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View Full Version : When will TVA shut off the water?


Corbo
02-07-2012, 10:34 AM
I prefer to fish tailwaters (though I fished Little River the other with no success) and it seems that TVA has done nothing but run water Everywhere for the last few weeks during daylight hours!

Is it too much to ask for "recreational flows" this early in the year?

Any ideas as to when they will let us on the water below Norris, Cherokee or South Holston?

duckypaddler
02-07-2012, 10:55 AM
Good time to be a whitewater enthusiast:biggrin:
It has been unseasonally wet lately.

You also have to be willing to grab the short windows when they appear.

On Sunday I fished Watauga for several hours in the morning, then jumped on the South Holston in the afternoon in order to get a day of fishing.

The rain has tapered in the last week so maybe you'll be getting a few more chances

Knothead
02-07-2012, 11:34 AM
Go to www.tva.gov (http://www.tva.gov) for lake and flow information. Click on Lakes and Recreation.

David Knapp
02-07-2012, 11:47 AM
Depending on the tailwater, I like to check the "operating guide" for the lake on the TVA website. Here is an example:

Go to the TVA Operating Info page for the SoHo (http://www.tva.gov/lakes/shh_r.htm). Between the "Observed Data" and "Predicted Data" sections you will find a link that says "See Operating Guide for...." (http://www.tva.gov/river/lakeinfo/op_guides/sholston.htm)For the SoHo, it appears the lake is now within the expected elevation range although just barely. Thus, I would assume we will continue to see more and more recreational schedules, particularly on weekends, as long as we don't get any more significant rain events. In the short term, it looks like the continuing wet pattern might actually ease up finally.

Spring in Tennessee often means more windows for wading as the reservoirs are allowed to rise to summer pool. Unfortunately, in a wet year we get too much rain and the tailwaters will still continue to run. It seems that Norris lake is within the expected range but still well above the flood guide meaning the Clinch will be running water for a while still. Cherokee Lake is in the extreme high side of the balancing guide but without any additional rain might start having some better windows in the next few weeks...

MadisonBoats
02-07-2012, 01:03 PM
I agree with David's philosophy for trying to get an idea on when there may be some opportunities for wading-especially for this time of year.

Also; most of the releases this time of year are guided by the computer projections and not adjusted by human operators. This starts to change when the recreational releases start and if there are any anomalies in the queue.

I expect that February will be pot marked with a few wading opportunities on the Clinch. However; many of the low flows will be extended low cfs rates and not many opportunities to wade or red-eye start-ups. This should change after the first week of March.:smile:

cockeye valdez
02-07-2012, 03:58 PM
The two engineers responsible for scheduling and monitoring the release at all t.v.a. dams spoke to the Clinch River Chapter of T.U. last fall. They explained the process and there is more human control than you think. While flood stage control is a major factor the amount of water at Chickamauga is a MAJOR-MAJOR factor. A signed agreement with Chattanooga and t.v.a. requires a minimum flow for Chattanooga and everything above has to feed that. As much as generating power that agreement binds t.v.a. hands to standards that have to be supported by the upper reservoirs

According to the two engineers, they do try to accommodate wade fishermen. They look at 4 hour increments for wading.

But the historical agreement is binding, no one knows how it came about. They do know it has to be met.
c.v.

Grannyknot
02-08-2012, 04:04 PM
Looks like somebody doesn't mind that the water is running full bore. :smile:
http://www.theriverjournal.com/journal/2012/2/6/lightning-strikestwice.html

Good job puttin the man on a hog Mike.

billyspey
02-08-2012, 09:22 PM
, when Obama was elected the drought ended,so the last 3 years have been lots of rain means less down time for TVA dams , less wadable water . a farmer told me last week,that Obama has been the farmers best friend, he brought a end to the drought.

Grumpy
02-08-2012, 11:12 PM
, when Obama was elected the drought ended,so the last 3 years have been lots of rain means less down time for TVA dams , less wadable water . a farmer told me last week,that Obama has been the farmers best friend, he brought a end to the drought.

must be that CHANGE he was talking about:mad:

Grumpy

waterwolf
02-08-2012, 11:32 PM
I guess no one noticed but the Clinch was off today, almost all day....

Wilson10
02-09-2012, 12:18 AM
Oh, I noticed! just couldn't get away from work.

BlueRaiderFan
02-09-2012, 02:47 AM
The Elk rarely generates...but there are no fish there. I use generation time to do a little map recon. Try and look for small streams or rivers you don't normally fish and go do some warmwater fishing. It's a ton of fun.

waterwolf
02-09-2012, 07:55 AM
Oh, I noticed! just couldn't get away from work.


Same here, I saw it Tuesday night when I got home from freaking NYC. Too much to do yesterday to get away. Bet it was interesting.

MadisonBoats
02-09-2012, 09:44 AM
It was a decent day on the river. It started off slow in the area I was fishing. There was little sunlight and bug activity; plus the water was still slightly stained.

I seined the river and found size 18-20 bwos-baetis, and micro midges #24 during the early AM. In hindsight; I think I should have fished a few patterns on the bottom during this time frame. The fishing picked up immensely after the noon hour and I ended up with several decent browns.

waterwolf
02-09-2012, 11:32 PM
I seined the river and found size 18-20 bwos, baetis,
This is really interesting as just today I was talking with one of the TVA benthic folks who has been doing a study on the Clinch for the past 2 years. He has basically catalogued every species of mayfly, caddis, and stonefly he found and his last sampling was done sometime around Thanksgiving.

He found the usual sulphurs, black caddis, blackflies, little black stones, a few hex, couple of light cahill's, and a couple of Quill Gordon's. He said unlike the South Holston where he finds good numbers of BWO's he has not found any in the Clinch or it's tributaries.

Not saying you are wrong Madison, just interesting that he didn't find any with his exhaustive studying and you found some yesterday.

Were they adults or nymphs? I am sure they would love to have samples as well.

Rodonthefly
02-10-2012, 09:00 AM
This is really interesting as just today I was talking with one of the TVA benthic folks who has been doing a study on the Clinch for the past 2 years. He has basically catalogued every species of mayfly, caddis, and stonefly he found and his last sampling was done sometime around Thanksgiving.

He found the usual sulphurs, black caddis, blackflies, little black stones, a few hex, couple of light cahill's, and a couple of Quill Gordon's. He said unlike the South Holston where he finds good numbers of BWO's he has not found any in the Clinch or it's tributaries.

Not saying you are wrong Madison, just interesting that he didn't find any with his exhaustive studying and you found some yesterday.

Were they adults or nymphs? I am sure they would love to have samples as well.

You mentioning hexs on the Clinch, I seen a few of these last year, the seemed to be there early in the morning only. And the **** things were big! Now with having said that, do you think there's enough in the river to matter if not do you think we will ever see more of them?

MadisonBoats
02-10-2012, 09:06 AM
This is really interesting as just today I was talking with one of the TVA benthic folks who has been doing a study on the Clinch for the past 2 years. He has basically catalogued every species of mayfly, caddis, and stonefly he found and his last sampling was done sometime around Thanksgiving.

He found the usual sulphurs, black caddis, blackflies, little black stones, a few hex, couple of light cahill's, and a couple of Quill Gordon's. He said unlike the South Holston where he finds good numbers of BWO's he has not found any in the Clinch or it's tributaries.

Not saying you are wrong Madison, just interesting that he didn't find any with his exhaustive studying and you found some yesterday.

Were they adults or nymphs? I am sure they would love to have samples as well.

Jim, actually I collected several sample jars for the day and I will review my samples to be sure I identified them correctly. I am not an entomologist; so, I may have been wrong. I will try and post some pics of them later.

PS-There were many scuds and black fly nymphs as is normal.

Wilson10
02-10-2012, 11:49 AM
You mentioning hexs on the Clinch, I seen a few of these last year, the seemed to be there early in the morning only. And the **** things were big! Now with having said that, do you think there's enough in the river to matter if not do you think we will ever see more of them?

I forgot about those Hexs we saw last year. Those things were really huge! I bet them stockers tremble when one of them things drifted over their heads. :biggrin:

Corbo
02-10-2012, 02:42 PM
I have really never seen HEX (brown or green) on a river except directly below dams where the head pond had them. Up North the HEX harch in ponds starting late june through mid-july and they are enormous... like size 8.

What color & size were they?

Some rivers get really large ISO's

waterwolf
02-10-2012, 11:22 PM
The Hexes ( intentional mispelling) have always been around on the Clinch, not in any great numbers but enough that I have seen more then one fish eat them.

I would call it an extremely sparse population, and I have seen them as the dark brown speckled spinners, and the big yellow freshly emerged adults.

Usually I have seen more of the big brown ones, and like Rod said early early in the morning in the fog. Usually late July and August. If you see one drift past you in the fog listen up and most times they get eaten before they get too far.

Madison, I would love to see what you collected, and it is possible they could show up anytime. It has always surprised me that there seems to be zero Baetis in the river. I personally have never seen them, but that doesn't mean that something doesn't exist.

I also forgot about a hatch we had for a few years in the late 90's that was some sort of mahogany dun looking mayfly. They were about a 16, maybe a 18 with slate gray wings and a redish brown body. We only saw them for a year or two, and only at 61 bridge. The hatch was super spotty and brief, but they were there for a short time. Haven't heard about any in a very long time however.

Elk riverrat
02-10-2012, 11:57 PM
The Elk rarely generates...but there are no fish there. I use generation time to do a little map recon. Try and look for small streams or rivers you don't normally fish and go do some warmwater fishing. It's a ton of fun.

I live on the bank of the Elk, been a much wetter than normal winter, TVA has run water around the clock and on quite a few weeks.

I hear people complain about the generation, these MAN MADE trout rivers we have are from storage reservoirs.

http://www.tva.com/river/lakeinfo/op_guides/timsford.htm

Corbo
02-11-2012, 09:25 AM
I saw some mahagony duns at Nance's last year so I tied some just in case.

Hex usually live in ponds; maybe there are some small ponds near the spot on the Clinch where you see them?

Kudo's to Shawn for all his nymph work; identifying them is tedious.... so much to look at on the nymph that needs to be compared to the book sata ub order to confirm one may fly from another.

Historical Bug Question:

I wonder.... before the COLD water days (meaning tailwaters) did the Clinch, SoHo and other places have the hatches they do now?

MadisonBoats
02-11-2012, 10:02 AM
Corbo,
The bugs are posted on my FB page for you guys to reference. Also; there are some videos on my YouTube Page of nymphs underwater and hatches. I still need to go through my 2 TB video drive and post some more clips.

I did not collect any of the early AM flies; but, troutmanbrook can verify what we were seining...

No Hackle
02-11-2012, 11:52 AM
Hexes will live anywhere there is silt and sand. I've seen hexes up from the lake on the lower Clinch in july I think. Don't quote me on the month. Where I'm from in Loudon we had awesome hatches of "Willow Flies " either in late June or into July. Wasn't until much later I learned they were Hexagena Limbata. An un-weighted size 8 3xl tellico or haresear works great.
Lynn

Knothead
02-11-2012, 06:50 PM
No Hackle, I have been in willow fly hatches on the lower Hiwassee. With boat lights on at night, it looked like going through a blizzard. Literally, millions of them. Always wondered what they were.

waterwolf
02-11-2012, 11:10 PM
Hexes live in marl and clay primarily which is very prevelant in all waterways. Most of the reservoirs on the TN river are loaded, and I can only assume the few on the CLinch just randomly ended up there over the years.

Troutman
02-12-2012, 11:14 AM
I've seen a few small hex hatches on the French broad also in late evenings. Those willow hatches down on watts bar and lower TN river are something spectacular though.
FB Hex

http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l114/gltroutman/SD531312.jpg

waterwolf
02-12-2012, 10:45 PM
I've seen a few small hex hatches on the French broad also in late evenings. Those willow hatches down on watts bar and lower TN river are something spectacular though.
FB Hex

http://i94.photobucket.com/albums/l114/gltroutman/SD531312.jpg

The adults like above are quite impressive, I have only seen a handful of those on the Clinch, more of the brown spinners is what I have seen over the years.

Flat Fly n
02-15-2012, 11:37 AM
Watts Bar/Willow fly boogy!
http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee78/tnflyfish/HPIM0540.jpg

http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee78/tnflyfish/HPIM0514.jpg

http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee78/tnflyfish/HPIM0527.jpg

http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee78/tnflyfish/HPIM0534-1.jpg

waterwolf
02-15-2012, 11:30 PM
Watts Bar/Willow fly boogy!
http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee78/tnflyfish/HPIM0540.jpg

http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee78/tnflyfish/HPIM0514.jpg

http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee78/tnflyfish/HPIM0527.jpg

http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee78/tnflyfish/HPIM0534-1.jpg
Rob tries hard to imitate me in that last picture, but can't quite get the same resemblance. :biggrin:

Got your text and forgot to respond, my apologies. I put that wig on so no one would recognize me.

MadisonBoats
02-22-2012, 09:34 AM
This is really interesting as just today I was talking with one of the TVA benthic folks who has been doing a study on the Clinch for the past 2 years. He has basically catalogued every species of mayfly, caddis, and stonefly he found and his last sampling was done sometime around Thanksgiving.

He found the usual sulphurs, black caddis, blackflies, little black stones, a few hex, couple of light cahill's, and a couple of Quill Gordon's. He said unlike the South Holston where he finds good numbers of BWO's he has not found any in the Clinch or it's tributaries.

Not saying you are wrong Madison, just interesting that he didn't find any with his exhaustive studying and you found some yesterday.

Were they adults or nymphs? I am sure they would love to have samples as well.

Jim,
Is this John you are referring to from TVA? If so; I found my sample container from that day underneath my back bench in my boat. The samples dried up; but, it seemed to have persevered them well. I placed them in encapsulation and on sample sheets for viewing. I have years of sample/dates if he is interested in viewing them.