 2015

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