PDA

View Full Version : Suggestions for the new guy


benintenn
09-14-2010, 11:35 PM
Over the month or so, I've been practicing my cast like a champ on a pond near my house and have taken a trip to the Hiawassee to do the same. This weekend I'm headed to the area and will attempt my first go at fishing in the park. Before going to the game on Saturday, I am planning on spending a few hours on the water.

Since I'm pretty new at it and I'm not great at casting, my expectations are low in regards to actually catching anything because I realize that approach and presentation are everything. My goals are 1.) to get some practice at fishing smaller streams where I can't back cast like at the pond and 2.) just getting out/enjoying the woods for a while.

Should I just stick to somewhere close to the road (around the Wye, Metcalf, Tremont, etc.) or would it be better to take a short hike in somewhere? I'll be staying in Seymour, so TN side is where I'll be at.

I need the practice because my friends and I are taking our annual fall break backpacking trip to Cataloochee in October. Both campsites(40 and 41) are on the water and this will be my first trip with a fly rod in my pack.

TellicoFlyfisher
09-15-2010, 05:59 AM
If you are really interested in learning, I would advise spending a few hunded dollars and get an education from a professional guide. Nor a casting education but an on-stream education. You need to learn what to cast and where to cast it and a pro can teach you more about that in a few hours than you can learn on your own in years.

Just my 2 cents worth - I don't guide and I have no connection to any guide other than to hire one occasionally when fishing in a new area.

Jim Casada
09-15-2010, 08:14 AM
benintenn--TellicoFlyfisher's advice is sound, but there's another approach which is equally effective and a lot cheaper. Find an experienced fly fisherman to act as a mentor and go fishing with him two or three times. Incidentally, you can learn a lot just by watching a master fish, and should you get someone to let you watch AND help you with tips for a day or two, that's a real gift.
Even if you do that or spend lots of money though, be aware of the fact that the learning process is a gradual and ongoing one. Asbout Horace Kephart which frost my grits, but his words "in the school of the outdoors there is no graduation day" are spot on.
Jim Casada

benintenn
09-15-2010, 08:59 AM
I have already taken a pretty in depth class. Most of the day was spent on entomology and a few hours at the end was spent on casting, about an hour in the parking lot and another hour in the water. It was essentially a private lesson because I was the only one there.

Crockett
09-15-2010, 09:10 AM
Ironically most of the time in the smokies (with the exception of some of the bigger streams like the little river) casting and entemology skills won't be a big indicator of success. Dark earth tone colors, stealthiness (especially this weekend there will prob be low water) and knowing a few basic flys to use (ehc, stimulator, dropper of greenie weenie or small nymph) and how to present gently (often very close in from behind a rock say) with a good drift will be the most useful skills.

Most of the trout up there are very hungry and very scared. Seems like they will eat almost anything and run from almost everything.

BlueRaiderFan
09-15-2010, 09:26 AM
I have already taken a pretty in depth class. Most of the day was spent on entomology and a few hours at the end was spent on casting, about an hour in the parking lot and another hour in the water. It was essentially a private lesson because I was the only one there.

In my humble opinion (most on here know a TON more than I do), you should be roll casting about 95% of the time. You should be on the trail/bank or barely in the water about 90% of the time (unless there are a lot of boulders in the stream and no access to cast from the trail etc). Try to stay low while casting. I've seen fish refuse my fly after rising, looking me in the eye, bumping the fly and never actually taking it. Had I been kneeling or crouched a bit, I would have caught those fish IMO. Oh yeah, if you don't have a ton of time, I would hit the Chimneys area. It's high and accessable by car. The water temps are cooler and the fish more eager than down low. Or, you could go up the road at Treemont and fish after it gains a little elevation. Skip the slow water at this time of year, unless there is some structure down deep (big rock etc).

Carlito
09-15-2010, 10:05 AM
All good advice here. Be sure to dress the part, think like a ninja, and try to get the most natural drift possible.

Drop a leaf in the stream and watch how it drifts along... it doesn't cast a wake, it doesn't dart about, and it doesn't hop up and down. That's what you want your fly to do. You can do that by minimizing the amount of line on the water, keeping the tip of your rod high, holding steady, and taking in line by hand as the fly drifts towards you.

Since you'll be in Seymour, it won't be super convenient to swing by LRO, but if you do stop by the shop you'll get lots of friendly advice on flies and supplies.

flyman
09-15-2010, 03:04 PM
Look behind you, and over your head before you cast
Keep your cast short
Keep as much of your fly line off the water as you can
Move then cast, don't try to cast and walk at the same time
Have fun

benintenn
09-19-2010, 09:36 AM
Thanks for all the sound advice. I got up at 5:30am Sat. morning, got ready, and hit the water just before sunrise. I fished along the road that goes to the Tremont Institute. I learned a ton! And just before I called it a day, I got my first trout on the fly rod. It was about a 7/8 in rainbow. Its amazing how the colors on them are so vivid when compared to the farm raised/stocked fish. I got the fever now.

BlueRaiderFan
09-19-2010, 10:31 AM
Way to go, Ben!

Jim Casada
09-19-2010, 10:37 AM
Ben--Great news, and I suspect you are hooked about as well as that lovely rainbow.
Jim Casada
www.jimcasadaoutdoors.com

Scott H.
09-19-2010, 11:22 PM
Great job Ben!

Nothing like catching your first Smokie Mt. wild trout!

Enjoy your lifetime of learning like the rest of us.

Scott

mattblick
09-20-2010, 03:27 PM
Congrats Ben,

I fished that stretch in early July on my way down to Atlanta. I detoured, extending my drive by an hour to get the last 2 hours of sunlight on the water before hitting the road again.

As others mentioned you will have a lifetime of learning, and in the start keep in mind casting is not catching. The roll cast serves me well in the Smokies, and maximizes the time the fly is in the water.

Shoot for site 40 (Big Hemlock) if you can, 41 allows horses overnight..

MadisonBoats
09-20-2010, 07:50 PM
Over the month or so, I've been practicing my cast like a champ on a pond near my house and have taken a trip to the Hiawassee to do the same. This weekend I'm headed to the area and will attempt my first go at fishing in the park. Before going to the game on Saturday, I am planning on spending a few hours on the water.

Since I'm pretty new at it and I'm not great at casting, my expectations are low in regards to actually catching anything because I realize that approach and presentation are everything. My goals are 1.) to get some practice at fishing smaller streams where I can't back cast like at the pond and 2.) just getting out/enjoying the woods for a while.

Should I just stick to somewhere close to the road (around the Wye, Metcalf, Tremont, etc.) or would it be better to take a short hike in somewhere? I'll be staying in Seymour, so TN side is where I'll be at.

I need the practice because my friends and I are taking our annual fall break backpacking trip to Cataloochee in October. Both campsites(40 and 41) are on the water and this will be my first trip with a fly rod in my pack.

If you would like some tips and help; you are welcome to email me for advice. You are one that I would consider taking out and helping learn new things. No money involved; I RARELY take anyone out and the ones I do; I must feel their heart is true in what they are trying to achieve. I feel that with you; so, let me know if you want to fish with me or some tips.