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View Full Version : Last Weekend - A Sampler


ijsouth
06-13-2007, 09:22 AM
The girls and I took a three-day trip up to the Smokies; as we left around 8:30 Friday night, I hoped that the recent showers had helped the streams a little. We got into Townsend around 7AM - a little too early for LRO to be open, but early enough to get this picture of the fog lifting off of the mountains:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s243/ijsouth/DSC00079.jpg

We drove back into Maryville for some breakfast and to kill some time before LRO opened; we had to get some wading boots for my eldest daughter, and because she has grown so much, we really couldn't order them online. I joked with Daniel a bit - it's a good thing y'all run a fly shop and not a marina down on the gulf - they have to open at 5AM to launch boats. Anyway, after we got her boots (and some more yellow flies), we headed for Cosby. I wasn't really sure what we would find, given the overall lack of rain...well, it was certainly low - a lot of the pockets I fished in April were bone dry. The water that was there was nice and cool - below 60.


I managed to catch 5 in about 2 hours of fishing - if you could find a decent pool, there were fish in there.

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s243/ijsouth/DSC00081.jpg

My oldest daughter had several hits, but couldn't quite get a good hook set - I can certainly sympathise - that might be the toughest part of small stream fly fishing. The twins were happy catching crawfish in a little pool - I think they got at least 5 of them, one was almost big enough to boil.

Afterward, we hiked down a trail, looking for a few streams I had seen on the map...apparently, they were farther down the trail than I thought, so we turned around and headed back to the car.


We drove back to Townsend and checked in to our hotel. Then, we headed up to Marysville for dinner - we found that Mexican place at the mall on one of our earlier trips...pretty good food, and very reasonably priced.

Sunday, we decided to drive over the mountains and fish Straight Fork. Before fishing Straight Fork itself, we tried a few casts in some pools of Hyatt Creek:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s243/ijsouth/DSC00088.jpg

Beautiful looking spots, but no takers. We wanted to fish the stretch above the bridge crossing, but someone else had the same idea and was already there. We headed back down the stream and found a nice stretch. Both my oldest daughter and I started getting strikes, but the old hookset bugaboo was in place, and neither of us was able to get a fish on. Finally, I found a nice looking run, and after 10 drifts through it, I brought this to hand:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s243/ijsouth/DSC00091.jpg

I was surprised it was a brookie; from everything I had read, they were most likely to be found further upstream. Oh well, no complaints from me! Straight Fork is a pretty stream, and it seemed to have a better flow than the streams on the Tennessee side. We will definitely fish it again, and soon. The water temps there were a shade under 63.

We grabbed something to eat in Cherokee, and headed back across the mountains. We ended up at Tremont with about 30 minutes of daylight left. We parked just a little ways above where the road turns to gravel. I had a few hits, then managed to get a nice rainbow that really taxed the 2wt I was fishing with (TFO Finesse - a really nice rod, thanks LRO). Unfortunately, I didn't get a good picture of it. However, the girls found this dead young brown trout:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s243/ijsouth/DSC00095.jpg

The next day, we packed up, visited LRO briefly for some more yellow flies, then headed for Ripley's in Gatlinburg (ugh...I hate touristy stuff, but the girls wanted to go). It was pretty neat. We then headed for Cosby again, in a quest for my oldest daughter to get her first solo fish on a fly. We went on the nature trail, and split up. I got a couple of nice hits in a pool about the size of a jaccuzi, but couldn't bring anything to hand. I caught one VERY tiny fish upstream, then we met back up. I had my oldest try that same pool...several hits, but nothing to hand. We went upstream, where I managed to get one decent sized brookie. By now, my oldest was determined to get that fish in that pool - she thought the fish was teasing us. We went back a third time, and she finally got the better of a nice 6' wild brookie. Unfortunately, we were fumbling around with the camera, and the fish decided to release itself before we could snap a picture.

I wanted to fish the lower section of Cosby, just before it leaves the park; the upper sections are just so low - I don't think I'll fish it again until some substantial rains hit...the water temps are good, but if they start to climb, those fish will be stressed. Anyway, there was a lot more water down there, and I was able to get this nice bow:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s243/ijsouth/monday009.jpg

In the meantime, this stray dog showed up, and the girls wanted to take him home:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s243/ijsouth/monday010.jpg

It looked like it hadn't had a bath in about 10 years...I finally was able to herd them back in the car, and we left for home. On the way out, on the Foothills Parkway, I got this shot of the Cosby area from above:

http://i154.photobucket.com/albums/s243/ijsouth/monday015.jpg


I won't tell you how late it was when we finally made it home, but it was worth it for my oldest to get her first fish on the fly. We'll be back soon.

mtnman2888
06-13-2007, 09:32 AM
Great report! It must really be special to you to get to spend quality time like that with your girls. Really wouldn't matter if you caught a fish at all, now would it??

I had thought about trying the cosby area out sometime soon, but if the water is that low, i may postpone a bit.

Craig

scflyfisher
06-13-2007, 10:56 AM
Nice report and pictures. It's a good thing I wasn't there with my wife when that dog showed up, I would have a fourth dog at my house as I type this. I'm also gonna have to try that area sometime after lots of good reports and pictures I seen on here.

I would say that dog was a great pyrenes. This is Bela who lives at my house. I'd say the stray dog looks pretty similar.

http://i171.photobucket.com/albums/u307/belawela/Neely009.jpg

ijsouth
06-13-2007, 11:14 AM
Mtnman: Cosby is a wonderful stream, and I've never seen anyone fishing it, even though there are usually a fair amount of campers, hikers, and picnics around. However, it is extremely low, at least from the picnic/camping area on up - you have to hunt for fishable pools. The extreme lower end of it, right at the entrance/exit does have a nice amount of water in it, and it's well-shaded by the trees - that's where the rainbow came from, and I think that normally in the lower section, that's all you will catch. I had wanted to try the lower as a sort of experiment - I thought that maybe some of the better brookies from further up might have drifted downstream in search of better water. It looks like they haven't...I did spook a trout that must have been at least 12', maybe better...a huge fish for such a small stream. Anyway, I'm waiting for a good soaking before trying the brookie sections again - I would like to also try some of the other streams that feed into Cosby - I'm always exploring.

scflyfisher - you may be right...although this dog had a purple tongue - maybe some chow in it? He really was a good-looking, friendly dog, but filthy. I hope it doesn't get run over.