View Full Version : Cataloochee day 2

Carolina Boy
05-15-2009, 08:25 AM
So knowing the water was droping a bit I blazed outta work a little early and headed to Cataloochee for the second straight day. Got to the stream and the bgs were already coming off in large numbers, types and sizes. There were even these monster bugs that looked like green drakes. Literally the first 3 or 4 casts yielded 2 fish. I was kneeling on the bank and the fish were all around I got the slam with the prize being one of the bigger speck I have caught a real beauty would have gone 10 + inches for sure. The thunder and some rain took over and the fish went down as leaves hit the water along with rain drops. At one point I was casting to a rising fish with a elk 20 yards away feeding on the bank, don't get much better than that! See yall at troutfest.

05-15-2009, 08:54 AM
Glad you had a good trip in a short amount of time. I know the water has been high there recently. Was it difficult to fish?

I hope the river is back a bit from last year. I heard it got hit hard by the drought.

Carolina Boy
05-15-2009, 09:28 AM
It was looking great! As full as I have seen it in several years. It wasn't tough fishing, I took most trout from the slowere pool sections, casting from the bank and outta the water where possible. The water got a little bump from the rain last night you can check the levels on this web site http://waterdata.usgs.gov/nwis/uv?03460000
The was such a wonderful variety of bugs hatching, if you can go today I would cuz more rain is coming tomorrow and it will be up a good bit and probably diffiult then.

05-15-2009, 10:27 AM
Sounds like a good trip. Years ago, the Cataloochee was my favorite stream even though it was a five hour trip to get there. Wouldn't happen to have a pic of that 10 incher would you? That's a nice fish.

Carolina Boy
05-15-2009, 10:42 AM
I wish i don't usually take a camera with me on the rivers, at least not when I am alone plus I am apt to crawl around and sometimes even fall, don't really wanna dunk my digi camera, might have to go pick up another disposable one. I don't really like handeling em any more than I have to. Sure was a pretty fish, I actually got all 3 species in the first run of the afternoon and within a short time, the bow was an absolute acrobat, and the brown was the biggest fish of the day, really cool, the biger fish are moving and hungry.

05-15-2009, 10:54 AM
the bigger fish are moving and hungry.

I fished the WPLP yesterday afternoon/evening and half of the fish I caught were 8" and above (with several pushing 10"). Two weeks ago in the same spots I was catching mostly 4-6" fish.

The fish also looked healthier than I remember; football shaped with bright cheeks and flanks. Thankfully the drought appears to be over!

05-15-2009, 10:59 AM

I put my camera in a plastic bag if I'm going to be in the thick stuff and sinch the strap as small as it will go around my neck. Question: Is Cataloochee a special permit area, or can I just go with my state license? How far up the trail should I go from the visitor center of trail head? Which forks do you fish?



Carolina Boy
05-15-2009, 11:42 AM
No it is park water you tn or nc license will be fine. I was in a time crunch cuz I went over after work. i was fishing what is known as Palmer Creek. I am actually friends with Gugger Palmer one of the last people born & raised in "The Plamer House' he is 92 I think, good frineds with my Grandma, makes that place special for me? When you head down into the Valley you will go from a dirt road back to a paved one. About 2.5 miles down you will cross a bridge and there is a sign for the Palmer house and group camping area make that right hand turn, the Palmer house is on the left river on the right, drive down to steel bridge fish all the way back up. Really pretty water with elk all around, talk about fishing where you feel you are being watched!

05-15-2009, 12:10 PM
That was one of my favorite stretches of water. There used to be a big pool in front of the house that always seem to have a couple of trout rising. I tried to hit that right at dusk. Lovely stream.

Carolina Boy
05-15-2009, 01:26 PM
Did exactly what you are talkin bout both nights! Special place

05-15-2009, 01:38 PM

Thanks for the help. I always like to fish new areas of the park. I may hit that one up on day two after I go up Treemont way.

05-15-2009, 03:10 PM
Just to clarify, it sounded like you were calling the stretch of creek in front of the Palmer house, Palmer Creek. That is actually Cataloochee Creek. Palmer Creek runs past the horse camp. You may already know that, it just didn't read that way.

Carolina Boy
05-15-2009, 03:14 PM
Worth it especially this year now that we actually have water again. You could also hit up Big Creek on the way over by I-40 Be careful it gets snaky on Big creek in the summer but it is way cool, If you like bouldering where you stand in a pool in front of a 3 foot or so waterfall and cast to almost eye level upper pool, then climb up repeat! I like it cuz you get a cool visual perspective as you are eye level with rising fish.

fly fisherman DK
05-15-2009, 05:55 PM
carolina boy,

I had a few questions about the Cataloochee area because my dad, cousin, and I are going to make that the second part in a week long fishing trip we are taking this summer.

1.Is it common to see the elk in the fields even throughout the summer months?
2.Are rainbows and browns regular catches around campsite 39 because we were planning on baking some trout one night while in the backcountry.
3.Finally, is there a lot of fishing pressure there during the summer months.

Daniel Koeppel

05-15-2009, 10:01 PM

I hit WPLP today and mine were of the smaller variety. I was there morning and early afternoon but, as I recall, you said that later in the day a couple of weeks ago, the bigger fish came out late in the afternoon. Got a dozen with three brookies. It was nice to not have to struggle so much for a change.

Coming over the mountain from the Laurel Falls trailhead, I was greeted with this early morning scene of our mountains.

05-16-2009, 09:29 AM
Charlie B, Awesome picture!! Sure do wish we lived A LOT closer than we do! It would be amazing to be able to fish that area without the 7 hour drive to do so! Maybe we can make a quick trip this summer, but it looks like the beach will win out this year over the mountains:frown: Must keep the family happy!! Maybe if we spend more time over there, the mountains might just edge out the beach for the next few years! Good fishing to everyone this year! flyguys

Carolina Boy
05-17-2009, 10:04 PM
OK sorry i said Palmer creek, ment Palmer house, I guess, was kinda giddy bout the days fishing, and the naty light :smile: when I wrote it, so yes Cataloochee Creek! So elk talk, they are pretty much all over especially down the road past the campground and into the area just past the ranger house. They are often viewed at dusk moving around. That said I was casting in the creek while one was 20 yards away feeding, and three of his buddies were in the field behind me both days. My take on the fish there is that they are particularly spooky, I think this is actually a result of the lack of pressure. They do not see the tubers and swimmers and kids and so on. So I kinda think that they are easier to get spooky. That said they pretty much had to forget safety this past week cuz the water droped & they had to eat. I just was at the right place right time. Great place to be whenever you can.

fly fisherman DK
05-18-2009, 05:38 PM
Thanks Carolina Boy!!!

05-23-2009, 09:55 AM
Carolinaboy, if you don't mind, were you catching them on dries or nymphs? Any more details appreciated as I have fished Cat a few times but with little success and am trying to improve. PM me if necessary.
Thanks in advance,

Carolina Boy
05-26-2009, 08:53 AM
NO worries man, I was using dryflies only the last couple times I fished it. There was so much surface activity, I cut off the dropper and stayed on top the whole time. It is the ususal suspects Caddis patterns, green drake pattern worked I fish a good deal with Klinkhammers, they work, On the two nights I was there anything would have worked i think, just don't slop around in the water, stay on the banks and low and you will be all set...Oh and don't where a white T-shirt, say a few fellows not having much luck that way? haha