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. At 5:20 am, the temperature is 27.1 degrees. The sky will be clear, no rain is expected and it will be cool to cold through the weekend. Highs will be in the 50’s with lows dipping in the high 20’s.  Next week will be warmer with another chance for rain closer to the weekend.

Little River is flowing at 850 cubic feet per second (cfs) or 3.05 feet on the gauge.  Median flow for this date is 214 cfs.  The water temperature is 45.7 degrees this morning.

The water levels are receding in the Smoky Mountains, just not enough, not yet. Most anglers will find the water levels too high to wade in most streams. I think you will find more reasonable flows by the weekend. The other problem is water temperature. We’ll see those numbers drop further for at least the next two or three days.

Fishing in the Smokies is just not a good option today.

When the water is high, and fishermen want to go no matter what, we usually send them to Laurel Creek, along the road to Cades Cove. Another option could be upper Abrams Creek, in and above the Cades Cove picnic area. I have not been there this morning so I don’t know if they are fishable or not. If you go, be careful. The rivers are swift. I would not go.

Tennessee Valley Authority will be generating at the secondary dams, where the tailwaters feed the Tennessee River. I checked Norris and Cherokee Dam schedules. They will be generating at both today.

Yesterday was my day off this week.  I tied a few flies and played guitar all day. If you tie, these are perfect conditions for that. If you don’t tie flies, you can learn from us. We will be holding fly tying classes all Winter.  We also hold free fly tying demonstrations on Saturdays during the cold months. Tying flies is a great way to stay involved in our sport, when fishing is slow.

We have great hiking conditions right now. You could do that. I’m sure a lot of people are. Winter is a wonderful time to hike. It’s not hot. It is comfortable. And, you can see things you normally don’t see when the trees are covered with leaves. I have read, Great Smoky Mountains National Park contains over 800 miles of hiking trails. That is about the same number of miles of fishable streams in the Park.

One of our close friends hiked every inch of every trail in the Park. She spent several years accomplishing the goal. I am so proud of her for doing that. I can’t imagine me doing it.  I probably won’t. I’m sure I won’t.

I haven’t fished every stream in the Park. There are too many. Paula and I enjoy fly fishing on lakes. We do that often. But, we have not fished every lake nearby either. There are too many. I counted the large lakes we have here, within an hour or so drive from Townsend, and I think that number is 9. I have fished many of the tailwaters near us, but not all of them. There are too many.

If you enjoy fly fishing in lakes, tailwaters, lowland rivers and mountain streams, I can’t think of a location with more opportunities, than we have here. That is why I decided to live here.

I hope you have a great day and thank you for being here with us.

Byron Begley
December 4, 2015

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