Craig, Great Report!! I thought the hike up from Deep Creek was pretty bad but its only 1000' elevation change over the last two miles up to 441. The hike up/down on the Road Prong trail (from Clingmans Dome Rd) is a little tougher at about 1200' across 2 miles, but the 1.9 miles up to Hyatt ridge with over 1500' change is definitely MUCH worse (not to mention the 750' across the last mile down, then up on the way out). Well done!!
It doesn't look like it could be done as a day trip...
What were the water temps like up there? I had fished over on Road Prong last week and the water was in the low 50s and the action on dries was still pretty good. I'm wondering at what point do the Brookies stop taking dries?