Thread: Clinch Monsters
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Old 08-17-2012, 11:18 PM
waterwolf waterwolf is offline
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 1,319


The dynamics in Cherokee Lake and the Clinch below Norris are not even remotely comparable. Cherokee is a typical reservoir by all measures. The Clinch below norris which ultimately forms Melton Hill lake is entirely different. One dip into Melton Hill lake right now would bring the obvious counter answer to your views. The cold water discharged from Norris Dam maintains its temperatures well down stream of Bull run steam plant. The stripers in Melton Hill lake are not moving to see cold water and thus moving up stream, they live in cold water year round, and only migrate to the steam plant for warm water in the winter, which is false as well. They are actually moving to pursue food (shad) which seek out the warm water discharge from Bull Run.

The Stripers in the Clinch and Melton Hill are not stocked, they are brood fish which were dumped in and have survived 100% on trout above Clinton, and on shad primarily below Clinton. The population is relatively small and virtually are very large fish.

You are also wrong about the release survival rates of stripers in the lakes now. If a fish is properly handled then survival rates are extremely high.

Another thing which is incorrect in your post is that fishing is best at periods of high flows or changing flows. Having spent a considerable time on the Clinch killing stripers I can say with confidence that the water being dead low is the absolute best time to target these fish. See the below image for evidence by the banks showing mud behind me. This fish was caught at the bottom end of Donnies at around 11 am with the water being off 11 hours, high sun, and on an 8" live rainbow. He is dead along with most of the fish that lived in that hole.

This isn't Maine, and our stripers do not act like ocean going stripers. I have fished for years below the dams, not as much as Flat Fly N, but a bunch. I have done extremely well on flies over the years normally during low water. I would fly fish on the Clinch, but my goal is eradication not sport. So I use the best method to kill the most.

Picture as promised, this fish had 100% trout in it's stomach and from my memory I believe it had 14 trout total that were fresh enough to distinguish species.

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