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View Full Version : Sipsey River Tailwater 4/25


Plunker
04-27-2008, 08:28 PM
Been away from the Forums on business for a while, and feel like I've missed a bunch. Did get in some fishing though.

Fished the Sipsey below Smith Lake Dam (Jasper Al.) Friday morning. Hit the river around 7:30 and found a sporadic/selective rise and coaxed a few up to size 18 midges, para adams, and a small humpy...brought 6 to hand (6-8") and missed more than I'd like to admit...little quick on the trigger.

Started at the dam and worked our way down to the Honey hole and started having some success. Should have known.....a good scum line from a prolific hatch earlier came down the river and things got interesting...only to be rudely interrupted by an unannounced, unanticipated, unscheduled, and poorly timed freight train of water barrelling down the river:eek: . No horn, no planned release info. Surprise!!!
Safely crawled up the bank to wait it out to no avail...the release showed no signs of tailing off...packed up and bushwhacked our way up the hill to fish another day.

Isn't it nice to have your day ruined by a couple of air conditioners:biggrin:

TroutMaster
04-28-2008, 10:22 AM
I didn't expect the Sipsey to have trout. I am assuming they stock in the spring. Is the river cold enough to sustain hold-overs giving big trout opportunity? I am intrigued by the idea of the Sipsey.

Plunker
04-28-2008, 12:51 PM
Yep there is trout in them there waters.
Fish and wildlife release 3000 to 3500 rainbows every 60 days or so. The water temperature was a balmy 56 degrees friday, and I personally have never seen it much over 60 in August.
I do know there are holdovers but have personally never caught anything over 9". If Dalefish is out here somewhere he may have done better.

The dam is one of the tallest earthen dams east of the Mississippi River, and good, cold, Gin-Clear water is always available from the bottom of Smith lake.
Of course that brings up another subject...edumacated trout that often require 10-12' leaders to fool. Needless to say; "they see you coming!".

I don't know if I would drive Southwest from Chattanooga to fish the Sipsey when so much water is available to you in the North and east...a lot closer too.

The access is easy to moderate with a couple of good trails. The local info is excellent with Riverside Fly Shop on the road in. Brandon is a great Guy who really knows his stuff and is generous with his info. I am tacking on a link to the Outdoor Alabama info about the Sipsey below. My experience Friday was an anomaly about the release. This marks the only time I've been surprised by the water...just serves as a reminder of where you are and what you're doing. Days like that serve to keep you on your toes. Still it was a very manageable and easy exit from harms way...Got to keep your wits about you!:eek:
http://www.outdooralabama.com/fishing/freshwater/where/rivers/smithtailwaters/

ALflygirl
04-28-2008, 02:42 PM
No horn??? That's not very nice!!

Plunker is right about these fish...they are edumacated and very easily spooked!!

TroutMaster
04-28-2008, 04:24 PM
Thanks for the info. I used to live in Starkville, MS and in Birmingham and never knew trout fishing was so close.

Plunker
04-29-2008, 06:03 PM
My favorite and most aggravating story about being outsmarted by a fish...
I'm standing in the river and have been shredding the ozone layer all morning with every thing in the box...12' leader 7x Flouro...low and sneaky...the fleet was in every trout in the river would swim up to my offering...look at it flick a fin and swim off....time and time again the same thing.
This happened from a size 22 midge up to a #4 damsel fly...no go.
I sit down on a rock and watch for a while to see what's going on...about this time I see a PORTERHOUSE of a grasshopper floating down the river. This thing was a big mac compared to the other critters out and about that day.
I watched no less than 10 trout rise to it take a look and pass right on by. I watched the grasshopper float down the river out of sight:eek:

thinking you can't compete with mother nature I packed up to leave and waded ashore. I was met onshore by another gentleman who had been fishing up river of me...we exchanges complaints about the selective rise and walked together talking back to the cars. During the walk he asked...hey you didn't by chance see a grasshopper float by did you...he said he had actually caught it in his hat and tossed it into the river just to see if that would work... Some days it just don't pay.:cool: