Townsend, Tennessee - Fly Fishing in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, East Tennessee and Western North Carolina

Welcome to the Fishing Report.  There is a tree, just behind the store, that is full of crows.  They are all just sitting there doing nothing.  Right now we have a large crow population in Townsend.  That happens every Winter.  Occasionally we see ravens too.  The bald eagle is still in town.  People are spotting this large male again.  I saw him for the second time two days ago.  At first I thought it was a large hawk or osprey.  It turned out to be our local bald eagle.

It is overcast and 42 degrees.  We are having perfect fishing weather lately.  That will continue through the weekend.  It is warm, way warmer than normal.  For that reason, the trout in the mountain streams are active.  I just looked at the water temperature in Little River.  At 7:55 am it is 48 degrees.  These water temperatures are what would normally see in the Spring. 

The only problem is low water in the Smoky Mountains.  Little River is flowing at 75 cubic feet per second (cfs).  Median flow for this date is 203 cfs.

You will need to hide yourself from the trout to catch them.  The dark skies will help.  It will be cloudy with a slight chance for rain every day through Saturday.  Sunday should be mostly cloudy.  The fish can be found in the riffles and deeper runs.  Since it is dark outside, you might see them venture into the open.  But, they can see you so try to blend in.

Nymph fishing would be a good way to start the day.  You might also do well with dry flies, especially a Blue Wing Olive.  You might find some midges on the water.  If the trout are slurping, tie on a dry. 

This week offers us some excellent fishing conditions in East Tennessee. The tailwaters are fishing well for trout.  I know for sure, smallmouth bass fishing in the tailwaters, has been fairly good.  With these warm water conditions, smallies should be coaxed into taking a fly in the lowland rivers.  This warm weather won’t last too much longer.  Later next week it should be cold again.  We are expecting rain next Tuesday.

I am going to try to photograph and write a fly tying instructional today on how to tie a Knucklehead. I brought everything from home, all the materials and tools.  At the least, I can get a start on it, baring any major interruptions.  I think the project will take a day, maybe a long day.  I have found this fly to be one of the best two top water flies I have used for smallmouth bass.  The other is a Stealth Bomber.  They are similar but also different.  The Knucklehead does not dive and swim like a Stealth Bomber.  It is designed to float high on the water and just get nudged a little by the angler.  Smallmouth bass don’t like a lot of movement, or that’s what I’ve found during the past three years.  When this project is finished, you will be able to see it here.

I have been exchanging e-mails with Tim Holschlag.  CLICK HERE to visit his website.  He is an expert smallmouth bass fisherman, writer and video producer.  He will be here next year for a Warmwater Fly Fishing Symposium I am working on.  Tim lives in Minnesota.  He has perfected a “float n fly” technique for fly fishing, actually using a fly rod.  He told me recently he is using that technique now in the northern lakes.  Evidently, they have had a mild Fall there too.  He sent me some pictures of huge smallmouth bass he has been catching lately.  Tim writes about smallmouth bass fishing, using both a fly rod and a spinning outfit. 

I started smallmouth bass fishing with a fly rod, almost exclusively, 3 years ago.  I wanted to try something different.  I must admit, I’m hooked.  

Hey, it is raining right now.  That’s good news.  The radar does not indicate any substantial rain in the short term.  I can barely see the larger mountains right now.  Hopefully it is raining hard up there. 

I hope you are able to go fishing this week.  We probably won’t have many warm days like we are having now for a long time.  Maybe we will have a normal Winter.

We had only 3,676 visitors to our website yesterday.  That is a very low number for a weekday.  When I clicked on the pages to record the number of Fishing Report visitors I was shocked at another number I saw.  Those 3,676 people visited 48,827 pages.  Normally, a visitor views 10 pages per day on our website.  Yesterday, each of you averaged 13 pages.  That is a high number.  I really don’t know what that means.  It probably has something to do with holiday shopping.  We’ll see when we open the online orders we got during the past 18 hours.  Yesterday was a very good shopping day on our Online Store.  It’s that time of year!  Remember, we don’t charge for ground shipping.

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

Byron Begley
December 6, 2012

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