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 59 degrees this morning.  We had a brief shower early yesterday. It amounted to almost no measurable rainfall at our house. 

Little River’s flow bumped up slightly yesterday.  Flow is up from yesterday morning at 68 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.37 feet on the flow gauge.  Median flow for this date is 86 cfs.  The water temperature at 6:12 am is 63 degrees.

We need rain.  We have only had .19 inches at the airport all month.  Normal for this period is 3.13 inches.  Year to date, rainfall is down 7.28 inches from normal.

Actual flow in Little River is down 20.9% from median flow this morning. 

This is not a critical problem.  We have been getting rain in the Smokies this month.  A comparison with the airport is not valid.  But, there is no doubt, this has been a dry month and year.  Flow in Little River between September 12th and the 24th was above median flow. 

Fishing is still good, just not like we would hope. The trout are spooky, living in cramped quarters.  You can certainly catch them.  They are active.  The water is cool.  The water is just lower than normal right now.  Rain is expected Thursday night and Friday.

We almost always hope for higher water in the Fall, especially in September when it is normally low. 

I would use a dry and a dropper.  I would choose a Stimulator or Neversink Caddis for the dry.  No doubt, I would use a Green or Pink Weenie as the dropper.  I think you will catch more trout on the dropper.

Tennessee Valley Authority is dropping some of the lake levels.  They do this every Fall.  The recreation boating season is over.  It’s time to create storage capacity in the lakes as we move into a season when we get more rain. 

Norris Lake is currently at an elevation of 1006 feet.  This summer, the level hovered around 1020 feet.  Cherokee is at 1055 feet this morning.  We saw the level around 1070 feet this summer.  The level at Douglas Lake is 976 feet compared to about 990 this summer.  Fort Loudoun and Tellico are at 812.  They will drop those lakes to 810 this winter.  Melton Hill’s level is normal.

At 4:00 pm today, Wanda Taylor and I will meet Rick and Mark from Chota at the Middle Prong of the Little River for a photo and video shoot.  Wanda will be the model, I’ll run the cameras and the guys will tell us what they want.  We will probably work until near dark.  We will be getting footage and still photos of their new wader.  Frank Bryant, the President of Chota, developed a new wader with a unique suspension system, like nothing I’ve seen before. 

Describing the benefits of this wader is difficult.  You’ve got to see it in action to appreciate it’s benefit. 

With video and photos, combined with work the copywriters will do, we intend to make this wader a hit with fly fishermen.  When it’s all done, we will.

There are many new fly fishing products, that will be introduced soon.  Some are available for sale now.  Rio has a whole new lineup of fly lines that don’t stretch as much when you cast, allowing you to cast further and hook more fish.  Sage has new rods.  Orvis revamped their luggage and fishing pack line.  They have other new products including rods.  Fishpond has a lot of new product that will be available to you very soon.

This is going to be an exciting year for those who sell and buy fly fishing gear. Our small industry is having a good year.  Anglers are spending money for tackle and travel.  Our manufacturers feel confident about the future.  When that happens, we see new product.

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

Byron Begley
September 30, 2014 

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