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Gerry Romer
11-05-2007, 12:18 AM
Could have gone to Elkmont - heard about a guy from the Alcoa fire house who hit the Smokies slam there this week but the last time I looked, the water was still scary low. Could have gone to the Caney - but I think I'm gonna save that for thanksgiving week.

So that left the SoHo. It had two things going for it: 1) I could find it, and 2) it's been consistently fishing well.

http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l233/gwrom/SoHofallcolor.jpg

Wind out of the southwest made for good casting upstream but also produced a veritable flood of leaves. Nice color, but I've definitely had my fill of falling leaves. Probably another reason I opted for the SoHo today was that it's relatively flat. Nevertheless, I spent the better part of the day becoming one with the leaves. Caught more leaves than fish, for sure. But the fish I caught were beautiful. All browns... all in spawning color. Good size and healthy! Here's a sample.

http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l233/gwrom/BrowninColor.jpg

http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l233/gwrom/Browncolortwo.jpg

http://i97.photobucket.com/albums/l233/gwrom/Browndeepcolor.jpg

Once again the key was Hugh Hartsell's Rockhold Sulfur Emerger! (as imitated by my son). A killer fly! I had it dropped about 24" off a para Adams and it was the only thing they would touch (and believe me I tried everything). Not coincidentally, I was fishing the Rockhold section of Rt. 44 - just below the church :rolleyes:.

All in all, a good and productive day on a tailwater that produces hookups every time out! Who knows?? I may even fish the SoHo on Thanksgiving instead of the Caney... Just kidding, David, I'm looking forward to being schooled on the Caney!:biggrin:

Gerry

Hugh Hartsell
11-05-2007, 08:16 AM
Guys, I know that there was more, than just one report, of fishing tailwaters this weekend, but I'll just post a response right here to all of them.
My admiration is open to all of you for how you are approaching water that you may have only fished recently. I think that all of you are looking at the rivers in a more technical way. You are looking at the insects that you see hatching when you arrive on the river and trying different flies to try to match what is going on in the stream. We are in a time of change for the Fall season. You will see the larger flies dwindle down and smaller different insects take the place of the Summer ones. Continue to be aware of the smaller midges and try your hand at tying these very small flies.There is a great sense of accomplishment when you have tied and matched that little miniscule rascal that you see those trout taking, when they are dimpling the water everywhere. Again, great reports to all of you tailwater guys!. Thanks for sharing your pictures.
Hugh Hartsell---East Tn.

Gerry Romer
11-05-2007, 12:13 PM
Hugh --

Thanks for the ole pat on the back! However....

When I said I threw everything I had at 'em, I meant everything! There was no surface activity at all when I got on the water so I opted for a Rockhold Sulfur Emerger dropped about 18" - 24" off the bend of a #14 para Adams. That rig has become a sort of standby on the SoHo. I watched a guy across the river from me nymphing his way upstream with no success. When I first got there, he was a couple hundred yards below me on the river, on the opposite side, and stationary. Right after I geared up he decided to start moving upstream and fished right through the section I had kinda staked out. Nevertheless, I got my first 14" brown, he was right across from me and apparently getting skunked. He kept working his way upstream and I kept pulling browns out of the same narrow run of water. All of them on the Rockhold Emerger.

When things finally started cooling off for the Rockhold Emerger, I noticed a light hatch starting up. Mostly tiny cream midges with what looked like some tiny BWOs. So I switched up my rig. I tried black thread midges and blood midges and zebra midges - all in sizes 20, 22, and 24. Nothing, nada, zip :frown:. Then I noticed some surface activity and what appeared to me to be some "tailing" going on so I tried size 24 black flies and an imitation of Andy Kim's midge at size 18 in summer brown, dropped under a size 16 sulfur comparadun. All to no avail.

At about that point the sun was at a really strange, low angle and it made it harder to follow my line no matter which way I was casting. The really unfortunate thing about that was that the sunlight was at an angle that sort of lit up the bottom. All of a sudden, I could clearly see 10 to 20 good sized fish holding in their feeding lanes just about 20 yards upstream from me. They weren't rising, just drifting side to side and feeding on something drifting along the bottom. I tied on a size 20 rubber-legged copper john and dropped a size 20 cased caddis imitation off the bend and ran it right through their lanes. No takers.

With the light getting too weird to fish I decided to leave them alone :biggrin: .

I just wanted to let you know how - once again - the Rockhold Sulfur Emerger proved to be trout candy... this time in the Rockhold section of
the SoHo!!

Thanks again!

Gerry

MTN_TRT
11-05-2007, 03:28 PM
What is this Rockhold Sulfur Emerger exactly?

Gerry Romer
11-05-2007, 05:02 PM
This is a fly that Hugh Hartsell developed. Below is a link to an earlier thread where Hugh was kind enough to share the formula. My son saw it on Hugh's website and decided to try and copy it. Did a pretty good job of it, too. Between that and the split-backs, that's about all we fished this summer and fall on the Watauga and the South Holston.

If you go to Hugh's website, look under his page of tailwater nymphs. If memory serves, it's in the top row, third or fourth from the left.

http://littleriveroutfitters.com/forum/showthread.php?p=42802#post42802

Gerry

MTN_TRT
11-05-2007, 09:39 PM
Thank you sir!

DALEFISH
11-06-2007, 08:00 PM
wow the pics sure make me miss the soho.i think thats my favorite river.hugh, i`ve got a midge/emerger pattern i would like you to look at and try.i`ve had great success down here in alabama and 3 or 4 places i`ve fished in tennessee.i dont have a camera that will go small enough to take a picture of it but i will send you a couple of them to try.they are fun to fish and can be fished a number of ways.please e-mail me to where i can mail them.
dalefish
dale morrison
n. alabama

Hugh Hartsell
11-06-2007, 08:32 PM
Hi Dale,
Good to hear that you're having good luck with your fly. If you will go to one of my posts and click on the Website connection under my name, it will bring up my email addy and we can communicate from there. I hope that you know that staying away from East Tn. too long will cause withdrawal pains. If you will get back up to Townsend when the wintertime flytying events start taking place, Byron will probably let you show all of us how to tie that great fly. I look forward to hearing from you.
Hugh