View Full Version : Chasing brookies into TN

08-05-2007, 08:01 AM
Hello all, got an itch to go try out some new water in the northern part of tn this weekend (mainly because we wanted to use our tn licnenses!), so we struck out early yesterday morning. After having slight difficulty finding this place, we finally made it to our destination and began to go down this incredibly bumpy road, almost as if you need a 4 wheeler to get down it, huh...... After taking this road and finding a nice area where we could park, we got and began getting geared up when a gentleman rode up in his 4 wheeler and we just knew we were getting kicked off of someone's land and someone was pissed off at us. I thought we were on public land, but you never know, sometimes things like that are kinda sketchy. Turns out, we were fine, we just weren't supposed to drive down that dirt road. The fellow turned out to be real nice and seemed as if he just wanted to talk for a few minutes. Just another good ol' country boy. After having a nice conversation with him for a few minutes, we headed off to the stream and came across an interesting sign crossing a gate. (This is a dead giveaway of where we went, but you have to have been there before!)


Apparently they don't want any rainbows ruining the brookie population, but we never saw any so we didn't have to worry about it. Anyways, we hopped in and i had an ant on while shawn had a light cahill. The first hole i hooked i had a strike, set the hook, and landed the first fish of the day..........a 3" brookie! I know, you can imagine the excitement i had, i find it hard to contain myself even now, writing this report. While i was doing all this, shawn was switching out soles on his new korkers boots (which i really liked, i may get some from LRO in the future). When he got done, shawn felt the need to get a glamour shot of him and his korkers.


I know what you're thinking and i'll go ahead and answer for you, yes, he is married so he's not available. Back to fishing, things started out a little slow as i caught a few more on the ant in the next hour or so and shawn managed one. We decided to switch things up a bit, so i went nymphing with one of hugh hartsell's yellarhammer soft hackle nymphs and shawn switched to an ehc. About this time, the fishing started to pick up in a big way, except for with me. Shawn was catching fish right and left and while i was managing strikes, they just seemed ot be looking up and pounced on his fly with wreckless abandon.

The fish looks terrified in this picture, he must have known who caught him.

After getting shutout for a while and watching shawn take the lead, i switched back to a special version of ehc that i had and immediately started getting into them again. All the fish that were caught up to this point were pretty good size for a brook trout stream, with about 6-7" being the norm, some of them seemed to put up a good fight, too. This stream was very small and required lots of bow and arrow casts all day long.



I let shawn take the lead and he started fishing a small hole, (they were all small!) when i heard him say he saw a large fish. I stood back to watch as he made another cast and the fish came up and took his fly off the top! I think it scared shawn a bit because it jerked the line out of his hand and the fish went crazy, running all over that hole. He finally managed to get him in and we got some great pictures of the lovely couple together.



I'll be honest, i think both shawn and i thought it looked bigger than it does on these pictures, but pictures don't lie. We laid it next to his rod so he could measure when we got home but i don't believe he's done that yet. So don't hold your breath and we'll get back to you on the actual size of him. He sure was a fiesty critter though. After the excitement wore off, we continued upstream, pulling fish out of about every likely hole and even out of the oddball places that i am famous for fishing. Matt can atest to that, i will fish the places that most fisherman will pass up, just a habit. By this time, we realized we were getting up there in numbers and we got as close as we could, taking a low shot at it. Our goal, or mine, became to get 50 fish between the two of us in a short morning trip. The fishing never slowed down, really, and we reached our goal easily by 11 30.

To be continued.......

08-05-2007, 08:04 AM
One more big fish story, this one authored by me. I was fishing a hole while shawn was fishing on the other side of the split when i made a nice cast up against an undercut rock when................nothing. This disturbed me as i knew there was a fish there, it was just too nice of a hole. I made a couple more casts with more of the same. Feeling a little dejected since the fish was smarter than me and had won, i decided to try one last thing, so i dunked my fly in the water to get all the frog's fanny off and made another cast where my fly would barely sink below the surface. This time the fly got underneath the rock instead of floating up against it and it proved to be the trick. A nice fish came out from underneath it and i set the hook, the battle was on! This fish had quite the heart, let me tell you. He fought until he realized he was toast. Originally, i knew shawn's fish was bigger, but after looking back at the pictures he seems to think that mine was a little bigger. Nonetheless, it was a beautiful fish and one of the likes i won't forget anytime soon.



He had some beautiful orange colors on his belly, as did alot of the fish yesterday, anyone know why?? I thought they only got that when they were spawning. Anyways, that's about it. We walked our way back down teh "trail" and i'll never make the mistake of letting shawn lead the way again as we ended up in briars and all sorts of mess. We finally made it back to the truck though and luckily, it was still there. We hopped up in there with fond memories of exploring a new place, catching lots of fish, and even a couple big ones. Then our thoughts turned to that jarring road we had to go back down


Hope everyone got a chance to get out this weekend.


swipper 74
08-05-2007, 08:22 AM
I did forget to measure...the fish I am holding was approximately 9.5". I could have sworn it would have went an easy 12". Craig I remember placing yours next to my rod and they came to about the same place, so yours should have been about the same size, but FATTER!!!! You get the prize for big fish of the day!!! Nonetheless, both fish were a great size for this little stream and probably the largest brooke I've ever caught!

I got this place marked on the GPS and I'm ready to go back!!!

08-05-2007, 09:50 AM
Great pics and reports fellas. Looks like you were truly in the back of the beyond. I like the fact that you guys fish some streams that are remote and require some sweat to catch wild trout. Makes me wish I was younger, LOL. I hope to catch a few brookies myself in the Smokies next weekend.


08-05-2007, 01:15 PM
Nice work guys. That may be a place that I need to check out with you sometime Craig. Those two big ones are awesome, and they have incredible colors. When I was fishing with Ben yesterday, he missed a fish that I'm guessing was in that same size range.

By the way Craig, the "Tennis Ball Weenie" struck again yesterday. I didn't fish it very much, but did manage a nice 6-7" brookie with it. I'll keep in touch so that we can try to get out again sometime soon.

Glad you guys had such a good trip.


Gerry Romer
08-05-2007, 10:49 PM
Nice report and pics! Some real pig brookies for sure... glad to see they're still out there ;)

You did release them, didin't you??


08-06-2007, 05:27 AM
Yeah we released them, always do. Just seems a shame to me to take away such a beautiful resource.

Glad to see the tennis ball weenie is still productive matt. We'll definitely stay in touch, although i don't think i'll be able to go for awhile.