I sympathize with any of you on this board that cares anything about the Clinch. Not to worry boys, they're just scouting her out. I would bet a float trip on the Caney, that the Clinch will be wiped clean (trophy fish) by this Fall 09, but the Caney is dead and not worth fishing.
Ask me how I know this? Saw it happen with my on eyes and couldn't do a **** thing about it, legally.
I feel sorry for you guys, I really do. It happened to the Clinch once before, then the crowds left, now with each picture posted, each boasting report, and each story told it chinks away at what has taken years to build back.
I just wish folks would not stroke their egos online so much, if they only knew they were hurting themselves in the end, it might not happen.
Those of you who know me (waterwolf) know I've always been somewhat anti internet. But the reality of it is, it's here to stay! Even in the "dark" ages rivers always saw increased pressure when they were fishing really good. It just happened a little slower. Now it can happen almost overnight. The shock value is much higher. As for the Clinch river "megafish" they have been there all along. Even during the down years. Possibly made better because of them. Can you say "fingerling stocking program". But they are so different you can almost count them as a different species. They certainly can't be counted on in a normal days fishing. What made the Clinch river great were the 14 to 18 in rainbows that could make a five weight cry! When the water goes away..so will the mega fish pictures. Then we'll find out how far the river has really come on the road to recovery. As for fishing for spawning trout on redds..I find it repulsive..plain and simple. I've done it mind you, but like so many other things in my life..I was wrong.
I got a 4wt ready to make a few 14"-18" rainbows weep, hope the chance is there if they ever turn the freaking water off.
You also know how I feel about fishing for spawners, it doesn't get any lower or sorrier as far as an excuse for catching a giant brown. If you want to catch one, do it like a man.
I have enjoyed the good old days of the Clinch and the not so good days, I hope we see fish in good numbers protected by the slot limit this year.
As for spawning fish, I have caught monster browns both ways, spawning and not. If you stay out of the redds and limit your impact with careful fish handling I'm ok with it to a degree. I think protecting the main spawning areas is great and if there are fish outside that area that are going to be released.....what the heck.
I think we forget that we all prefer to hunt during "spawning". Do you quit deer hunting during the rut, do you skip turkey hunting during the spring. Both of these time periods put the "trophy" animals at a disadvantage to the hunter just like brown trout spawning. The drive to reproduce makes everything more vunerable ... including me. I don't think we can say fishing redds is totally wrong when our hunting practices totally revolve around breeding seasons.
I have been guilty of this in the past, as have many others on all these forums. I am sure most of us do it with the best intentions, it just doesn't work out that way. At one time I would post the results of each and every trip whether good or bad on forums. I still give reports of many trips on my blog, but I tend to shy away from it on forums. If I do provide a brief report, it is with the intent to share useful patterns or techniques used on recent trips. Sometimes I hesitate before doing so. I spent years learning the Clinch and how to fish it, and just giving that information away just seems wrong. The flies to use are no secret, however how to fish it is another matter. I see many people who are fishing in water that is typically productive on other waters, but that isn't the case on the Clinch.
I guess one positive about the Clinch is that I know plenty of people who can't figure those fish out. Hopefully it will continue to remain a technical water that frustrates many people. Also, it may help that the Caney, SoHo, and now the Holston get so much publicity that it will take some of those people away from the Clinch. The Watauga and Hiwassee are also good fisheries, but you just rarely hear about them. Makes you wonder why....
I realize that this is a predominantly flyfishing forum, and most people on here probably practice C&R. However, I know of a couple bait flingers who read the board regularly to find out where the hot tailwater is at the time. I still think that some of the more bait-fishing oriented forums will cause more harm than this forum.
Last edited by ChemEAngler; 03-14-2009 at 01:39 PM.
Interesting comments. I think you have to agree even if you hate the hardware guys, they released these fish. Yes, they did post them on the internet but so does everybody else on this forum, including Mike Bone and Waterwolf who post pictures on their internet sites so that you will book your trips with them. So if we/they (the hardware guys)should not post pics of a great resource (trout/stripers/bass, etc), then everybody should not do it, i.e. guides, bloggers, etc. You guys didn't mind posting the big trout in other fly shops in Knoxville in the past, so why now? Is it because it not directly putting money in your pockets as it was back then?
The Clich died off for several reasons IMO, but mostly it was for the lack of a slot and enforcement. We have the slot, and hopefully we can get TWRA there to enforce if there are enough folks on the river to warrant. The Clinch was far more crowded in the 80'-90's than it is now, and bigger fish were caught then. With an enforced slot we can protect what fish are there longer than in the past. It's a put/grow and take resource at this point. Always has been and probably always will be.
Without interest in this river, LUCRO and folks like Running Wolf would be back up to the same old crap of trying to get the regs reversed. Money coming into Anderson Co. for fishing the Clinch will keep the regs there, as well as folks who like the big fish. It will even help LRO with interest in the Clinch for folks coming to the Smokies and maybe slipping up to the Clinch for a day of tailwater fishing as well. It compares to driving on the interstate. I don't like the big trucks and traffic, but I do like driving on a 4 lane at 75mph when I want to get somewhere. You can't have it both ways, and this isn't your own little private river. The Clich is 8 MILES of river, surely we can all find a 30 yard spot to fish that we like. If it gets too crowded for you to wade, buy a boat. IF you want solitude hike 2 miles back on the Little River from Elkmont. If you want the big fish, accept popularity or accept mediocrity of the way it was.
PS. IF you didn't bother writing TWRA or going to a meeting trying to get the regs changed over the past 10 years, don't bother now complaining about someone posting a great day of fishing on the Clinch.
PSS. Too crowded to have fun...notice the date
Last edited by Flat Fly n; 03-14-2009 at 04:57 PM.
I am a great admirer of spectator sports, especially on television; it keeps the riffraff off the trout streams.
I don't have a forum, and I don't post pictures of fish from around here. If you can find a picture of me with a trout or smallmouth that I posted on the internet please provide the link. Heck most of the time, folks other then those closest to me (Mike Bone, etc) Don't even know I have been on the river. And they (Mike) can usually predict when and where I will be, more times before I know I am going
Old school--> I wouldn't shoot a buck that was mounting a doe, if that is what you are asking. Maybe I would, just depends on how big he was I understand what you are saying.