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 6:50 am, dark outside, and 70 degrees in Townsend, Tenneessee. 

It is Labor Day but we will be open at 9:00 am.  Campers and other visitors will be heading home today.  Townsend has been bustling with people this weekend.  We were busier at the shop than I expected.  Holidays during the Summer are typically slow for us.  Not this time.

Little River is flowing at 75 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.40 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 91 cfs.  The water temperature is 70.4 degrees below the confluence of the three prongs of Little River.

It is going to be hot today, maybe 90 degrees.  The water temperature will rise.  You should plan on fishing in the high elevations.  That could mean driving up Highway 441 toward Newfound Gap.  Stop along the way and fish the West Prong of the Little Pigeon or the numerous tributaries up there.  The water will be cool and the trout will be active.

You might hike above Elkmont Campground.  Higher up, you should find cool water.  There are many high elevation streams to fish in the Smokies.  Check your map for the elevations and take a thermometer with you.  58 degrees is perfect.  65 degree water is good.  70 degree water is not good.

A Yellow Neversink Caddis and Green Weenie are the two flies I would use.  Others will work well too.  Black beetle and ant patterns will fetch.

I would either be out there now, waiting for daylight, or fish this afternoon until dark.

It’s daylight and I walked down to the lower driveway to measure the width of the drive and the dimensions of the footers for the new boat house.  Then I went down to the barn and measured Paula’s boat.  The total length of her boat with the trailer is 20 feet.  The width is 6’ 6”. 

The boat house is 24 feet deep and 20 feet wide.  The driveway is 11 feet wide.  The boat house is going to be perpendicular to the drive.  So, we’ll disconnect the boat from the truck and push it into the boat house.  No problem.  We can put the kayak trailer in there too.  Everything, the boat house floor and the drive outside will be perfectly flat concrete.

The problem is, we plan to buy a second boat, a wider boat and keep hers.  The kayaks will go back to the barn. I think I’ll do a scale drawing today with cutouts of the boats.  We may need to widen the driveway in front of the boat house to make the turn when pulling the boats out and pushing them in.  I think I’ll get a fold-in tongue on the new trailer.  That will cut the total length by 3 feet.

The footers will be poured this week.  The excavation has been done. It’s too late to change the dimensions of the boat house.  It will be built on a fairly deep slope.  So, concrete block, filled with concrete and rebar will be built up to ground level.  It will be filled and packed with gravel, then the slab will be poured.  I think the concrete block walls at the back of the boat house will be 6’ tall.

I’ve been reading about largemouth bass.  You know what?  Those fish grow to be 20 pounds or more.  The northern strain bass are smaller, but they grow quicker when they are young.  The Florida strain bass grow much larger.  But they grow slower when they are young.  I’m trying to interpret what I read in “In Fisherman” magazine.

According to the article I read, by breeding the two strains, you get the best of both, faster growth when young, and they keep growing due to the Florida strain genes.

Evidently, that has been done in California.

I’m considering exploring the Southern States and fishing for giant largemouth bass with a fly rod.  I would be happy catching a 10 pounder.  It is fun to broaden your fly fishing experience to other places and other species.  I catch some largemouth bass around here.  In fact, that is what I targeted with my fly rod when I was a kid.  I never caught a 20 pound largemouth though.

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

Byron Begley
September 1, 2014 

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