Huntin' for trout
I've never considered myself a trout "fisherman" as much as a trout "hunter". Yesterday was a good example of how and why. I took the afternoon off thinking the prospect for rising fish was looking pretty good. I entered into the park through Wears Valley around 1:00. I spent the next 2 - 3 hours "road hunting" from the sinks to the turn off to Elkmont. I stopped at all of the usual places and hopped out of my truck with my binoculars and glassed the surface of the water looking for rises. This is especially effective when you are 20 feet above the water surface. Every little disturbance becomes more pronounced when you see it through a pair of 8x30s.
I saw 3 risers. Two of them you never would have known were there with a casual glance of the naked eye. One was a rainbow tucked up next to a rock. Once about every 2 - 3 minutes she would porpoise and be gone in a flash. She has a sore lip this morning.
Where I grew up we looked down our noses at road hunters; called them lazy. Of course that was during deer season. I'm a certified road hunter now - for trout. Next time you see a guy standing next to his red Ford Ranger with a pair of Zeiss 8x30s in his hand peering down into a pool stop and say howdy. We'll hunt together.
I had the same idea you did. I was afraid I'd get run over on that road with all the stopping and such. I'd try driving slow and looking around only to see a convoy of tourists behind, not enjoying the scenery like I was!
It can be remarkably similar to hunting, good thing about it is,
your quary can swim away if you want it to...
Ain't nothing wrong with glassn' for fish...I like to do some recon as it were too, usually through a long lens of a camera, but the results the same...
Something I always like to tell folks when fishing the park for the first time is to just sit back and observe the water...don't even string up the rod yet - just be a conscietious observer...see what bugs and fish are doing, helps with giving some familiarity with the water and gives you a mental map of where the fish are and a course to take....and if nothing else, virtual fishing if you can't break out the rod..
You'd be suprised about how many big fish you'll spot this way...
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