Townsend, Tennessee - Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  It is a beautiful overcast morning in Townsend, Tennessee.  By beautiful, I describe the angler’s sense of the word.  It looks like a great fishing day.  Traffic was very light this morning.  I doubt if I saw over 10 cars on my morning commute to the river.  Restaurant attendance was low too. 

Little River looks really good.  Flow is at normal with a computed flow of 75 cubic feet per second.  Median flow for this date is 77 degrees.  The water temperature was a rather warm 66 degrees.  We have a 60% chance for rain today then sunny skies tomorrow.  High temperatures will be in the 70’s and lows in the 50’s for a few days.  Watch tomorrow night.  The low is predicted to be 51 degrees.  I wonder if it will reach the 40’s.

Today is the official first day of Fall.  It looks like Fall.  Leaves are turning yellow and many are dropping from the trees.  What we are seeing is not even close to peak colors but the trees are indicating the approach of that event just the same.

Fishing is pretty good.  Reports vary.  My experience Wednesday that is collaborated by other people I know was, the Middle Prong was not fishing very well.  The East Prong however seems to be faring better.  That could all change and probably has.  One report from a guide almost convinced me and him that the brown trout are starting to show themselves and “pairing up” as some people call it.  It seems too early to me but you never know.  This has been a strange year weather-wise. 

The water is normal which is kind of low.  That means you need to fish the turbulent water where the trout are hiding.  And, to get a good drift you almost have to be on top of the fish, keeping your line off the water.  I was fishing with my Winston 8’ 3” rod Wednesday wishing I had a 9 footer.  So, you’ve got to stay low, especially if the sun is shining down on you.  That should not be a problem today.  Wear clothing that blends in.  Lighter tippet will probably get you more strikes.  If we get some more rain today and the water gets some color that will help conceal you and them.

For a dry fly I would pick a Elk Hair Caddis, Neversink Caddis or small Yellow Stimulator.  For a nymph I would use a Bead Head Pheasant Tail or Green Weenie. 

Yesterday I wrote about 2mm foam.  I described black foam that I purchased at a craft store.  I lamented the fact that the black foam did not float well.  And, my yellow flies made from foam I bought here floats like a cork.

I called Wapsi, our largest supplier of fly tying materials.  The receptionist put me in touch with Pat.  He is the foam expert.  He told me that closed cell foam is what they sell.  That foam floats better.  At craft stores you can buy either closed or open cell foam.  I guessed I bought open cell foam at the craft store. 

So yesterday, I opened a new shipment from Wapsi.  In it was an extra ten packages of black foam for me to tie Stealth Bombers.  Last night I cut some bodies from that foam.  I was surprised by the fact that this black foam was much easier to cut than the yellow or chartreuse foam I cut the day before.  I’m betting now this black foam will sink too. The fly doesn’t actually sink, it rides low in the surface film.   Maybe the black foam is a little different from the yellow or chartreuse foam.  This complicates my problem.

This morning I flipped through the Rainys catalog.  They sell some cross link closed cell foam.  I think I’ll order some in black and see if there is a difference.  It could be that all this stuff is exactly the same no matter where it comes from.  Maybe it all comes from the same place.  I hope that is not the case.

So, if it is, I need to find some sort of sealer or film to keep the water from saturating the foam.  I can’t believe I am getting so worked up about this.  The fish probably don’t care.

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

Byron Begley
September 23, 2011 

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Our fly fishing classes will be offered from March to October 2011.   To sign up just call the shop at 877-448-3474.  You can read more on our website in the Schools Section.  The fly fishing class schedule follows:

Saturday September 24 – Beginner Day One
Sunday September 25 – Beginner Onstream Day Two
Saturday October 8 – Beginner Day One
Saturday October 22 – Beginner Day One
Sunday October 23 – Beginner Onstream Day Two

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