Townsend, Tennessee - Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, East Tennessee and Western North Carolina

Welcome to the Fishing Report from Townsend, Tennessee in the Great Smoky Mountains.  At 5:44 am, the temperature is 66.7 degrees.  This is going to be a beautiful week.  There is almost no chance for rain.  Daytime temperatures will barely reach 80 degrees.  Lows at night will be in the 50’s.  Fall is coming.

Little River is flowing at 69 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.32 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 111 cfs.  The water temperature is 70 degrees this morning.

Fly fishing for trout in the Smoky Mountains has been fairly good, especially in the high elevations where the water is colder.  Flows are lower than normal.  You will need to use your low water tactics.  Blend in, fish the choppy water in riffles, runs, and pockets.

Dry flies and nymphs will work.  I would use a dry fly or a dry and nymph dropper rig.  I think the dry fly is all you will need.  Try a beetle or Yellow Sally Stonefly pattern.  A Yellow Stimulator is a good choice.  The trout are not picky about the fly, if it is reasonable.  The fish are confined to smaller areas, seeking cover and competing for food.

We should see the water temperatures gradually drop this week in the lower elevations.  It will be chilly at night in the mountains, about 10 degrees cooler than it has been lately.

Lake fishing is improving in the Southeast due to the cooler temperatures.  It’s all over the internet.  It will be sunny this week.  Plan to fish early or late on the lakes for largemouth bass, smallmouth bass and panfish. Poppers and Knuckleheads are working well in the evenings.

TVA will be generating at both Norris and Cherokee Dams today.  According to their website, Cherokee is off right now but will begin generating in two hours.  If you are there, downstream you may have opportunities for wade fishing.  Check the TVA website yourself before going and plan accordingly.

I’m fairly sure, smallmouth bass fishing is very good on the tailwaters, but I have not verified that with Josh.  He has been guiding about every day all Summer. I do know this, I’ve fished with Josh on the tailwaters, during August, for smallies and fishing has always been excellent. Those fish have always been keyed in on topwater flies and poppers during the hot months.

I’m still working on our Smallmouth Bass mini-website.  There are two more pages and more information to be added.  You can see what I’ve done so far by CLICKING HERE.  Fly fishing for smallmouth bass is a hoot!  You should try it if you haven’t.

I started researching fly fishing for largemouth bass last night.  I catch a lot of largemouth bass, when fishing for smallies.  I started my fly fishing adventure over 50 years ago, fishing for largemouth bass.  So far, I have not found a lot of information on the internet.  There are a lot of articles to read about largemouth bass fishing.  I just couldn’t find much about fly fishing for them, or not so far.

I did find information, reinforcing what I knew, about lakes near us.  Some of the best largemouth bass fishing lakes are nearby, on the Tennessee River. If you look at Bassmasters top 100 bass lakes for both 2014 and 2015, Chickamauga Lake and Guntersville Lake are ranked in the top 10 in America.  Chickamauga is in Tennessee about 1.5 hours away.  Guntersville is in Alabama, approximately 3.5 hours drive from here. We have several great bass lakes closer to us, with populations of both largemouth and smallmouth bass.  You don’t see many anglers fly fishing on the lakes.  

I found a couple of Chickamauga largemouth bass guides online.  I intend to call them, and possibly fish with them next Spring, using fly tackle.  Later, we could take out boat to those lakes.  The chart plotter on our boat has navigation software for Chickamauga.  I would have to buy a $200 card for lake maps in Alabama and other Southern States.

The black bear population in Great Smoky Mountains National Park is doing well.  Actually, it is doing too well.  The population is at carrying capacity.  As a result, more bears than usual are wandering outside the Park.  I can vouch for that.  We’ve seen more bears at our house this year than ever before.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the University of Tennessee and the U.S. Geological Survey are tracking bears that leave the park, using GPS technology.  I found an interesting article on the WBIR website this morning on the subject.  You can read it by CLICKING HERE.

Dancing Bear Lodge opened their new “Appalachian Bistro” restaurant this weekend.  They had over 100 reservations Friday night.  We are all excited about this new addition to our hospitality offering in Townsend.  You can read a story on the Daily Times website by CLICKING HERE.

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

Byron Begley
August 24, 2015

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