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 sunny and clear this morning.  It is also colder than a well digger’s backside, 22 degrees.  Traffic was light this morning in Townsend, Tennessee.  Those who could stay home did.

The snow didn’t happen in the valley.  It did snow in the high elevations yesterday.  Cars were stranded on Newfound Gap Road.  That road is currently closed but National Park crews are working from each end trying to get the road open again.  I think ice was more of a problem than the snow.

It was 4 degrees at Mount LeConte early this morning.  They have 2 ½ inches of snow there.  I appears the only closed road is 441 which connects Gatlinburg and Cherokee.  Of course, Clingman’s Dome Road is closed and a few others due to normal seasonal planned closings. 

Little River did not benefit much from the precipitation.  Flow is currently 72 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 1.50 feet on the flow gauge.  The water temperature is a very cold 40.8 degrees.

Fishing is good in the Smoky Mountains for some anglers, mostly those targeting the brown trout.  I do not remember a year when more large browns over 20 inches have been caught.  Nineteen years ago, when we started this business, only a handful of local anglers knew how to catch these trout on a fly rod just before, during and after the spawn.  Now, more people have learned.

Lynn caught a 26” brown last week and posted it on our message board.  That was his personal park record.  He sent me a photo the next day.  The guides from Blackberry Farm were all fishing in the Park early this week.  Alex, Dan, Jeremy and Michael were all together.  Jeremy hooked and landed a huge fish.  I saw the photo yesterday.  I can’t remember the length.  I would say it was around 25” long.  Josh was in the parking lot taking off his waders last night at closing time.  He and Jewells fished yesterday.  Josh caught a hog.  I think he told me how long it was but I can’t remember the number.  It was in the 25” range. All the fish appeared to be males.  These guys don’t pester the females when they are on the nest. 

For those who just want to fish and catch a few, fishing may be slow today.  The water is cold.  The water is low and the sun will be shining all day.  Use nymphs if you go.  The trout will be spooky.

The good news is, it will be much warmer later this week. Fishing should get better.  We may get a little rain too.

I was supposed to be off today.  We did the big switchover from one digital provider to another yesterday.  I’ve been working on this since August.  We had to bury larger conduit and pull in a big cable.  New equipment has been installed.  Right now the internet and 5 of our 7 phone lines are working.  A phone expert will be here today after noon to hopefully repair the new connections.  I need to be here for that.

If you want to see some fast internet, we’ve got it right now.  I thought we had a fast internet connection at home until yesterday.

Last night I checked the speed at home.  We were getting on average about 4 megabytes per second (mbps) down and 1 mbps up.  That seems fast to me.

I checked the speed at the store just now.  We are getting 50.96 mbps down and 10.63 mbps up.  So basically, our speed is over 10 times faster here than what we have at home.  I can tell a huge difference.  When I upload the web pages I am creating now, I’m sure I will see a big change.

What we had at the shop before was a full T-1 Line for both phone and internet use.  The internet speed was 1.5 mbps up and down. That is slow by today’s standards.  

Much of my work is done on the internet.  When you spend all day doing that, 5 seconds seems like a long time to wait for something to load onto our remote server.  I don’t think I’ll be patiently waiting anymore.  Comcast is our new provider.  They have been great people to work with.  Also on the team was Eric and Randy from ASI in Maryville.  They are our computer gurus.  Another phone company called Foothills NetCom has been working with us too.  Also, we needed help from our security company, Sonitrol of Knoxville.  Everyone has been very helpful and worked well together. 

When I built this building, I personally pulled wire for 18 internet, server connections and phone ports.  Without all of this digital service we can’t not process credit cards, receive phone calls, call out, get orders online, scan products we sell, ring up your order, process gift cards or sell fishing licenses. So, being down means we are out of business.  Obviously, we are dependent on all of this digital stuff.  And that is why we backup to two hard drives every day, one mirrored instantaneously and one remote with 4th drive stored off site.

Nineteen years ago, I didn’t see all this coming to a fly shop.

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

Byron Begley
November 13, 2013
 

Respond to: byron@littleriveroutfitters.com


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