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.  It is 5:40 am and the temperature is 65.1 degrees.  Rain and thunderstorms pounded us at home last night around 10 pm.  Judging from the radar, it appeared they would move into the mountains.  That must not have happened.  All the streams in the Park, that have flow gauges, show no or very slight rise in their levels.  I guess the storms broke up when they hit the mountain ridges.  That happens often.  We do have a good chance for rain today and tonight.

It is going to be colder, much colder over the next few days.  Expect high temperatures in the 70’s with lows in the 40’s and 50’s through the weekend.  Later next week it will be slightly warmer.  The rain should end tonight, and there is no rain in the forecast until next weekend, after today.

Little River is flowing at 63 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.24 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 82 cfs.  The water temperature is currently 69.6 degrees.

Expect fly fishing in the Smokies to improve as the water temperatures fall over the weekend.  Fishing will improve greatly in the lower elevations on the larger rivers.  The water is not much cooler down low yet.  Just wait.  It’s coming.

You might want to fish higher today.  Choose a mid to high elevations stream.  Try the upper East Prong of Little River above Elkmont.  Way up Lynn Camp Prong will be fishing well.  Fishing is good. Trout are taking dry flies or nymphs.  Don’t expect high water.  We don’t have that.  Most of the streams in the Park are flowing below normal.  Normal is low this time of year. 

You may have some opportunities this morning to wade fish on the Clinch and Holston Rivers for trout.  Check the TVA website and see if you can work with their generation schedules.  You might even slip in a few hours on the Caney Fork.  Look at the schedule and see what you think.

The lowland rivers are flowing at or below normal in our area.  Little River at the Maryville gauge is flowing at 126 cfs.  Median flow for this date is 131 cfs.  If I were planning to float Little River today, I would go way down stream, near Rockford, below the low head dam.  Fishing should be good there for bass and bluegill. Don't get near that dam!

I noticed some good flows on the lowland rivers in Middle Tennessee yesterday. 

This week’s U.S. Drought Monitor was released Thursday.  You can see it by CLICKING HERE.  It is dry all around Tennessee.  But fairly normal here.  We have a couple of spots that are considered “Abnormally Dry” in upper East Tennessee and upper Middle Tennessee.  The rest of the State looks fine.  Kentucky is fairly dry and we have drought areas in the states to our East and South.  The Extreme and Exceptional droughts still remain in the far west states.

We have a full beginner fly fishing class today and tomorrow.  There are more fly fishing classes scheduled in September and October.  Check the Schedule by CLICKING HERE.  You will notice we are offering another nymphing class Saturday September 19th.  I’m not sure if it has filled. Don’t forget, we offer free 2-hour Beginner Fly Fishing 101 classes.  Check that out.  When you are on one of our school pages, a menu on the left will take you to many different pages on the subject.  

November ushers in Fly Tying season.  Our fly tying classes begin then.  Learn more about them by CLICKING HERE.

The Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont will hold an open house “Homecoming” on September 27th.  This will include dinner and an auction to raise money for the Institute.  CLICK HERE for more information.

You can probably tell, if you read this report, I love Fall.  I was walking around last night, just before dark, looking at all the trees on the property, that will soon be losing their leaves.  That is special at our house because we gain a view of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, that lasts all Winter, after the leaves fall.   

I can start feeding the birds in a few weeks and I’m looking forward to that.  We can’t do that now because the bears tear down our feeders.  We are seeing a lot of wild turkeys.  We see them every day.  They are waiting for us to start feeding the birds again.  They get their fair share of seed too.

I buy seed at a farm supply business in Knoxville.  I buy in bulk.  By bulk, I mean at least 200 to 300 pounds per trip.  That feed store is the only place I’ve found around here that sells white proso millet in 50 pound bags.  I also buy premium corn and black oil sunflower.  I have bought a lot of pre-mix seed that has filler,  birds won’t eat.  I think I come out ahead by buying premium seed, mixing my own, and buying 50 pound bags.

I’m in the process of overhauling our Fishpond Online Store and our Fishpondflyfishing.com website.  I’ll be working on that all weekend.  The categories will be changed and re-arranged.  I’m writing new content and changing photography.  Our website visitation keeps growing.  Our business is growing too.  Dan, Daniel and I went over some numbers yesterday, using the first 8 months category reports.  We found a couple of areas we need to improve on.  There were not many.

I guess there will be a college football game or two played today in America.  I think the NFL games have begun. Surely, people won’t let football interfere with fly fishing. 

Wow, it’s 7:18 am and I finished writing the report.  This one went by quickly.  It won’t be launched for about 30 minutes.  There is still more to be done after the report is written.

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

Byron Begley
September 12, 2015 

Respond to: byron@littleriveroutfitters.com


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