September 26, 2009
Welcome to the Fishing Report. It is cloudy and warm in Townsend, Tennessee. Sometime late yesterday or last night we got some heavy rain in the Little River and Little Pigeon River watersheds. We didn't get any in the valley. Little River is rolling and it is muddy. The flow rate is currently 505 cubic feet per second. Normal for this date is 78 cfs and the lowest recorded flow on September 26th was 21 cfs in 2007. Back then Little River was not much more than a lot of scattered puddles. Trout were dying and I was telling people to fish somewhere else. I didn’t want anglers to have a bad experience here and back then there were a lot of bad experiences. So, I sent people to the tailwaters.
If you go fishing today be careful. The water is already high and we have a 100% chance for heavy rain. It is headed our way and behind that is a cold front. We’ll have lows in the 40s this week and highs in the low 70s. That will be a good thing for fishing.
If you go fishing today, try to stay out of the water as much as possible. Don’t try to wade across the larger streams or some of the small ones. You could score big if you chunk some large dark nymphs into the eddys while standing on the bank or wading out a little. There are some streams in the Park that may be lower and clear. I would try Anthony Creek or Laurel Creek along the road toward Cades Cove. The Middle and West Prongs of Little River may be fine. Watch out for rising water. They are predicting an inch of rain or more today.
We have a beginner class today and tomorrow. Since we don’t put beginners on the river when the gauge is 2.4 feet or above, tomorrow’s on-stream class will probably be cancelled.
Townsend Days festival is bringing tons of people to town. Today should be the big day. We were spared bad weather yesterday except for the fact it was hot. Today does not look so good.
I went up to the Visitors Center twice yesterday to take photographs for our planned Blount County website. I talked to a fellow for a while who was there making molasses. He is here every year but I never took the time to check out what he does.
First he has a huge horse trailer. He transports all his gear, two draft horses, a portable horse stall, a large grill and a bunch of sugar cane that he raises himself. The process involves running the sugar cane through a grinder. The grinder is attached to a long wood pole which is lashed to one of the draft horses. When he is ready to grind cane he starts feeding it into the grinder and tells his horse to walk around in the circle running the machine. When he is finished he says “whoa”. The horse stops immediately. He removes a bucket from under the grinder and pours the liquid into the cooking vat. He cooks down the liquid and skims it all day long.
I grew up on a horse farm near Richmond, Kentucky so I’m comfortable walking up to these animals and petting them. Of course I pet these draft horses for a few minutes. They are huge and they are beautiful. The ones I’ve been around are friendly too. I have a friend here who is our County Mayor. He raises draft horses. My favorite commercials on TV during the Super Bowl feature the Budweiser Clydesdales.
I toured through the antique tractor area yesterday. There were plenty of vintage tractors and farm equipment that have been completely restored. I think I got pictures of all of them for the Blount website. I found an old Ford 3N. That is the model I grew up using on our farm when I was a kid. We had a larger diesel beast but I preferred to mow with the little 3N. A lot of my mowing back then had something to do with dove hunting. I always chose to mow the wheat just before the season opened. Then my buddies and I would have the time of our lives. Raising wheat and then cutting it down before dove season is a good agriculture practice or at least that is what I was told by some very experienced farmers back then. I’m not sure why though. Maybe someone came in after dove season and baled it up for straw.
You can learn a lot about the Southern Highlanders by attending Townsend Days. Be sure to visit the Heritage Center Museum, The Visitors Center, The Railroad Museum and Nawger’s Knob Arts and Crafts Village. If you come today, bring an umbrella. Tomorrow the festivities at the Visitor’s Center and Heritage Center Museum will be over.
UPDATE 2:26 PM - IT IS RAINING VERY HARD. THE HEAVIEST RAIN IN THIS SYSTEM IS RIGHT OVER US. WE ARE UNDER A FLASH FLOOD WATCH.
IT COULD BE DANGEROUS TO BE ON ANY STREAMS IN THE SMOKIES RIGHT NOW. THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IS PREDICTING 1 TO 4 INCHES OF RAIN BY THIS EVENING. I WOULD SAY IT WILL BE CLOSER TO 4" THAN 1". STAY HOME.
NOTE: THE FLY TYING SCHOOL SCHEDULE IS NOW AVAILABE ONLINE. HERE ARE LINKS TO BEGINNER, INTERMEDIATE AND ADVANCED FLY TYING CLASSES.
Have a great day and thank you for being here with us.
September 26, 2009
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