View Full Version : My Forney Creek Trip 6/5-6/7

06-08-2011, 10:41 AM
Myself and a couple of friends took our annual end of the school year backpacking trip this week. This was only my third time in the backcountry since I took up this addictive hobby less than a year ago. I had read here and there that Forney Creek was a great area to backpack as well as fish. Since my other friends don't fish, I have to find the best of both worlds. So, this area was an easy choice. We did an end to end starting at Clingman's Dome and coming out at the tunnel...15 miles over 3 days/2 nights.

Part of Forney Ridge Trail


Andrew's Bald


Got down to #68 and set up camp in the late afternoon. There are two rather strange #68 campsites...an upper one and a lower one that are about .4 mile apart. We stayed at the lower one which seems less used. It was pretty nice, not great but ok. The water at 4000 ft is very small and you could tell it hadn't rained in a while. That didn't stop me from trying. I got this fella in the pool right beside the campsite. I fished until I couldn't see the fly caught a couple more of the same in the 6 inch range. I was using a tan caddis fly. Its amazing the small little pockets you find "big" fish.


The next day was water crossing after water crossing however the area between #68 and #70 is some of the prettiest I've seen. This is where Huggins Creek and Forney meet at #69.


I have yet to take a dedicated fishing trip but when I do i want to stay here. Its a cool campsite with lots of water to explore. One of the best parts of the trip was that we didn't see a soul until we got close to #70. It seems like the upper part of this trail is seldom traveled or it could be the fact we were hiking on a Sun, Mon, Tues.

We made it down to #71 but 3 pm or so. This is one of the nicest campsites I've seen. I set up camp, got firewood, and was on the water. I manage to land a bow and a brown that afternoon. Sorry, no pictures. I was paranoid I was going to fall in with the camera b/c I busted my rear and fell in few times the day before. I'm sure it won't be the last either. The next day we hoofed it out 5 miles in 2.5 hours. Managed to see all kinds of wildlife. 3 bears, too many salamanders to count, turkey, etc. It was a good trip.

I learned a few more things as well. 1.) I need to take a pure fishing trip where I go to one campsite and stay for two days. I passed a lot of pretty water. 2.) I felt overwhelmed at times in the lower/bigger parts of Forney Creek. How do I approach this run? Walk in the water or on the bank? How can I get from here to there? Then I look down and realize walking through or right beside a run I didn't even throw a fly at. When the water is small there's not as much to choose from and I though it was a little easier. I'm sure this will improve the longer I do it. 3.) My cast is get pretty decent after almost a year. I can't wait to go back.

06-08-2011, 11:35 AM
Very nice! Thanks for sharing.

06-08-2011, 12:33 PM
Nice report and your pictures were of some interesting spots.

Can you add anything about your backpacking and water crossings. Did you have to stop and change into different shoes to cross the water or were you able to cross them with your backpacking shoes/boots?

Thanks for sharing excellent report. :biggrin:

That is a really nice Brookie

06-08-2011, 04:14 PM
I remember at least three big crossing where we had to take shoes off and two others that we rock hoped but the water was really low too. If the water was at a normal level, then I imagine most of them would be tough.

06-08-2011, 04:30 PM
When I wa sther elast month, I found that all but the first crossing below 68 were ones where you had to get wet. The ones in between 69 and 70 are close enough together that it isn't worth it in my opinion to be changing shoes everytime. I try to wear shoes that it doesn't matter if they get wet because I hate taking the pack off changing shoes putting the pack back on, crossing, taking the pack off, drying my feet off somewhat, changing shoes again etc. This gets really tedious when there are alot of crossings. Plus, I don't know if this was the case now, but when we were there, there were long stretches of the trail where you were basically walking in mud/water for a good ways.

06-08-2011, 09:28 PM
Nice work, report and photos:biggrin: I really like to spend a couple nights at most sites so I can fish up and downstream. This watershed fishes good all the way to the lake:smile:

06-09-2011, 05:36 PM
Looks like a great time! thanks for sharing...very nice pics!

06-09-2011, 07:00 PM
very nice brookie, and one of my favorite flies.....I used to carry extra shoes to hike out in while fishing. Now I use the vibram sole wading boots and neoprene footies. I have gone twelve miles in one day in these boots and my feet felt fine. Studs or sheet metal screws are a must!!! I get good traction and comfort in and out of the water. Just thought I would chime in.......thanks for the report.